environment and to be able to do her job (report instances of sexual mistreatment in the technology field), but instead, she was portrayed as the villain instead of the victim. Situations like the Iowa City dentist/dental assistant case and the Richards incident happen more frequently than one might think. While these stories grabbed national attention, not all of them do, which is the issue. It is a commonplace thing that needs to be more examined and recognized than it already is. According to a 2011 study, one in four US women reported being sexually harassed at work (Langer, 1). This is significant because it exhibits how widespread the numbers of victims of workplace harassment are.
8 While it should be the duty of the law to protect these US citizens who have been victims of workplace harassment, sometimes that isn’t necessarily the case. Rod Huppke, a journalist for the Chicago Tribune, writes in a clearly disapproving tone about an unfair law that was passed this past summer. The law makes it more difficult for companies to be held liable for harassment because it drew a line between who could be held responsible for the harassing, which in this case would be the supervisor. The Justices redefined supervisor as anyone who has the authority to promote, demote, or hire. As stated in statistics provided by the Sexual Harassment Practice Group of Outten & Golden in a survey of 782 US workers, 43% reported their harasser as a supervisor. That is less than half. On the other hand, the other 77% reported being harassed by an employee senior to them, a coworker at their level, or an employee junior to them. Less than half reporting their harasser as a supervisor shows that this is not where the focus on catching the perpetrator should lie. It needs to be an overarching emphasis on any and every position in a company, and not just some. Another problem with this is that in many large companies, an entire department (i.e. a Human Resources department) is responsible for doing all of these things, and an entire department cannot be held liable for harassment. Business support laws like these because they believe it will cut down frivolous, unnecessary lawsuits. These large companies clearly do not care enough about the impact that this has on the employee, who is an actual human being . Methodology The goal of my study is to use the university setting as an example of how workplace harassment affects many different people—from students, to professors, to
Babinec 9 employees of the school. Specifically at Denison, we are a concentration of people from a good amount of different backgrounds, socioeconomic classes, races and ethnicities, and upbringings. There are students who have been working jobs since high school and have jobs even while here at school (I have two—I’m a first year RA, which takes up an immense amount of time and energy, as well as an intern in Admissions which I work 3 hours a week for), and there are also kids who have been spoon-fed their entire lives and had things handed to them.
You've reached the end of your free preview.
Want to read all 12 pages?
You've reached the end of this preview.