Workplace harassment often happens in the workplace. It is a horrible and stressful situation that can ruin a great job opportunity and transform companies into toxic and unproductive work environments. Employees often do not report harassment to their supervisors for fear of losing their jobs. In addition, employees are uncertain about what qualifies as harassment and how to handle the situation. Read on to learn what defines supervisor harassment and what to do if it happens to you.

What Is Harassment?

Defined by the US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), harassment is a form of employment discrimination and unwelcome conduct based on a worker’s inclusion in a protected class.

What Is Supervisor Harassment?

Supervisor harassment can be complicated to identify. When a supervisor makes someone uncomfortable, many brush it off in fear of losing their jobs. Also, employees are unsure when offensive behavior crosses the line with illegal conduct. This uncertainty causes most people to be cautious and hesitant when their job is on the line. It is complicated to know where to draw that line and when to act. Some people suffer for months and even years by abusers because they think speaking up may be an overreaction to the behavior. Laws protect you from harassment, so it’s vital to know when a supervisor has stepped over the line.

A supervisor who perpetrates abuse puts employees in a complex and stressful situation. Supervisors have the power to make or end your career or advancement within a company.

“Quid pro quo,” a common form of harassment, means “this for that.” Usually, it occurs when a supervisor wants something from an employee beyond the individual’s workload. A common form of quid pro quo harassment is sexual abuse, where the abuser suggests or states that if the employee grants the supervisor certain sexual favors, they will receive preferential treatment at work. Another form of quid pro quo harassment could be religious abuse.

Below are additional examples of quid pro quo harassment:

  • You are up for a promotion, and your boss suggests that you can improve your chances if you agree to date them.
  • Your boss asks you to perform sexual acts for a promotion or pay raise.
  • A manager states that you can get better work hours or easier assignments if you join them at church or synagogue, or another place of worship.
  • Your boss propositions you sexually, and after ignoring their advances, they fire or demote you.

Laws Protecting Employees in New Jersey

Employees in New Jersey are protected from harassment in the workplace under both state and federal law. These laws grant employees protection:

If you have faced supervisor harassment in the workplace, it is always best to consult an experienced employment lawyer who is seasoned in harassment situations and employment cases.

Cherry Hill Employment Lawyers at Burnham Douglass Represent Individuals Who Faced Workplace Harassment

If you have struggled with harassment in the workplace, you have legal rights. Our experienced Cherry Hill employment lawyers at Burnham Douglass are skilled in navigating the complexities of employment cases. You can call us at 856-751-5505 or contact us online to schedule a consultation. From our offices in Marlton and Northfield, New Jersey, and we serve clients in Camden County, Burlington County, Atlantic County, Gloucester County, Mercer County, and throughout New Jersey.