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Tag Archives: Illinois Sexual Harassment Attorneys

Illinois workplace sexual harassment lawyerOver the last year, national news headlines have been dominated by one story after the next about allegations of sexual harassment, sexual assault, and other types of inappropriate sexual behavior. While they have different names depending on the jurisdiction, sexual assault and other types of unwelcome sexual contact are criminal acts. Sexual harassment, however, is a different story. By law, sexual harassment is a form of sex-based employment discrimination. While it is still illegal, it is a matter that is handled through state and federal agencies, as well as the civil court system.

Because it is an employment-related matter, sexual harassment is also somewhat easier to recognize and address than acts of sexual violence often are. Sexual harassment can even be prevented and avoided if those who work together are willing to have open and honest conversations about the topic. Depending on where you work, management may be willing to facilitate such discussion. If a formal meeting is not feasible, consider opening lines of communication with your coworkers on your own—regardless of your gender or your previous experience with sexual harassment.

Men and Women Must Communicate

In many cases, sexual harassment is the manifestation of a power struggle. For example, men who have worked with only other men for many years may feel threatened—even subconsciously—by the introduction of a female coworker. Similarly, a person in a managerial position may get a thrill out of flirting or making sexual advances toward a subordinate as a result of the power differential. However, sexual harassment can also occur due to the differences in the perspectives of men and women.

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Illinois sexual harassment attorneysSexual harassment in the workplace has never been a more hotly-debated topic. There have been laws against inappropriate sexual behavior at work for decades. Discrimination on the basis of sex has been against the law in the U.S since the 1964 Civil Rights Act. However, many instances of sexual harassment have gone unchecked throughout the years, and many people’s lives have been negatively affected as a result.

Last year, the nation was taken by storm by the viral Twitter hashtag #MeToo as thousands of men and women shared their stories of sexual harassment and sexual assault. During this time of controversy and change, it can be hard to know exactly what actions are acceptable at work and what are not. For example, should you date a co-worker? There are no easy answers, but there are some things you should keep in mind regarding romantic relationships at work.

Dating at Work When There Is a Power Differential Between the Employees

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Illinois sexual harassment attorneysFor many people, professional sports cheerleaders present an ethical dilemma. On one hand, the women who are a part of professional cheerleading teams are generally independent and empowered, and they voluntarily sign up for a high-profile role within the specific organization. On the other hand, arguably professional sports cheerleaders use their physical appearance, charisma, and sex appeal to promote the team under which they are employed.

As with any profession that involves sex appeal, there are likely to be instances where cheerleaders may be placed in uncomfortable situations, some of which may even rise to the level of sexual harassment or sexual misconduct. A recent report suggests that this may have been the case for members of the Washington Redskins cheerleading team during a trip to Costa Rica in 2013.

Unexpected Spectators and More

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Illinois sexual harassment lawyersIf you look at Google Trends to see the recent history of the term “sexual harassment,” you can see that this phrase started being searched at a much higher rate right around October of 2017. This is no coincidence. October 2017 marks the beginning of what has become a revolution against sexual harassment in the workplace. Before the end of that month, over eighty women had made accusations of sexual harassment against media mogul Harvey Weinstein. Allegations against other high-profile individuals quickly followed. Since then, many more women who had silently endured sexual harassment have come forward to report the behavior. Throughout this increased media attention, there has been a great deal of confusion and misinformation about terms like sexual harassment, sexual misconduct, and sexual assault.

Sexual Harassment

Sexual harassment is a term which is frequently misused. Many people use this phrase to mean undesired sexual attention, and while that can be part of sexual harassment, it is by far not the full definition. From a legal perspective, sexual harassment can only exist in the workplace. So, while the construction worker who cat-calls women walking past a construction site is inappropriate and annoying, he or she is not engaging in unlawful sexual harassment.

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Illinois sexual harassment lawyersSexual harassment has been in the news more than ever recently. From famous actors to unnamed hotel patrons, women and men who have been victims of sexual harassment are making their voices heard. Sexual harassment in the workplace is a form of illegal sex discrimination.

Quid pro quo sexual harassment occurs when an employer or superior offers promotions to an employee in exchange for sexual acts or threatens to fire the employee if he or she does not submit to sexual acts. “Hostile work environment” sexual harassment refers to situations where the employee's work environment is made offensive or hostile due to sexual conduct which negatively affects the employee’s work performance.

Patient Harassment is Par for the Course According to Nurses

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From our law office in Wheaton, IL the family law and civil litigation law attorneys of Mirabella, Kincaid, Frederick and Mirabella, represent businesses and individual clients throughout the western suburbs of Chicago, Illinois including Wheaton, Naperville, Oak Brook, Glen Ellyn, Carol Stream, Lombard, Downers Grove, Burr Ridge, Lisle, Elmhurst, Oakbrook Terrace, Winfield, Woodridge, Warrenville and throughout DuPage, Kane and Kendall Counties.

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