California workers may know that sexual harassment is forbidden in the workplace by both federal and state law. Yet, many may be unaware of what defines sexual harassment. Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 considers it an act of discrimination. In California, the Fair Employment and Housing Act protects employees from sexual or gender harassment in the workplace as well as harassment due to childbirth, pregnancy or other gender-specific medical conditions.
All workers should have the right to feel comfortable in their workplace. This means that employees should be able to work in an environment free from sexual harassment and other inappropriate behaviors. If this is not the case, a party may wish to speak to a superior about the situation in hopes of seeing improvement. However, if a harassment complaint is ignored, an individual may wish to take legal action.
Being treated in an inappropriate manner sexually while in the workplace may make a person feel uncomfortable and abused. Sexual harassment is illegal and can cause the victim to suffer psychological issues for years following the incident. A victim of this type of behavior in California has the right to try to hold the offending employer accountable.
Typical standards for keeping a job often include being able to make an established quota, follow directions and arrive at work on time. People legally should not be required to put up with sexual harassment in order to claim or keep a job. However, this type of behavior takes place every day at workplaces across the U.S. If a California resident is a victim of hostile work environment due to workplace sexual harassment, he or she can take legal action.
A trial date has been set for a member of the Los Angeles City Council who is facing allegations of workplace sexual harassment. Beginning on Nov. 10, a court will hear from both sides regarding the charges he is facing. The 45-year-old councilman is facing accusations from an aide who suggests that he subjected her to a continuous barrage of retaliatory behavior causing a hostile work environment in response to her refusal to perform sexual activities with him. The woman's attorney suggested that he would call 20 witnesses to the stand in the case.
The City of San Diego approved the use of a $250,000 disbursement for a sexual harassment case against former mayor Bob Filner on Feb. 10. The ex mayor's former communications director agreed to the settlement on Feb. 7. If the two parties hadn't settled, they would have had to go to court in February 2015. The city employee claimed that the former mayor used sexually explicit language and tried to initiate sexual conduct while she worked for him. Two other women filed pending sexual harassment suits against the ex-mayor, who resigned in Aug. 2013 after almost nine months in office.
California viewers of Black Entertainment Television may be familiar with the gender-bending look of its host B. Scott. However, leaked emails from BET seem to show evidence of what some may consider workplace discrimination as company executives express concern over his "looking like a woman" while hosting on their network. For his part, Scott characterizes his gender identity as nonconforming, although he was born male.
National Football League fans from California to Florida have recently been forced to consider whether locker room hazing is a harmless football rite of passage or something more serious. In a story that has received widespread coverage, Miami Dolphins player Richie Incognito has been accused of helping to create a hostile work environment involving racial epithets and threats that may or may not have been a misguided effort to welcome a new player onto the team. Even Incognito admitted he might have gone too far with teammate Jonathan Martin.
On Nov. 7, the U.S. Senate passed the Employment Nondiscrimination Act. This bill provides a federal level of protection which mirrors laws already in effect for workers in California and 16 other states. The purpose of the bill is to eliminate employment discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity. Supporters of the bill feel that workplace discrimination can contribute a to hostile work environment and is wrong.
A California woman who worked in the office of a Los Angeles city councilman has filed a sexual harassment suit against his office, claiming that the councilman's chief of staff made a number of inappropriate sexual jokes at her expense and that such behavior was rampant throughout the office. She also accused the councilman of making several sexual jokes himself.