What Laws Prohibit Sexual Harassment? | liebste.info

Sexual harassment is a form of sexual discrimination and is prohibited by Title VII, the D.C. Human Rights Act (DCHRA), and Article 49B of the Maryland Civil Code. Title VII, the federal law prohibiting sexual harassment applies only to labor organizations, companies, or employment agencies with more than 15 employees. The D.C. Human Rights Act however, applies to all employers regardless of size.Sexual harassment includes: unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and any verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature that affects an individual’s employment.What must a plaintiff prove to prevail under Federal Law?Under Title VII, there are two types of sexual harassment claims that can be made: tangible employment action and hostile work environment.To prevail on a tangible employment action for harassment, an employee must make a prima facie case that:(1) he/she was a member of a protected class;
(2) he/she was subjected to unwelcome sexual advances or requests for sexual favors;
(3) his/her refusal to submit to a supervisor’s sexual demands affected his employment status; and
(4) the harassing supervisor used his authority to subject the employee to adverse job consequences.An employee alleging harassment based on a hostile work environment must show:(1) he was subjected to unwelcome conduct;
(2) the harassment was based on sex; and
(3) the harassment was severe or pervasive, and created an abusive working environment.What must a plaintiff prove to prevail under the D.C. Human Rights Act?An employee claiming sexual harassment under the DCHRA must establish a prima facie case demonstrating that unwelcome verbal and/or physical sexual advances were directed at him or her in the workplace, resulting in an abusive or hostile working environment.Retaliation for Reporting Sexual Harassment is ProhibitedSection 704 (a) of Title VII and the DCHRA prohibit retaliation against employees who file sexual harassment complaints. Retaliatory actions include: termination, suspension, demotion, reduction in salary, and any act that might dissuade a reasonable person from reporting harassment.What can a prevailing plaintiff recover?A prevailing plaintiff is entitled to reinstatement, back pay, front pay, compensatory damages and attorney fees. In addition, Title VII authorizes exemplary or punitive damages.