At Tand and Associates we help employers and employees with sexual harassment claims. However, we know it is best when employers are able to prevent these claims from happening all together. As a form of gender discrimination, sexual harassment has serious consequences and is banned under federal, state, and local laws. Employers need to know what is required of them in order to make solid efforts to prevent sexual harassment in the workplace. Tand and Associates is here to help guide businesses through this process.
How Can My Business Protect Itself from Sexual Harassment Claims?
In order to protect your business from sexual harassment claims, it is best to understand what is expected of you as an employer in the first place and to know the relevant law. Employers have a fundamental responsibility to work towards preventing sexual harassment in the workplace and to respond to sexual harassment if and when it occurs. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has laid out some recommended practices in order to help businesses better handle sexual harassment issues. Some of these practices include:
- Create and implement sexual harassment policies: The EEOC recommends businesses developing their own policies and procedures regarding sexual harassment claims and how they will be handled. It is encouraged that businesses be open about sexual harassment issues that can arise in the workplace, keeping employees informed of their rights, and creating a system where employees will feel comfortable raising their concerns. Reporting procedures should always be developed with the victim in mind.
- Posting federal Anti-Discrimination Laws: This is actually required for a many businesses. Generally speaking, employers with 15 or more employees will be subject to the federal laws regarding sexual harassment. These employers are required to to post a notice which details federal anti-discrimination laws, including gender discrimination like sexual harassment.
- Keep thorough employment records: Federal law mandates that employers keep employment records for at least one year and payroll records for three years. This is a good practice even for those employers who may not be subject to federal laws regarding sexual harassment. In the event that a sexual harassment claim is filed, employers should maintain any records relating to the incident in question until the claim has been handled to resolution.
Helping Fight Sexual Harassment in the Workplace.
Everyone benefits when affirmative steps are taken to promote a work environment free from sexual harassment. Know the law regarding sexual harassment and take the recommend steps to prevent it in the workplace and to make a safe space for any employee to report potential violations. At Tand and Associates, we represent businesses and employees. We’ve seen both sides of sexual harassment claims and have seen plenty of ways things could have been handled better such as being proactive on the issues surrounding sexual harassment in the workplace. Contact Tand and Associates P.C. today and work to protect your business and your employees.