According to the Nebraska Fair Employment Practices Act, employers in Nebraska are strictly prohibited from discriminating or harassing an employee due to their gender. Also protected are pregnancy and any medical conditions related to pregnancy and childbirth. The Nebraska Fair Employment Practices Act covers all companies who employ more than 15 workers. At the federal level, sexual harassment is prohibited due to Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
There are also provisions within the guidelines that forbid any employer to retaliate against an employee who makes a claim for sexual harassment, testifies to it, assists in the charge of a claim or helps to investigate any charge of harassment.
What types of behaviors are encompassed under sexual harassment?
Misconduct of any sexual nature is prohibited in the workplace. Examples of sexually-harassing behaviors can include sexual innuendos, nonconsensual touching, derogatory remarks or degrading comments, explicitly sexual materials, and gender-based jokes.
Sexual harassment doesn’t involve just one action. It must be shown to be pervasive, systematic and repetitious. Joking with someone once does not constitute sexual harassment; repetitive remarks that are meant to threaten and intimidate do. Someone is the victim of sexual harassment if they are repeatedly offended to the extent that their work performance and comfort level in the workplace are compromised by the behaviors.
Another form of sexual harassment can be a one-time action in which a boss or supervisor makes a sexual request and makes it known either implicitly or explicitly that failure to comply can negatively affect the employee’s work status. In the same way, if the boss or supervisor requests a sexual act or favor to further your status or advancement at work, that is also considered sexual harassment, and is illegal in Nebraska.