What constitutes sexual harassment in the workplace is determined on a case by case basis, said a local attorney, but the attention must be unwelcome and a “reasonable person” must be able to consider it hostile or offensive.
“Everything is a case by case basis, so it’s very difficult to write in – this conduct means this,” attorney Susan Moran said.
According to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, EEOC, harassment is “illegal when it is so frequent or severe that it creates a hostile or offensive work environment or when it results in an adverse employment decision (such as the victim being fired or demoted).”
The EEOC receives thousands of complaints of harassment based on sex each year, making up nearly half of all the harassment complaints they receive.
Since a part of sexual harassment is that the attention is unwanted, Moran recommends telling the harasser to stop, and that the behavior is unwelcome.
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