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Human Resources: Sexual Harassment Case Study

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You are the Manager of Human Resources for a Fortune 100 Company. A female employee approaches you, very upset and tells you that her manager, also a woman has told her that she if she does not enter into a sexual relationship with her that she will not receive any salary increase for the next year. She also tells you that her manager has sexually explicit photographs which she both leaves on her desk and at times shows to her. She tells you that she believes she is being sexually harassed. She is scared and wants you to take immediate action. If what the employee tells you is true, is it a violation of Title VII? Do you need any more information to answer this question? If so, what information do you need? How would you go about investigating these allegations?

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First and foremost, you are obligated to take this report seriously whether or not you believe it to be true. You must start by documenting the report and then beginning to investigate it. If you do not, and there really is a sexual harassment situation, the company (and possibly you personally) could be liable for damages incurred.

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