What anti-harassment measures should the employers take to protect their business interest?


Workplace harassment has become a serious cause of concern. The employers are held liable for any sort of violation in the workplace and therefore, the employers should know what harassment is, and how to protect the well-being of the employees. Also, the employers must know that they can be sued by the employees if there are no provisions for their safety. Nakese law Firm has dedicated employment lawyers who can provide expert advice in unpaid wages, sexual harassment, gender discrimination and racial discrimination.

Physical harassment, Verbal abuse, Retaliation, Requests for sexual favors, unwanted touching, Derogatory comments, racial discrimination, gender discrimination, and showing favoritism are some of the harassments that take place in California. If the employees are subjected to a hostile working environment, they can take legal action against the employer. Most people think do I need to give two weeks notice before leaving a job? If you’ve been harassed or exploited, you do not need to give any notice. California works on an at-will basis and therefore, there is no obligation on the part of both the employees and the employers to give any notice. However, if you feel that you deserve unemployment benefits, you can make claims for that. If you’re wondering how to write an appeal for unemployment, then you should check out samples and examples of notice letters.

Measures that employers should take:

The anti-harassment rules under the FEHA apply to all the California employers. The employers can be held legally responsible even if –

  • The harassed person is a volunteer or an unpaid intern
  • The harasser is a client, vendor, customer, or a contractor.

Therefore, every employer should be aware of the Harassment laws in California and should take preventive steps for the same. Below mentioned are some of the essential steps that the employer can take to prevent any kind of workplace harassment.

Draft an anti-harassment policy

Employers should draft a well-written policy on workplace harassment, provided that it meets the standards laid down by the California law. It should cover all the aspects of harassment including – hostile working environment harassment and quid pro quo harassment. The written policy should state that any kind of harassment in the workplace is prohibited and that the employees have the right to stop them. There should be contact information written in the policy so that every employee knows who to contact after being a victim of harassment. A list of disciplinary measures should be taken against the harasser. Lastly, the policy should clearly read that the employees will not be subject to retaliation for reporting against harassment.

Inform the employees about the policy

After drafting the policy, the next step is to inform the employees about the same. The anti-harassment policy needs to be clearly explained to the employees on their joining day. You can also give a handbook to the employees for their reference. You can distribute the information through emails, or by providing a copy of it to the employees. Besides this, the employers must ensure that the employees send an acknowledgment, stating that they have received and read the policy. The employees should sign and send back an acknowledgement form to the employer to ensure that the policy was received by the employee.

Training on the policies

Besides sending a written copy, the supervisors and the employees should receive training on the written policies. The California FEHA requires that any employer having more than 5 employees should provide training on workplace harassment to the employees after every two years. The employees should receive one hour of training and supervisors to be given two hours of training. All employees- seasonal, temporary, and permanent employees should receive training on workplace harassment.

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