Allegations of discrimination and harassment plague employers across the country. While some of these claims have merit, many don’t. But the ramifications associated with a successful discrimination or harassment case can be tremendously impactful for your business, harming its financial stability and its reputation. That’s why you need to do everything you can to protect your business, which may include undertaking each of the following steps:
- Develop comprehensive policies that address discrimination and harassment, turning to applicable state and federal laws to ensure that you’re abiding by them and furthering anti-discriminatory and anti-harassment practices.
- Build a training program that consistently and routinely reinforces the expectations when it comes to workplace behavior and specifies what can and should be considered discriminatory and harassing behavior.
- Keep detailed documentation of all complaints and investigations, including interviews and conclusory findings.
- Justify all policies with a valid business purpose, ensuring that you assess whether less discriminatory ways of fulfilling that business purpose are available.
- Demonstrate that all negative employment actions are motivated by something other than a discriminatory or retaliatory purpose, such as by showing that the employee consistently performed poorly.
- Show that the employee failed to inform you, as the employer, that they were being subjected to discriminatory or harassing behavior.
There’s certainly a lot on the line when your business has been accused of discrimination, harassment, or retaliation. And these allegations are becoming more common. The good news, though, is that you can retain a lot of control over these matters by being proactive. If you’d like assistance in doing so and developing the policies and practices that you need to protect your business, then please consider reaching out to a skilled employment law professional who can guide and advise you throughout the process.