Harassment can rear its ugly head in any workplace.

And the harassment can take many forms.

Let’s take a deeper look into the issue of workplace harassment.

What is workplace harassment?

A person who is the victim of workplace harassment is the target of pervasive, unwanted conduct based on a protected trait. This could be based on the employee’s gender, race, ethnic background, religion, sexual orientation, gender, age, pregnancy, or disability, for example.

What are some examples of workplace harassment?

Here are some examples of conduct that may be considered harassment:

  • Racial harassment: Making inappropriate jokes or comments about a person’s race.
  • Religious harassment: Repeatedly asking inappropriate questions about an individual’s religious practices.
  • Age-related harassment: Inappropriate name-calling at work, based on an individual’s age. Employees age 40 or older are protected against age discrimination.

What are some examples of sexual harassment?

A variety of actions and conduct may be considered sexual harassment:

  • Making offensive or sexual comments about an employee’s body
  • Repeatedly asking a co-worker out on a date
  • Repeatedly touching or hugging a co-worker
  • Promising an advancement at work in exchange for sexual favors

When should I seek help?

Many victims of harassment choose to report the behavior, and often this stops it.

But sometimes, managers, supervisors, and other leaders do little or nothing to stop the harassment. At this point, victims may wish to speak to an employment law attorney.

Remember: Workplace harassment based on race, religion, sexual orientation, gender, disability, age, pregnancy – or inclusion in another protected class – is illegal.

If you are a federal employee who has experienced harassment on the job, talk to a federal employment law attorney to learn about your legal options.

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