Sep 30, 2019 02:33 PM EDT

Types of Sexual Harassment: Everything You Need to Know


Los Angeles has a strong entertainment industry. Unfortunately, this makes women in L.A. likely to be victims of sexual harassment. Approximately 41% of women in median and entertainment have reported sexual harassment.

With sexual harassment being so common, it's important for you to understand the types of sexual harassment. Here's everything you need to know about the types of sexual harassment.

The Types of Sexual Harassment

There are several basic types of sexual harassment that can affect both men and women. Before you take legal action, you should understand the basics of each type. 

Quid Pro Quo

With this type of sexual harassment, a supervisor asks an employee for sexual favors in exchange for work benefits. The request could be direct or implied by suggestion. The benefits could be a bigger office, better wage, or a promotion. At times, it can be better shifts or more travel opportunities. 

Quid pro quo harassment can also be in the form of a threat. For instance, your employer could threaten to fire you or lower your wage if you don't perform a sexual act. They might threaten to demote you or give you undesirable shifts.

By law, your supervisor cannot require you to perform sexual acts in exchange for benefits. They also cannot threaten to take away benefits because of your refusal to partake in a sexual action or discussion.

There are many workers who don't think they can't say no. They fear being fired or ruining their careers. But there is hope. Even if you agree to the act, you can still notify someone of the harassment. It's not too late to seek justice.

Hostile Environment 

This type of harassment is still sexual in nature. However, it does not come with any employment benefits. Usually, it involves sexual advances, jokes, or gestures. The actions keep an employee from working well, as they feel intimidated or threatened.

While quid pro quo harassment involves supervisors and managers, hostile workplace harassment can be done by anyone in the workplace. It may involve a supervisor, but it could just as easily involve a co-worker, client, or delivery person. If the interaction occurs in your workplace, it could be sexual harassment.

All of the following are common examples of this type of harassment:

- Repeatedly telling dirty or sexual jokes and stories 

- Showing or drawing sexual images (or images with sexual undertones)

- Saying insulting or derogatory sexual things to a person

- Writing sexual letters, emails, or other material

- Rubbing, touching, or groping without permission or in a way that offends others

Taking Action Against the Responsibility Party

No one needs to put up with sexual harassment. If you're a victim, you should take action. You may not even be the person who was a direct object of the incident but could still be able to file a claim. For example, you could be passed up for a promotion because your co-worker participated in quid pro quo harassment with the boss. 

No matter how you were made a victim, you need proof. You must show that you believed the behavior to be offensive, hostile, or abusive. Additionally, you need to show the court that someone else would have felt the same way about the incident. 

It's the employer's job to keep the workplace safe. This means having a workplace that is free of sexual harassment. Therefore, many sexual harassment cases involve the employer rather than the employee who committed the act. 

Don't suffer in silence. If you're ready to take action against sexual harassment, visit

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