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When Is Touching Inappropriate in the Workplace?

November 17th, 2022
Philadelphia Sexual Harassment Lawyers at The Gold Law Firm P.C. Uphold the Rights of Harassed Workers.

Inappropriate touching in the workplace occurs whenever a coworker, manager, or a supervisor initiates unwanted contact. Any unwanted touching that occurs could be deemed inappropriate. The touching might occur through a job task, like helping to move a heavy piece of equipment or assisting with a work uniform. Unless there is a legitimate reason for the touching, it should not occur.

Whenever touching occurs that is unwanted and creates a hostile work environment, it is inappropriate. Depending on the type of touching that is being done, it might even be a crime.

Inappropriate Touching of a Sexual Nature

Whenever a coworker, manager, or employer touches you in a manner that is sexual or otherwise flirtatious in nature, it is a type of sexual harassment. Many times, unwanted touching of a sexual nature is overt, including groping, touching the genitals, or forced kissing.

Any type of touching that is unwelcome and sexual qualifies as sexual harassment. It also might rise to the level of sexual assault depending on the location and severity of the touching.

What Should You Do if You Are Experiencing Workplace Sexual Harassment?

If you experience inappropriate touching of any kind while at work, your employer has a duty of care to put a stop to it. You should start by telling whoever does the inappropriate touching to stop it and emphasize that you do not approve of it. Unfortunately, you might have many good reasons to not confront the offending person directly. Fear of an assault and increased workplace hostility are two common reasons people might hesitate to say anything to the offender.

If the inappropriate touching continues or you experience any kind of retaliation, you should notify your immediate supervisor. Your supervisor should take reasonable steps to cease the offending behavior without you suffering any repercussions.

If your supervisor does nothing, then you should obtain the help of an experienced sexual harassment lawyer. Your lawyer can help you to file a well-supported complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and your respective state agency that oversees workplace discrimination.

The EEOC or your respective state agency, or both, might agree that a hostile work environment exists and that sexual harassment is occurring. In some cases, you could file a legal complaint and hold your employer liable if they fail to stop the sexual harassment.

It is important to speak with a lawyer as soon as possible, as the legal process can be complex, and you may face time restraints.

Philadelphia Sexual Harassment Lawyers at The Gold Law Firm P.C. Uphold the Rights of Harassed Workers

If you are experiencing sexual harassment at your work, you can get legal help from one of our experienced Philadelphia sexual harassment lawyers at The Gold Law Firm P.C. Call us at 215-569-1999 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation. We have offices in Philadelphia and Pennsauken, New Jersey, and we serve clients in South Jersey and Southeastern Pennsylvania, including Wilkes-Barre, Scranton, Northeast Philadelphia, Bucks County, Chester County, Delaware County, Lehigh County, and Montgomery County.

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