Sexual Harassment

The Speak Out Act: Another Step Forward in the Battle Against Sexual Assault & Sexual Harassment in the Workplace

On Thursday, September 29, the Speak Out Act passed in the Senate with bipartisan support. If it passes in the House and is signed into law by President Biden, it will be another important step toward holding perpetrators of workplace misconduct accountable. Following the passage of the Ending Forced Arbitration of Sexual Assault and Harassment Act of 2021 (the Ending…

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Recourse for Victims of Sexual Assault & Harassment in the Maritime Industry

It is no secret that there is a long, well-publicized history of sexual assaults and sexual harassment (SASH) within the maritime industry. In fact, in 2016 and again in November 2021, due to widespread incidents of SASH aboard maritime vessels, the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy (USMMA) temporarily halted its Sea Year program – a program in which students are placed…

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H.R. 4445: Congress Bars Forced Arbitration of Sexual Assault and Sexual Harassment Cases

Attorneys at along with many other commentators (and, unfortunately, a number of forceful judicial dissents), have written extensively about how arbitration has been distorted and manipulated to deprive employees and other individuals of their legal rights and remedies and prevent them from holding companies fully accountable for unlawful conduct. Now, after years of stalled efforts in Congress, H.R. 4445 represents…

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The Silenced No More Act Provides a Long-Overdue Expansion of Rights to California Employees

On January 1, 2022, a California law went into effect that, among other developments, prohibits nondisclosure agreements (NDAs) that keep employees quiet about the discrimination they have suffered in the workplace. The state legislature passed the bill, known as SB 331 or the Silenced No More Act, on October 7, 2021. What Does the Silenced No More Act Do? SB…

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Congress Should Pass the Judiciary Accountability Act

For years, Ninth Circuit judge Alex Kozinski sexually harassed his law clerks, repeatedly making inappropriate comments and sharing pornography in chambers.  He could act with impunity—and other judges have been able to do the same—because our nation’s anti-discrimination laws have left law clerks and most other judicial employees unprotected.   Because of a loophole in Title VII, there are more than 30,000 workers…

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Sexual Harassment is a Form of Illegal Housing Discrimination

The Federal Fair Housing Act, along with many state and local laws, prohibits gender discrimination in housing, including sexual harassment. It is illegal for landlords, property managers, real estate agents, and maintenance staff to demand sexual favors in exchange for access to housing or repairs. They also cannot create a hostile environment for tenants based on their sex, for example,…

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Can I Still Bring a Sexual Assault, Sexual Harassment, or Gender Discrimination Lawsuit Against My School or University?

The #MeToo Movement continues to call attention to victims of sexual violence and discrimination. A chorus of survivors’ voices grows. More and more survivors are filing sex discrimination lawsuits to vindicate their rights in court and hold accountable both the perpetrators who harmed them and the institutions that failed to protect them. Often it is an educational institution that betrays…

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Filing A Sexual Harassment Lawsuit Under A Pseudonym

The Federal Rules of Civil Procedure generally require that a publicly filed lawsuit name all the parties involved.  However, under certain circumstances, plaintiffs can avoid disclosing their name by filing a lawsuit using a pseudonym (such as “Jane Doe” or “John Doe”).  Although the use of a pseudonym commonly arises in sexual harassment cases, some courts are reluctant to allow…

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NYU Lawsuit Highlights Potential Problems with Sexual Harassment and Assault Investigations

Universities and employers have a duty to respond to allegations of sexual assault, harassment, and discrimination. Many organizations conduct investigations before responding, and plaintiffs have filed gender discrimination lawsuits based on the investigations themselves. For one example, read coverage of trial about a Columbia University investigation here. Whether an investigation is so faulty or biased that it creates a legal claim…

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