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What kinds of harassment are there?

It’s hard to handle a job that comes with discrimination or harassment. You want to be accepted and appreciated for the work you do, not worried about if your skin color or the religion you practice is affecting others’ opinions.

Harassment is, unfortunately, a reality for some people in the workplace. There are two main kinds: sexual harassment and nonsexual harassment.

Sexual harassment is relatively straightforward. It’s when someone harasses you based on your gender. You might be approached with unwanted conduct or comments about your gender, sex or sexual orientation.

Sexual harassment isn’t limited to vocal harassment or touching, so it can include many different circumstances. Emails, acting suggestively and sending obscene videos to others can all result in sexual harassment claims.

Nonsexual harassment is a little different, because it doesn’t necessarily involve harassment due to your gender, sex or sexual orientation. Think of nonsexual harassment as bullying.It could be because of what you wear, how you act or a disability. Any kind of offensive language describing your physical differences, age or other attributes could fall into this category.

If you’re a victim of sexual or nonsexual harassment, it’s important to speak up and reach out for help. Your human resources department may be able to stop the harassment immediately.

If it continues, you have an opportunity to file a lawsuit against your company for failing to stop harassment in the workplace. If you succeed, you could be compensated for the trauma you’ve been put through while on the job. Your attorney can talk to you more about your options.

Source: The Balance, “How to Handle Harassment at Work,” Alison Doyle, accessed Feb. 16, 2018

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