If you live in the New York City area and have ride the subways, Staten Island Ferry or walked by most construction sites know how prevalent street harassment is in the Big Apple. Well, several anti-harassment groups held a rally last Saturday, April 11th to raise awareness about sexual harassment in public areas. Through music, dance, spoken word poetry, and speeches, these groups got together to share stories and experiences with harassment – hoping by getting the word out, they can help raise the bar for respect on New York City streets. About 200 people attended last week’s rally.
“When we talk about street harassment, we’re talking about things that start with verbal harassment, catcalling,” Debjani Roy, deputy director of Hollaback!, said. “It can also escalate into things like groping, touching, following, but also all the way in the direction of public exposure and sexual assault.”
With over eight million residents and thousands of more tourists traveling in and out of NYC every day, street harassment has become an epidemic for men, women, and transgender individuals alike. Victims report being catcalled, touched against their will, stalked, and harassed on subways, buses, parks, and of course, right on the street.
In an often-cited study by Stop Street Harassment done in June 2014, 65 percent of women and 25 percent of men report having experienced street harassment.
Ending sexual harassment in New York City workplace
When sexual harassment moves from the streets into your place of employment, the stakes get higher. Not only is workplace sexual harassment uncomfortable and traumatic to victims, it is also illegal. Like street harassment, sexual harassment at work may start with an inappropriate comment then escalate to physical violence and threats.
Our NYC sexual harassment lawyers recommend taking these steps to end sex discrimination harassment at work:
- Keep office relationships professional and limit inter-office romances
- Limit your alcohol intake at holiday parties and work functions
- Let your co-workers know they made offensive comments if they have done so
- Don’t make sexually explicit jokes
- Limit the personal questions you ask your co-workers
If you are an employer, our New York City attorneys advise offering your employees comprehensive anti-sexual harassment training. Maintain an employee handbook that outlines all your policies regarding employment sexual harassment and discrimination. Create concrete repercussions for offenders and stick to your company’s policies. Don’t sweep indiscretions under the rug.
If you have been affected by sexual harassment in your New York City workplace, you may be able to take legal action. Under local, state, and federal laws, you may be entitled to compensation.
The New York City sexual harassment attorneys at the Derek Smith Law Group, PLLC handle a multitude of employment discrimination cases that involve sexual harassment and Gender Discrimination in Manhattan and the greater New York City area. Sexual Harassment is gender-based discrimination and is illegal. For further information, please feel free to call us at 800-807-2209 for a free consultation or click here to schedule a free consultation.