“Sexual harassment” is a term that we have all seen quite frequently in the news in recent years, particularly with regard to this type of conduct occurring in workplaces throughout the country. New Jersey is not immune to this issue. But, even though it may seem like your employer holds your livelihood and the financial stability of your family in it hands, it is important to remember that under state and federal law, you have protections as an employee. And that includes protection against sexual harassment in the workplace.
So, what might constitute “sexual harassment” in the workplace? Well, for starters, it has to be some type of behavior that goes beyond simple one-off jokes and comments, or isolated incidents. Even though those types of situations may make employees feel uncomfortable and might even change their views of their employer and the managers at their workplace, under the law, it usually takes more than that to rise to the level of actual “sexual harassment.”
The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission notes that, in most cases, a sexual harassment claim needs to be backed up by claims of severe or frequent conduct—so severe or frequent, in fact, that the conduct creates a “hostile” work environment for the employee. However, every situation is unique, which is why it is important to have the facts of your situation evaluated.
Taking a stand
At our law firm, we know that employees who have experienced sexual harassment in the workplace are feeling angry and threatened. We do our best to evaluate the facts of each potential claim to try to determine an appropriate path forward. For more information, please visit the employment law overview section of our law firm’s website.