Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 44

COMPLIANCE & LEGAL
EMPLOYMENT
provide even broader protection from
sexual harassment. Look up whether
your state has its own laws and make
sure you understand your obligations (including whether supervisors must attend mandatory sexual
harassment training).

STUDIOSTOKS/SHUTTERSTOCK.COM

LESSONS TO LEARN FROM

Follow these 5 steps to be aware of and
prevent sexual harassment in your hotel.
by ANKIT BHAKTA

H

ARVEY WEINSTEIN.
Kevin Spacey. Louis
C.K. Charlie Rose. Matt
Lauer. Al Franken.
Bill O'Reilly. Need I
go on? Spurred by the
#MeToo movement, sexual harassment
is emerging as one of the top employment issues of 2018. With that in mind,
refreshing your knowledge of the laws
prohibiting sexual harassment (and
making sure your supervisors also
understand these laws) is crucial in the
hospitality industry.

THE LAW
Under Federal law, while Title VII forbids
discrimination, harassment has been held
to be a form of prohibited discrimination. As such, harassment on the basis of

4 4  | MARCH 2018 | TODAYSHOTELIER.COM

sex (and race, color, religion or national
origin) is strictly prohibited by Federal
law. Unwelcome sexual advances,
requests for sexual favors, and other
verbal or physical conduct of a sexual
nature constitute sexual harassment
when: (1) submission to such conduct
is made either explicitly or implicitly
a term or condition of an individual's
employment; (2) submission to or rejection of such conduct by an individual
is used as the basis for employment
decisions affecting such individual; or
(3)  such conduct has the purpose or
effect of unreasonably interfering with
an individual's work performance or creating an intimidating, hostile or offensive working environment.
Many states have also passed their
own laws addressing the issue and

Now that we have a general understanding of sexual harassment law, you may
be thinking just prevent harrassment,
end of story. While most of us have a
good idea about what sexual harassment is and isn't, a quick look at some
examples where businesses spent hundreds of thousands of dollars litigating
exactly what constitutes sexual harassment teaches us some valuable lessons.
Sexual harassment doesn't have to be motivated by sexual desire.
As an example of the importance
of looking at your own state's laws on
sexual harassment, let's took a look at a
case from my home state of California.
In Taylor v. Nabors Drilling USA, LP, plaintiff Max Taylor worked as a floorhand
on an oil rig. His co-workers frequently
called him a "queer," "faggot," "homo,"
and "gay porn star," even though they
knew he was not homosexual. After his
employment was terminated for poor
performance, he sued his employer
under California's Fair Employment and
Housing Act. The employer argued that
the conduct was not sexual harassment
because the employees knew Taylor was
not homosexual and they had no sexual
feelings towards Taylor. In rejecting this
argument, the Court of Appeal stated,
"here sex was used as a weapon to create
a hostile work environment for respondent." The Court awarded the employee
$150,000 in damages, awarded attorneys'
fees of $680,520, and ordered the recovery of additional costs and attorneys'
fees on appeal.
Sexual harassment doesn't have to be directed
at the victim.
In EEOC v. PVNF, L.C.C., a female manager at a car dealership was subjected


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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Today's Hotelier - March 2018

Letter From the Chairman
Letter From the President & CEO
#AAHOACON18 Spotlight
Government Affairs & Advocacy
The C-Suite
Common Ground
Elevate Yourself to a Higher Role in the Industry
Next-Level Housekeeping via Technology
Mentoring Matters
Small Business
Finance
Marketing
Technology
Compliance & Legal
Leadership
Guest Experience
Aahoa Founding Members
Classifieds
Advertiser Index
Back of the House
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - Intro
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - cover1
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - cover2
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 3
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 4
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 5
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 6
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 7
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 8
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 9
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - Letter From the Chairman
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 11
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - Letter From the President & CEO
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 13
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - #AAHOACON18 Spotlight
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 15
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 16
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 17
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - Government Affairs & Advocacy
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 19
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - The C-Suite
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 21
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - Common Ground
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 23
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - Elevate Yourself to a Higher Role in the Industry
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 25
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 26
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 27
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - Next-Level Housekeeping via Technology
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 29
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 30
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 31
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - Mentoring Matters
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 33
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 34
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 35
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - Small Business
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 37
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - Finance
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 39
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - Marketing
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 41
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - Technology
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 43
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - Compliance & Legal
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 45
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - Leadership
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 47
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 48
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 49
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - Guest Experience
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 51
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 52
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 53
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - Aahoa Founding Members
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 55
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - Classifieds
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 57
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 58
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 59
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 60
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 61
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 62
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - Advertiser Index
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 64
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - Back of the House
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 66
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - cover3
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - cover4
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