Unfortunately, sexual harassment is common in various workplaces in the US and the whole world. According to statistics, 81% of Americans believe that sexual harassment is prevalent in workspaces. However, 90% believe that it is not a problem in their company. That is quite alarming because many people think that it can not happen in their office, but that is not entirely true. You should know that around 89% of sexually harassed individuals in their workplace do not file a complaint out of fear of the individuals involved or fear of losing their jobs.
Sadly, sexual harassment can happen in any form and to anyone, regardless of their sexual orientation. Verbal and physical sexual harassment, unwanted sexual advances, and sexual favors are incredibly common forms of harassment. Other forms of harassment that people forget are sexual jokes or comments. These sexual harassment types are often ignored because they may seem subtle at first. The victim will only realize the gravity of the comments only later.
For you to be able to know whether sexual harassment is frequent in your workplace, you will have to understand what you are looking for. It is to keep yourself safe and know when to ask for assistance from a criminal lawyer. Here is a list of sexual harassment signs you should be aware of:
Undesired attention, physical contact, jokes or comments
Some of the most common sexual harassment signs are glaring, touching, and making unnecessary sexual jokes and comments. These are incredibly difficult because, aside from being unwanted, the perpetrator can pretend that the situation is only a joke.
Some situations involve the following:
- Glaring at your body that makes you feel uncomfortable
- Catcalling or making sexual comments about your appearance
- Not respecting your personal space
- Discussing sexual experience and other media without your consent
These signs are particularly tricky because some perpetrators will not only say it is only a joke, but also say that it is their way of showing affection. However, if it makes you feel uncomfortable, you should immediately file a complaint.
Sexual favors for something in return
One of the most common signs and most often practiced by people with power is quid pro quo. Quid pro quo is a Latin phrase that translates to “something in return for something.” This means the perpetrator will pressure the victim into doing sexual advances and services for them. The victim may receive a reward or could also be a given threat to their career should they refuse.
This is an incredibly tricky case because most of the time, victims will be too afraid to speak up and complain because of the perpetrator’s power. Should this happen to you, seek professional assistance immediately. This can significantly affect the morale of the company you are working for.
If speaking up is a problem and there are consequences
Most often than not, if a victim is too afraid to speak up and complain, then it is a sign that you are sexually harassed. Often, victims are scared to complain because of the repercussions, such as being criticized or affecting their job security.
You should know that you are not entitled to have the same “sense of humor” as your perpetrators. This is an excuse that they use to continue to sexually harass other people in the workplace. When people dismiss this by saying that it is not something you should worry about, you are in a hostile work environment.
When harassments get too out of hand and affect your mental state and capabilities to work, it is best to speak to a criminal lawyer immediately.
The bottom line is, as long as the acts done to you are unwanted, it is sexual harassment. Remembering that it is not your responsibility to adjust and avoid your perpetrator; you will be able to get proper help. Although it may be incredibly terrifying to speak up, asking for legal assistance from a criminal lawyer can help you deal with this toxic workplace situation.
Are you looking for legal assistance? The Fernandez Firm is the #1 criminal lawyer and best criminal defense attorney in Boston. Our firm concentrates on various criminal defense cases and are experts in the industry. Get proper legal assistance and a free consultation regarding your case today!