Phillips & Associates

Sexual Harassment

Sexual harassment includes unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical harassment of a sexual nature, including text messages and emails. The harasser can be supervisor, a co-worker, or in some instances, someone who is not an employee. Often, the harasser is in a position of power or authority over the victim. Sexual harassment can lead to retaliation after a person rejects sexual advances. If you have been subjected to improper sexual conduct at work, contact the New York sexual harassment attorneys at Phillips & Associates.

Sexual Harassment Includes:

Workplace sexual harassment can occur even outside of the office, such as a holiday/office party. Some industries, such as the as the fashion industry, are particularly susceptible to sexual harassment in subtle but poisonous ways. For more information on recognizing sexual harassment, read our Sexual Harassment FAQs.

New York and Federal Law Prohibit Sexual Harassment

Sexual harassment is considered a form of gender discrimination, because it is harassing conduct that occurs because of an individual’s gender. Gender discrimination in all its forms, including sexual harassment, is prohibited by Title VII of the federal Civil Rights Act of 1964. Sexual harassment claims are handled by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). New York State’s Human Rights Law and the New York City Human Rights Law also prohibit sexual harassment, and reach much smaller employers than the Civil Rights Act. In 2010, 11,717 sexual harassment claims were filed with the EEOC across the country.

How to Recognize Workplace Sexual Harassment

The EEOC groups sexual harassment into two main categories. The first is called “quid pro quo” sexual harassment. This happens where submitting to unwelcome sexual conduct is made the basis for employment decisions – such as requiring sexual favors in order to grant a promotion. Similarly, when rejection of sexual advances forms the basis for a decision to fire, demote, or refuse to promote an employee, quid pro quo sexual harassment has occurred. This type of harassment results in an economic loss to the victim. A pattern of favoritism to one gender based on the granting of sexual favors can create quid pro quo harassment of members of either gender.

The more common form of sexual harassment is the second category, called “hostile work environment” harassment. A hostile work environment exists where unwelcome verbal or physical conduct unreasonably interferes with the victim’s ability to do his or her job, or creates an offensive, intimidating, or hostile working environment. Even general, non-sexual comments – such as comments about one gender – can create a hostile work environment where the comments are frequent or severe. Minor isolated incidents or harmless lighthearted teasing do not amount to a hostile work environment. If you are uncertain, it can be helpful to consult with an attorney to get an idea of whether the conduct at issue is so offensive as to constitute a hostile work environment.

Sexual harassment does not always follow expected patterns. Men can easily be the victim of sexual harassment. Between 1997 and 2010, the percentage of harassment charges filed with the EEOC by men has risen from approximately 12% to 16%. Sexual harassment can also occur between members of the same sex, based on unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature or patterns of favoring the opposite sex for inappropriate reasons. Anyone affected by the improper conduct can be a victim, not just the person directly subject to harassing conduct, and harassment can take place without any economic injury to the victim.

Phillips &Amp; Associates: Experienced New York Sexual Harassment Attorneys

Sexual harassment cases are difficult, and require an experienced New York sexual harassment attorney. There is inevitably a high level of discomfort in testifying about the facts of harassment, and often sexual harassment cases involve “he said, she said” types of testimony, making credibility and any documentary evidence or email critical. While retaliation based on pursuing a sexual harassment claim is prohibited, the workplace may remain uncomfortable.

At Phillips & Associates, we understand the difficulties of pursuing a sexual harassment claim, but we also know that no one should have to tolerate unwelcome sexual advances in the workplace. We are aggressive advocates for our clients, and have substantial experience in harassment and discrimination claims. For a free, confidential consultation, contact us today at (212) 248-7431.

PHILLIPS & ASSOCIATES
45 Broadway, #620,
New York NY, 10006
Tel: 212-248-7431
Fax: 212-901-2107

New York Employment Attorney Blog - Sexual Harassment
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Client Reviews
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I called at Phillips & Associates seeking for a consultation and I was very pleased with the conversation I had with Eugenio Benvenuto. He was able to answer my questions thoroughly and gave me reassurance. I highly recommend their practice. Giulia
★★★★★
Hands down the best law firm for labor disputes in NYC. Being in the restaurant industry for more than 30 years I can say that this law firm is the number one choice for workers in the restaurant business that need to sue their company for wrongful termination. A special compliment to my lawyer Brittany Stevens. An amazing person and well prepared experienced lawyer. She was professional and empathetic to my case and worked in a time appropriate manner. She never miss a phone call at any hour of the day.The other associates that assisted Brittany were Yusha Hiraman, Eugenio Benvenuto and Katerina Housos. They were all professional and answered any questions or concerns that I had. Brittany and her team helped me with what I needed, when I needed it. I want to thank them all (especially Brittany), for a job well done. Massimo
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Jesse Weinstein handled my discrimination case. He was extremely patient and understanding throughout the process and remained professional and consistent even when I could not. I really felt like he had my back and I didn't have to worry. His expertise, combined with the experience of the Firm, resulted in the best possible outcome of my case. Although I wouldn't wish what I went through on anyone, things do and always will happen and I would highly recommend Jesse and this Firm to anyone facing discrimination or other workplace issues. Karen
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I highly recommend Parisis (Gerry) Fillippatos with Phillips & Associates to represent you for employment related matters. He and his team were professional, attentive to every detail and brilliant at identifying the legal grounds to win the case. Parisis's communication and delivery were highly articulate and precise. He is personable and makes you feel comfortable in the maze of legal jargon. Finally, his confidence, perseverance and masterful negotiation skills deliver the win. Anonymous
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I had an excellent experience with this team! Thanks, Marjorie, Brittany, and Candy for your great support and prompt answers to all my questions. I highly recommend this firm. This team works very hard and I am extremely happy with the results. Ana