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Sexual Harassment Defined
In West Virginia, sexual harassment includes any unwelcome conduct, be it verbal or physical, that is of a sexual nature. It is considered a form of sexual discrimination as per Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and is against the law. Sexual harassment causes victims to feel insecure, threatened and afraid at work and this may lead their performance at work to suffer. West Virginia has strict laws against sexual harassment at the workplace and it is important for victims to know that help is available to ensure that harassers are stopped.
Types of Sexual Harassment in West Virginia
There are many different sexual harassment incidents that can occur at a workplace. Behaviors can range from mild to severe and may occur on a frequent basis or one time. The following are a few examples of sexual harassment behavior in West Virginia:
• Joke about someone’s body, clothing, physical appearance, sexual orientation or sex life
• General lewd comments
• Repeatedly asking someone out on a date or for sexual favors
• Blocking someone’s path
• Affecting someone’s job because of sexual harassment allegations
• Sending inappropriate and sexual emails, letters or notes
• Making obscene or inappropriate gestures or facial expressions
• Quid pro quo (this for that) requests
• Touching someone inappropriately and without their consent, such as hugging, kissing, groping, or fondling
• Aggressive behavior, such as rape or attempt at rape
Victims and Offenders
Both the victims and offenders of sexual harassment can be of any gender, age, race, religion or sexual orientation. In addition, victims and offenders may be of the same sex. Victims of sexual harassment don’t’ have to be directly affected by the unwanted conduct in order to file a formal complaint. A victim can be someone that overheard another person making a sexual joke, received a lewd email, or witnessed inappropriate sexual behaviors and took offense.
Harassers can be supervisors, co-workers or may not even be employed at the specific workplace in which the unwanted conduct is happening. Offenders can choose to attack one victim only or may attack several. In order to ensure that the behaviors stop, victims are encouraged to speak with a sexual harassment attorney to file charges.
Sexual Harassment Laws in West Virginia
Sexual harassment is against the law in West Virginia, and anyone who is found guilty of will be brought to justice. In West Virginia, it is also illegal for anyone to have their job affected in any negative way due to a rejection of sexual advances, filing sexual harassment complaints, or participating in an investigation. An employee may not be fired, demoted, reassigned to another position or have their position compromised over sexual harassment allegations.
In West Virginia, all employees have a right to a workplace that is free of discrimination and hostility. When that right is compromised, victims can take action to ensure that the sexual perpetrator is stopped. First, victims should speak to the harassers to make sure they understand that their behaviors are unwanted. If that doesn’t work, victims may elevate the matter to a supervisor or Human Resources representative. If the issue remains unresolved, victims may file a case with a sexual harassment lawyer.
Working with a Sexual Harassment Lawyer
The victims of sexual harassment in West Virginia are entitled to seek legal help. Everyone in the state is entitled to a workplace that is free of hostility, discrimination and fear. If you or someone you know at work is suffering because of unwanted sexual conduct, turn to a leading sexual harassment attorney right away.
Although help is readily available for victims, there are many sexual harassment cases that are not taken care of because victims are embarrassed or afraid to come forward. However, not saying anything about the situation will only make matters worse for the victim or may even lead the harasser to turn their attacks on a new victim. Sexual harassment lawyers make it their personal mission to ensure that your rights as a victim are upheld and that the harasser is stopped. With a leading sexual harassment attorney on your side, you can rest assured that your case will end with the best possible outcome.
Sexual harassment attorneys also work diligently to get you the money damages you deserve for your pain and suffering. You may be entitled to thousands, or possibly even millions of dollars in compensation and your paralegal will ensure you obtain your full spectrum of benefits.
Don’t wait any longer to contact a skilled team of sexual harassment lawyers in West Virginia to file a claim and fight for your rights.