Workplace Harassment: How To Handle It

Workplace Harassment

Published on June 18th, 2022

Facing harassment in the workplace can be emotionally draining, and even frightening. Being harassed in any manner and feeling unsafe in your work environment is a serious violation of your rights as a worker and as a person, and this is an issue that should never go ignored.

While there are many different types of harassment that you might be dealing with, the fact remains that something should be done about it immediately. Here are a few ways to help you handle the problem quickly and efficiently.

Know Your Rights And Company Policy

First of all, try your best to make sure that you’re clued up about regulations, what might be done about your issue, how you might be compensated, etc. Where you find this information will differ.

You can research online to understand your rights as a worker, but make sure you also understand labour laws specific to your country or state, as well as what company policy says about harassment and other issues. The more you know, the better equipped you’ll be to walk into the situation informed and ready to fight for your rights.

File A Formal Complaint

In order to have the problem addressed and taken seriously, you will need to file a formal complaint in the form of a written grievance letter.

Make sure that you include all the relevant information in this letter relating to the incidents, who is involved, where and when the incidents took place, any evidence you might have as well as the contact details of willing witnesses.

After filing this complaint, you will have to wait for feedback from your employer. Remember that you can consult an employment lawyer if you are a victim of retaliation or if you wish to escalate the issue.

Document The Incidents

Keeping track of what has happened is a crucial step and one you hopefully would have begun from the moment you started experiencing the harassment. If not – this is okay, but try to document as much as you can and write reports of what you remember from previous incidents.

It’s important that you know how to document harassment in the workplace and do so effectively and efficiently. Record information such as names, dates, locations, what was said or done, and anyone that might have been around to see it happen. If you have any evidence at all, such as text messages, include these too.

Keep It Professional

Finally, as difficult as it might be, you need to try to remain neutral and professional when engaging in discussions, interviews and even writing letters and emails. Allowing your emotions to take over could make matters more complicated.

Make sure that you keep your stress in check during this period, as this will help you manage your emotions. Getting angry and accusatory won’t be helpful, especially if the issue is escalated to a legal context. Save your venting and swearing for when you’re blowing off steam with your close friends outside of work hours.