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Columns

Florida Is 'Committed to Eradicating All Forms of Harassment'

November 29, 2017 - 6:00am

In light of the #MeToo campaign and all the allegations against prominent figures, sexual harassment is on the forefront of headlines across the nation. Whether it’s a Hollywood executive, an all-star sports figure or eminent politician, the issue of unlawful harassment continues to show its pervasive face across our contemporary world.

Unfortunately, sexual harassment in the workplace is very real, and it happens every day.

In its most fundamental definition, sexual harassment is unwelcome behavior that happens to workers because of their sex. It occurs when a person’s submission to, or rejection of, sexual advances is used as the basis for employment decisions about him or her, or submission to sexual advances is made a condition of his or her employment (quid pro quo harassment). 

It may also occur when sexual conduct or gender-based hostility is sufficiently severe or pervasive that it creates an intimidating, hostile, or offensive work environment (hostile work environment harassment). Regardless of the intent, sexual harassment in the workplace should never be tolerated. Fortunately, there are remedies.

As the agency charged with shining a light on discrimination in the state of Florida, the Florida Commission on Human Relations is committed to eradicating all forms of harassment that can impact each and every one of us. The Commission offers training to businesses, agencies and individuals, teaching them how to avoid creating or permitting a working environment where sexual harassment exists.

I encourage all employers and employees to become aware of the issue of sexual harassment and carefully address inappropriate behavior. Remember, you do not have to keep it to yourself. If you think you are a victim of sexual harassment, you can file a complaint with the Commission by visiting our website here, http://fchr.state.fl.us or by contacting us directly at (850) 488-7082.

By knowing what to do and who to call, business owners, managers and employees can assist the Commission in its goal to shine a light on sexual harassment and other forms of discrimination in the workplace.

 
Michelle Wilson is executive director of the Florida Commission on Human Relations.

Comments

"Harassment" is merely ONE of a variety of unexpected results of two disagreeing individuals,.. one of which doesn't know how to "back out" of a particular dilemma,NOR ever learned how to say "NO !"; and the 'other' individual, therefore, is incapable of "getting the the proper message" to "cease & desist"... "Harassment" can THEN become a 'criminal' action (depending upon attenuating circumstances,...(most often never reaching the 'criminal' level ). We. in America are currently "locked in a FRENZY level" over what heretofore outlined normal social discourse. We have now added a mandatory "penalty phase" to EVERY disagreement, for an underlying variety of reasons: money, position, discreditable intent, ambition, compelling force, etc., and other persuasive intents. Our "social interactions" seem to have overcome our understandings of "social graces" taught to us by our parents........

ridiculous waste of tax payer money...

Wow. Personally I think it would be a big savings to get rid of this agency altogether. We are talking about grown up people, right? Do we really need to have classes on how to behave? From people we elect? And now they are doing it in Congress too. Now, Johnny, this is not the 3rd grade and you are not allowed to grab Jane's ass? Be a lot cheaper not to elect them. This nonsense reminds me of the Vern and Alcee Nonsense Show, now playing in Congress. Seems like everyone agrees that we should end the practice of eating dogs and cats. Course, none of these assholes have ever been hungry. This being what is left of the United States.

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