The best weapon against sexual harassment is prevention. Harassment does not vanish on its own. Truth be told, when the issue isn’t solved, the harassment will intensify and turn out to be increasingly hard to cure over the long haul. Hence, a Sexual Harassment Policy is a must in any kind of business these days.
What is Sexual Harassment?
‘Sexual Harassment’ is any type of unwelcome sexual conduct that is hostile, humiliating or scaring. Above all, it’s illegal. Being sexually harassed influences individuals in various ways. In case you’re encountering harassment, there are numerous things you can do about it
The most extreme form of sexual harassment is sexual assault. This is a serious crime and our company will support employees who want to press charges against offenders.
Examples of Sexual Harassment:
Sexual Harassment can happen at any time. It can be spoken or written, visual or physical acts. Sexual Harassment can happen in person, through messaging, social media channels, or in many other ways.
Sexual harassment has many forms of variable seriousness. A person sexually harasses someone when they:
- Stalk or threaten someone to engage in sexual acts without the opposite person’s consent.
- Touching a person inappropriately.
- Send sexually explicit messages.
- Flirt with another person persistently without the other person’s consent. Also, flirting with someone at an inappropriate time is considered sexual harassment. This is because such actions can harm a person’s professional reputation and expose them to further harassment.
What is a Sexual Harassment policy?
Sexual Harassment policy intends to protect people from undesirable sexual gestures and give them guidelines to report such incidents. It similarly clarifies how the claims are handled, punish inappropriate behavior and help the victims recover.
There should be no tolerance when it comes to Sexual Harassment. Our way of life depends on mutual respect. Sexual Harassment is a genuine issue in today’s’ world.
The Objective of a Sexual Harassment Policy
The objective of this policy is to define workplace sexual harassment and to outline procedures for filing complaints, investigating sexual harassment claims and issuing appropriate disciplinary measures in the case of violations.
Importance of the Sexual Harassment Policy
Employers may not completely understand the importance of having a sexual harassment policy for the employees. Some feel that having such a policy is not entirely necessary, but it is necessary to have an anti-harassment policy. Employers and managers play a key role in preventing sexual harassment in the workplace. They are the ones’ who set the tone of the company. It is their job to lead by an example, to model respectful behavior and promote good conduct throughout the organization. A positive work culture where everyone respects each other is vital, it significantly lessens the chances of sexual harassment taking place in the organization. However, if it does happen then the sexual harassment policy may empower the employees to come forward. Having a sexual harassment policy may even help managers and business owners identify potential harassment or problem employees before an incident can occur.
Sexual harassment is harmful to all of us. Harassment damages the whole working environment and leads to poor morale, a feeling of insecurity, and legal consequences. Failure to prevent sexual harassment in the workplace will have huge consequences on the employer as well as the company as a whole. Additionally, the liability lies with the employer in case of harassment by a superior that results in tangible unrest with the organization.
Sexual Harassment Policy Framework
The philosophy of the company should be reflected in the policies. The policy should clearly state that there will be no scope for discrimination while redressing complaints. People should be encouraged to report sexual harassment with an assurance that every reported complaint will be treated seriously. The policy should be explained in simple language so that it’d be easier for everyone to understand the policy properly. The policy should allow the Internal Committee to conduct inquiries regarding the complaints as quickly and decisively as possible. Assessment should be done thoroughly to cover potential possibilities of sexual harassment, such as alcohol consumption at work, misuse of positional power, sexual relationships at work, etc.
How to Report Sexual Harassment?
On the off chance that you are sexually harassed (or suspect someone else is being harassed), do report it to [HR administrator, HR generalist or your manager.] In genuine cases like rape, it would be ideal if you call the police and inform the Human Resources Department that you intend to squeeze charges. We recognize it’s difficult to talk about these issues, however, your assistance is needed to build a reasonable and safe working environment for you and your partners.
If you want to report sexual harassment within our company, there are two options:
- Request a meeting with your [HR director or HR generalist or supervisor.] Clarify the situation in detail. On the off chance that you have any hard evidence (for example messages), forward it or bring it with you to the meeting.
- Send your complaint by email. Address it to your boss, please cc HR to the email as well and join any proof or data that can be utilized in the investigation. HR and your manager will talk about the issue and get in touch with you as quickly as possible.
Managers should talk to HR and explain our company’s procedures to their team member who made the complaint.
HR and managers should attempt to prevent Sexual Harassment by building a culture of respect. In any case, when sexual harassment happens and a worker makes a protest, both HR and managers must act right away.
When HR receives a complaint that an employee harasses another employee, they should:
- Ask for as many details as possible from the person making the complaint.
- Keep the documents of the report with all the information and any possible evidence in a confidential file. This file should be updated with all the details regarding the complaint.
- Launch an investigation.
- Respect the opinion of the harassed employee. Some may want the matter to be resolved discreetly, while some may expect more radical actions.
- Contact the alleged harasser and explain the complaint and explicitly ask for this behavior to stop.
- Launch a disciplinary process depending on the severity of the harassment.
The Human Resource Department or managers must not blame the victim, regardless of the circumstances. If anyone behaves that way, please send an email to their own manager or a senior HR leader explaining the situation.
Disciplinary action and repeat offenders
Employees who are found guilty of sexual assault should be terminated from the organization after the investigation.
Proper action has to be taken against the harassers. To ensure that justice is done to the victims. Recurrent harassers and wrongdoers have to be terminated.
These disciplinary activities should be implemented uniformly.
We have a ready-to-use Sexual Harassment Policy in the toolkit that comprises of various Employee Policies, HR Documents, Job Descriptions, etc. The templates can be customized as per your requirements and needs.
The Sexual Harassment Policy aims to protect both men and women from unwanted sexual advances. The policy also aims to give these individuals some much-needed guidelines to report incidents.
Sexual harassment policy Template Download