Victims should understand what to do next if they are retaliated against in the workplace because they made a legitimate sexual harassment claim.
A person who has suffered sexual harassment in the workplace has additional protections afforded to him or her when that victim shares concerns about the harassment to a supervisor or other person. Retaliation is prohibited on behalf of employers, but happens all too often. Retaliation occurs when a person makes a good faith complaint or a report of sexual harassment, or in any way participates in a legitimate investigation of harassment, but is then treated negatively by the employer because of the report, complaint, or involvement in the investigation.
Reprisal conduct can take many different forms, and it is important for a sexual harassment victim to realize that all of these should be reported directly to a sexual harassment attorney as soon as possible. Some examples of prohibited retaliation include giving the affected employee less desirable work environment, gossiping about him or her, providing a negative performance review or rating directly tied to the participation in the sexual harassment investigation or complaint, ignoring the victim, or sabotaging materials. Even if a person has already filed a legitimate sexual harassment complaint, they may also maintain the opportunity to file a separate complaint for retaliation.
Sexual harassment leads to physical and psychological problems tied directly to the harassment. Many people are forced to take sick leave or to quit their jobs to escape from the harassment overall. Any person who has suffered sexual harassment will want to consult directly with an experienced sexual harassment attorney as soon as possible about his or her rights, and whether or not a legal claim for retaliation may also be considered.