A gender war erupted when Anita Hill accused U.S. Supreme Court nominee Clarence Thomas of sexual harassment. These allegations divided Americans and brought sexual harassment to the forefront of issues in the work environment. Suddenly, sexual harassment had to be clearly defined. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission's definition is “Sexual harassment is any unwelcomed sexual advances, requests for sexual favours and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature.”(7) The problem, however, lies in the difference of opinons in defining which behaviours constitute sexual harassment. One individual may find a crude joke funny while another individual may find it humiliating. It has been well documented that when employers establish an effective sexual harassment policy, most of the harassment cases can be handled within the company. This eliminates substantial costs that could be incurred by litigation, unproductive management, employee morale, and even community embarrassment. The hallmarks of an effective policy include communication and clarity. The employer should provide the employees with a confidential and retaliation‐proof system to report sexual harassment. This will encourage victims to come forward so the company can correct any current or future problems.
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