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Today’s show explores the turbulent realities of sexual harassment, abuse and racism in three high profile world cases: Herman Cain, Penn State, and FIFA’s Sepp Blatter.
As a 24 year diversity professional, I have a growing concern about the state of diversity and multiculturalism in our world. With technological advances at an all time high, there are still some realities that just haven’t gone away. Yes, we have made quantum leaps forward in certain areas of diversity. For that I am quite pleased. American has its first Black President, truly one of our society’s great achievement. But lurking in the background are age old offenses that simply have been swept under the rug.
Case in point: The 4 Sexual Harassment allegations against Republican presidential nominee Herman Cain. And most recently the explosive Penn State tragedies where 8 or more young boys were allegedly molested over a 15 year period by retired asst. coach Jerry Sandusky. In Europe football/soccer fans and pros alike are calling for FIFA President Sepp Blatter’s resignation after his remarks about racism on the field downplayed its volatility.
Put on your thinking cap and weigh in on this pressing matters dogging the advancement of TRUE diversity, multiculturalism and inclusion.
Facts About Sexual Harassment
Sexual harassment is a form of sex discrimination that violates Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
Unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature constitutes sexual harassment when submission to or rejection of this conduct explicitly or implicitly affects an individual's employment, unreasonably interferes with an individual's work performance or creates an intimidating, hostile or offensive work environment.
Sexual harassment can occur in a variety of circumstances, including but not limited to the following:
- The victim as well as the harasser may be a woman or a man. The victim does not have to be of the opposite sex.
- The harasser can be the victim's supervisor, an agent of the employer, a supervisor in another area, a co-worker, or a non-employee.
- The victim does not have to be the person harassed but could be anyone affected by the offensive conduct.
- Unlawful sexual harassment may occur without economic injury to or discharge of the victim.
- The harasser's conduct must be unwelcome.
When investigating allegations of sexual harassment, EEOC looks at the whole record: the circumstances, such as the nature of the sexual advances, and the context in which the alleged incidents occurred. A determination on the allegations is made from the facts on a case-by-case basis.
Prevention is the best tool to eliminate sexual harassment in the workplace. Employers are encouraged to take steps necessary to prevent sexual harassment from occurring. They should clearly communicate to employees that sexual harassment will not be tolerated. They can do so by establishing an effective complaint or grievance process and taking immediate and appropriate action when an employee complains.
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