There are many layers to workplace harassment, and it is vital to be able to spot this so that you can seek the right help. Here, we take a closer look at workplace harassment.
What Is Workplace Harassment?
Workplace harassment can cover a variety of different circumstances, which allows it to arise in different forms. It is characterised by an individual or group being targeted by another individual, or several people, in order to make them feel bothered. This can include rumours being spread about someone, ignoring or leaving someone out, or being refused the opportunity for training and development. It can also take place on a physical level, such as pushing past a colleague intentionally roughly.
While there are some signs of workplace harassment that are easier to spot, you may find yourself the victim of lesser known but still unfair and upsetting harassment. You may notice that colleagues fall quiet when you approach them, or undermine you subtly in meetings or in front of customers. In some cases, you may find that there are “accidents” taking place that feel more intentional (for example, being “forgotten”, being left out of important email threads or having your property dropped or damaged). Harassment can be as simple as a negative atmosphere being created whenever you are around certain people, or as complicated as your work being sabotaged to “show you up”.
In general, if you feel as if you’re walking on eggshells in the workplace, you are likely the victim of harassment in some form.
Sometimes it can be challenging to make these subtle forms of harassment sound “real”. Therefore, it is essential to gather as much documentation as possible on instances of harassment – keeping a personal log is helpful, and make sure to retain any instances that take place via email or in writing. You can take these to a senior member or staff or your company’s HR department. However, if your senior management is unsympathetic, or if they are the ones perpetuating the harassment, in some cases it may be necessary to escalate this and seek legal advice.
If you have been the subject of workplace harassment, don’t let your experience be dismissed. Bowsers Solicitors can help. We are experienced in handling workplace discrimination cases and can advise you on the documentation and evidence you need and explore your options for taking legal action, providing representation when necessary.
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