Employers can play a very important role in the prevention of sexual harassment. The law requires an employer to make sure their staff are completely safe from sexual harassment in the workplace. So, employers should pay special attention to the behavior and actions of the workers and employees in the workplace.
If such an incident takes place in spite of all the preventive measures, it can have bad impact on employee morale. As a result, their productively will decline. Such incidents may also lead to lawsuits.
According to the legal definition of sexual harassment, this is an unwelcome sexual conduct in the workplace creating a hostile, intimidating or offensive environment. Sexual harassment is considered an offense that affects men and women alike.
In a workplace, the relationship between an employer and employee is threatened when a sexual harassment incident takes place. At times, the harasser can be the boss of the victim. In most of cases, employers were found guilty. However, it depends upon circumstances.
Following are some simple steps you can take in order to reduce the risk of sexual harassment in the workplace.
First off, you should implement a solid policy against sexual harassment conducts. You need to formulate rules and regulations with respect to this sort of harassment in the office. The employees’ handbook should contain important points of the policy regarding sexual harassment.
For example, the policy handbook should define sexual harassment. It should clearly state that this sort of harassment will not be tolerated at all. If someone commits such act, they will be punished. The handbook should also state the procedure to file a complaint. The policy should state each complaint will be thoroughly investigated and retaliation against a complaint will not be allowed. These points should be included in the policy.
Your next step should be to conduct preventive training in order to train workers and employees. The training should be conducted at least once every year in order to teach workers and employees how to prevent sexual harassment. During training, you should spell out their rights to them and spur on them to file a complaint when someone tries to harass them.
Train managers and supervisors separately. Training is necessary for supervisors as well as managers. They should also be aware of the severity of the issue and the rights of employees. Tell them how they can handle sexual harassment complaints.
It is also important to monitor the workplace. To do this, you might meet your employees and try to socialize with them. You can ask questions about their inputs as well as suggestions. Meet managers and supervisors and ask them if everything is fine. Stay in touch with your employees.
Do not take any complaint lightly and investigate right away. If the complaint turns out to be valid, you should act quickly and effectively as per the policy rules.
In order to formulate an effective sexual harassment policy, you may turn to a business lawyer. These lawyers have a lot of knowledge and experience. You can hire a lawyer who has long experience in dealing with sexual harassment cases in the office.