Experiencing sexual harassment at work is distressing and damaging. If your employer in California is the one who is engaging in this illegal behavior, you may feel trapped and unsure about what to do.
Knowing your rights and the appropriate actions to take can give you the confidence to tackle this problem head-on.
Document the harassment
A crucial first step is to document the harassment. Take note of each incident, including the date, time, location and the people involved. Also, record any actions you took and how the incident affected your work. This information could serve as vital evidence should you need to take further action.
Report to human resources
If your company has a human resources department, report the harassment to them. They should have procedures in place to deal with such situations. Present all the evidence you collected and follow their guidance.
Lodge a complaint with the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing
If your employer fails to address the issue or if the harassment continues, you can file a complaint with the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing. This department enforces laws that protect employees from sexual harassment and other forms of discrimination.
Contact the equal employment opportunity commission
You can also reach out to the federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. They enforce laws that prohibit sexual harassment at the federal level. You can file a charge of discrimination and they may conduct an investigation.
Consider changing jobs
If the harassment does not stop and you do not see a resolution, you might want to consider looking for another job. No job is worth enduring continued harassment and the associated stress and emotional toll.
If your California employer will not stop sexually harassing you, take steps to protect yourself. You have the right to work in an environment free from sexual harassment. Stand up for your rights and do not let fear or uncertainty deter you from seeking a resolution.