Sexual Harassment includes but is not limited to unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and any verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature that affects your employment, which is severe or pervasive.
Making offensive remarks about looks, clothing, body parts
Touching in a way that may make an employee feel uncomfortable, such as patting, pinching or intentional brushing against another’s body
Telling sexual or lewd jokes, hanging sexual posters, making sexual gestures, etc.
Sending, forwarding or soliciting sexually suggestive letters, notes, emails, or images
Unlawful harassment is a form of discrimination that violates state and federal laws.
Unwelcome verbal or physical conduct based on race, color, religion, sex (whether or not of a sexual nature and including same-gender harassment and gender identity harassment), national origin, age (40 and over), disability (mental or physical), sexual orientation, or retaliation) constitutes harassment when:
1. The conduct is sufficiently severe or pervasive to create a hostile work environment; or
2. A supervisor’s harassing conduct results in a tangible change in an employee’s employment status or benefits (for example, demotion, termination, failure to promote, etc.).
This occurs when unwelcome comments or conduct based on sex, race or other legally protected characteristics unreasonably interferes with an employee’s work performance or creates an intimidating, hostile or offensive work environment. Anyone in the workplace might commit this type of harassment — a management official, co-worker, or non-employee, such as a contractor, vendor or guest. The victim can be anyone affected by the conduct, not just the individual at whom the offensive conduct is directed.
Harassment that results in a tangible employment action occurs when a management official’s harassing conduct results in some significant change in an employee’s employment status (e.g., hiring, firing, promotion, failure to promote, demotion, formal discipline, such as suspension, undesirable reassignment, or a significant change in benefits, a compensation decision, or a work assignment). Only individuals with supervisory or managerial responsibility can commit this type of harassment.
A claim of harassment generally requires several elements, including:
1. The complaining party must be a member of a statutorily protected class;
2. S/he was subjected to unwelcome verbal or physical conduct related to his or her membership in that protected class;
3. The unwelcome conduct complained of was based on his or her membership in that protected class;
4. The unwelcome conduct affected a term or condition of employment and/or had the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with his or her work performance and/or creating an intimidating, hostile or offensive work environment.
Our Guide to Filing a Charge of Employment Discrimination will provide you some answers to starting the process of protecting your rights.
The anti-discrimination statute are not a general civility code. Thus, state and federal law does not prohibit simple teasing, offhand comments, or isolated incidents that are not extremely serious. Rather, the conduct must be so objectively offensive as to alter the conditions of the individual’s employment. The conditions of employment are altered only if the harassment culminates in a tangible employment action or is sufficiently severe or pervasive to create a hostile work environment.
These may include:
Use of racially derogatory words, phrases, epithets
Demonstrations of a racial or ethnic nature such as a use of gestures, pictures or drawings which would offend a particular racial or ethnic group
Comments about an individual’s skin color or other racial/ethnic characteristics
Making disparaging remarks about an individual’s gender that are not sexual in nature
Negative comments about an employee’s religious beliefs (or lack of religious beliefs)
Expressing negative stereotypes regarding an employee’s birthplace or ancestry
Negative comments regarding an employee’s age when referring to employees 40 and over
Derogatory or intimidating references to an employee’s mental or physical impairment
Douglas, Leonard & Garvey, P.C. – Employers and their insurance companies have experienced lawyers on their side. With our employment lawyers on your side, we level the playing field. While some employment cases settle without filing a lawsuit, you need a skilled and aggressive employment lawyer so you get fair compensation. Douglas, Leonard & Garvey has the reputation and experience of being a trial law firm. What makes our law firm different is that employers and insurance companies know that we will take a case to trial if they do not offer fair compensation. If you have an inexperienced lawyer that isn’t used to going to court, you won’t have that leverage on your side. It is that leverage or the threat of taking a case to trial that gives you an advantage in your case.
New Hampshire Employment Lawyer
The attorneys at Douglas, Leonard & Garvey have years of trial experience in handling employment cases. Choosing the right lawyer may mean the difference between success and failure. Call 1-800-240-1988 or fill out our online contact form.