Sexual Harassment


In Ohio, instances of sexual harassment and assault impact roughly 86.9 per 100,000 people each year. These incidents can occur at any time and in any location, leaving individuals particularly vulnerable. When people are subjected to sexual harassment, they are often overwhelmed with the mental and emotional consequences of the harassment. These traumatic experiences can result in devastating self-esteem issues and cause victims to have problems concentrating and moving on. When victims are sexually harassed here in Hamilton County, it is imperative that they understand that there are legal options available for them.

For nearly four decades, our Cincinnati sexual harassment attorneys at The Green Law Firm have helped thousands of victims move forward after being sexually assaulted. Our attorneys provide compassionate and effective legal representation for our clients that ensures their legal rights are protected. Our team investigates the circumstances surrounding each claim, gathers evidence and documents to prove both the harassment and consequences victims endure, and various other types of evidence to help establish strong cases on behalf of our clients. Our ultimate goal is to help those we work with move forward and reach their recovery goals. Contact our law firm at your earliest convenience to see how we can help you.

Sexual Harassment in the Workplace

There are many actions in the workplace that constitute harassment, although it is often extremely challenging to define. Although it is not illegal to throw an offhand comment, annoyance, petty slights, or even crude jokes around the workplace, so long as they are not intended to injure a specific person, there are many things that constitute harassment. Actions like making inappropriate slurs, assaults, ridicules, threats, or even making insensitive displays of photos or offensive jokes in the workplace can be considered sexual harassment.

Sexual harassment in the workplace can fall under either of two categories. The first type of harassment is referred to as quid pro quo. This type of harassment occurs when the harassing conduct results in some type of change to an employee’s benefits or employment status. For example, sexual harassment can play a role in whether a person is given the opportunity to be promoted at work, demoted at work, or terminated. The second type of sexual harassment at work is known as hostile work environment harassment. This type of harassment is conduct that is extremely severe or pervasive enough to create a work environment that could be considered intimidating, abusive, or hostile by a reasonable person.

Regardless of the actions a person takes in the workplace, it will generally have to interfere with the work performance of a reasonable person in order to constitute sexual harassment. Generally, sexual harassment has to occur in a series of repeated acts, though there are instances where isolated incidents are considered actions that constitute sexual harassment. In addition to creating an unpleasant work environment, some acts of sexual harassment violate both state and federal anti-discrimination laws.

What is Considered Sexual Harassment in Ohio?

Sexual harassment can take several forms. Generally, sexual harassment is any undesirable sexual advances made toward a person. These can also include demands for sexual favors and various other bodily and oral conduct with sexual connotations. These actions are considered to be sexual harassment in situations where:

  • The employment of a person is undoubtedly affected by the actions of the perpetrator
  • The employee’s workflow is interrupted unjustifiably
  • An antagonistic, offensive, or taunting work environment is created as a result of the perpetrator’s actions

When victims are subjected to sexual harassment, either on the job or elsewhere, it is imperative that they act quickly to protect their legal rights. Victims are entitled to justice and compensation for their traumatic experiences. Working with a knowledgeable sexual harassment attorney from The Green Law Firm in Cincinnati will ensure you are able to protect your legal rights.

Identifying The Hostile Work Environment in Cincinnati, Ohio

There are numerous instances where sexual harassment creates a hostile work environment for one or more people. This is just one form of harassment where the conduct of a perpetrator is so severe that it creates a working environment that is considered to be hostile, abusive, or intimidating. Being subjected to a hostile work environment can have a debilitating toll on a worker. In many cases, workers are unable to concentrate and perform the duties of their job efficiently. Sexual harassment can come from either employees, such as bosses and coworkers, or non-employees, such as contractors or customers. In some cases, offensive conduct may entitle victims to pursue legal options through sexual harassment laws in our state.

Some actions that constitute sexual harassment which instills a hostile work environment include, but are not limited to:

  • Making rude comments about another person’s appearance, whether clothing or body parts are referenced
  • Gawking at someone in a manner that is sexually suggestive
  • Making contact with another employee that makes them feel awkward, such as patting, rubbing up against them intentionally, or pinching
  • Sending, requesting, or forwarding emails, images with sexual connotations, letters or notes to others
  • Telling vulgar or sexual jokes while at work
  • Hanging lewd or perverted photos in the workspace
  • Making sexual gestures

Working with a sexual harassment attorney in Cincinnati will help you to determine what legal options are available for you to combat the sexual harassment you are forced to endure. Contact The Green Law Firm today to see how we can help you.

