Your Employer Can’t Fire You for Reporting Sexual Harassment

Many employees are hesitant to report workplace sexual harassment for fear of negative employment action at the hands of their employer. It’s important to keep in mind that federal and state laws prohibit employers from taking any negative employment action against employees for reporting workplace sexual harassment.

Learn more about your rights in the workplace.

What is Workplace Sexual Harassment?

Workplace sexual harassment can be physical, verbal, visual, electronic, and more. It can be explicit—like a bold sexual advance—or it can be implicit—like a veiled suggestion that performing a sexual act may result in a promotion or the avoidance of a demotion or termination.

Sexual harassment in the workplace may have the following characteristics:

  • The victim, as well as the harasser, may be a woman or a man. The victim does not have to be of the opposite sex.

  • The harasser can be the victim's supervisor, a supervisor in another area, or a co-worker.

  • The victim does not have to be the person harassed but could be anyone affected by the offensive conduct.

  • Unlawful sexual harassment may occur without economic injury to or discharge of the victim.

  • The harasser's conduct must be unwelcome.

Your Rights Under Federal and State Laws

Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 protects employees from discrimination at the hands of their employer on the basis of race, age, sex (and pregnancy), religion, and more. This law also prohibits sexual harassment in the workplace.

Additionally, federal and state laws in Kentucky and Illinois prohibit employers from firing, demoting, reducing pay, or taking any other negative employment action against employees for reporting sexual harassment. If your employer violates these laws, you may be able to recover back pay and future pay in recompense.

Contact Charles W. Miller & Associates at (502) 890-9954 to learn how we can assist you.

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