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Documenting sexual harassment in the workplace

On Behalf of | Sep 11, 2023 | Blog, Sexual Harassment

Workplace sexual harassment occurs in virtually all California industries and can affect both men and women.

Documenting instances of it helps shine a spotlight on this common issue while reducing the chances of it happening again, so it is important to know what to do if it happens to you.

Preserve evidence

Documentation serves as concrete evidence of harassment and includes details such as dates, times, locations and descriptions of what transpired. The more thorough the detail is in the documentation, the better.

Encourage accountability

Documenting workplace sexual harassment also raises the odds of perpetrators facing accountability for their actions. When there is clear evidence of misconduct, employers are more likely to take appropriate action against the harasser. This, in turn, helps create a safer workplace for all employees.

Ensure accuracy

Memories fade over time, and details may become hazy. Documenting harassment helps increase accuracy in an employee’s recollection of events. This may become especially important if the harassment continues or escalates, as documentation helps establish a pattern of behavior in the harasser.

Identify witnesses

Witness statements may carry substantial weight in a workplace sexual harassment case. Having corroborating statements from colleagues may also help strengthen an employee’s case when he or she makes the decision to come forward about the harassment.

More than 40% of working women and 16% of working men report experiencing sexual harassment on the job. These figures have remained steady since the 1980s, suggesting that employers need to do more to combat the ongoing problem.

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