Sexual harassment in the workplace
Sexual harassment at work is defined as a behaviour which involves making unwanted sexual advances. This could include making crude remarks or gestures of a sexual or obscene nature.
Sexual harassment at work is classed as unlawful under the Equality Act 2010, so when sexual harassment happens in the workplace, you are entitled to claim compensation for your suffering.
Different types of behaviour can be classed as sexual harassment at work. Harassment can occur in the form of:
- Written notes
- Spoken words
- Emails or other electronic communication methods
- Physical behaviour
- ‘Jokes and pranks’
Harassment and sexual harassment have often been passed off as ‘a joke’. The victim of sexual harassment at work can be made to feel that taking offence at it is an overreaction.
If jokes or pranks are unwanted and of a sexual nature, this is classed as sexual harassment. If you consider it to be sexual harassment there’s a good chance the law will see it that way too.
In some cases it might feel difficult to determine whether an experience is considered sexual harassment or not. If you are unsure, our expert solicitors can give you confidential, personalised advice.
What actions you will need to take if you have been subjected to sexual harassment at work
If you been a victim of sexual harassment at work, we can give you expert advice and support, however you need to take the first steps.
If you wish to bring forward a claim for compensation, either now or in the future, you need to try and collect as much evidence as possible:
- Keep copies of any written notes, emails, texts or other electronic messages as screenshots and saved conversations can be vital to supporting your case
- Keep a diary of any incidents, no matter how minor they may seem
- Make a note of all instances where you stated that the behaviour is unwanted, even if this may seem clear. If the same thing is being experienced by someone else at your workplace, make a note of this too
In most situations we recommend that you aim to resolve the matter with your manager or employer first, unless they are involved or if you feel you are unable or unsafe to do so. Keep a clear record of all communication with your manager or employer in regard to the sexual harassment at work and make sure you receive confirmation of any meetings, and their outcomes, in writing.
If you need tailored employment law advice for sexual harassment at work
If the sexual harassment at work matter can’t be resolved internally through the company’s grievance procedure, or you were not satisfied with the way that process went, you can contact our expert employment law solicitors.
With respect and recognition, we will help you get the compensation you deserve.
By taking on the heavy lifting, we’ll make sure there is little intrusion into your life as possible. We want to help you be able to move past your experience and look forward to the future of your career without having to worry.
Your employer’s responsibilities
An employer can be held responsible in a sexual harassment at work case if their employee is subjected to sexual harassment at their place of work.
Employers are accountable for the safety of staff during hours of work and on work property. If another employee was harassing you, and your employer failed to act, they have failed to fulfil their duty of care.
If sexual harassment took place somewhere seen as an extension of your workplace, it will likely still fall under the responsibility of your employer and a tribunal claim can be made. This might be the case for example, if you are at an overnight work conference and a colleague sexually harasses you.
Not sure if you can make a sexual harassment at work claim?
If you’ve been sexually harassed at work, you might be left feeling lonely and confused about how to handle the situation or even how to seek advice.
Sexual harassment can be terribly upsetting and distressing. Many victims doubt themselves and worry they might have ‘misread’ certain behaviour. They may feel unsure about their rights or even blame themselves. If this sounds like you, we can help.
Legal guidance and support with your sexual harassment at work claim
Start your sexual harassment in the workplace claim today
If you are unsure whether what you experienced is classed as sexual harassment at work, speak to one of our supportive employment law solicitors for confidential and personalised advice today.
We are here for you and will be by your side to give you the advice and support you need. We will be in your corner throughout the entire process helping to make sure you get the compensation you deserve.
We understand that dealing with sexual harassment is tough, and can affect your work and home life hugely. We want to help you put it behind you and move onwards and upwards.
Starting the process couldn’t be more simple!
- Contact us Get in touch however suits you best and arrange a consulation with one of our solicitors
- Meet an expert You’ll meet the expert solicitor assigned to your case and discuss all the necessary details
- Authorise Once we’ve got all the details of your case and you’re happy to proceed, just give us the go-ahead
- We get to work It’s time for us to get to work! We’ll set up your file on our system and get to work right away
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