Sexual Harassment in the #Metoo Workplace is Illegal, but you may not get fired.
What to do if you have been sexually harassed in the workplace.
The grim lesson that stems from the Les Moonves scandal shows that companies just don’t take sexual harassment seriously. Now the #metoo movement is calling employers to task on the very issue of sexual harassment. It will be interesting to see how large corporations respond in the #metoo world.
Ok, Les Moonves did not get the golden parachute that he so desparately wanted as he exited CBS, but in the end it was NOT sexual harassment that cost Moonves his job at CBS. Moonves lost his job at CBS because of the evidence that he misled the board of directors at CBS – not the allegations of abuse from multiple women. This is just horrific.
Women’s careers were ruined by Moonves, and essentially CBS just condoned the sexual harassment. This has helped further launch the #Metoo movement. It is worth stating the obvious: Sexual harassment is illegal. It has been illegal since the 1986 U.S. Supreme Court Case Meritor Savings Bank v. Vinson. In Meritorthe Court stated that sexual harassment violated laws prohibiting workplace sexual discrimination. Yet, what we learned from the Moonves case is that CBS (just like other large American companies) turned a blind eye to permit this conduct.
While CBS’s investigation found that Moonves “engaged in multiple acts of serious nonconsensual sexual misconduct in and outside of the workplace,” that wasn’t enough to oust him without a huge payoff. It was only after he was also found to have deleted texts in which he tried to silence one of his accusers and lied to the company’s investigators that they were able to withhold it. So, had he played by the rules, Mr. Moonves may very well have walked away with his loot. Again, it was not the sexual harassment, but rather his conduct with the board. CBS did not take sexual harassment seriously.
Companies must take allegations of sexual harassment seriously, especially in the #MeToo world. They must properly investigate allegations and punish employees who have been found to conducted themselves in a sexually harassing manner. Companies must have manuals and rules about sexual harassment. They must hold training seminars and follow the rules that they set up. Most of all, companies must take sexual harassment seriously.
If you are an employee who believes that they have been accused of sexual harassment, you must report it immediately to your Human Relations Department or a person in charge. The company must conduct an investigation, and in most cases separate you from the harasser. You may also report it to the EEOC and the Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission. No one should be subjected to sexual harassment especially in the #metoo world.
How Can Robert Maizel Help You?
If you even believe that you have been subjected to sexual harassment in the workplace, I can help you. We protect you from harassing employers.
I am an experience employment lawyer who handles these matters regularly in Court, at the EEOC Level and with the Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission (PaHRC). Our team investigates your claim to secure all of the information to help obtain a positive resolution to your case. We know the law and we understand your needs. No matter what your question, please feel free to call us at 215-695-3000 to discuss your case. All consultations are free of charge.