How to Deal with Harassment in the Workplace

Dealing with harassment in the workplace? Harassment is an infringement on your rights as an employee, and you can take immediate action to address it. When an internal complaint fails, support from a Florida employment attorney can help you move forward and hold responsible parties liable. 

Read on to learn about the best next steps to take after experiencing harassment at work. 

Defining Workplace Harassment

According to the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), harassment is defined as unwelcome conduct rooted in race, color, sex, national origin, age, or genetic factors like medical history. This also includes unwanted conduct based on gender identity, sexual orientation, or pregnancy. 

Harassment is considered illegal when it becomes a condition of employment or creates a hostile, abusive, or intimidating workplace. 

Thankfully, employees are protected under anti-discrimination laws. Under Florida’s Civil Rights Act, employers can’t discriminate against employees or applicants for various characteristics, including race, or exhibit offensive conduct that may make someone feel harassed. This conduct can include offensive jokes, slurs, threats, intimidation, insults, offensive photos or objects, and yelling, among other intimidating behaviors.

Dealing with Harassment at Work in Florida

If you experience workplace harassment in Florida, there is a path forward to justice. 

First, tell the harasser that their conduct is unwelcome. If this doesn’t work or you’re uncomfortable doing so, report the harassment through internal procedures. This may mean reporting to the human resources department, your supervisor, or your employer. 

Before reporting the incident(s), write detailed notes and gather evidence, such as emails, texts, or photos. Make sure to keep a copy of these materials, along with a copy of your complaint. 

If your complaint isn’t adequately addressed or resolved, you may be able to file a complaint with the Florida Commission on Human Relations (FCHR) or the EEOC. A Florida employment lawyer can help you with this process, ensuring that your complaint adheres to various requirements and deadlines. Additionally, if your complaint doesn’t result in a satisfactory settlement, your attorney can help you move forward with a legal case. 

At Weldon & Rothman, PL, our Florida Bar Board-Certified Labor and Employment lawyer and staff can help you deal with work harassment in Florida, ensuring your rights are protected. Contact us today to get started.