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Is sexual harassment in the workplace a form of discrimination?

It is difficult to believe that any form of workplace discrimination remains a problem in the 21st century. As an educated and supposedly enlightened nation of individuals, these age-old issues should no longer plague American workers. Unfortunately, they still do and workplace discrimination in the form of sexual harassment is particularly unsettling.

To be clear, sexual harassment takes many forms. Sometimes, it is so subtle that victims have difficulty deciding if the problem is real or imagined. In other cases, the behaviors are so egregious that victims know immediately what is going on. Examples of workplace discrimination centered on sexual harassment include:

  • Displaying sexually explicit images or making lewd comments
  • Unwanted and inappropriate touching (patting, pinching, rubbing, etc)
  • Whistling and catcalling as well as staring in an offensive way
  • Asking inappropriate questions about sex
  • Making offensive comments or gestures about gender identity or sexual orientation
  • Sending sexually suggestive emails, letters, notes or other materials

Further, one can be a victim of sexual harassment if his or her superiors demand sexual favors in exchange for promotions or raises. Such behaviors are clear examples of workplace discrimination because they indicate that your superior singled you out from at least some of your coworkers with this behavior.

Putting a firm stop to sexual harassment in the workplace is a goal shared by all states, including Michigan. You can participate in this goal by holding those responsible to account for their discriminatory behaviors. This will make Detroit a better city in which to work for people of all genders.

Acquiring a legal representative can help you file a successful claim against all forms of workplace discrimination. Doing so will also help you avoid any work-related retaliation in which your superiors or coworkers may attempt to inflict.

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