New Hampshire Sex Discrimination and Harassment Lawyer
Sex discrimination and sexual harassment are, regrettably, still quite common in the workplace. The attorneys at the New Hampshire Employee Rights Group have decades of experience helping victims of sex discrimination and sexual harassment. If you have experienced sex discrimination or sexual harassment at work, we may be able to help you enforce your rights.Sex Discrimination
When an employer makes a personnel decision based on a person's sex (or gender), it violates the law. For example, if an employer makes hiring, layoff, promotion, or pay decisions based on the sex of the applicants or employees, it has discriminated on the basis of sex. Men and women can both be victims of unlawful sex discrimination.
There are a variety of reasons why employers engage in sex discrimination. Sometimes certain jobs are seen as "men's jobs" or "women's jobs," like firefighter (men) and nurse (women), and some employers think women are not well suited for "men's jobs" and men are not well suited for "women's jobs." Sometimes employers also base personnel decisions on generalized sex stereotypes, like the stereotype that mothers are more likely than fathers to take time off from work to care for children. Whatever the reason, sex discrimination is illegal and you do not need to tolerate it.Sexual Harassment
Sexual harassment is an epidemic in the American workplace. Sexual harassment is unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature that, either explicitly or implicitly, becomes a term or condition of employment. Sexual harassment can take many forms. For example, sexual conduct that creates a hostile, intimidating, or abusive work environment is sexual harassment. Also, if your boss withholds a benefit from you, like a promotion, because you refuse to submit to his or her sexual advances, that is sexual harassment.
Some common forms of sexual harassment are:
- Sexual assault or rape;
- Inappropriate touching;
- Physical intimidation;
- Unwelcome sexual overtures;
- Offensive comments or jokes about sex;
- Displaying offensive graffiti or images in the workplace; and
- Hostile behavior directed at women because they are working in a "man's job" or men because they are working in a "woman's job."
Both women and men can be victims of sexual harassment. And the victim of sexual harassment and their harasser do not have to be of the opposite sex. In other words, men can sexually harass other men and women can sexually harass other women.
Your employer is required to take reasonable steps to prevent sexual harassment from occurring in the workplace and to promptly remedy the effects of sexual harassment in the workplace when it occurs. If you complain to your employer about sexual harassment, your employer is required to promptly investigate your complaint and take appropriate action to prevent sexual harassment from recurring. While this is what employers are supposed to do, many of them fail in this responsibility. So, you should contact an experienced employment lawyer for advice before you complain about sexual harassment.Both Federal and State Law Prohibit all Forms of Sex Discrimination
There are multiple federal and state laws, including Title VII of the Civil Rights Act and New Hampshire's Law Against Discrimination, that prohibit sex discrimination and sexual harassment. There are deadlines for pursuing sex discrimination and sexual harassment claims that can sometimes be relatively short. As such, if you have experienced sex discrimination or sexual harassment, you should act promptly to protect your rights.Victims of Sex Discrimination and Harassment may be Entitled to Compensation
If your employer has violated your rights by subjecting you to sex discrimination or sexual harassment, you may be entitled to monetary compensation including lost wages, lost benefits, and compensation for emotional distress. In some cases, punitive damages may also be appropriate to hold your employer accountable for violating your rights.
Sex discrimination and sexual harassment can be terrible and demoralizing but victims have rights and can fight back. Keep in mind that if you are a victim of sex discrimination or sexual harassment, you are likely not the only person who has been victimized in the workplace. An employer that discriminates against people on the basis of sex will likely continue to do so unless they are stopped. Serial sexual harassers are common and if you experience sexual harassment you're probably not the harasser's first victim and you probably won't be their last victim unless they are stopped.
The lawyers at the New Hampshire Employee Rights Group have a long track record of helping victims of sex discrimination and sexual harassment and holding their employers accountable. If you think you have experienced sex discrimination or sexual harassment, contact us at 833.365.2929 or through this web form for an initial consultation to learn more about your rights.