Attorneys Experienced In Federal Workplace Sexual Harassment Claims
No federal employee should have to experience sexual harassment at work. But it happens all the time, damaging victims’ careers and causing deep emotional and psychological scars. Our team of employment law attorneys at Southworth PC represent federal workers who have been sexually harassed on the job, and seeks compensation under laws such as Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
Understanding Sexual Harassment
Technically, sexual harassment is a type of workplace discrimination based on the victim’s sex. It is illegal for a federal employee to sexually harass a colleague under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act.
Most Common Types Of Sexual Harassment
There are two types of workplace sexual harassment prohibited by federal law. In one version, an executive, manager or supervisor offers the victim a raise, promotion or other benefit in exchange for sexual favors, or threatens to fire, demote or punish the victim in some way if they don’t provide sex.
The other version of sexual harassment involves one or more workers creating a hostile work environment that makes it impossible for the victim to do their job. Examples include:
- Making sexually suggestive comments
- Unwelcome comments on the victim’s clothing, body or looks
- Sharing inappropriate jokes, stories, photos or cartoons
- Offensive comments about members of the victim’s sex in general
When a co-worker does or says things like these regularly, they can create a hostile work environment in which the victim feels unsafe.
How Can Federal Employees Bring About A Sexual Harassment Claim?
The law sets out a specific process for a federal employee to file a sexual harassment claim. First, you must contact the Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) Counselor where you worked, usually within 45 days of when the harassment occurred. The EEO Counselor usually gives you two choices: either participating in EEO counseling or using mediation or another alternative dispute resolution method. If neither option solves the problem, you can file a formal complaint with your agency’s EEO office.
The EEOC must decide whether to dismiss or investigate your complaint. If it does not dismiss the claim, it has 180 days to complete an investigation. Once that investigation is done, the EEOC will offer you the choice of a hearing before an administrative law judge or a decision direct from the agency whether you experienced sexual harassment. If you disagree with that decision, you can appeal that decision within EEOC or in federal court.
An experienced and knowledgeable federal employment law attorney can guide you through this process.
Evidence That Can Help Prove Your Sexual Harassment Case
Copies of all harassing emails, voice mails, text messages, pictures, notes and other materials can offer proof. Third-party witnesses who were present during incidents of harassment can offer testimony. And communications between yourself and your superiors can offer proof that management knew about the harassment and failed to take sufficient action.
Which Federal Agency Enforces Sexual Harassment Laws?
The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) receives harassment complaints from federal workers.
Discuss How We Can Help You
For more information about how we help federal workers fight for rightful compensation, contact Southworth PC at our Atlanta office and schedule a consultation. Call us at 888-899-7284 or use our online form.