Prevention is the best weapon against any form of sexual harassment. Harassment doesn’t stop on its own. It’s likely to become worse if the problem isn’t properly addressed.
This is why there are employer responsibilities to make sure that there will be no victims of harassment in the workplace. But what are the steps to prevent a sex crime?
Employers should be responsible in providing employees with harassment-free work environment. They also need to take reasonable steps in order to prevent harassment.
For instance, anti-harassment policies must be explained to employees so that they are aware of the consequences if an incident takes place.
Harassment in workplace, unfortunately, exists in every organization. There are two types of harassment in workplace:
Quid pro quo
Which means the harasser, usually, supervisors, ask for sexual favors in return to give employee benefits such as promotion, wage increases, incentives, etc.
Hostile Work Environment
The difference of hostile work environment from quid pro quo is the harasser don’t offer employee benefits. This type of harassment also not focuses only on supervisors but to co-workers and other people in the workplace, too. This is where sexual harassment falls.
Harassment takes in place in ways like sexual jokes or comments, sexual advances, threatening, writing emails that includes sexual words or images, etc.
As much as possible, you don’t want your company to end up facing penalties and lawsuits because of sexual harassment complaints. It is very important to take immediate action once you receive a harassment complaint.
By understanding preventive plans, you can efficiently deal with sexual harassment issues in your office. Here are some important steps to keep the workplace a healthy environment for everyone:
- Clearly declare that the workplace will not tolerate harassment.
- Provide accurate information and training to the staff for sexual harassment prevention through regular meetings or group discussions.
- Let everyone know that it’s better not to be silent when an experience of harassment happened in the workplace.
- Develop a policy with supervisors, managers, and employees to prevent sexual harassment.
- Every supervisor or manager should understand their responsibilities in providing an environment without mistreatment or inappropriate conduct among employees.
- If there are complaints made, make sure to promptly investigate the matter and resolve the case once and for all.
- There should be appropriate discipline and punishments to employees or supervisors who will harass anyone in the workplace.
- Protect and support employees who are victimized by sexually abusive co-worker or manager.
- Immediately take action once there’s a discriminatory joke, e-mail, photo, graffiti, or poster at the workplace.
- From time to time, visit the policy and make revisions if need be so that everyone will be protected from harassment.
The key preventative measure is to devise a strategy that will address sexual harassment with utmost confidentiality. An excellent anti-harassment plan should stop any inappropriate behavior before an incident actually takes place in the company.
Including an employee training in an excellent anti-harassment plan could be a great way to educate employees on how to understand and recognize sexual harassment in the workplace and to immediately take appropriate actions. Making them take a sexual harassment training online could be a great choice.
A zero-tolerance policy to prevent sexual harassment is only one of the responsibilities of employers. Training their people about harassment including top-level executives, managers, and even CEOs is also important.
Everyone in the workplace should feel confident and safe while at work. Most importantly, employees should be encouraged to report incidents of harassment to provide proper actions and solutions.
Building a safe workplace must always be a mission for every organization, all the way from CEO down to security guards and janitors must always keep in mind that it’s important to have a secured environment in the workplace.
Having a secured workplace from any type of harassment could result to a better performance of employees and harmony in workplace.