Sexual harassment does not have to be tolerated in the workplace and it is important for victims to understand. There are different types of sexual harassment recognized under the law that victims should be familiar with.
Quid pro quo sexual harassment
Quid pro quo sexual harassment is a type of sexual harassment prohibited under the law. It occurs when a supervisor, or someone in a position of power, requests or demands sex, sexual favors or a sexual relationship from the employee in exchange for not firing or otherwise taking adverse action against the employee. Examples of adverse actions in addition to firing can include demotions, pay decreases, changes or limiting the employee’s hours or refusing to grant the employee a pay raise or promotion. Favors offered in exchange for the sexual requests can include pay increases and promotions.
Hostile work environment
Hostile work environment is a type of sexual harassment also prohibited under the law. It occurs when the sexual or offensive behaviors are so pervasive that they create a hostile work environment. Objectionable behaviors can include sexually suggestive or demeaning jokes, photographs, jokes or threats. Workers facing a hostile work environment each day can feel threatened, intimidated and unable to do their jobs.
Victims of sexual harassment should understand that it is prohibited in the workplace and also understand their rights. Workers do not have to put up with sexual harassment as they go to their job each day to earn a living to support themselves and their family. Employment laws protect employees in a variety of different situations from abuses at work.