Shareholder Benjamin E. Widener, member of the Employment and Litigation practice groups, authored the article The Importance of an Effective Anti-Harassment Policy in the Workplace, which was published on NJ.com on October 1, 2015.
The article underlines the importance of maintaining a healthy and safe work environment by properly enforcing a policy against sexual harassment. This should be done for the safety of a company’s employees as well as protection of the company at large. Failure to enforce a proper sexual harassment policy can result in accusations of an overall hostile work environment.
Such was the case with Arguas v. State of New Jersey, in which the Supreme Court of New Jersey “provided some ground rules to motivate employers to eradicate discrimination in the workplace and, at the same time, better insulate themselves against vicarious liability arising from supervisory discrimination and harassment.” In order for a company to have a hostile work environment, the conduct of the allegedly offending employee(s) must be so objectively offensive that it alters the victim’s conditions of employment.
“An employer can defeat vicarious liability with effective anti-harassment policies, and such practices also weigh against employer liability under a negligence theory.”
You can read the full article by clicking here.