Businesses in Florida and across the country have no doubt been grappling with how best to address the seemingly unending number of sexual misconduct cases that are being reported. The issue of fair treatment and a truly harassment-free workplace is one that spans all companies regardless of industry or size. The existing laws appear to have been ineffective in eliminating the problem and that has made some assert that a new approach is needed when it comes to training on this topic.
If asked to define "sexual harassment," you (and most in Fort Lauderdale) would like limit it to unwanted actions directed at a co-worker. Yet harassment regarding your own relationship may also fall into this category (particularly if you are engaged in an office romance). While you (and your romantic partner) should not be subjected to rude or disparaging comments, it is also important to recognize the need to handle office relationships delicately. One question that we here at The Law Office of Michelle Cohen Levy, P.A. often field is whether or not people are required to report to their employers when they enter into a personal relationship with a co-worker.
There is a good chance workers in Florida who have experienced, or are currently experiencing, sexual harassment do not report it. Even after the #metoo movement, there are many women and men who still will not come forward. The reasons for this vary, but they are common, and it is hard to know what it will take for more to report this behavior.
Workplace harassment of a sexual nature is universally frowned up. However, when it comes to dating co-workers, opinions tend to be a bit murkier. It’s natural that you form bonds with the people you work with, and some employees take these bonds to another level by entering into romantic relationships with co-workers. The Balance offers the following advice in this case.
We have covered many different aspects of sexual harassment on our blog and sadly, this continues to remain a problem in workspaces across the country. In Florida, many people are subjected to sexual harassment while they are trying to perform their job and some may be too afraid to step forward, whether they worry about possible repercussions or think that nobody will take them seriously. Moreover, some people who subject others to sexual harassment deny that any wrongdoing took place, which can make these cases especially difficult. That said, victims deserve justice and should be relentless when it comes to holding offenders accountable.
According to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the number of sexual harassment complaints rose 12 percent during its last fiscal year, the first rise in complaint levels in 10 years. The number of sexual harassment lawsuits the agency filed was also up by 50 percent over the previous fiscal year. The timing of these increases suggests that the #MeToo movement has had an influence.
CBS's chief executive Les Moonves has resigned after six more women brought forward allegations of past sexual misconduct against the veteran television executive. Previously, six other women made allegations, resulting in an investigation at CBS.
According to a survey of 250 men and 250 women employed full time in the U.S., more than a third of all respondents -- 35 percent -- said they had experienced some form of harassment in the workplace. Among women, the number was 41 percent. About half of those who had experienced harassment said it was gender-based.
When bookseller Barnes & Noble fired its CEO Demos Parneros last month, the only explanation was that he had been let go for violating company policy. Now, Parneros has filed a lawsuit accusing the company of defamation and breach of contract. That led B&N to publicly clarify that the firing was partly in response to a sexual harassment complaint. Parneros claims the alleged sexual harassment complaint was pretextual, and that he had really been fired without warning after a deal to sell the bookseller fell through. He is seeking $4 million in severance, along with equity and damages.
After the #MeToo movement began, there came a new hashtag: #AskMoreofHim. The idea was to urge men in positions of power to take a more active role in preventing gender discrimination and sexual harassment in the workplace. Will they? Or might it cost them to do so?