Sexual Harassment in the Workplace Essay

2298 Words 10 Pages
Sexual harassment is an important issue in every business; if left unattended it could cost companies millions in damages. In 1980 the Supreme Court ruled that sexual harassment was a violation of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. From 1978 to 1980, sexual harassment cases brought against companies cost them $189 million. This number rose to $267 million from 1985-1987. Damages are just measured only by numbers. Sexual harassment can cause harm to a company's image, reputation, customers, as well as their revenue.

In earlier years, women use to think in order to get along in the workplace they must "go with the flow" of whatever may happen in the office. Co-workers often looked negatively upon people who stuck up for themselves.
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A procedure should be included as to how to report claims of sexual harassment. The plan needs to also contain penalties for violators and protection for the victims. Employers should raise the subject, express strong disapproval, inform employees of their rights to raise the issue, and develop methods to sensitize all concerned.

All policies are bound to fail if a company does not enforce them quickly, consistently, and aggressively. Members of management must take sexual harassment very seriously. Employees look up to management and if they see them joking about sexual harassment then they will too. Once a complaint if brought forward it is necessary for the business to be prompt and confidential in the investigation into the incident. Every claim must be looked into no matter hoe trivial they might sound. Every investigation must be prompted and thorough. They must also be documented. Everyone involved with the investigation must preserve the information obtained. If word gets out about the incident at hand the victim and/or harasser may face humiliation or the source might not be trusted. This may constitute, in future cases, that the victim may not report a case of sexual harassment.

Employers must make sure that employees know what sexual harassment is, how to deal with it, and where to turn if the problem does not stop. Surveys and

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