NC needs laws to better address sexual harassment in the workplace

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Because the lack of concern speaks volumes:

"If you have the terrible misfortune to be sexually harassed in North Carolina at an employer that has less than 15 employees, you literally have no claim in North Carolina," Noble said. "You don't have a federal claim, and you don't have a state law claim. And that's wrong."

If a victim works at a larger employer, they can file a claim under federal statute, Noble said. But that's more difficult, more complicated and more expensive. As a result, many people don't follow through. In the meantime, Noble said calls to her office about sexual harassment have increased 500 percent since coverage of the stories began appearing in the news media last fall.

Even that increase in wanting to "take action" represents just a tip of the iceberg. And when it comes to behavior such as this, men are more than happy to emulate other men who appear to be getting away with it. No doubt Republicans would say it should be left up to the civil courts to handle it and not an "authoritarian government." But in their next breath they will whine about too many lawsuits and the need for "tort reform." Don't look for any relief coming from that direction, because most of these folks live in a 1950's bubble. Which may explain why half of working women have been harassed in the workplace:

A new poll from the Wall Street Journal and NBC found 48% of female workers said they had personally experienced sexual harassment at work.

Meanwhile, 41% of employed men said they’d witnessed sexual harassment occur at work. And the vast majority of survey respondents agreed that sexual harassment in the workplace is quite common: 67% said they believe that sexual harassment takes place in most or almost all work environments, including 62% of men and 71% of women. In 1991, by contrast, when a similar poll was taken, 63% of Americans said they thought sexual harassment happened in most or almost all workplaces.

Bolding mine, because that 41% had a responsibility to do something, anything, to curb the behavior they witnessed. But the vast majority of them probably didn't lift a finger. I understand it's a tough economy and job security is virtually non-existent these days, but the only person in that room who should be worried about getting fired is the jackass doing the harassing. Until we get to the point where this becomes an "unforgivable" violation of workplace behavior and automatically brings about a dismissal, half of working women will continue to be subjected to such disgusting treatment.

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