Have you been working from home lately? If so, like many other companies in this nation, your employer may be rapidly making adjustments to the way that they do business, particularly when it comes to holding conferences and meetings. They may also have quickly set up an online forum that helps you and your co-workers communicate better outside of formal meetings.
One of the most frequently suggested solutions to the problem of sexual harassment in the workplace is to move more women into positions of authority. As supervisors, managers and executives, women might be in a better position to move a company's culture in a direction that won't allow such things to happen as easily.
Former Senator Tony Mendoza may have resigned his position in 2018 after a flurry of accusations involving sexual harassment, but his unfortunate legacy is still hanging over California. Another six-figure settlement has been made related to the senator -- but it's the taxpayers who have to pick up the bill, not the former senator.
One of the reasons that sexual harassers thrive in the workplace is that there's never been any particular effort to track them. Indeed, since many employers are reluctant to admit that sexual harassment occurred behind their doors, many harassers can quietly move on to other positions in other companies -- where new potential victims await.
As of Jan. 1, 2020, California was set to ban forced arbitration in employment contracts -- a move that was designed to keep sexual harassment victims from being forced to settle and stay silent after being abused. Critics have long said that forced arbitration clauses can end up punishing the victims for fighting back. They also tend to protect the sexual harasser since a company can often settle a claim quickly and quietly -- without any risk to its reputation.
When you think of "pregnancy discrimination," you may think of those days, long ago, when companies actually forbid female employees from getting pregnant. Anyone who announced they were expecting (or started to show) was summarily dismissed from their position.
If it surprises you that the #MeToo movement is already a decade old, you probably aren't alone. The movement -- which is designed both to allow victims to show solidarity and to provoke beneficial changes in the workplace -- only developed some of its biggest momenta a couple of years ago.
Have you ever heard anyone express skepticism about the damage done by workplace sexual harassment? For decades, the idea of a lecherous boss chasing a harried secretary around a desk was played for laughs -- as if a little sexual harassment was just part of being an attractive human being in the workforce.
You've been putting up with sexual harassment for weeks or months now from a co-worker or supervisor. You've tried politely ignoring the harasser as well as directly asking them to stop. You've made your boundaries clear, but the message doesn't seem to be getting through.
"Well, what was she wearing to work?" "How did she talk to him?" "Did she lead him on?" "Did she smile a lot?"