Media attention on sexual harassment, particularly in the workplace, has put increased pressure on human resources departments in companies throughout the country to ensure that they follow sexual harassment laws, and that they have effective policies in place for handling and investigating sexual harassment claims.
Human Resources to Change Strategies
Communications move faster today than they ever have before. Previously, a sexual harassment complaint would be made to human resources departments, who would then take a few weeks to investigate the claim and determine how to resolve it. This process could take a few weeks or longer to resolve, and it would remain private from start to finish.
Today, employees take to social media to discuss their experiences in the workplace. It can be difficult for a human resources worker to determine the best way to investigate a claim that starts on an employee’s private social media page, or when a complaint arises in an anonymous chat program. Many individuals feel embarrassed about discussing their experiences with human resources, or they feel that accusing a colleague or supervisor of sexual harassment will jeopardize their job security.
To make it easier for employees to bring their harassment to their employer’s attention, a new website, AllVoices, will launch early next year. This product will obtain information from employees through a series of structured questions about their experience, then provide employers with aggregated anonymous data to use in sexual harassment investigations.
How Pressure Changes Company Actions
While a human resources department does not want to respond too slowly to a sexual harassment allegation, it can also do more harm than good for the company and the parties involved in the complaint by reacting too quickly. They are not giving themselves the necessary amount of time to thoroughly investigate and understand the allegation. Simply terminating the alleged harasser can have immense backlash and potentially open the company to a wrongful termination claim by the terminated party. In some ways, it is easier to make snap decisions than it was in the past. An employee with screenshots and other electronic evidence of sexual harassment has a solid claim that can be extremely difficult to refute.
Montgomery County Sexual Harassment Lawyers at Sidney L. Gold & Associates, P.C. Represent Employees Pursuing Sexual Harassment Claims
Sexual harassment in the workplace is a complicated topic. If you are concerned that you are facing sexual harassment in your workplace or that you are working in a hostile work environment where harassment is an everyday occurrence, fill out our online form or call 215-569-1999 to schedule your initial consultation with one of the Montgomery County sexual harassment lawyers at Sidney L. Gold & Associates, P.C. Our office is in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and we work with clients from the surrounding areas.