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What steps can I take after experiencing sexual harassment?

If you’re a victim of on-the-job sexual harassment, coming forward may be the only option you have to make it stop aside from quitting your job.

Here are the steps victims of sexual harassment can take:

Read: Read your company’s sexual harassment policy and act according to the instructions in the policy. Put your complaints in writing, and maintain clear records of every harassment incident. Write down the times and dates and who was involved.

Inform: Tell your employer that the harassment is happening by following the requirements for reporting in your company’s sexual harassment policy. Report the harassment as soon as possible. Delaying your report could negatively impact your ability to seek remedies.

File a complaint: If you haven’t received a satisfactory response from your employer, do not delay in contacting the appropriate federal and state agencies. In California, you should contact is the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH). On the federal level, you will want to reach out the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC).

Dial 911: If your situation has escalated to the point where you feel threatened in any way or if you have been victimized by sexual assault, call 911 and report the issue to the police. Also, visit a doctor immediately for a medical exam.

Seek out emotional support: No matter what your situation is, reach out to family and friends — and possibly a therapist — for emotional support.

You don’t have to put up with the trauma of sexual harassment in the workplace. With experienced legal guidance, you can seek justice.

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