Just because an employee works from home doesn’t mean that the employee cannot experience sexual harassment. Sexual harassment and remote work is still a possibility, and since the pandemic in 2020, the incidents of sexually harassed remote workers have increased significantly. Sexual harassment for New York City remote workers can consist of the same types of activities, communications, comments, and actions that targeted employees can face when they work at the physical place of employment. Just because they log in via a computer doesn’t diminish the possibility of sexual harassment happening. At Ricotta and Marks, we take seriously any claims of sexual harassment brought to us by our clients. We investigate cases fully and seek justice for our clients.
Examples of Sexual Harassment and Remote Work
Examples of sexual harassment and remote work are very similar to what takes place at the job site. Just because the targeted employee works from home, a sexual harasser can still communicate things that make the workplace a hostile working environment. As the New York Times put it, “Since the start of the pandemic, employees have felt as if online environments are the Wild West, where traditional rules do not apply.”
Here are some common examples that we hear about from our clients at Ricotta and Marks:
- Sexually related or sex-based jokes, memes, images, or other crude or rude content can easily be shared with other employees through electronic communications such as email, texts, chat rooms, and other electronic communication devices and platforms;
- Displaying sexually explicit pictures or sexually suggestive comments in the sexual harasser’s profile pictures or profile information for all to see during video conferences or group chats;
- Unwanted and incessant requests for a romantic relationship through telephone calls, text conversations, or by other means; and
- Unsolicited distribution of explicit photographs of oneself or others.
This, of course, is not an exhaustive list. These examples are only but a few of what a targeted employee could experience if the employer does not take complaints of sexual harassment in the remote work environment seriously. Just because the offensive sexually based comments or activities are directed at a NYC remote worker doesn’t make it okay. It is still considered sexual harassment and it still creates an illegal hostile work environment for the targeted employee.
What to do if You Experience Sexual Harassment in Remote Work?
If you experience any type of action or communication from a co-employee that makes you feel uncomfortable, the first thing to do is report it to your supervisor. Make sure you have previously written down all the facts surrounding the unwanted communications or actions and saved any of the electronic communications. Make sure you have proof–record any dates and times and specifically list what was said or done. If the sexual harasser is your supervisor or someone in a supervising position, make a report directly to the human relations office and sidestep your supervisor. The more information and detail you can provide to HR the better.
After communicating with the appropriate people at your employer, your next step is to contact an experienced NYC sexual harassment lawyer. Don’t just hire any lawyer, like someone you saw on TV or someone a relative suggested. You need to make sure they have decades of experience in successfully handling these types of cases.
The bottom line is that the NYC sexual harassment lawyers at Ricotta and Marks have successfully handled hundreds of these cases and have helped countless clients through difficult times. Contact us today! Help is only a phone call away.