What is Quid Pro Quo Harassment in the Workplace?

Workplace discrimination and harassment are unfortunately common. However, that does not mean that it is acceptable. Harassment has a significant and lasting impact on victims and can negatively affect the work environment. Harassment refers to any unwelcome conduct due to one’s race, skin color, religion, sex, pregnancy, national origin, age, genetic information, or disability. Workplace conduct may be upsetting or offensive but does not always fall under harassment laws. These workplace behaviors become unlawful in situations in which enduring the inappropriate conduct becomes a condition of continued employment, or when the conduct is so severe or pervasive that it creates a work environment that a reasonable person would consider intimidating, hostile, or abusive.

What is Quid Pro Quo Harassment?

Quid pro quo harassment is a very serious form of sexual harassment. It differs from other forms of workplace sexual misconduct in that it involves the victim’s participation in sexual conduct as a condition of employment. This can take on many forms. It could be that a potential employee is told that they can only have the job if they provide sexual favors to the employer. This could also apply when an employee is eligible for a promotion and their employer makes it conditional on sexual acts. Beyond hiring and promotions, quid pro quo harassment can include threats of termination or disciplinary action for employees that refuse sexual advances.

Any kind of workplace harassment can have a real impact on victims. Quid pro quo harassment affects employees in multiple ways. The mental and emotional impact can be significant. Additionally, quid pro quo can seriously affect an employee’s career opportunities. Being denied employment or career advancement for refusing sexual advances is both unfair and illegal.

What Should I Do If I Experience Quid Pro Quo Harassment?

When employers engage in sexual misconduct, they must be held accountable. Employees should have a solid understanding of workplace procedures for reporting misconduct. Some employees might fear retaliation if they report misconduct since employers who engage in quid pro quo harassment are not above taking punitive actions against employees who do not cooperate with their demands.

In New Jersey, an employee can file a claim with the Division on Civil Rights under the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination (NJLAD), which prohibits discrimination due to one’s race, religion, gender, national origin, and disability, among other protected classes. A knowledgeable employment lawyer is the best option when pursuing a discrimination or harassment case.

South Jersey Employment Lawyers at The Law Offices of Leo B. Dubler, III, LLC Help Victims of Workplace Harassment

Employees should not suffer any type of harassment in the workplace. If you have been a victim of harassment in the workplace, the experienced South Jersey employment lawyers at The Law Offices of Leo B. Dubler, III, LLC can help. We advocate for victims of workplace harassment and discrimination. Call us today at 856-235-7075 or contact us online for a free consultation. Located in Mount Laurel and Atlantic City, New Jersey, we serve employees throughout South Jersey, including Cherry Hill, Burlington County, and Camden County.