Categories of Sexual Harassment

Sexual harassment can take many forms. Generally, there are three types of sexual harassment that people are subjected to in businesses, at work, or in other locations. The first type of harassment is known as verbal harassment. Verbal harassment includes the following:

  • Sexual comments/suggestive comments
  • Making fun of a person by imitating how they speak
  • Making sexual propositions
  • Making obscene telephone calls to others
  • Making obscene broadcasts over radios and loudspeakers
  • Threatening or insulting others
  • Using inappropriate language at work
  • Making offensive jokes repeatedly while prodding about a person’s life

Non-verbal sexual harassment is extremely common as well. Some examples of non-verbal harassment people are subjected to include:

  • Hanging pictures or other materials on the wall that are offensive or contain sexual content or innuendos
  • Making sexually suggestive gazes or sneers toward others
  • Engaging in practical jokes that impersonate others
  • Following someone around the workplace with no legitimate purpose
  • Making offensive body gestures towards others
  • Sabotaging another person’s work
  • Mandating that women perform domestic tasks in the workplace

Finally, the third type of sexual harassment includes physical actions. Physical sexual harassment includes:

  • Attempting to touch a person’s breasts, genitals, or other body parts (sexual assault)
  • Pushing, jostling, or shoving another person
  • Sticking your hands or objects in a person’s pockets
  • Pinching, brushing up on someone, or hugging without approval

There are many actions that can be considered illegal harassment. Generally, actions conducted with the mutual consent of both parties, while not offending coworkers, is acceptable. If you believe you were subjected to sexual harassment, contact our sexual harassment attorneys in Cincinnati to discuss your experience and determine what legal options are available for you.

Examples of Sexual Harassment

There are a variety of situations in which sexual harassment can occur. In many cases, the harassment may be overlooked by superiors and other workers. Some of the most common scenarios of sexual harassment include:

  • When women harass men or people harass others of the same sex
  • When a person is harassed by their boss, an agent, coworkers, a contractor, another department’s manager, or a non-employee
  • When the victim is not the direct target of the harassment and just someone offended by another person’s behavior
  • Sexual harassment that does not result in the victim experiencing any financial impacts or losing their job
  • When sexual harassment creates an inhospitable work environment for the victim
  • When comments are generally offensive regarding a person’s sex

Working with a responsive attorney in Hamilton County will help to delineate sexual harassment and whether you have experienced it as well as what the best process moving forward may be for your case.

Steps to Take if You are Subjected to Sexual Harassment

If you are forced to endure the physical, verbal, or non-verbal sexually harassing actions from another person, it is imperative that you take the necessary steps to ensure your legal rights are protected. First, you will want to thoroughly document each instance you experience. Take notes of when and what happened. Document who was involved, where it took place, if anyone witnessed the act, and how you reacted to it initially. These critical details can help bolster your legal claim and demonstrate the extent of harassment you were forced to endure.

Any steps that you take in an attempt to stop the harassment can be useful in proving the harassment existed and how it occurred. If you feel as if you are being sexually harassed, it is crucial that you take the following steps to resolve the issue.

First, ask the person to stop what they are doing. Let them know what actions they are engaging in so they know particularly what you are asking them to stop. Let them know that their actions are making you uncomfortable and that they are violating the code of conduct for your workplace.

Next, maintain detailed documentation of all of the events that you consider to be harassment. If the behavior does not cease, you should notify your supervisor. You can begin the grievance process detailed in your employee handbook as you determine how to proceed. In some cases, employers can be liable for harassment that workers experience. If the harassment is from a supervisor and it results in the termination of a worker, the loss of wages, or a failure to promote or hire, the employer can be held liable.

Companies must act quickly and responsively to correct the harassing behaviors. They must provide employees with corrective and preventative opportunities to ensure they are able to perform their work without interruption. When employers fail to perform these tasks, they can be held liable for any harassment you endure. In some cases, companies may unlawfully terminate workers who complain about sexual harassment. If your employer retaliates against you due to harassment you experience, you may be able to hold them liable for your termination. Working with a sexual harassment attorney in Cincinnati will ensure your legal rights are protected.

The Green Law Firm Can Help You

Tens of thousands of men, women, and minors are subjected to sexual harassment every year in our country. Here in Hamilton County, we see thousands of people struggle to move forward after their traumatic experiences. Dealing with sexual harassment can have an overwhelming impact on the mental and emotional health and well-being of a victim. Whether a person is subjected to this type of behavior while at a business, while working, or under any other circumstance, it is crucial that they understand that they do have legal options available to them. Working with a sexual harassment attorney in Cincinnati will ensure your legal rights and best interests are protected.

The personal injury attorneys at The Green Law Firm have several decades of experience helping victims of sexual harassment get the justice they deserve by holding their perpetrators responsible for their actions. Our team strives to provide aggressive, trusted, and competent legal representation for clients to ensure they are fully and fairly compensated for their suffering. Our sexual harassment attorneys in Cincinnati can meet with you at your earliest convenience to discuss the circumstances surrounding your case. Contact The Green Law Firm today by calling (513) 769-0840. Schedule a free case evaluation with our reputable personal injury attorneys in Cincinnati to explore legal options available for you.