Florida workers deserve to have a work environment free of harassment and fear. Unfortunately, laws cannot guarantee that a workplace will remain safe. Many workers suffer from harassment even with anti-discrimination and anti-harassment laws in place.

Today, we will look at sexual harassment. In specific, we will look at non-physical sexual harassment. Unfortunately, many workers do not know that sexual harassment is not always physical. This leads to workers under-reporting cases at their workplace.

Verbal sexual harassment and gender commentaries

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission discusses sexual harassment at the workplace. They specify that sexual harassment does not have to be physical. In fact, it does not even have to be sexual in nature. For example, sexual harassment also includes offensive remarks based on someone’s sex. You cannot harass a woman in the workforce by targeting women.

Other types of non-physical sexual harassment include catcalls and comments. The comments span everything from crude jokes to intentional rumors. Requests for sexual favors fall under this category. So do unwelcome sexual advances. Verbal harassment of a sexual nature may include threats. For example, an employer may threaten an employee with demotion or worse. They refuse to relent unless they provide sexual favors.

Hostile work environments

Even teasing and offhanded comments may veer toward harassment. Anything that creates an offensive or hostile work environment is not legal. Derogatory sexual actions are also classified as harassment. This is if impacts an employee’s status in the company. As an example, let us say someone starts a malicious sexual rumor. This rumor results in the employee’s demotion. This is sexual harassment.

Sexual harassment in the workplace is a nuanced topic. Many types of harassment exist. It is important to understand what each type looks at. This can help you combat it if you see it.