Being sexually assaulted is a painful and overwhelming experience and is quite common in the workplace. A recent study found that 81 percent of women and 43 percent of men reported incidents of sexual assault at work. You might feel afraid to come forward, but to get the justice you need, you will need to report the incident and seek the legal representation of a sexual abuse attorney in Philadelphia.
What is the Definition of Sexual Assault?
Sexual assault is when a person intentionally and sexually touches someone else without their consent or physically forces a person to engage in a sexual act against their will. This can happen anywhere, including a professional setting and the workplace.
Of course, this experience is devastating and often times leaves victims with a range of emotions, including fear of coming forward. However, it is important to not feel powerless or stay quiet and always report any sexual assault to help find closure and justice.
What are the Signs of Sexual Assault?
Some signs of sexual assault are obvious, while some aren’t. Signs include unwelcome advances, asking for sexual favors, talking intimate while standing close, aggressively looking and commenting on your body, asking about sex life, attempts to meet alone, and other forms of verbal and physical harassment. A strong sign is when you say no to these advances and the person gets an attitude in response.
Steps to Take After Experiencing Sexual Assault
If you have been sexually assaulted, there are steps you can take. First, always document and record any sexual harassment incidents. Write down all of the details including the date, time, location, and any witnesses. Always be alert to your surroundings and see if you can tell if this is happening to anyone else in the workplace place. Try to gather and keep together all of your evidence including these documents, emails, phone records, recordings, videos, texts or any social media contact. It is smart to keep these records in a safe place where no one can end up finding them. You might even want to leave these documents with your trusted legal representation.
You always need to report any sexual harassment incidents to your work. Every workplace should have a sexual harassment policy and you must follow this before going forward with any legal action. This gives your employer a chance to make any changes since they are liable.
If your employer fails to take action, you will want to file a complaint with the EEOC and this must be done within 180 to 300 days of the incident. This is why it is wise to speak with a lawyer to get legal advice and guidance. A good lawyer will know what you need to boost the chances of winning your case, while also being respectful and supportive during this sensitive time.
Why Work with a Sexual Assault Attorney
After you report to your work about the incident, speak with a sexual abuse attorney. Make sure to report all the details including dates, times, locations and other important details. Keep in mind that the sooner you are able to report, the better. During the investigation, always keep your info confidential and never say anything that can interfere with your case, especially at work or on social media.
At Edelstein Law, we will fight to bring you justice while still respecting what you are going through. We understand that after being a victim of sexual assault at work, you could be feeling overwhelmed depressed, guilty and fearful. Our compassionate team of lawyers will be there to offer you the support and legal guidance you need during this difficult time.