Can Sexual Harassment Training in the Workplace Harm Women More Than Help?

JACKSON, Mississippi. Sexual harassment in the workplace can lead to many difficulties for women. Women who complain may face wrongful termination or other forms of retaliation. Other women may suffer in silence in a hostile workplace. If you are facing wrongful termination due to reporting sexual harassment, you have important rights. The Heilman Law Group, P.A. are wrongful termination attorneys in Jackson, Mississippi who can assist you.
More companies are becoming aware of the toll that sexual harassment at the workplace can put on women workers. As a result, they are requiring more employees to engage in sexual harassment training. Yet, according to the Guardian, some believe that sexual harassment training in the workplace can actually harm women more than help them.
The U.S. Equal Opportunity Commission evaluated the effectiveness of sexual harassment training and found that the programs are designed to protect employers from lawsuits rather than designed to protect employees and prevent harassment. In fact, some claim that the training is not effective in changing behavior.
The investigation comes in the wake of sexual harassment scandals at several colleges and universities where professors were shielded from termination. Professors of gender and women’s studies find the training “laughable.” In fact, some have suggested that the nature of the training programs may cause some men to retaliate, or at the very least, joke about the training.
The reality is that diversity among individuals in management position actually leads to better prevention of sexual harassment than a two-hour training session. Unfortunately, there isn’t a lot of research to determine the effectiveness of sexual harassment training because many cases are handled internally within organizations.
One writer for the Los Angeles Times claimed that sexual harassment training may make men more cautious around women, leading to more difficulties in women seeking advancement. In fact, men are more likely to have lunch with other men, go out for drinks with male colleagues, and create networks with men. This could leave women out of the loop when it comes to greater advancement opportunities. It could also result in women losing out on important mentorship opportunities as well. In fact, one study found that male executives were far less likely to have a one-on-one lunch with a junior female employee. This can create serious barriers for women on the job. Having a larger network can lead to greater promotions and raises.
Women report cases where men would not have closed door meetings with them, making it tough to discuss sensitive workplace issues. Women may also have more trouble accessing senior management networks because of their reluctance to engage in out-of-work activities with women. Finally, sexual harassment training can also cast women in a weaker role, resulting in greater difficulty when it comes to seeking promotions.
Employers would do well by their employees to be clear about what constitutes sexual harassment. Women who do experience sexual harassment, are wise to take proper steps to protect their rights. Visit the Heilman Law Group, P.A. at www.heilmanlawgroup.com to learn more.

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