An Overview of Workplace Harassment in California

Employees in California have the rights to be free from harassment at the workplace. This article describes the overview of workplace harassment and how to secure yourself from such harassments.

Workplace harassments can come in many ways arising from verbal and physical harassment. Deciding if a line has been crossed can be exceptionally complicated because an incident that may not be excessively troublesome to one individual might be devastating to another. The development of communication methods, for example, social media, messaging, texting and applications, progressively give harassers more approaches to track and contact their victims.

Workplace harassment is secured under federal law and California law. The majority workplace harassments claims are filed in California State courts under the Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA).

Experienced harassment lawyers in Los Angeles, California can review individual situations who have faced harassment at the workplace so that they can determine if one has a legal claim for harassment or not.

What Does Harassment at Work Mean?

The California Government Code defines harassments as an employee being harassed “in view of race, color, religious faith, national origin, and so forth

Breaking down the law further, an employee experiences unwanted conduct or discrimination from an employer or coworker dependent on a secured class. In particular, the unwelcomed conduct or discrimination is based on at least one or more of the accompanying categories:

  • • Race
  • • Religious faith
  • • Physical disability
  • • Color
  • • National origin
  • • Age (older than 39)
  • • Mental disability
  • • Medical condition
  • • Marital status
  • • Sex
  • • Gender
  • • Ancestry
  • • Sexual attitude
  • • Gender identity
  • • Gender expression
  • • Genetic information and
  • • Military or veteran status

California Government Code names these seventeen (17) secured traits, making it illegal for an individual to be harassed by an employer or fellow worker because of at least one of these traits. Despite the fact that it isn’t valid for all situations, most of the time if the unwanted conduct happens only once, it won’t qualify as harassment. Obviously, there are particular kinds of conduct where one incident will be sufficient to cross the threshold of harassment. In case of such threshold harassment, you can immediately hire sexual harassment attorney in Los Angeles, California so that your complaint is in writing and the harasser doesn’t continue to harass you in the future.

Are there various types of harassment?

Yes, there are various types of harassment. Harassments can be of a sexual or physical, wherein the harasser may threaten its subject to perform or bear a sexual act or conduct. Yet, this isn’t the only way of harassment that can happen. Harassments can likewise refer to activities or conduct that lead to the weakening of your mental, emotional and physiological self too.

A significant differentiation is that workplace harassment doesn’t mean only sexual harassment as it can also include harassment between two individuals of a similar sex. The harasser can be a boss, an indirect supervisor, a colleague in your department, or an altogether another one.

How to Report Workplace Harassment?

In the event that you have been harassed at work, your initial step should be documenting the incident. Here’s the list of what you have to do next:

  • Confront the harasser, and tell that person to stop. In any case, do it only if you feel safe doing it.
  • Check your employer’s anti-harassment policy. See which conduct is outright restricted by the employer. Figure out how you can report the incident.
  • File a formal complaint against the harasser with your employer.
  • Report the conduct to a manager or supervisor, and request their assistance.

Your boss can’t retaliate against you for

  • Reporting harassment,
  • Participating in a harassment investigation or lawsuit, or
  • Opposing harassment.

 

Conclusion

Dealing with harassment isn’t simple. Yet, if it’s hurting your job, it’s time to take a lead. Speak to EEOC, and file a charge of discrimination. Contact your sexual harassment lawyer and understand what options are available. You may have the reason for suing your employer for emotional distress and workplace harassment.

What’s also possible is that by speaking up you may pressurize the employer to clean up their deteriorating reputation.

We all need a work environment free from harassment and it’s possible. It starts with knowing your rights and responsibilities. The initial step is to know your harassment policies and procedures in the organization you are working. Learn about acceptable and prohibited conduct.

These blogs are meant purely for educational purposes. They contain only general information about legal matters. They are not legal advice, and should not be treated as such. If you have any specific questions about any legal matter you should consult with an attorney.

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