Sexual harassment is a form of discrimination that has a negative effect on not just those immediately affected, but on an entire organization, especially in the long-term. One of the first steps in preventing sexual harassment in the workplace is spreading awareness about what qualifies as sexual harassment, and how to respond if you are a victim or witness.
Some employers may question whether or not employees should undergo sexual harassment training. The short answer is “yes!” Having worked many employee discrimination cases, sexual harassment lawyer Dan A. Atkerson can attest to his Allen, TX, clients that sexual harassment training is hugely beneficial. Not only that, but in the state of Texas, it is required by law for state employees to undergo training.
Sexual Harassment Training Requirements
Each state makes their own laws regarding sexual harassment training for employees. While all states recommend training, they do not all require it.
The state of Texas mandates that all state employees undergo employment discrimination training within the first 30 days of employment. This training covers all forms of employment discrimination, including sexual harassment. Our Plano clients should understand that, after this initial training, ongoing education is required. State employees in Texas are required to undergo a refresher course in employment discrimination training (including sexual harassment) every two years of their employment.
Benefits of Sexual Harassment Training
Sexual harassment can create a toxic work environment, particularly if reports aren’t taken seriously. Without addressing these type of issues, employers open the door for low work morale, high employee turnover, and costly lawsuits. Conversely, sexual harassment training brings awareness to this behavior and lets employees know that discrimination in any form will not be tolerated.
Even when employers are not required to provide employee discrimination training, we highly recommend that our Frisco clients have employees attend sexual harassment classes. Providing sexual harassment training is an effective way for employers to minimize the risk of harassment on their job sites. Some of the most notable benefits of training include:
- Awareness – Sexual harassment training may seem like just common sense, but many employees are unaware of some of the subtle actions or remarks that can be classified as harassment. These classes bring awareness to what is and what is not acceptable behavior at work, so that there are no areas of uncertainty.
- Encouraging reporting – Sexual harassment training makes it clear that this type of behavior is not tolerated, which encourages both victims and witnesses to make a report. Incidents of sexual harassment that are reported and addressed right away are far less likely to result the loss of an employee, or a lawsuit.
- Improved morale – Sexual harassment training is one way to set the standard for a safe work environment. This creates a space where employees feel motivated to perform their work and strengthens trust between employers and employees.
Sexual harassment training discourages workplace discrimination, but it still takes place. If you have been a victim of sexual harassment, employment law attorney Dan A. Atkerson can help you understand your legal options. To discuss your situation, send us a message at your earliest convenience or call our practice at (214) 617-1327.