Same-Sex Sexual Harassment of Men by Men

Employment Attorneys Advocating for New York City Workers

Workplace sexual harassment is illegal. Many people assume that sexual harassment occurs between a man and a woman. However, same-sex sexual harassment of men by men is also prohibited in New York City and elsewhere in the state. If you are a man who is harassed by a man at work, you may be able to recover damages. You should discuss your harassment with an employment law firm to understand your rights in the workplace. Sexual harassment can occur under a variety of circumstances, ranging from office parties to the hiring process. It is important to consult an experienced New York City sexual harassment lawyer about your legal options.

Same-Sex Sexual Harassment of Men by Men

Same-sex sexual harassment is distinct from sexual orientation discrimination. This is important to note because sexual orientation discrimination is not expressly prohibited by Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Sexual harassment is a form of sex discrimination, and it can occur in a workplace when perpetrated by a manager, supervisor, coworker, client, or customer. Harassment can consist of demands for sexual favors, sexual jokes, assault, and other physical actions or words. It can be perpetrated by a man against a man. If your supervisor or boss grabs your crotch in the workplace, this can be a form of sexual harassment. Sexually explicit text messages or photos sent by a manager or a co-worker, can also lead to sexual harassment and a hostile work environment. The employment law firm of Phillips & Associates has experience handling hundreds of cases of sexual harassment and sexual orientation discrimination including guy on guy harassment.

Same-sex sexual harassment is illegal when it is quid pro quo harassment or when it results in a hostile work environment for the victim. Quid pro quo harassment occurs when an authority figure at work requests sexual favors and suggests that you will be terminated, demoted, or subject to some other adverse action if you refuse. Hostile work environment harassment is illegal when it makes the work environment intimidating or offensive to the victim. Sexual harassment can also lead to a sexual assault. It is often perpetrated by a person in a position of power over the employee.

Our employment law firm offers free consultations, to discuss the harassment you are experiencing at work. It’s important to know, Sexual harassment can also take place outside the workplace. Sometimes the sexual harassment takes place at an office party, company retreat or other office site location. Some employees are harassed in hotel rooms and even their own home.

Same-Sex Sexual Harassment Under Federal Law

It can be challenging for employees to distinguish between sexual orientation discrimination and same-sex sexual harassment for the purposes of bringing a Title VII charge. The former occurs, for example, when a male manager refuses to promote you because you are gay or because he believes that you are gay. This type of discrimination is not actionable under Title VII. On the other hand, same-sex sexual harassment would occur if a male supervisor tried to grope you, a male worker, against your will at a holiday party or kept asking you out even after you stated that you were not interested.

In one Supreme Court case, a male employee was sexually assaulted with a bar of soap and subjected to threats of rape. He reported the assaults and other harassment to his supervisors but was ignored. He filed a sexual harassment charge with the EEOC. His employer argued in defense of itself that same-sex sexual harassment was not prohibited under federal law. However, the Supreme Court found that same-sex harassment is prohibited under Title VII as long as the actions were based on the victim's sex. Sexual desire does not enter into the equation. As long as it is based on the victim's sex rather than on sexual orientation, harassment can be actionable under Title VII.

Same-Sex Sexual Harassment Under State and Local Laws

The distinction between same-sex sexual harassment and sexual orientation discrimination is less important if your attorney brings your claim under New York State or local New York discrimination laws. These laws prohibit sexual orientation discrimination and harassment against someone based on their sexuality. You cannot be demoted, terminated, or harassed because you are gay or bisexual. You also cannot be subject to unwelcome come-ons, touching, groping, sexual assault, or verbal comments based on your sex, even if you are a man and the perpetrator is also a man. Same-sex sexual harassment could include flirting, sexually suggestive gestures, intimidation, threats, sexual assault, lewd comments, and jokes or comments about genitalia.

Benefits of Filing Under State and Local Laws

In general, there is broader protection against same-sex sexual harassment under New York state and local laws because these laws cover employers that have fewer employees, which are not covered by Title VII. You do not need to file a charge with an agency first, as you do with federal law. Under local law, you also do not face caps on your damages based on the size of your employer. Our employment law firm works on a contingency basis, which means there are no attorney’s fees paid unless we recover a settlement or jury award.

Seek Assistance from a New York City Lawyer for Your Sexual Harassment Case

At Phillips & Associates, we provide aggressive legal representation to plaintiffs in cases involving same-sex sexual harassment of men by men in New York City. It’s important to discuss your situation with a knowledgeable employment law firm. We may be able to develop a strategy to pursue damages from your employer. Our attorneys fight employment discrimination and harassment in the Bronx, Queens, Manhattan, Brooklyn, and Staten Island, as well as Nassau and Suffolk Counties. We also handle sexual harassment cases in Westchester, Pennsylvania and New Jersey. Contact us at (212) 248-7431 or submit our online form.

PHILLIPS & ASSOCIATES
45 Broadway, Suite 620,
New York NY, 10006
Tel: 212-248-7431
Fax: 212-901-2107
info@tpglaws.com
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