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Free Sample Sexual Harassment Policy
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Sample Sexual Harassment Policy


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Sexual Harassment Policy

Employer ABC is committed to maintaining an environment free of sexual harassment.  In order to establish an environment typified by dignity and respect, sexual harassment of employees at Employer ABC is unacceptable conduct and will not be tolerated.

The possibility of sexual harassment is potentially destructive to all employees.  When, through fear of reprisal, an employee submits, or is pressured to submit, to unwanted sexual attention, the Employer's mission is undermined.

The Employer does recognize that sexual harassment may occur between persons of the same status and between persons of the same sex.  The Employer will not tolerate any behavior between or among employees creates an unacceptable working environment.

LAWS REGARDING SEXUAL HARASSMENT

Sexual harassment is a violation of federal and state law and Employer ABC's discrimination policy.  Title IX of the 1972 Education Amendments prohibits discrimination on the basis of gender.  Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, and national origin in all employment practices, including conditions of employment.  Federal Courts have ruled that sexual harassment of employees constitutes unlawful sexual discrimination and is therefore a violation of Title VII.

Under the Civil Rights Act, employers and supervisors are required by law to investigate claims of sexual harassment and to develop appropriate preventative measures and discipline for such behavior.  Supervisors are also responsible for acting upon information that comes to their attention, and have a responsibility to act on information they could reasonably have been expected to know.

EMPLOYEES COVERED BY THIS POLICY

This policy applies to all employees.

DEFINITION

Sexual harassment is defined as unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, or other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature when:

·         Submission to such conduct is made explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of an individual's employment;

·         Submission to/rejection of such conduct is used as a basis for evaluating employment decisions; or

·         Such conduct has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with an individual's work performance, or of creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive work environment.

EXAMPLES OF SEXUAL HARASSMENT

Sexual harassment encompasses any unwanted sexual attention.  Examples include, but are not limited to:

·         Unwelcome touching, patting, hugging, fondling, or grabbing;

·         Solicitation of sexual activity by promise of reward or threat of punishment;

·         Direct or subtle pressure for sexual activity;

·         Verbal conduct that includes one or more of the following:

·         Sexual based comments;

·         Sexually explicit statements, questions or jokes;

·         Remarks of a sexual nature about a person's clothing or body;

·         Comments about current or previous sexual activity (includes speculations about activity).

·         Nonverbal conduct directed at a person that would discomfort and/or humiliate a person.

CONSENSUAL RELATIONSHIPS

Consensual relationships are defined as sexual relationships between two people where one employee is in a supervisory position over the other.  A supervisor who engages in consensual relationships may be liable for formal disciplinary action and will be held accountable for unprofessional behavior.

Moreover, other staff can be affected by such behavior as it possibly places the staff member in a position of favor at the expense of others and implicitly makes obtaining benefits contingent on sexual favors.

A supervisor who is not in a supervisory position over an employee must be aware of the possibility that they may be placed in a supervisory position over the employee with whom they have a consensual relationship.

COMPLAINT PROCEDURE

Employees are encouraged to notify the alleged offender that his/her behavior is offensive and unwelcome.  Note: Failure to do so will not preclude filing a complaint.

ADJUDICATION

All stuff must immediately report all alleged incidents of sexual harassment.  Sexual harassment complaints may be filed through the informal complaint procedure or the Formal Complaint Procedure.

INFORMAL COMPLAINT PROCEDURE

The intent of this procedure is to resolve problems without the use of formal internal procedures or external adjudicative procedures.  This procedure should resolve misunderstandings and/or communication problems, as well as encourage reporting.  At this stage, emphasis will be placed on eliminating any behavior that violates this policy.

The complainant has the option to bring a complaint in person or have any other employee act on the complainant's behalf to any member of the Employer ABC Sexual Harassment Committee.  A complaint must be filed within  calendar days, or sooner, of the occurrence of the harassing behavior.

Every reasonable effort will be made to privacy and to protect complainants from reprisals.  If the complainant wishes to be identified to the alleged offender and wants to try and resolve the problem informally, the Sexual Harassment Committee will participate in discussions with the parties, either jointly or individually.

FORMAL COMPLAINT PROCEDURE

A formal complaint must be filed within  calendar days, or sooner, of the occurrence of the harassing behavior or within  working days of the completion of the informal process, whichever is later.  All formal complaints must be in writing and submitted to the Sexual Harassment Committee.

A representative in any discussions relating to a formal complaint may accompany the complainant.

A formal written complaint must specify the nature of the charge.  Dates and times of specific incidents, names of witnesses, and any evidence that support the allegation should be included in the charge.  The complaint must be signed by the complainant and dated.

A copy of the complaint will be forwarded to the alleged offender and the Sexual Harassment Officer will conduct an investigation.  The Sexual Harassment Officer will provide the results to the appropriate Vice President within  working days of conducting the investigation.  The Vice President will act within  working days.  If the complaint has merit, the Vice President will impose appropriate disciplinary measures.  If the complaint cannot be resolved, the Sexual Harassment Committee and the appropriate Vice President shall review the complaint.

SEXUAL HARASSMENT COMMITTEE

The committee will advise the complainant of his/her options and at the complainant's request may:

·         Help resolve the complaint through the informal complaint procedure and/or;

·         Help the complainant draft a formal complaint.

The committee can outline the options available to deal with the alleged offender, for example:

·         How to talk to the alleged offender in order to stop the offensive behavior.

·         How to write a letter to the offender to stop the offensive behavior.

·         Have a committee member speak to the alleged offender to determine if a violation of this Policy has occurred.  The complainant, the accused and other witnesses will be interviewed.

DISCIPLINARY MEASURES

Disciplinary measures for employees who violate this policy shall include counseling, oral reprimand, written reprimand, reassignment, suspension (with or without pay), termination, or referral to the criminal justice system.

APPEALS

If either party has information that was not known during the investigation, they can present an appeal of the decision of the Vice President directly to the CEO.  The CEO's decision is final and binding.

PROTECTION OF COMPLAINANT AND OTHERS

All complaints will be investigated.  All parties will be kept informed of the steps taken during the investigation.

All reasonable action will be taken to ensure that the complainant and those testifying on behalf of, or supporting the complainant in other ways will not suffer retaliation.  Steps to avoid retaliation include:

·         Lateral move of one or more of the parties, and

·         Ensure those performance evaluations of the complainant be made by an individual other than the accused.

The appropriate Vice President may take immediate action against an employee when it is reasonably certain that sexual harassment has occurred and that serious and immediate harm could ensue if the person continues to interact with the complainant.  This will be done in consultation with the CEO and the Sexual Harassment Committee.

FRIVOLOUS OR FALSE CHARGES

This policy shall not be used to bring frivolous or malicious charges against fellow employees.  The appropriate Vice President with take immediate disciplinary action shall be taken against any person intentionally bringing a false charge of sexual harassment.

RETALIATION

It is a violation of this policy for any employee to take reprisals against any complainant, witness or complainant supporter.  Threats, intimidation, and/or retaliation against the complainant or any other involved party may be cause for disciplinary action.

INVESTIGATIVE REPORT

After the investigation, both parties will be informed in writing of the decision within 15 days.

CONFIDENTIALITY

To the extent possible, the investigation will protect the confidentiality of the complainant, the alleged offender and all witnesses.  All involved parties will be instructed to maintain strict confidentiality, for the entire process to safeguard the privacy and reputation of all involved.


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