Discrimination and Harassment

Discrimination and harassment claims often increase in a down economy. Learn the proper techniques for conducing proper workplace harassment investigations, providing sexual harassment training, and more to reduce claims of employment discrimination and preventing sexual harassment in the workplace.

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The EEOC has filed its first two lawsuits against private-sector employers based on the contention that bias against gay people is a form of sex discrimination.
Employers have the right to set reasonable behavioral expectations for employees. This, of course, includes expecting that employees won’t sexually, or otherwise, harass employees. Feel free to make your anti-harassment policy as strict as you want.
As a manager, it’s your responsibility to ensure that none of your people behave in a way that diminishes the sense of mutual respect and dignity in your unit. That’s what insensitive racial remarks do.

If managers somehow collude to discriminate against an employee, that may be grounds for a conspiracy lawsuit. It happened in a recent case.

It usually happens like this: An employee comes to HR complaining that her boss said something inappropriate—maybe it was a sexually explicit joke, racial slur or offensive comment about someone’s religion. Then the supervisor gets angry at the employee for complaining and retaliates.

The EEOC handled 89,385 charges of workplace discrimination in fiscal year 2015.

A Los Angeles jury determined that Bikram Choudhury—founder of the “hot” movement that has swept the yoga world since the 1970s—harassed and retaliated against an employee after she resisted his sexual advances.

When an employee reports sexual harassment that may place her in physical danger, act immediately. Do everything you can to keep the complaining employee safe. Only then should you start investigating.
Here’s something to remember if you find that an employee’s sexual harassment allegations have been swept under the rug, unresolved and ignored.
Some terminated employees think that all they need to do to build a winning lawsuit is recall an offensive comment a supervisor once made. That’s not usually true.
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