I am being harassed at work: what should I do?
If you are being harassed at work, there are several steps that you can take to protect your legal rights:
· Keep notes: Because the anxiety and stress of the harassment may impact your memory, write down what happened, with specific references to dates, times, locations, and witnesses.
· Print documents: If you received letters, notes, emails or text messages, keep copies if possible.
· Report the harassment: It is important that you put your employer on notice of the harassment. Consult your employee handbook for direction on how to report harassment in your workplace. If the handbook does not include a section on harassment, write a letter to your manager or to Human Resources, or ask your attorney to draft a letter for you.
· File a claim with the DFEH: In addition to notifying your employer, you may also file a complaint with the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH.) The DFEH is authorized to conduct workplace investigations.
· Act promptly: The law imposes deadlines for filing complaints or lawsuits related to harassment. If you delay reporting, you may jeopardize your rights.
California law protects you from retaliation for reporting harassment and participating in an investigation.
If you have any questions about documenting and reporting harassment, please don’t hesitate to contact us for a free consultation.