New York City sexual harassment attorneys understand how difficult it can be when you are the victim of harassment or discrimination in the workplace. Perhaps you have been passed over for a promotion because of your gender. Maybe you have been the unwilling recipient of persistent sexual advances from a supervisor. Have you been forced to listen to one inappropriate joke after another in the office?
Each of these situations may amount to sexual harassment and, when you are the victim, it can be difficult to get through the day. You may become emotional, upset and even frightened. You don’t want to lose your job or make things worse. What can a victim do?
If you are being sexually harassed at work, speaking with experienced New York City sexual harassment lawyers at Leeds Brown is a wise step to take. You are not alone in this. Our attorneys have decades of experience helping victims of sexual harassment and discrimination and are here to help you as well.
We have the right mix of experience, compassion, and dedication that you want on your side when you are considering a sexual harassment lawsuit. With our team based approach and proven record of success, you will be in good hands with Leeds Brown. Our goal is to put our clients’ needs first and vigorously advocate to secure the desired outcome. Contact us today to discuss your sexual harassment claim.
There are essentially two forms of sexual harassment, and both are forms of discrimination. Quid pro quo sexual harassment exists when a supervisor conditions an employment decision on some sort of sexual favor. For example, your boss tells you that you will receive a big raise if you sleep with her. Or, your supervisor tells you that you will be fired or lose your prime territory unless you sleep with him. The promise of something positive or threat of something negative are each a form of quid pro quo sexual harassment.
Hostile work environment sexual harassment is different. The perpetrator of the harassment does not have to be a supervisor or person in a position of authority. When a person or group of people act in a manner so pervasive as to make the workplace hostile to the victim, a hostile work environment exists.
For example, your co-worker corners you in your cubicle every day and rubs up against you, blocking your ability to exit. Or, your co-worker frequently tells you offensive jokes that make you uncomfortable. Another example may be when a co-worker persistently asks you out despite your repeated requests that he or she stop. The occasional off-color joke or teasing is not sexual harassment. The behavior must create a hostile work environment.
While speaking to an attorney about workplace sexual harassment can help you every step of the way, there are some additional actions to consider taking in order to protect your rights and preserve evidence. Whether you think you are a victim of quid-pro-quo harassment or hostile work environment, consider the following suggestions:
Speak Up – Tell the person harassing or offending you to stop. This may be more difficult in a quid pro quo situation since it involves your superior and often occurs after just one act. But, in a hostile work environment situation, the first thing you may try to do is let the person know that their conduct is making you uncomfortable. He or she may not realize that the behavior is offensive.
Follow Office Procedure – Many businesses have a policy or procedure in place that can guide you in the event you are experiencing sexual harassment. If your employer has such a policy, follow it. The policy may designate a particular person to speak to or impose a time limit on the filing of complaints. If there is no policy, consider reporting the conduct to your supervisor. If your supervisor is the person doing the harassing, report it to your supervisor’s supervisor.
Make sure you keep records related to the harassment including the times, dates, and notes on all conversations regarding the sexual harassment.
File Administrative Charge – If you can’t resolve the problem or wish to pursue the matter you will need to file an administrative charge with the appropriate governmental agency. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission is the federal agency who handles discrimination claims under Title VII. There are New York State and New York City agencies who handle sexual harassment claims under local anti-discrimination laws.
It is up to the agency to investigate your claim and attempt to negotiate a resolution with your employer. If the agency thinks that you have a valid harassment claim, they will issue a “right to sue” letter. You need this letter before you can file a civil lawsuit against your employer.
File Lawsuit – Once you receive a right to sue letter from the appropriate agency, you may file a lawsuit in court to recover monetary damages for any injuries you suffered because of the sexual harassment. The injuries need not be physical. You may be entitled to:
Speaking with the New York sexual harassment attorneys at Leeds Brown can help you understand the best way to proceed with your hostile environment or quid pro quo claim. You can depend on us for the strength and support you sometimes need to address sexual harassment in the workplace.
Leeds Brown has decades of experience helping employees file sexual harassment and other discrimination claims in New York City. Our track record of successful verdicts and awards speaks for itself. Let us put our team of dedicated lawyers to work for you. Call us today at 1-800-585-4658 to discuss your New York City sexual harassment claim.