Harvey Weinstein. Matt Lauer. Al Franken. Matt Dababneh. All of these men, of course, stand accused of committing sexual harassment, sexually inappropriate behavior, or worse with female colleagues. And, before we dismiss this as pervasive only among Hollywood stars or politicians, let’s acknowledge that it all too often happens to women in every profession.
An ABC News-Washington Post poll found 3 out of every 10 women have experienced unwanted advances from male coworkers. For 25% of respondents, those men had influence over their work situations. This shockingly translates into about 33 million U.S. women being sexually harassed, and 14 million sexually abused, in work-related incidents.
Excuse me while I pick my jaw up off the floor! Wow! We must do better, America.
What are we learning?
As much as it pains me to hear such awful stories of harassment and misconduct, this is also a defining moment for workplaces everywhere.
How to snuff out workplace harassment:
- Have a committed and engaged leadership team.
- Demonstrate consistent accountability.
- Adopt strong and comprehensive harassment policies.
- Maintain trusted and accessible compliance procedures.
- Offer interactive sexual harassment training tailored to your organization.
AB 1825 has been in effect since 2004 and requires all employers with 50 or more employees to provide at least 2 hours of classroom or interactive training and education for all supervisors. New supervisors must be offered the training within 6 months of their promotion or hire date. Training must be completed once every 2 years.
SB 396 amends AB 1825, goes into effect on January 1, 2018, and requires employers to include training on gender identity, gender expression and sexual orientation. The training must also include practical examples to address such harassment.
Being Part of the Solution
If you’re a KPA client, you’re already positioning your organization to build a better workplace and effectively counter the harassment epidemic currently sweeping the U.S. Our updated Sexual Harassment and Abusive Conduct Prevention training (AB1825 Managers) is available to you through KPA’s Vera HR, and Risk Management Center.
Show harassment the door.