OH NO! I NEVER EXPECTED THAT
TO HAPPEN TO ME!
Several weeks ago I sent out a newsletter titled “Defending
Against a Sexual Harassment Charge”. In that article I
listed 5 things that all employers must do in order to potentially
be successful at defending their organizations against a sexual
harassment charge which was initiated by a current or former
employee. Several days after that newsletter was distributed,
I received a very nice email from a long time client. In her
message she wrote the following:
I am happy to report that due to your expert advice several years
ago, we follow all of the points listed in your most recent newsletter.
We had a major harassment claim last December and because we
had followed all of the regulations and had trained everyone
annually, we were able to successfully navigate this charge.
The employment attorney who assisted us on this matter mentioned
that we had done everything correctly.”
WOW! It is so satisfying
to know that my advice helped an employer to follow the guidelines
and avoid a major loss due to a sexual harassment charge. In
2016, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) received
a total of 91,503 charges, of which approximately 27,000 (almost
30%) were sex related. A recent survey calculated that the average
sexual harassment case costs the employer $150,000 to defend
and that the average verdict in favor of the employee was $350,000.
times when I speak to employers about harassment and discrimination
in the workplace, the comment that I most often here is “well,
that can never happen to me”. I am sure that the lady who
wrote the email above also thought that she would never be defending
her company against a sexual harassment charge. But she found
herself in exactly that position. Fortunately, she was prepared.
to all of my clients and potential clients who may be reading
this, I sincerely wish that you never walk into your office and
find a letter from the EEOC or the U.S. Department of Labor stating
that your company is being sued for harassment, discrimination,
overtime violations, independent contractor violations or any
of the multitude of other federal or state laws which employers
often unknowingly violate. I believe that it is a better business
decision to be prepared with proper and well written Human Resources
related policies and processes and never need them than to not
be prepared and then realize that you should have developed appropriate
policies, procedures and processes years ago.
A company’s best defense against the potential expense
and aggravation related to federal or state law violations is
to proactively review and revise as needed all Human Resources
policies, handbooks, hiring procedures, compensation, benefits,
training programs, communications tools and other functions.
The professionals of PHHR are ready to assist your organization
with this type of training as well as to maintain compliance
with the latest state and federal mandates.
Paul Hilton Human Resources Consulting works with our clients to insure that all required documentation is correct and sufficient to successfully defend against a claim to any unemployment compensation commission.
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Paul Hilton is a certified Human Resources Consultant, located in
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