Relationships in the workplace can be difficult to manage, especially if they become sour. But what kind and how far of workplace maltreatment should you call a harassment lawyer Melbourne for? And if you’ve been subjected to sexual harassment, it’s critical that you understand your rights and the options available to you.
When is it Considered Harassment?
Workplace romances aren’t unexpected. No one should be surprised when it happens, given how much time we all spend within the same walls. However, just like in every relationship, things can go awry, but this isn’t always the case. There are also instances when a friendly working relationship devolves into sexual harassment. This is the kind of unpleasant connection where one’s advancement is not or no longer reciprocated or consented to.
Uninvited sexual approaches, solicitations for sexual favours, or unwelcome sexual behaviour in situations where a sensible person would assume that the harassed person would be insulted, embarrassed, or frightened are all examples of sexual harassment. It’s also possible that they’re sending you unsolicited text messages or emails or making remarks that make you feel uneasy at your workplace. Talk to one of harassment lawyers Melbourne if you’re in doubt whether a particular advancement can be considered harassment.
The motives of the harasser don’t matter in these situations. It’s common for the harassers to claim that they were only trying to get the victim back together or that they just truly enjoy the person they’re pestering. When it comes to sexual harassment, it doesn’t matter what the motive may be. Your harassment lawyer Melbourne should make this clear to you.
Do you Know Your Rights?
Your rights are protected by laws enacted in both federal and state courts, which can vary depending on your state. But on a broader category concept, this legislation is consistent. Essentially, you have the right to go to work and not be harassed.
As long as there is a relationship between your employment and personal life, your rights extend outside the workplace. Attending business-related activities, such as travel for work, client meetings, or customer events, should fall under the workplace category without question, and the same rights apply to such a setting.
What are the Considerations, and What are Your Options?
First and foremost, if your former lover or spouse is sexually harassing you, you should let them know that their behaviour is not tolerated and not acceptable. However, it’s understandable that the person on the receiving end may not always be able to do that. If you cannot communicate your opinion clearly, or if you feel intimidated or uncomfortable, you may discuss the issue with your supervisor or HR officer. After all, you are protected from any form of retaliation or punishment for filing a complaint under the Fair Work Act of 2009. If you want to know a tad more about this law, you can ask your harassment lawyer Melbourne to explain it.
You may find the method for lodging complaints in your employment agreement, workplace practices or any applicable labour agreements; these will outline what you can typically consider your employer to do in the event of a complaint. It doesn’t matter whether the allegation of sexual harassment is made formally or informally or whether it’s made on or off the clock; your employer is mandated by law to act on your complaint, which generally leads to an enquiry of some sort.
Due to the subjective nature of sexual harassment claims, the evidence is almost always slanted in favour of the accuser. Harassment often takes place in secret or without anybody else present to witness. Because of this, it is crucial to keep track of any encounters that lead to your discomforts, such as text messages or emails. In your complaint, you may want to include such information.
You may also file a complaint with an outside agency outside your employer. Depending on its specifics, a human rights commission or the Fair Work Commission may be the appropriate venue for your complaint. However, it usually is advisable that you first address your issue internally with your employer before seeking legal advice from a harassment lawyer Melbourne.
How does Workplace Harassment Affect Your Health?
If it happens in a workplace, sexual harassment can negatively influence a person’s health. Seeking medical attention when your health is in jeopardy is critical; speak with your primary care provider about it right away to get proper treatment.
No one expects a workplace relationship that fell out to lead to sexual harassment, but regrettably, it can and does. But if you’re the victim of harassment, there are ways to stop the behaviour and return to a workplace where you feel comfortable. Call us now when you’re decided to speak up about this terrible experience. One of our harassment lawyers Melbourne can advise you how to fight it legally and find that peace of mind again.