Georgia has been working as an Executive Assistant for five years and enjoyed her job until she experienced an inappropriate conversation with her boss. The CEO of the company asked her to accompany him to his family beach house on the weekend while his wife is away. He said he always wanted to see Georgia in a bathing suit. He complimented her on her good looks and said she would look great in a bikini. If she accepted his offer, he would give her a hefty raise and promotion. If she refused, she should seek new employment. His comments made Georgia very uncomfortable and uncertain about her future. She felt intimidated, humiliated, and disrespected. What can Georgia do? Georgia has several legal rights and options.
Many people find themselves in inappropriate office dilemmas, such as Georgia in the fictional story. Her case is an example of sexual harassment. Unfortunately, it a real situation and a problem for many employees in the workplace today. It can happen to women and men. According to a Cosmopolitan survey of 2,235 female employees, one in three women has experienced some form of sexual harassment in the workplace.
Sexual harassment is defined as unwelcome sexual advances or requests for sexual favors and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature. Sexual harassment in the workplace is often made as a condition of an individual’s employment. The conduct creates an intimidating or offensive environment for the victim. The acceptance or refusal of such conduct may affect an individual’s employment and advancement with the company.
Federal and New York Laws Protect Victims
According to U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), sexual harassment is a form of sex discrimination that violates Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. This is a federal law that prohibits employers from discriminating against employees on the basis of sex, race, color, national origin, and religion. If you believe you are a victim of sexual harassment in the workplace, you can file a charge of employment discrimination with the EEOC.
New York State’s Human Rights Law and the New York City Human Rights Law also prohibit sexual harassment in the workplace. Recently, the New York State Assembly passed the Women’s Equity Act, which prohibits sexual harassment in all workplaces regardless of the number of employees. Prior to this law, only workplaces with four or more employees were protected. According to the NYS Division of Human Rights over 60% of New York State employers employ less than four employees. Under this new law, all workers are now protected in New York.
Sexual harassment happens in many different industries and professions, from farmworkers to the theatre. Broadway actors in New York are lobbying for better ways to address sexual harassment and misconduct behind the stage.
Get Legal Help and Advice
If you believe you are a victim of sexual harassment or feel an employer has violated your rights, please contact the Law Offices of Joseph & Norinsberg. Their lawyers will provide an honest assessment of the strengths and weaknesses of your case. If your case merits going to court, the attorneys at the Law Offices of Joseph & Norinsberg will work diligently to help you find the justice you deserve. Contact the Law Offices of Joseph & Norinsberg at (212) JUSTICE or at firstname.lastname@example.org for a free initial consultation.