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Intersectional Approach to Sexual Harassment

July 1st, 2019
sexual harassment

Most companies have a sexual harassment policy to protect employees and create a safer workplace. Often, these policies reflect the stereotype of a senior perpetrator harassing a subordinate victim. Sexual harassment is often about power, and the act of harassment does not always fit the stereotype. The standard view of sexual harassment fails to account for the intersection of race and gender. An intersectional approach to sexual harassment in the workplace can help companies protect all employees equally.

The Harvard Business Review found that 31 percent of Asian women who reported harassment in the workplace said that the perpetrator was a junior colleague. For black women, nearly one in four reported that they were harassed by another women. Moreover, men may be less inclined to report harassment, leaving them subject to a hostile workplace and feeling like they have no recourse.

Companies can address these disparities and ensure that all employees are protected by instituting fully confidential reporting combined with confidential surveying of employees’ perception of bias. New technology facilitates this by allowing victims to log encrypted, time-stamped accounts of assault, with the option to report only if someone else reports harassment by the same perpetrator. This helps mitigate the he said/she said scenario that often results in punishing the victims. Updated sexual harassment training, which accounts for the intersection of race and gender, can also help combat the problem of harassment in the workplace.

If you experienced sexual harassment, you do not have to feel undervalued or misunderstood at work any longer, regardless of your race or gender. Contact a Philadelphia sexual harassment lawyer at The Gold Law Firm P.C. today. We will review the details of your case and help you obtain the justice you deserve. Call us at 215-569-1999 or complete our online form for a free claim assessment. With offices in Philadelphia and Pennsauken, New Jersey, we serve clients throughout Bucks County, Chester County, Delaware County, Montgomery County, and South Jersey.

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