Hard-working adults in Rhode Island go to their jobs each day to earn a living. Unfortunately, some employees work in places where workplace harassment is the norm. Many work-related harassment claims are coming from people employed by the federal government. Recently, to stop harassment of federal employees, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission issued updated best practices.
The EEOC’s updated recommendations
In its recently updated guidelines on how to prevent harassment at work, the EEOC listed many new guidelines, including:
- Providing clear descriptions of prohibited conduct
- Enacting a no-tolerance policy on bullying, intimidation, and stalking
- Distributing updated anti-harassment policies that detail the consequences of workplace harassment and how to report it
- Having platforms available for employees to report harassment anonymously
- Rewarding managers and supervisors who take action to stop harassment
- Giving workplaces anti-harassment training that details real-world situations
- Implementing agency-wide punishments for those engaging in harassment
The problem of harassment in federal agencies
In 2003, the EEOC published a set of standards aimed to prevent workplace harassment. However, since 2011, workplace harassment remains the leading issue mentioned in complaints from federal employees. This issue seems to be ramping up since 2018. Each year since 2018, harassment claims make up for over half of employee complaints filed by the EEOC.
In a statement given by the EEOC regarding its new guidelines, the commission stated that its new guide should “help federal agencies prevent and remedy harassment.” This guide should also help federal agencies revise their current anti-harassment plans and programs accordingly.
It doesn’t matter who employs you – no employee deserves to be a target of harassment in the workplace. If you suspect this is happening, document each instance.