Samples Harassment Sexual Harassment Case Study

Sexual Harassment Case Study

944 words 4 page(s)

Clarence Thomas Hearings

Law Professor Anita Hill was one of the first women to bring to light the injustices and harassment that women faced in the workplace. She was involved in a sexual harassment scandal with Clarence Thomas, Associate Justice of the United States Supreme Court. The case became a huge public scandal, and it allowed people to understand the level of harassment that many women are subjected to in the workplace. During that time, many women were afraid to tell their stories and reveal that they were victims of sexual harassment. However, due to Hill’s brave testimony, she was able to give other women a voice and the courage to tell their own stories of harassment at work.

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The ideology or theory that women are weak and vulnerable leads to many cases of sexual harassment. It also shows some of the reasons why many sexual harassment cases are not brought to the forefront. Many women are afraid to speak out about sexual harassment in the workplace due to consequences that they fear they may encounter from their male counterparts. They are often threatened and forced to remain silent to maintain their jobs and on some occasions for the sake of their well-being. Thus, this gives substantial proof to the idea that sexual discrimination is oftentimes hard to spot because so many victims remain silent years after the incident.

Stricter workplace policies and legislation should be put into place to protect women from sexual harassment. They should be protected from harm and threats by co-workers, managers or whomever the offender is at work. This will allow more women to become open and bring up complaints at the first signs of sexual harassment at work. It is important that women understand that they do have a voice and they will be protected in the workplace, which should be outlined in workplace policies. The first 30 days should be a meeting with employees and upper level management to discuss the importance of respect and gender equality in the workplace and written warnings to anyone involved in sexual harassment. Within the next 60-90 days, human resource managers should pass out knowledge-based material passed out to employees to review and there should be training to make sure everyone understands the information.

Navy TailHook Scandal
This case took place in 1991, and it involved Paula Puopolo, an Admiral’s aide and Naval aviators. Puopolo was subjected to verbal and physical abuse by the aviators during a Tailhook convention in Las Vegas. The aviators took part in a ritual called “the Gauntlet” in which they groped and made sexual advancements towards women as they walked passed them in the hallway. Unfortunately, Puopolo did not receive any help from her boss who blamed her for being in the area with drunk Navy men. Thus, this case shows the injustices that women face when it comes to sexual harassment at work.

Also, the case shows the level of gender discrimination that exists within workplaces, especially the military. Because many consider the military to be a male-dominated field, women are usually scrutinized and placed in harmful conditions with fellow male co-workers. They are viewed as beneath the men, and thus they are vulnerable and susceptible to many forms of sexual harassment. Thus, there needs to be an immediate change to the policy and procedures in which men and women interact in the military to reduce the instances of sexual harassment and verbal abuse.

The first 30 days of the action plan should allow the victims to submit a written complaint of their side of the story involving the sexual harassment case. Also, the offender should be allowed to voice his side as well to get a full understanding of the incident. If the offender is found guilty of the offense, he should be kicked out of the military or given a written warning depending on the severity of the case. During the last 90 days of the action plan, upper level commanders should determine the course of action such as suspension or dishonorable discharge that should be given to the offender of the sexual harassment case.

Six-year-old v. Brockton, Massachusetts School District
This case involved a first-grader at an elementary school who was accused of sexually harassing a classmate. In 2006, a complaint concerning the young boy’s actions were brought forward by the principal of the school. He told the mother of the boy that her son placed his fingers underneath the clothing of one of his female classmates. As a result, the principal not only suspended the boy, but he also contacted the police and Department of Social Services. However, no charges were brought, but the boy’s family later sued the city of Brockton and they publicly apologized to the family of the young boy.

Thus, this case reveals the different ways in which sexual harassment can affect young people. Although the young boy’s actions can be considered a form of sexual harassment, considering his age and level of mental maturity, the punishment for his offense was harsh. He probably was not fully aware that what he was doing was considered sexual harassment, and probably did not intentionally mean to cause any harm to his classmate. Suspending him for violating the school’s sexual harassment policy was a fair consequence, however contacting law enforcement and social service agency was completely unwarranted. Thus, the 30-90 day plan the school should make sure to communicate and teach kids about the harms of touching between the sexes and some of the consequences of sexual harassment. This will allow them to gain a better insight into the crime and avoid acting in a manner that could be considered sexually offensive to their classmate.

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