Most people have a general idea of what constitutes sexual harassment, but they don’t always realize that same-sex sexual harassment is also an issue.
Both federal and state laws prohibit same-sex sexual harassment. Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 is the federal law that prohibits such actions. California’s Fair Employment and Housing Act is the state law that forbids the same.
A worker doesn’t need to touch another to face sexually charged treatment accusations. Data from the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) shows that undesired sexual advances can come in many shapes and forms, including belittling, embarrassment, humiliation, and horseplay. Any sexually oriented gestures, conversations, or acts may constitute sexual harassment as well.
Some examples of some unwanted advances that workers received from their employers that they reported to the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) include:
While many workers who endure this same-sex treatment report it to their supervisors, few think of same-sex issues like harassment and thus don’t investigate these allegations. This leads some workers to file claims with the state or federal government. Some of them, unfortunately, leave their jobs without taking any action.
If you’ve suffered sexual harassment, it doesn’t matter what gender is involved. You have every right to demand a safe working environment. If your appeals to your employer have gone unheard, it may be time to speak to an attorney.