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What Can be Done to Protect Oneself from Sexual Harassment in Pennsylvania?

— December 14, 2021

All employers are required to set sexual harassment policies and to protect oneself further, all employees should remain up to date with these policies.

When a person first experiences sexual harassment, especially at the workplace, they will likely feel very scared, intimidated, and confused. In normal circumstances, a person would just try to distance themselves from the perpetrator, but in such conditions a person’s entire livelihood is linked to remaining where they are. They may consider transferring jobs, but is it fair for them to have to leave their hard-earned position just because of the ill intentions of another person? The answer is a clear no. No one in Pennsylvania should have to compromise their job and income because of sexual harassment and there are other steps a person can take to prevent themselves from getting harmed in such a situation and to hold the abuser to account.

The first step any employee can take to protect themselves is to speak up and be bold. Most abusers only carry out abuse against someone who they feel is compliant and who won’t stand up against their behavior. Once a person is bold and they clearly state they do not like a person touching them a certain way or speaking to them a certain way, the abuser will often get the message and back away. Another method a person can use is to make sure they write down all the details and timings that the harassment took place. All emails, text messages, and anything of this nature should also be documented as soon as possible so that a person has the evidence needed when matters escalate to the filing of a legal claim.

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Anyone who was raped should consider getting a rape kit done and this should be done within 72 hours for the best possible chances of gathering the required evidence.  If an individual was drugged by another or they were too intoxicated to consent, then they can further be tested for such substances to prove that the abuser did in fact harass them and the behavior was not consensual. 

Educating oneself on employer policies in Pennsylvania

All employers are required to set sexual harassment policies and to protect oneself further, all employees should remain up to date with these policies so they know exactly where to go and so they are educated on their rights and what steps to take when an act of harassment occurs. If the employer fails to act out their policies and they do not take the required measures to help a person with their situation, then they can be held to legal account by getting in touch with a sexual harassment lawyer who can guide a person through the required steps and educate them further on their right to be protected.

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