JUL 2018

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[ 58 ] • # dayspamagazine • july 2018 legal pad by Michael L. Antoline, JD e new light being shed on sexual harassment should prompt all employers to brush up on the law. I f you want to bring up a tricky subject that is bound to off end someone and trigger an argument—and you don't want to talk about politics or religion—I would suggest "sexual harassment." It isn't that most reasonable and enlightened people don't agree that sexual harassment is a bad thing that shouldn't be tolerated under any circumstances; it's that we're still not all on the same page about what constitutes "harassment," much less how to banish it. The governmental organization that sets the rules about sexual harassment in the workplace is the Federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), which categorizes sexual harassment under the heading of sex discrimination, considered a violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. For our purposes, this column will provide an overview of workplace sexual harassment as it is legally defi ned and described. e Long Arm of the Law The offi cial EEOC statement reads as follows: Unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical harassment of a sexual nature constitute sexual harassment when this conduct explicitly or implicitly aff ects an individual's employment, unreasonably interferes with an individual's work performance, or creates an intimidating, hostile or off ensive work environment. Notably, a person may harass someone else by making disparaging or off ensive comments about that person's sex in general, even without mentioning them or directing it to them specifi cally. Remember that women and men are equally subject to, and can be held responsible for, such harassment. Crossing the Line © GETTY IMAGES

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