Sexual Harassment by Sexting or Email

Most communications today take place via cellphones and computers. Unfortunately, this includes sexual harassment communications. Sexting and sending inappropriate emails between co-workers have become very common. However, the fact that something is happening more often than before does not mean that it is excused. California law prohibits sexual harassment by sexting or email. Gov. C. §12940(j)(1). Mere language can be determined to be sexual harassment if the atmosphere in the workplace has been so altered by severe and pervasive sexual remarks as to become a hostile environment. Lipsett v. University of Puerto Rico (1st Cir. 1988) 864 F2d 881, 905.

An example: A new female supervisor begins sexting a male employee. In the text messages, she teases him by sending him sexually explicit messages. The supervisor is sending these text messages during all hours of the day including after office hours. The male employee asks the supervisor to stop sending him these kind of messages because he is not interested in having a relationship with her and because they are making him uncomfortable. The supervisor, however, keeps sending the sexually explicit text messages despite the male employee’s several attempts to stop this. Each person’s situation is unique. If you find yourself in a similar situation, contact our office.

Another example: A male manager begins to send sexually explicit emails to another employee. The employee tells the manager that this needs to stop because he is being distracted from work. However, the manager continues to send him emails asking him out and telling him how “cute” of a couple they would make. The manager continues to do so throughout the work day and, as a result, the employee is having trouble focusing on his job. Hence, the employee is also worried that he might underperform at his job. Your situation may not be exactly like this, but if there are similarities, contact our office.

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If you have experienced sexual harassment at your workplace, contactthe renowned sexual harassment lawyers at our office.