The rise of the #MeToo movement has given women a platform to stand up and raise their voices against sexual harassment. Issues about this type of crime have many inclinations, mostly have to do with gender, power roles and how women and men are perceived in the workspace. It is important for victims of sexual harassment to know what legal measures exist and what can be done to prevent this from happening.
In Texas, there have been many efforts done to prevent sexual harassment and several of their regulations have been issued by The Texas Supreme Court and are supervised by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). For instance, they say that sexual harassment includes unwanted sexual advances, sexual favors and several other of verbal and/or physical contact.
It is important to note that the victims and aggressors can be either man or women. One must not assume that this dynamic only exists between men and women. This can also happen to people of the same sex, as well. The aggressor can be identified as a supervisor, manager, or even clients and/or customers.
There are several steps that can be taken if someone has been the victim of sexual harassment in the workspace. For one, several victims tend to feel unsafe after the event has happened so their well-being must be a priority. Keeping a timeline of the event is also of vital importance and communication with trusted co-workers or supervisors will also help in order to alert them of the situation.
One of the main steps to take are for victims to look into their employee handbooks and look for where to file their complaints, which would be at human resources or to their supervisor. If the victim still feels at risk, then another option is for them to document what they have experienced. When the victim feels ready, he or she can file a formal complaint to the EEOC or Texas Workforce Commission. The victim might also choose to potentially file a lawsuit, which can also be an option, at a given time.
Victims should know that they are not alone and there are several remedies that can be done after the event has taken place, but it is important for them to feel that they are safe and that there are people who are willing to help.