There has been a lot of vulgarity in the news lately. High profile sexual harassment lawsuits and admissions of sexual assault are becoming way too common place. Men and women alike are somehow under the misguided belief that the sexual assault and vulgarity about unwanted sexual advances are ok and just dismiss it as “boys talk.” First thing, so called “locker room talk” or “boys talk” in the workplace is ILLEGAL. I repeat, it.is..illegal. No woman (or man) should be required to listen to or be subjected to offensive language or unwanted touching in the workplace or at school. I would go so far as to say that if an employee is glorifying the current GOP presidential candidate’s “locker room talk” in the workplace, then that person is likely in violation of sexual harassment prohibitions under Title VII and the Tennessee Human Rights Act. Second, it is a real disservice to decent men all over the country who would never dream of using the Access Hollywood language in mixed company, private conversations or the workplace.
The hardest thing about sexual harassment is that it makes the victim feel filthy or even responsible, merely because they heard the comments or felt the groping. As a result, shame ensues. The shame keeps many victims from making a complaint or standing up for their rights because all they really want is to forget about it. The flaw in this is that it will happen again. Serial harassers or predators will not stop. Anne and I have met many clients who were afraid to tell their own families what happened to them because they were so ashamed. Sexual harassment is not your fault, nor should you have to put up with it.
It is so important to report sexual harassment; if not for yourself, for the next person. If you are afraid to report it, call us. We will walk with you every step of the way, report it for you and fight for you every step of the way. Stop the cycle.