Quid Pro Quo vs. Hostile Work Environment Sexual Harassment By Gregory Thyberg on December 10, 2018

A statue of lady justiceIf you have been the victim of sexual harassment at the workplace, it’s important that you report the incident through the proper channels, such as your supervisor or HR. If they fail to take action, it’s important that you discuss your workplace sexual harassment experience with employment law attorney Gregory A. Thyberg. A Sacramento, CA-based lawyer, he can provide you with information on your next steps for holding your employer accountable.

Two kinds of sexual harassment that may occur at the workplace involve quid pro quo arrangements and hostile work environments. Even though they may have some crossover, they are different kinds of unacceptable behavior on the job. The team at ThybergLaw would like to compare and contrast these types of incidents.

About Quid Pro Quo Sexual Harassment

In Latin, “quid pro quo” means “something for something.” With regard to sexual harassment, a quid pro quo arrangement means that someone higher up in a company insists on sexual favors in order for a subordinate employee to achieve some kind of advancement. This is inappropriate behavior and should never be tolerated at the workplace.

An Example of Quid Pro Quo Sexual Harassment

Say that an employee is eligible for a raise and a new title at work. Her supervisor tells her that she can have a higher salary and a new job title, but she would have to go to dinner and exchange sexual favors first. The supervisor refuses to offer job benefits regardless of his employee’s qualifications and work performance.

Quid pro quo sexual harassment is probably most well known to people since it’s often depicted in television, films, and books featuring workplace sexual harassment.

About Hostile Work Environment Sexual Harassment

Sexual harassment that causes a hostile work environment refers to any comments, conversations, jokes, actions, or images at work of a sexual nature that make people feel uncomfortable. This discomfort is an example of a hostile environment, which can negatively impact worker morale and job performance. Employees may feel intimidated or unsafe while at work under such conditions.

An Example of Hostile Work Environment Sexual Harassment

Say that two employees in the break room during lunch are making lewd, sexual jokes or comments, including the use of sexist language. These employees repeatedly make these kinds of comments, causing their fellow employees to avoid the break room and to feel disturbed or uneasy around these two problem employees.

Hostile work environments are also depicted in pop culture. Where sexual harassment is concerned, these depictions tend to reveal how old boys’ clubs maintain power at companies.

Our Law Firm Is Here to Help

The workplace is no place for unwanted sexual advances, harassment, or intimidation. Whether you have been the victim of a quid pro quo arrangement or have been subjected to various kinds of harassment, we can help you file formal complaints to the proper state and federal agencies. We can also discuss holding the harmful employees or the company itself accountable for the harassment you have faced. Our legal team is here to help you, offering sound counsel and peace of mind.

Contact a Sexual Harassment Attorney

For more information about your legal rights and options following mistreatment on the job and issues with a hostile work environment, be sure to contact a workplace sexual harassment attorney. The team at ThybergLaw is here to help you. Our office can be reached by phone at (916) 204-9173.

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Thyberg Law

Since 1981, Gregory A. Thyberg has been providing legal services to clients throughout Sacramento. With a focus on employment law, he can help you find a solution when facing discrimination, harassment, or other workplace injustices. Mr. Thyberg is affiliated with organizations like the:

  • California Bar Association
  • San Francisco Trial Lawyer’s Association

If you're experiencing unlawful discrimination in the workplace, request a consultation with Mr. Thyberg or call (916) 204-9173.

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