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Sexual Harassment Prevention and Awareness Training

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Michael Travis

on 5 January 2015

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Transcript of Sexual Harassment Prevention and Awareness Training

Sexual Harassment Prevention
and Awareness Training

What is sexual harassment?

What conduct constitutes sexual harassment?

How do I handle a complaint of sexual harassment?

What are the requirements of Title IX?
For Today's Training
Sexual Harassment Prevention and Awareness Training
Literally means, "this for that"

Occurs when submission to unwelcome sexual advances or request for sexual favors is made a condition of employment or receipt of employment opportunities or benefits
Pinning a person to a wall

Blocking a passage

Grabbing, bumping, or pinching

Unsolicited touching or rubbing


Any other unwelcome physical contact

Sexual gestures

Displaying pornography/sexually explicit material

Touching or rubbing in a suggestive manner
Give the person immediate attention

Be a good listener

No judgments of the accuser OR the accused

No discussion of pros/cons of reporting
Initial Contact with Complainant
Ask the person if they know about the Board policy

Assure them that retaliation is prohibited, and punished severely

Make notes: conduct alleged, times and dates, witnesses, other evidence, response to the conduct
Sexual Harassment is a Form of
Unlawful Employment Discrimination
What is Sexual
What Behavior Constitutes
Sexual Harassment?
Initial Contact with Complainant
Physical Conduct
Nonverbal Conduct
"Quid Pro Quo" Harassment
Cerritos Community College Human Resources Department
Presented by Michael T. Travis and Barrett Morris
A salesperson for the Burlington Company quit her job after 15 months of being subjected to constant sexual harassment by one of her supervisors. His actions included making threats to deny her tangible job benefits. Ms. Ellerth refused all of his advances. She suffered no tangible employment harm and was in fact promoted.
Case Study
Burlington Industries v. Ellerth
(1998) 524 US 742
Unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, verbal, visual, or other physical conduct of a sexual nature, made by someone from or in the work or educational setting, under the following conditions:

Submission to conduct that is explicitly or implicitly made a term or condition of employment, academic status or progress
The conduct has the purpose or effect of having a negative impact upon the individual's work or academic performance, or of creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive work or educational environment
Submission to, or rejection of, the conduct by the individual is used as the basis for any decision affecting the individual regarding benefits and services, honors, programs, or activities available at or through the educational institution. (Education Code section 212.5)
Submission to, or rejection of, the conduct by the individual is used as the basis for employment or academic decisions affecting the individual
Types of Sexual Harassment:
1. Quid Pro Quo
2. Hostile Work
Presented By

Barrett Morris
Director of Diversity, Benefits, and Compliance

Michael T. Travis, Esq.
Parker & Covert LLP

March 25, 2014
Burlington Industries v. Ellerth
(1998) 524 US 742
Can the plaintiff state
a case for quid pro quo
No - "unfulfilled threats" was not quid pro quo
harassment, and qualifies as hostile work
environment harassment.
A tangible adverse employment action constitutes
a significant change in employment status, such as
hiring, firing, failing to promote, reassignment with
significantly different responsibilities, or a decision
causing a significant change in benefits
Sexual Harassment Prevention Training is Required
Conduct must be extreme, sufficiently severe and pervasive as to alter the conditions of employment or educational environment
Hostile Environment Harassment
Case Study
After four months of employment, plaintiff was fired and sued, asserting among other things that the writers’ use of sexually coarse and vulgar language and conduct, constituted harassment based on sex.
No Hostile Environment. Why?
Not directed at Plaintiff or any other specific female
Lyle v. Warner Brothers Television Productions
(2006) 38 Cal. 4th 264
Lyle v. Warner Brothers Television Productions
(2006) 38 Cal. 4th 264
Sporadic use of abusive language, gender-related jokes, occasional teasing do not constitute a hostile work or educational environment
Unwelcome verbal, physical, or visual conduct of a sexual nature unreasonably interferes with performance or creates intimidating, hostile, or offensive working environment.

Conduct may be an action or a failure to take action
Making sexual comments

Asking personal questions relating to sex or sexual activity
Verbal Conduct
Cerritos College is committed to providing an academic and work environment that respects the dignity of all individuals and groups. Inappropriate or offensive remarks, slurs, jokes, or innuendos based on a person’s race, gender, sexual orientation, or other protected status detract from the college’s values and educational philosophy. Please help us strengthen respect and trust in all people be they students, employees, or community members by reporting such issues immediately. If you have any questions or would like more information, please refer to Board Policy and Administrative Procedure 3430 – Prohibition of Harassment or contact the Office of Human Resources.
Lyle v. Warner Brothers Television Productions
(2006) 38 Cal. 4th 264
Plaintiff was a comedy writers’ assistant who worked on the production of a popular television show called Friends.

The show revolved around a group of young, sexually active adults, featured adult-oriented sexual humor, and typically relied on sexual and anatomical language, innuendo, wordplay, and physical gestures to convey its humor
The writers regularly discussed their preferences in women and sex in general, including preferences for blonde women, a certain bra cup size, “get[ting] right to sex” and not “mess[ing] around with too much foreplay," and sexually graphic drawings of female anatomy during meetings. None of it was directed at plaintiff.
Not severe or pervasive

Sexual jokes, innuendos were a part of the workplace
So What are We Talking About?
Altering Conditions

Work or school performance suffers
Emotional or physical discomfort at work or school
Victim dreads coming to work or school
Look at the totality of the circumstances
From the perspective of the "reasonable man" or "reasonable woman"
Hostile Environment Harassment
What to Look For
Bonus Question
What is the first thing you should you do if you suspect sexual harassment is occurring?
Physical conduct
Nonverbal conduct
Verbal conduct
Electronic conduct
Asking for dates or sexual contact

Telling sexual stories
Electronic Communications and Conduct
Text messaging
Social Media
Blogs and websites
Test: If the conduct were not
electronic, would it be offensive?
Sexual Harassment - Who Must We Monitor?
Faculty and Staff
All groups have the right to a work and an educational environment free of harassment
Handling a Sexual Harassment
What Next?
Making a Report
Contact Human Resources


If the person is a student, also contact Judicial Affairs

Contact Campus Police if you need immediate assistance
Do Not Attempt to Conduct Your Own Investigation!
Filing a Discrimination Complaint
Sexual Harassment is a form of unlawful discrimination
Cerritos College Administrative Procedure 3435 describes the steps and the process

Complaints of discrimination should be made in the Human Resources Department

Forms will also be available online
Retaliation is Prohibited
All parties involved…accused, witnesses, cautioned against any conduct or statement that could be construed as retaliation against the complainant for filing the complaint.
Complaints alleging retaliation are treated in the same manner as complaints of harassment and discrimination.

Retaliation prohibited under same laws prohibiting harassment and discrimination

Human Resources Department

Mr. Barrett Morris
Extension 2276

Dr. Adriana Flores-Church
Extension 2283

Dr. Mary Anne Gularte
Extension 2280

Board Policies on Discrimination


Dept. of Ed., Office for Civil Rights


Dept. of Fair Employment & Housing (DFEH)


Interactive Discussion
What is Title IX?

Complaint procedures

Dear colleague letter
Role of the Title IX Coordinator
No, Really
(It's not always bad)
Don't forget to complete your participation forms!

Thank you
Full transcript