KPWH FIGHTS AGAINST SEXUAL HARASSMENT
No worker deserves to be offended or discriminated against in the workplace. Unfortunately, many — especially women — experience a hostile work environment with sexual innuendo, outright sexual advances, and discrimination in advancement. That’s not fair. And it’s illegal.
Kator, Parks, Weiser & Harris, PLLC, has extensive experience in defending against workplace offenses and litigating complaints of sexual harassment in the workplace, including federal sexual harassment. We’ve helped workers throughout the U.S. and the world get relief and compensation. If you are a victim of harassment, contact us today for a free consultation. We’d like to help.
Cathy Harris is the Chair of KPWH’s sexual harassment practice section. Ms. Harris has successfully litigated numerous sex harassment cases, including securing an award of $300,000 in compensatory damages for a client (the highest amount permitted by federal law in that case).
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Below are answers to some questions you may have about taking action to protect yourself from sexual harassment or discrimination in the federal workplace
Q. What exactly is sexual harassment?
A. Sex harassment includes unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical harassment of a sexual nature.
Q. Is the person doing the harassing always a supervisor?
A. Not always. It can be an agent of the employer, a supervisor in another department, a co-worker, even a non-employee. And men can be victims also.
Q. Does my job have to be adversely affected to have a case?
A. No, you don’t have to suffer job loss, lack of promotion or other career-impairing acts to be a victim.
Q. My employer makes me feel like it’s my fault. Is that normal?
A. It is not unusual at all for you to feel that way. Many guilty employers use that tactic to avoid prosecution and to protect their own jobs. You are not the guilty person. The harasser is.
Q. What is my role when harassment occurs and what is my employer’s role?
A. It is the employer’s role to prevent and stop harassment of all employees. Victims must report occurrences to their supervisor or HR manager, and the employer must investigate complaints and correct the offense.
Q. What are some examples of sexual harassment?
A. Sexual harassment takes many forms:
Sexist words or comments (“baby doll”; “sweetie”)
Sexist behavior (unwanted touching, staring at your body, blocking your path)
Sexual criminal conduct
Q. What should I do if I experience sexual harassment in the federal workplace?
A. Say NO clearly.
Report the harassment to your employer.
Document the harassment with dates, names, location, description of the offense.
Review your Employee Handbook and ask to see your personnel file.
Contact an EEO counselor at your federal agency, or initiate a discrimination complaint with the EEOC or your state civil rights agency.
DO NOT BE AFRAID TO SEEK LEGAL HELP. CONTACT Kator, Parks, Weiser & Harris, PLLC.
Q. Are conversations confidential?
A. Yes, all conversations are confidential and protected by attorney/client privilege. Kator, Parks, Weiser & Harris, PLLC, will not take any action on your case without your approval.