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The numerous recent news reports and the #metoo campaign have shed light on the prevalent problem of sexual harassment in society and in California. Workplaces are not immune, and many workers are the targets of sexual harassment in the workplace. Sexual harassment is illegal in the workplace as a forbidden form of sex discrimination, and it is imperative that employers take steps to prevent it from happening.

According to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, there were 27,000 charges of discrimination that were filed with the agency in 2016. Experts say that this number is only the tip of the iceberg. Only about 30 percent of women who have experienced workplace sexual harassment file complaints within their companies because of the fear of repercussions.

Companies should have strong sexual harassment policies in place and should conduct regular training. They should also have multiple reporting methods available to their workers that are unrelated to each other. All complaints should be thoroughly investigated, including those that are made informally on social media or elsewhere. Companies might want to use independent investigators to investigate allegations of sexual harassment in the workplace and then to take action against the perpetrators when they are discovered. Businesses should never have the attitude that sexual harassment cannot occur at their companies. Sexual harassment can occur anywhere and in any industry.

People who have been the victims of illegal sex discrimination at their jobs might want to talk to experienced employment lawyers. The attorneys may analyze what happened and offer assessments of whether or not the claims appear valid. They may offer guidance to the victims about filing complaints within their companies. If the companies fail to investigate the claims or retaliate against the workers for complaining, the attorneys may commence formal lawsuits against the companies in order to help their clients to recover damages.

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