Some Tips to Prevent Employment Discrimination Lawsuits: A Faith-Based Legal Guide for Managers

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Eventually, Fowler alleges, Uber threatened to fire her in retaliation for protesting such mistreatment, leaving her no choice but to leave. For a generalized description of how sex-segregated social institutions breed inequality, see David S.

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Segregation not only affects male jobs: Women who work in traditionally female jobs are often at increased risk of harassment and exploitation, too, 18 Open this footnote Close this footnote 18 Some studies suggest that women who work in traditionally female-dominated jobs who interact frequently with men experience high levels of harassment, with some forms approximating the levels experienced by women in traditionally male-dominated jobs. See Barbara A. Gutek , Sex and the Workplace , tbl.

Commentators have pointed out that for some women in traditionally female jobs, performing sexual and other sex-biased requirements are so endemic that some people may think of harassment as simply part of the job. See id.

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The restaurant industry represents another highly sex-segregated arena in which women face persistent harassment. For an analysis of sex and race segregation in the restaurant industry, see generally Rest. Opportunities Ctrs. Times Feb. Research shows that sex-segregated employment is typically tied to discrimination, not choice. Skewed numbers leave women outnumbered and vulnerable at work, left to curry favor with men or compete on an unequal basis.

Reducing harassment requires eliminating sex segregation in employment and business settings. Organizations and industries must include women and men in equal numbers in every job at every level, especially in top positions. Achieving this goal means ending discrimination in recruiting, hiring, assignment, and promotion, and ensuring that women are paid and valued equally in every role. Leadership and accountability are crucial. Harassment policies should be linked to larger plans to eliminate sex discrimination, facilitate full inclusion, and achieve equal numbers of women, men, and gender nonbinary people of all races in all jobs at every level throughout the organization.

Both traditionally male-dominated and traditionally female-dominated jobs should be integrated. Organizations should hold owners, managers, and supervisors accountable for implementing non-discrimination and equal inclusion plans through measurable goals. Their own career advancement should depend on success in meeting these goals, along with success in preventing and remedying harassment. Organizations should use time-honored equal employment opportunity strategies and other creative measures to achieve these goals.

Employers should take similar steps to integrate men equally into mostly-female jobs. Federal and state enforcement agencies should bring lawsuits combining challenges to sex-based harassment with challenges to discriminatory practices that lead to sex segregation and inequality, such as discrimination in hiring, promotion, and assignment. These lawsuits can help expose and break the links between harassment and larger patterns of discrimination and stereotyping.

Reforms should challenge segregation and inequality in their own right and emphasize their contribution to harassment, creating public awareness and generating consensus about the need to integrate organizations and workforces along sex-gender lines in order to prevent and address harassment.

Contrary to popular perception, women are not the only victims of harassment. Men, too, frequently experience sex-based harassment—mostly at the hands of other men. Magley et al. Waldo et al. If So, by Whom? But more often, men harass other men through acts of gender-based hostility 24 Open this footnote Close this footnote 24 See , e.

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Online 99, [hereinafter McGinley, The Masculinity Motivation ]; Schultz, Reconceptualizing Sexual Harassment , supra note 3, at ; see also Cohen, supra note 17, at explaining hegemonic masculinity as the dominant view of manhood in a particular context and the one to which all men feel pressure to confirm, and citing classic sources. Harassment against LGBTQ people is also widespread, with transgender individuals experiencing the highest rates of all.

Grant et al. While the motive for such harassment is rarely sexual desire, the means include both sexual and nonsexual abusive behaviors. City landscapers attack vulnerable teenagers perceived as too soft, gay, or fat to work alongside them, 27 Open this footnote Close this footnote 27 See, e. Doe v. City of Belleville, F. Dechert , LLP, F. Jennifer L.

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Issues , , finding that fathers who spend time caring for their children are more likely to be harassed than other men. Fairfield Med. Frank, No. Although female-on-female harassment is less visible than other types, women do sometimes demean and ostracize other women, especially in sex-segregated job settings where they lack power and feel they must compete for favor on stereotypical female terms.

Verizon N. Altitude Express, Inc. Ivy Tech Cmty. Harris Funeral Homes, Inc. For analyses of the issues raised in such cases, see generally William N. Eskridge Jr. Enforcement efforts, education and research, and media coverage should highlight and address this point, contributing to a broader public understanding of the prevalence and harms of these forms of harassment.

Reform efforts should foster solidarity and support for people who face or risk facing these forms of harassment. Women and men of color experience higher rates of racial-ethnic harassment than white employees. Bergman et al. Occupational Health Psychol. Legal F. Black women have been subjected to sexual and labor exploitation for centuries, dating back to slavery.

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Women of color generally face increased risk of harassment, and enduring, pernicious myths about their sexuality. Chrisler et al. Inequality, Working Paper No. Immigrants, including many women of color, often lack information about their rights, and undocumented workers fear deportation and reprisal, making them less likely to stand up for themselves or complain.

Men of color, too, face pervasive stereotypes and are sometimes targeted for harassment or discrimination because of their race and sex.

Chan Sch. Research suggests that women of color have a particularly difficult time proving discrimination under existing law. They should explicitly cover and explain harassment and discrimination that is intersectional based on more than one factor.

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Organizations should hold owners, managers, and supervisors accountable for implementing these specific policies and plans through measurable goals. Principle 6: Broader occupational and other structural vulnerabilities must be reduced. Many women work in occupations or situations that leave them vulnerable to sex-based harassment and exploitation. Women in the skilled trades who depend on their male coworkers for informal training and teamwork face similar risks. See generally David L. It is also rooted in at-will employment, which gives supervisors the unconstrained authority to fire employees for any reason or no reason at all.

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