March 10, 2014
The most effective anti-harassment policies should encompass ten important points. These include:
- Adopt (or review and revised) sexual harassment policies that clearly enunciate a "zero tolerance" attitude toward sexual harassment retaliation against complaints of harassment.
- Identify all supervisors and make them accountable for compliance with the employer’s policy.
- Train all supervisors on sexual harassment prevention.
- Train non-supervisory employees on the sexual harassment policy and the procedures to follow if they experience harassment.
- Obtain a signed receipt when distributing the policy to employees.
- Redistribute the policy periodically (at least annually) and obtain updated receipts.
- Instruct appropriate managers on the guidelines for conducting investigations of sexual harassment complaints.
- Incorporate the sexual harassment policy into new employee orientation.
- Document efforts to prevent and correct harassment and any employee’s failure to take advantage of the opportunities provided by the employer.
- Assert the new affirmative defense in pending or future sexual harassment lawsuits.
Source: Jackson, Lewis, Schnitzler & Krupman, White Plains, NY, December 14, 1998.