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Here's what you need to know about sexual harassment

The subjugation of one person by another sounds like something that should not be part of a civilized society. Sadly, those who desire to have power over another person often still do so. In the workplace, some co-workers, supervisors and managers use sexual harassment as their tool here in Texas and elsewhere.

Victims are often made to feel as though their jobs depend on giving in to or ignoring demands for sexual favors, unwanted sexual advances or other physical or verbal sexual conduct. The victim's work environment becomes hostile and intolerable, and the harassment continues despite the objections of the victim. Most people recognize two separate types of sexual harassment.

The first is quid pro quo, in which sexual favors are demanded in exchange for something such as a promotion or pay raise. Hostile environment sexual harassment occurs when another employee of the company uses threats, intimidation or abuse against the victim. The harasser could be a co-worker or someone with authority over the victim. In either case, the victim does not have to take such harassment.

Most companies have policies against sexual harassment, and a victim should feel free to go to his or her superiors in order to get the unwanted behavior to stop. Unfortunately, when the abuser, and possibly others, hear about the complaint, retaliation becomes a possibility. Retaliation could come in the form of bad work assignments, bad performance reviews or an increase in the harassment, among other things.

If someone is sexually harassing a Texas worker, and his or her employer fails to adequately deal with the situation, further action might be required. An employment law attorney could explain a victim's rights and legal remedies. He or she might also help file a lawsuit against the parties believed to be responsible seeking restitution for both monetary and non-monetary damages.

Source: sapac.umich.edu, "What is Sexual Harassment?", Accessed on March 27, 2017

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