San Diego Sexual Harassment Lawyers
Steadfastly pursuing closure for California sexual harassment victims
The leering looks, the off-handed comments about the way your top fits, asking you to stay later than any of your coworkers. This is where sexual harassment begins, and you feel like your rights in the workplace end if you want to keep your job. The San Diego sexual harassment attorneys at Taylor & Ring want to stand with you to hold your harasser responsible for the damage and pain he or she has inflicted on you and your life.
What constitutes sexual harassment?
Sexual harassment can take many forms. The perpetrator or victim can be male or female. The perpetrator can harass the same gender or opposite gender. He or she can be your supervisor, a supervisor in another department, an agent of your employer, a colleague, or a non-employee.
There are as many ways to sexual harass someone as there are forms of communication. Regardless of the method used, when it’s unwanted attention it makes focusing on your job more difficult, the stress comes home with you and seeps into your home life, and it affects your overall mental wellbeing. Some of the more prevalent sexually harassing behavior is:
- Making inappropriate comments about your outfit, or physical appearance
- Making sexual jokes or innuendoes
- Creating rumors about your sexual life or orientation
- Intimidation, including threats of job loss for shunning sexual overtures
- Physically preventing you from leaving his or her presence
- Offensive touching of your person or clothing
- Leering at your body
- Making sexually explicit gestures or facial expressions
- Stalking behavior
- Sending emails containing sexual content
- Online sexual bullying
Anyone who is a subordinate is at a higher risk for experiencing sexual harassment. Statistics can be surprising. According to the EEOC, out of 10,000 work place sexual harassment claims reported in 2017, male victims made 1,650 of those complaints.
Teenagers are significantly at risk for being sexually harassed at work due to their tender ages, inexperience, and likely field of employment being the hospitality and retail industries due to the flexible scheduling that can be easily worked around attending school. Unfortunately, because of the high turnover in these industries and need to maintain staff, qualifications for hiring can be laxer resulting in employment of people who pose greater risk of engaging in sexual harassment and violence.
Your San Diego employer has a duty to safeguard you from sexual harassment
Regardless of the perceived incentive to the perpetrator, abusive behavior in the workplace should not be tolerated, and your employer owes you a duty to ensure that you can properly function to do your job in a safe, harassment-free environment.
Workplace sexual harassment is illegal under both state and federal law. Employers and the employee who committed the crime can both be held liable under these laws. Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, applies to victims of sexual harassment who work for companies with 15 or more employees, and have been terminated from their employment. Under this act, employees have 180 days from the date of discharge to file a charge with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”).
The law also provides added protection to the complaining employee and any witnesses who participate in an investigation of such grievances from retaliation in the form of demotion, loss of pay, discharge from employment, and other detrimental acts that come in the face of making a sexual harassment complaint. Under the statute of limitations in California, employees typically have one year to file a lawsuit for sexual harassment.
Some of the damages a sexual harassment victim could be compensated for are:
- Retirement fund contributions
- Payment to equate compensation lost from demotion or withholding a promotion
- Future projected earnings
- Pain and suffering
- Punitive damages
Protecting yourself from workplace sexual harassment in San Diego
Laws are in place to protect you and your harasser should be held accountable, along with any employer who failed to take appropriate action to protect you. Immediate steps you should take are:
- Keeping a journal detailing each incident of harassment.
- Clearly making your harasser and supervisor aware that the behavior is unwelcome and needs to stop.
- Requesting a copy of your personnel file.
- Officially reporting the incident to your human resources department in compliance with existing company policy. If no policy has been created, inform your supervisor, department manager, and human resources director in writing of what has taken place.
- File a charge with the EEOC at www.eeoc.gov or 1-800-669-4000, and the Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH), at www.dfeh.ca.gov or 1-800-8841684.
You deserve to feel safe and be treated with respect in your place of work. Often times sexual harassment is a gateway to the escalation of violent behavior. What starts out as uncomfortable comments can lead to a natural progression to improper contact, and eventual sexual assault. The San Diego sexual harassment lawyers of Taylor & Ring are here to help you take back control.
Fighting to restore the honor of San Diego sexual harassment victims
You need to know that you are not alone in this. At Taylor & Ring, we want to be there to help you fight back. Bringing a civil suit against your harasser, and others who neglected to properly correct the reprehensible behavior, will show your perpetrator that you’re no longer his or her victim. You deserve compensation for the daily anguish you have been forced to endure. Talk to one of our sexual harassment lawyers today at 310-776-6390 or complete our contact form to schedule a consultation.