Sexual Harassment In Entry Level Jobs
One of the most challenging aspects of fighting workplace sexual harassment is that it often happens to employees in vulnerable positions. While harassment is frequently depicted in popular culture as occurring in corporate environments, the reality is that harassment is just as prevalent in entry level jobs too.
Fast-food, hotel, and retail store employees are some of the most common targets. They are preyed upon because their supervisors know they need those jobs to make ends meet, and quitting is not an option. This creates a horrible environment for employees, who are forced to choose between losing their income, or suffering through harassment at work every day.
Especially disturbing is the number of teenage employees who are just entering the workforce for the first time and encountering sexual harassment. These are kids who may not feel empowered to speak out against their supervisors and instead suffer through harassment without knowing how to get recourse.
Fighting Back Against Harassment
The most important thing to remember is that every employee is legally protected from sexual harassment at work. An employee’s age, pay rate, and job title do not matter. All workplace sexual harassment is illegal and should be reported.
Employees that are new to the workforce should familiarize themselves with the various types of sexual harassment that are common in the workplace. Understanding what sexual harassment is, and how to report it, is an important part of being in the workforce.
It’s common for employees in entry level jobs to face the most resistance when trying to report sexual harassment. Managers are more likely to ignore these employees, or simply replace them outright if they are perceived as a problem that won’t go away.
Because of this, it’s more important than ever for entry level employees dealing with sexual harassment to document their experience as thoroughly as possible before making a complaint.
When to Call A Lawyer
While it can be intimidating and frightening to speak out, the best way to end workplace sexual harassment is to bring it to the attention of employers as quickly as possible. Keeping it a secret will only prolong the problem and increase the likelihood that it affects others as well.
If that does not end the behavior, and an employee has documented the abuse, then they should consider contacting an attorney to evaluate their case.
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