New Braunfels, TX – Sexual harassment is illegal in workplaces in Texas and throughout the country. Many claims of harassment are actually brought under a federal discrimination law codified in Title VII of the Civil Rights Act. This federal protection applies to all workers, but states are free to provide additional protection through their own laws as well. There are some laws on the books in Texas that address prohibitions against sexual harassment.
Labor code regulations
According to the Texas Workforce Commission, there is a separate state law related to sexual harassment and other types of discrimination in Chapter 21 of the state labor code.
Chapter 21 is essentially an anti discrimination law that applies to all private sector workplaces in the state that have fifteen or more employees, as well as government employers regardless of their size. The law is mostly focused on discrimination that happens due to gender or sex, while sexual harassment is considered a form of gender based discrimination.
State’s definition of sex discrimination
This law states that it is illegal for anyone to be denied employment, terminated or refused benefits, pay, or job privileges due to their gender. Stereotyping of people based on gender as well as adverse actions taken against pregnant women are covered in this definition.
Procedures for workers
The Texas Workforce Commission gives an outline for a response to sexual harassment that is similar to federal guidelines. Employers should first be proactive by providing training and education related to how sexual harassment happens in workplaces. A written policy with clear guidelines is useful as well. All of these steps are preventive in nature, and have been found to be the best way for businesses to avoid harassment issues.
If a worker experiences harassment, they should first tell the individual or group responsible that their conduct is unwelcome and illegal. The next step to escalate enforcement is to formally notify the employer through human resources or an assigned person about the behavior. If the employer still does not correct the issue, a formal complaint may be filed with the proper state or federal agency or commission depending on the employer. The agency will investigate the complaint and take various actions. Depending on their findings, the employee may be given a formal notice that they can retain legal counsel and file a lawsuit against the employer. The victim can also choose to retain a lawyer at any earlier point in this process.
Sexual Harassment lawyers in New Braunfels
Moore and Associates is a law firm that handles all aspects of sexual harassment lawsuits and other types of labor and employment cases. Their attorneys are available to anyone who schedules a consultation to discuss their workplace problems.
Firm contact info:
440 Louisiana Street, Suite 675, Houston, TX 77002