Discrimination laws in many states protect against workplace sexual harassment. This is because, for more than 50 years, unwelcome sexually-motivated behavior and comments have been recognized as illegal—and the right to workplace equality has been identified as a civil right. Federally, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 protects workers. At the state level, the Nevada Fair Employment Practices Act prohibits sexual harassment because it is deemed a kind of sex discrimination.

To better understand your rights and options, take time to research online information about federal and state protections. The first thing to understand is what, exactly, Nevada considers to be “sexual harassment.” 

What Is Sexual Harassment in Nevada?

Workplace sexual harassment can be summarized as unwelcome sexual behavior, whether it happens in Las Vegas or Alazon, in construction or entertainment. Examples could be sexually-driven physical behavior toward a coworker or an implication that a sexual favor is a condition of employment in a job interview.

According to the state of Nevada, sexual harassment is defined as “advances, requests for sexual favors or any conduct of a sexual nature when:

  • Submission to or rejection of such speech or conduct is made, either explicitly or implicitly, a term or condition of employment;
  • Submission to or rejection of such speech or conduct is used as the basis for employment decisions affecting the employee; or
  • Such speech or conduct has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with an employee’s work performance or creating an intimidating, hostile or offensive working environment.”

Federal Protection for Workers

The federal government has long provided protection against sexual harassment in workplaces with at least 15 employees. Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 added worker protection from sexually-motivated behavior and remarks at work. Title VII states that anyone can be a victim or a harasser, that harassment may apply in same-gender offenses, and that retaliation for a complaint of sexual harassment is against the law. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission is responsible for investigating complaints.

Nevada’s Protection for Workers

Like the federal Title VII law, the Nevada Fair Employment Practices Act provides state protection for workers against sexual harassment based on gender (“sex”) or on sexual orientation. And like the federal law, the state act applies only to employers with 15 or more employees. However, notably, the Nevada act has been updated to include protection against workplace harassment based on gender identity or expression. The Nevada Equal Rights Commission is responsible for investigating complaints.

Reporting Workplace Sexual Harassment

If you have experienced sexual harassment at work in Nevada, write down every detail and date you can recall about the harassment incidents. Next, report the situation to your manager at work. After that, you are entitled to file a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, with the Nevada Equal Rights Commission, or with a lawyer or a labor union representative.

Our legal system is complicated, and protective employment laws have stipulations and restrictions that you may be unaware of. When you are ready, you can get legal help with your sexual harassment complaint. 

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