Maryland Sexual Assault Attorney
Workplace harassment is an all-too-common problem experienced by Maryland workers. Unfortunately, in many cases harassment goes beyond bullying and escalates into outright sexual assault. When that happens, it is important to take action. Unwanted sexual advances are never justified, especially in a professional environment. If your employer condoned or failed to take action to address your reports of sexual assault, it can be held liable for employment discrimination. At The Law Firm of J.W. Stafford, L.L.C., an experienced Maryland sexual assault attorney can help you investigate and address this kind of serious misconduct in your workplace. You should never yield to pressure from your bosses or co-workers to ignore unwanted sexual advances. Even a single act of touching or sexual contact should not be excused as harmless behavior. You can and should stand up for your right to work in a safe, harassment-free environment.
How Assault Arises in the Workplace
Federal and state laws prohibit sex discrimination in the workplace. This applies not only to overt acts of discrimination–such as refusing to hire a woman for a particular job–but also fostering a “hostile work environment.” In other words, if an employee faces repeated sexual advances or requests for sexual “favors” at work, that may constitute a form of illegal sex discrimination.
Sexual assault is what happens when things go a step beyond mere advances or requests. In the employment context, sexual assault includes any kind of sexual activity that occurs without explicit consent. For example, if a co-worker intentionally touches you on the breast or buttocks, that is sexual assault.
If you experience this kind of workplace harassment or assault, you should not hesitate to take action. You should tell an assailant to stop immediately. It is also important to document any such incidents and report any sexual assault to your supervisors. Depending on the circumstances, you may also want to contact the police, file a criminal complaint, and contact a Maryland sexual assault lawyer.
Beyond sexual assault that occurs in the workplace itself, you may also be the victim of an adverse employment decision based on sexual violence that occurs elsewhere. For instance, if your employer fires or demotes you because you are the victim of domestic violence or refuses to give you time off to testify against your assailant in a sexual assault trial, then that falls within the bounds of illegal sex discrimination.
Don’t Let Your Employer Blame You, Contact a Maryland Sexual Assault Attorney Now
Even if you think your employer is taking a sexual assault report seriously, it is still a good idea to contact a Maryland sexual assault attorney as soon as possible following an incident. Employers often talk a good game when it comes to addressing sexual harassment and sexual assault, only to turn around and blame the victim. Some employers may think it is easier to try and silence the accuser, possibly by threatening termination or reassignment to another position. This is considered retaliation. It is unethical and illegal, and having a qualified employment discrimination attorney at your side will help ensure that your employer will not get away with such misconduct.
Attorney Jamaal (“Jay”) W. Stafford and his team are ready to assist you with any employment discrimination claim based on sexual assault. Contact or call The Law Firm of J.W. Stafford, L.L.C. today at 410-514-6099 to schedule a consultation.