Quick Tips For Creating a Sexual-Harassment Policy

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Don’t know where to start in creating a sexual-harassment policy? There are plenty of resources available. Our experts share some here along with advice on crafting an effective policy.

“In nearly every circumstance, team members and managers are ‘at will’ employees, meaning they can be subject to termination for any misconduct, especially allegations of sexual harassment. While not binding, an employment manual should state a zero-tolerance policy on sexual misconduct. I encourage owners to speak with local attorneys to help them craft a policy and procedure for investigating sexual harassment claims. But the first thing the employer should do is place the alleged abuser on administrative leave, and swiftly interview all potential witnesses. Please check your local and state guidelines on implementing effective investigation steps.”
—Nicole M. Cober, Esq., principal managing partner, Cober Johnson & Romney

“ISPA publishes guidelines for guest Rights and Responsibilities, and it is a great place to start as an outline for your staff. As a manager, it’s important to remember that it is the perception of the victim that needs to be considered, whether that is the staff member or the guest. If a guest reports to you an incident from one of your staff members, listening and documenting is imperative. Write down exactly what the guest says. Let them know you will follow through, and tell the guest what the course of action will be. And most importantly, get back to the guest with a resolution of how the incident was handled.”
—Michael Tompkins, executive recruiter, Hutchinson Consulting 

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