California has been facing the requirement of state-mandated sexual harassment training in the private sector workplace. Although other states are also introducing sexual harassment training in the private sector, however, the major states are requiring these training programs at the government level. Our aim here is to demonstrate the basic requirements, required documents, lawsuits, and applicability in different issues in California. This enables to provide training to the human resource management to deal with sexual harassment cases in the private and government sector.
The employers at the workplace must define the approach to prevent harassment. The focus of reducing sexual harassment in California is based on different approaches including extreme caution to reduce the risk of lawsuits, fallout, penalties and agency charges. The California employment law is not only required for the training of employees on workplace rights and sexual harassment issues however it is arguably the best practice to prevent the legal risk associated with sexual harassment.
Do you want to protect yourself from sexual harassment at the workplace? Are you silently experiencing this miserable situation? Just break the silence. Our legal services would support you to protect yourself and punish the responsible person. This blog is sub-divided into different headings that would help you to understand the actual meaning of sexual harassment and identify the possible options for filing a lawsuit.
What is sexual harassment in the workplace in California?
In California state, sexual harassment laws have defined. Under the state laws, and verbal, physical, or visual conduct that support the pro quo harassment or hostile work environment would be treated as sexual harassment. Defining these conditions, any act falls in the category of pro quo harassment if it benefits an employee by any kind of sexual favours. However, a hostile work environment relates to the behaviour of an employer or an employee at a workplace which could cause offence or abuse in any terms to the other colleagues and subordinates. Although, such conduct can be caused or sometimes triggered by gender identities or unethical workplace practices. As per the definition of pro quo harassment and hostile work environment any act fulfilling these conditions would be treated as the conduct of sexual harassment at the workplace consequently organizational management would be liable to fairly decide the matter under specified laws and workplace acts.
According to the legislation following civil right acts define that the sexual harassment in the workplace is illegal,
a. California’s Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA)
b. Title 7 of the Civil Right Act of 1964
c. Amendment AB2053 (effective Jan 1, 2015) required all California employers are subjected to the training required to prevent abusive conduct.
d. FEHA regulation (effective Apr 1, 2016) were revised to expand the protection of employees and to clarify the training requirements.
Workplace Sexual Harassment Lawsuit
Workplace sexual harassment is an illegal act in California. But still, it is uncontrollable for the organizations due to several reasons. Many people around us go through such bad experiences and remain silent to protect their jobs or sometimes in fear of powerful entities. Is it a reasonable decision? Definitely, no. In a country like the United States, several legal actions and lawful support systems are available to the employees to raise their voices if someone attempts sexual harassment conduct at the workplace. By filing a lawsuit against the employer or any other powerful entity at the workplace the victims can protect themselves. However, a major drawback is limited information and knowledge of employees regarding such lawsuit options. The only solution to this issue is to grab the services of a professional lawyer to defend your case or file a lawsuit against the responsible entities.
How Lawyers Can Help in Filing the Claim
If a car broke down, we go to the car mechanic. If we want to buy a property, we first engage the services of a real estate agent. If we get pain, we visit a doctor. Why do not we solve all these issues and problems at home by ourselves? Because we believe a field expert can understand the genuine issue and provide the best solution. Similarly, a lawyer is the most recommended person if an employee is seeking fair judgment on his/her sexual harassment experiences at the workplace. Engaging the services of a lawyer a client can support an employee in the following ways.
I) If an employee is retaliated against for a harassment case filing, then an experienced attorney can evaluate this case and support you to speak in court.
II) Lawyers will support your case with their previous experiences and knowledge of relevant laws and sections.
Time Required to File Harassment Claim
A person seeking to file a lawsuit for the sexual harassment case (by any way of conduct such as pro quo harassment and hostile work environment) has a deadline. The California state government has extended this duration from 1 year to 3 years. Is not it a good decision of the state government? As per the implementation of this law, employees are recommended to file a charge in DFEH (Department of Fair Employment Housing”. At this phase, employees are advised to ensure support from the lawyers to strongly represent their case and any kind of discomfort experienced at the workplace which could fall in the category of hostile work environment or pro quo harassment. This also can be less if the action is against the state government.
This is not the only effort by the state government, but they are also providing assurance for legal protection and safety of the employees alleging sexual harassment. The AB9 implementation in the laws of California would surely reduce such social issues in the state. We hope to have a better and safe workplace in the coming year in California. No one should be afraid of hostile work environment.