Most Maryland residents know that incidents of sexual harassment can occur in almost any workplace. In the EMS workplace, sexual harassment is often reported. In some cases, this results in a hostile work environment where an employee begins to feel uncomfortable due to comments that are made, inappropriate touching or other sexually-charged behavior. In other cases, an employee may actually submit to the harassment in order to get some benefits out of it. If sexual harassment incidents occur, there are several steps to take.
First, EMS workers should have up-to-date knowledge about the company’s policies when it comes to sexual harassment. This way, employees know what documentation will be needed prior to an incident ever occurring. If an incident does occur, employees should take it seriously and try to let the other person know that their behavior is not acceptable. In some cases, potential harassers just may not understand that the behavior they are displaying is inappropriate.
If the inappropriate workplace behavior does not stop, the employee should make a formal complaint with a supervisor. If there are witnesses, arranging interviews can help bolster a case. If the supervisor refuses to help or cannot help, the employee should continue up the chain of command. If there is still no improvement, a complaint could be filed with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.
When an employee is facing sexual harassment from a co-worker or a supervisor, it can have a detrimental effect on work performance and can cause mental anguish. If the employee is fired or denied a promotion for reporting the inappropriate behavior, an attorney may help the client seek compensation for any damages that have been sustained.