What to do if you are sexually harassed in your workplace


PADUCAH, KY – The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission defines sexual harassment as “unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical harassment of a sexual nature.”

If you are going through something that you consider to be harassment, speak up right away.  You should report the harassment to your supervisor or human resources department.

Human resources will investigate your claims. Then, they will decide on a course of action.

Although we have seen several prominent people fired, that is not always the immediate action. Beth Riddle, vice president of human resources at Computer Services, Inc., said “for someone to be terminated, it is going to have to be a proven allegation.”

Riddle said she is not aware of any statute of limitations on reporting harassment in the workplace, but you should report it right away.

“If an employee was harassed in the workplace and it resulted in continual harassment or possibly retaliation from a supervisor or a manager, then legally, you could get an attorney and file a claim against the company,” said Riddle. She said the claim would be against the company and not the individual, because the company is in charge of their employees’ actions.

“If the employee never brought the claim forward, if they never took the complaint to the human resources department or tried to get help, then chances are they wouldn’t have much of a case,” said Riddle. “An attorney would tell them that.” She said reporting it to someone in your organization should be your first action.

There are many forms of sexual harassment in the workplace, and sometimes there is no criminal action you can take. The only action may be to go to your employer.

You can find out more information about this story and others by following Leah Shields on Facebook and Twitter.

Related Articles

Kentucky House votes to revamp workers’ compensation system The Kentucky House has voted to make the biggest changes to workers' compensation in decades. The Republican-backed bill includes time limits on benef...
Impact of Billy Graham’s death, and life, felt in Local 6 region The impact of Billy Graham's life’s work is impossible to measure, but his message definitely touched pastors and preachers in the Local 6 region.
Firefighter and mother of 2 working to Go the Distance Go the Distance runner Karissa Shelton is running about 4 miles a day. When she started, she found running 1 mile to be a major struggle. 
Kentucky school monitors local air quality You take a big breath of fresh air, but how fresh is it? Students at Clark Elementary know. Fourth and fifth graders are a part of the pilot Air Quali...