Workplace Harassment Attorneys in San Francisco
Representing Residents of Northern California During Their Sexual Harassment & Employee Rights Cases
The attorneys at Wood Litigation, APC are passionate about civil rights and workplace rights in particular. Sexual harassment in the workplace is very common, unfortunately. For many people, it goes unrecognized, ignored or simply endured.
If another employee has committed any of the following, you may be the victim of sexual harassment:
- Unwelcome touching
- Constant sexual discussions
- Using sexually explicit language
- Sending sexually explicit texts or emailing unwanted images
- Continually requesting personal relationships outside of the workplace
- Making decisions based on a breakup or feud
- Using a position of authority to manipulate for sexual favors
An individual and their employer may be liable for damages related to harassment if they have contributed to or created a hostile environment. Many times, this harassment seems to simply be a normal part of the workplace. There is no excuse for this. While some examples of sexual harassment are overt, there are many times when such harassment permeates a company’s culture. Both are wrong and should not be tolerated.
Wood Litigation, APC will listen to your story, in confidence, and evaluate the challenges for you. Wood Litigation, APC takes appropriate cases on contingency and works with the TimesUp project to prosecute the more challenging cases.
As an employee, you have the right to go to work and not feel harassed or threatened because someone else uses inappropriate language or worse. You also have the right to not be propositioned by your boss or have your employment privileges and career path suffer because of declining another's advances.
What Is Quid Pro Quo Harassment?
Quid pro quo means "something for something." Quid pro quo harassment occurs in the workplace when a manager or other authority figure offers or merely hints that he or she will give the employee something (a raise or a promotion) in return for that employee's satisfaction of a sexual demand. This also occurs when a manager or other authority figure says he or she will not fire or reprimand an employee in exchange for some type of sexual favor. A job applicant also may be the subject of this kind of harassment if the hiring decision was based on the acceptance or rejection of sexual advances.
To prevail on a quid pro quo claim, a claimant (the plaintiff in a lawsuit) must be able to prove the following elements to a jury:
- Plaintiff was an employee of, or applied for a job with, company X (the defendant).
- The alleged harasser, an officer or employee of company X, made unwanted sexual advance to the plaintiff, or engaged in other unwanted verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature.
- Certain job benefits were conditioned, by words or conduct, on the plaintiff's acceptance of the alleged harasser's sexual advances or conduct; or that employment decisions affecting the plaintiff were made based on his or her acceptance or rejection of the alleged conduct.
- At the time of the alleged conduct, the alleged harasser was a supervisor or agent for company.
- The plaintiff was harmed by the alleged conduct.
At the end of the day, courts are looking for proof that the underlying sexual harassment resulted in a significant employment action, such as the plaintiff being fired or suspiciously passed over for a promotion.
“We were very, very satisfied with Greg Wood's counsel, as he not only displayed quick understanding and sharp strategic thinking but also brought an impressive and -- one hates to say — almost rare "client-first" attitude to proceedings.”
A hostile work environment is one in which the inappropriate behavior of your co-workers or superiors targets you and interferes with your ability to effectively do your job. This can apply not only to sexually inappropriate comments and actions, but also to workplace harassment that exhibits discriminatory attitudes toward age, gender, or sexual orientation.
Some scenarios that would likely be considered to constitute a hostile work environment include:
- Inappropriate texting/sexting
- Inappropriate or offensive jokes
- Inappropriate or offensive images displayed at work
- Boss propositioning a worker
- Employer looking the other way/expecting a worker to endure harassment by clients
Everybody deserves a safe working environment free of offenses of the above nature. If you feel your work environment is hostile and offensive because of sex-based comments or actions, call the attorneys at WLAPC and know that we keep your details confidential.
Call (415) 936-0300. There is no substitute for having a committed and skilled attorney on your side.
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