Employers can assert an affirmative defense against sexual harassment by creating a reasonable system for individuals to report the conduct and by proving that the victim failed to use the system. When assessing the reasonableness of your organization’s complaint system, it doesn’t matter so much that it makes sense to you — it needs to make sense to your employee population. One population that you need to be especially mindful of is minors. For many, this is their first paying job. A recent ruling highlights the dangers of assuming your company’s sexual harassment policy is adequate.
Case in point: A 16-year-old restaurant worker repeatedly complained to shift supervisors and the assistant manager that her general manager made sexually suggestive comments to her and rubbed up against her in an attempt to kiss her. Getting nowhere, she asked the assistant manager for a phone number that she could call to lodge ...(register to read more)