Whether it is an office, a retail store, or even a non-traditional space, the workplace should always be a place of safety for the employees. We don’t mean only in terms of “on the job” safety but also safety from threats and inappropriate behavior. In reality, sadly, some people violate boundaries and the law by bringing sexual misconduct into the office. Some forms of harassment take the form of inappropriately lewd and suggestive remarks, while others involve unwanted touching and coercion. In the worst cases, physical assaults may take place.
If you have experienced sexual abuse in the workplace, it is not your fault. Despite the manipulation often forced upon survivors by their workplace abusers, no one “asks for it” or deserves abuse. Recognizing and remembering this fact is an essential first step. Next, you should also acknowledge that you have the right and the opportunity to hold the perpetrator and/or the business itself accountable for what occurred. At HHJ Trial Attorneys, we are here to help you make sense of this challenging time.
There are, of course, forms of interactions at work that clearly constitute abuse and which could, in some cases, even rise to the level of a criminal form of assault. Such actions could include:
In other cases, some behaviors — such as sending lewd messages, sharing pornography, or making suggestive comments — may constitute forms of sexual harassment. In either case, you have a right to demand the cessation of the behavior. When you have experienced abuse and assault, it is also your right to seek justice.
Employers have a duty to protect their employees, especially from other workers. The law surrounding sexual abuse on the job can be complex, but ultimately, companies are responsible and liable for what occurs under their supervision and on the clock. Working with an experienced attorney will help you to understand your options and who may be ultimately responsible for the situation.
Alert the relevant authorities in your workplace when possible and safe to do so, as ideally, they will take steps to prevent the perpetrator from continuing to harass or abuse others. Then contact a law firm with direct experience litigating such cases. Although taking these actions can be very difficult, doing so has several potential benefits. Survivors can find an opportunity for closure while receiving compensation for damages and suffering while also potentially preventing their attacker from harming someone else in the future.
Choosing representation to help with your case does not have to be complicated. Ultimately, you should select a team that respects and believes you, understands the gravity of the situation and is ready to step up to the plate for you.
The effects of abuse can linger for extended periods and could even sap the enjoyment you once experienced from your job. The loss of the ability to enjoy these aspects of your life is just one reason you should consider exploring the opportunity to seek compensation — and hold the responsible parties accountable. At HHJ Trial Attorneys, we believe strongly in advocating for survivors and their rights. With in-depth experience related to sexual assault and abuse cases and a proven track record in the courtroom, we hope to provide you with an invaluable asset for taking action.