Expert advice is key to understanding and protecting your rights.
Sexual harassment is a type of unlawful discrimination and you are protected against this type of behaviour in the workplace.
We know just how upsetting it can be to be subjected to sexual harassment at work and our team can provide the support, advice and legal services you need at this time. For sensitive and professional guidance for your circumstances, please contact our Employment Lawyers.
What is sexual harassment?
Sexual harassment is unwanted conduct in relation to sex or sexual behaviour that intends to or does
(a) violate a person’s dignity; or
(b) creates an intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating or offensive environment for that person; or
(c) where because of the individual’s rejection of, or submission to, the conduct, they are treated less favourably than they would have been if they had not rejected or submitted to the conduct.
What is unwanted sexual conduct and behaviour?
Whether the behaviour is unwanted is the view of the affected employee. Examples of unwanted sexual conduct include:
- Sexual comments, jokes or gestures
- Questions about a person’s sex life
- Sexual comments made via social media, emails or text messages
- Sexual propositions
- Unwelcome physical contact, such as touching, hugging or kissing
- Sexual assault, stalking, indecent exposure and other criminal behaviour
Such behaviour can come from your boss, superior, colleagues or anyone else who works for your employer and customers.
What should you do if you have suffered sexual harassment at work?
Your employer has a duty to protect their employees from sexual harassment at work and during any activities relating to work (e.g. training or office parties). They must also deal with any complaints effectively, including taking appropriate action against those responsible.
If you have been sexually harassed at work, you should write down the details of what happened. This can be useful when reporting the incident to your employer and if you decide to bring a claim to an Employment Tribunal.
If it is safe to do so, you may wish to try speaking to the person responsible and letting them know the impact their behaviour has had on you. However, if you do not want to deal with the issue in this way, you can tell your employer.
Your employer should have a harassment procedure, which will provide information on who to report the incident(s) to, how the matter will be investigated and the potential outcomes. Unfortunately, speaking to a senior member of staff or HR department will not always resolve the problem.
If you follow the internal sexual harassment or grievance procedure and you are unhappy with your employer’s approach, you may be able to make a claim to an Employment Tribunal. If your claim is successful, you could be awarded significant compensation. Please note that there are strict time limits that apply for bringing a claim – usually three months less one day from the date on which the sexual harassment occurred – so it is important to act without delay.
How can Partners Employment Lawyers help?
Our Employment Lawyers are experts in the law on sexual harassment at work. We empathise with people who have experienced such treatment, and we can assist employees at any stage of their case. We will listen to your situation carefully and provide clear advice on what you can do next. If you wish to tell your employer, we can ensure you follow the correct procedure and have all the available evidence so that you have the best chance of dealing with the matter quickly and effectively.
If the matter is not dealt with to your satisfaction by your employer, our partners at Excello Law can provide robust representation during an Employment Tribunal claim.
Contact our Sexual Harassment Lawyers London
Our Employment Lawyers are based in London and work with executives and other senior employees throughout England. We can help clients get clarity and control after experiencing sexual harassment in the workplace. To discuss your concerns with our highly approachable and professional team, call 0207 374 6546 now or contact us online.