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Harassment in the Workplace and Its Relationship to Discrimination…
While no employer wants to be accused of harassment, all employers need to be armed with the knowledge of how to proceed should they find themselves in the position of having to defend themselves against a harassment charge.
Employers often overlook the importance of promptly investigating complaints of harassment and taking quick and appropriate corrective action. Since an employer’s prompt, effective response to complaints can limit or even eliminate its liability in a discrimination, harassment, or retaliation lawsuit, it is imperative that employers implement an effective mechanism to investigate and resolve workplace complaints. How companies investigate potential misconduct can affect the company’s reputation as well as its bottom line. Because cultural and generational diversity is changing the landscape of the U.S. workforce, that diversity can become fuel for all types of litigation.
It is imperative that employers understand how to recognize harassment, evaluate the scope of their internal investigations, document steps taken along the way, and insulate their organization from subsequent lawsuits. Additionally, it’s also important for employers to ensure all parties are treated fairly during the process and be sensitive to how the organization’s process is communicated and implemented.
Participants of this 5-Hour virtual seminar will learn the best practices employers can employ to minimize the likelihood of violations. From fact-finding to conducting interviews and writing reports, participants will gain the knowledge needed to recognize harassment in their workplace and confidently and effectively conduct investigations.
Areas Covered in this Seminar
- What constitutes harassment in the workplace?
- What harassment is NOT
- Federal laws violated by harassment
- Employer/Employee responsibilities in preventing harassment
- Creating a harassment-free workplace
- Understanding discrimination, retaliation, and hostile work environments
- What constitutes discrimination?
- Federal laws providing protection from discrimination
- Legal requirements to meet the definition of hostile work environment
- Dealing with hostile work environment situations
- Understanding the concept of retaliation
- What constitutes a valid retaliation claim?
- Minimizing the likelihood of retaliation violations
- Whistleblower protection/Sarbanes-Oxley Act
- Adverse employment actions and causation of retaliation
- Steps to prevent retaliation
- Making the decision to investigate workplace complaints
- Avoiding the legal landmines surrounding investigations
- Creating a successful roadmap for investigations
- Appointing an Investigator
- Reviewing employee complaints
- Gathering evidence
- Conducting legally-compliant and effective interviews
- Understanding the perspectives of the Complainant and Accused Wrongdoer
- Determining witness credibility
- Creating a perception of fairness
- Concluding the investigation
- Determine corrective actions to take
- Taking appropriate action once a determination has been made
- Developing documentation that will stand-up in a lawsuit
- Writing a court-ready final report
- Advising management of investigation results
- Addressing employees’ rumors and questions in the aftermath of an investigation
- Handling post-investigative issues
Who Will Benefit from this Seminar?
- Senior Leadership
- Human Resources professionals
- Compliance professionals
- Operations professionals
- Recruiting professionals
- Managers and Supervisors