Suffolk County Sexual Harassment

Employment Attorneys Advocating for Residents of Suffolk County

Suffolk County is a suburban county on Long Island. Companies based there include Allion Healthcare, JVC Broadcasting, Leviton, Blue Point Brewing, Renaissance Technologies, Symbol Technologies, and OSI Pharmaceuticals. Workplace sexual harassment is illegal in Suffolk County. Under the New York State Human Rights Law, no employer may permit sexual harassment of an employee. All employers are covered by this law. However, there may be instances in which it may be advantageous to bring a claim under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, a federal law that is limited to employers that have at least 15 employees. At Phillips & Associates, our Suffolk County sexual harassment lawyers understand the nuances of these laws. We can develop a strategy to obtain compensation for sexual harassment victims.

Holding an Employer Accountable for Sexual Harassment

Sexual harassment can be committed by a man or a woman, and likewise, either a man or a woman can be a victim of it. Many people feel shame after being sexually harassed, and they may not immediately object. However, you should make it clear that sexual advances or offensive conduct are unwelcome, once you collect your emotions.

Only supervisors or managers can perpetrate quid pro quo harassment, in which a figure of authority in the workplace offers a job benefit or perk in exchange for your acquiescence in sexual activity or conduct. An example of this would be if your manager said that he would promote you if you would spend a night at a hotel with him on a business trip. A sexual harassment attorney can advise Suffolk County employees on whether they can bring this type of claim.

Customers, clients, supervisors, managers, and coworkers can all perpetrate hostile work environment harassment. Hostile work environment harassment can include sexually explicit comments, verbal sexual advances, physical sexual advances, sexually discriminatory statements, gestures, pranks, jokes, intimidation, and even physical violence, such as rape. The behavior must be both subjectively and objectively objectionable. In other words, the harassing actions must cause you personal discomfort or humiliation or interfere with your job performance, and they should also be actions that would cause a reasonable person in the same circumstances to feel that the workplace had become hostile.


Both state and federal laws prohibiting sexual harassment include a provision against retaliation for engaging in protected activity. A protected activity could include filing internal complaints of sexual harassment, testifying or assisting in a proceeding involving a charge of sexual harassment, filing a charge of sexual harassment, informing a manager or supervisor of sexual harassment, or encouraging another employee to report harassment.

Retaliation can be clear-cut, such as if an employee is fired or demoted due to complaining about sexual harassment. However, our Suffolk County sexual harassment attorneys have seen that it can also be more subtle. For example, a supervisor might write a poor performance review for an employee who went over his head to complain to a manager about sexual harassment by coworkers in the supervisor's department. The retaliation may even occur after an employee is no longer employed, such as when a prospective employer calls the harassing supervisor or manager for a reference. However, negative employment actions are not retaliatory only because they happen after an employee is involved in protected activities. It is important to be able to show a causal relationship between the protected activity and the retaliatory action.

It may be useful to document (including the date) everything harassing or retaliatory that happens as it happens so that you can refresh your memory later about which things happened when. For example, it would be useful to note if a supervisor made positive remarks about your performance during a period when you were being sexually harassed by your coworkers, but then they started making negative remarks about your performance after you had complained to HR about the sexual harassment and asked that something be done to fix the situation.

Consult a Knowledgeable Sexual Harassment Lawyer in Suffolk County

At Phillips & Associates, our attorneys have the experience to evaluate the strength of a sexual harassment claim. We offer free consultations. There are no upfront fees and we accept cases on a contingency basis, which means that you will not be asked to pay attorneys' fees unless we recover damages on your behalf. Contact us at (212) 248-7431 or through our online form.

1129 Northern Boulevard, 4th Floor,
Manhasset, NY 11030
Tel: 516-365-3731
Fax: 212-901-2107

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