What constitutes sexual harassment according to the Elliot-Larson Civil Rights Act?
Any behavior or conduct that discriminates against anyone due to their gender, which includes pregnancy and medical conditions related to pregnancy and childhood, is covered under the Discrimination Act. There are also provisions that explicitly make sexual harassment illegal. Someone can sexually harass another person in various ways.
Sometimes harassment is a situation where an individual’s behavior is repetitious and pervasive enough that it interferes with a worker’s ability to perform comfortably in their work environment. In cases where the misconduct is long-standing and systematic, that is legally termed “creating a hostile work environment,” which is prohibited under the Civil Rights Act.
Behaviors that constitute sexual harassment can be varied, but some examples are poking fun at or making jokes about someone’s gender, derogatory remarks and comments, nonconsensual touching, sexual innuendos, or even displaying sexually explicit material in the office.
Sexual harassment might also be one specific act where a person in a supervisory position or authority over an individual’s performance at work propositions them sexually and makes it known that if the employee goes along with the sexual request, they will receive special favors or advancement. It is also harassment when the employer or supervisor makes it explicitly or implicitly known that if the employee refuses the sexual advance, it could negatively affect their work position, like being passed over for a promotion or even terminated.