Most people think of harassment or discrimination at work and think that it must come from a coworker or a boss. In some cases, these issues can actually be traced back to third parties, like customers. If you are facing a problem like this, an employer needs to help you deal with this issue. An Atlanta employment discrimination attorney from our firm can help you convince them to act.
What is Third-Party Harassment and Discrimination?
Third-party harassment occurs when someone who is not employed by your company is creating a hostile work environment. This can be a customer, a vendor, or even someone in a nearby office in the same building. They are someone outside of your company that is making your job more difficult.
Even though your employer may not have a direct relationship with this person, as they would with one of your coworkers, they still have a responsibility to act. If a third party is harassing you or discriminating against you, that needs to be addressed.
What is an Employer’s Responsibility?
In accordance with federal law, an employer has to make sure that they are not creating a workplace that is hostile to any of its employees. Sexual harassment and any kind of discrimination can make a workplace hostile.
So an employer cannot harass or discriminate against an employee, and they have to deal with any employee who is creating a hostile work environment for another. Their responsibility does not end there though. They are responsible for the entire work environment.
That includes third parties who are in the workplace. An employer cannot simply ignore the situation because the person creating the problem is not someone who works under them. If harassment or discrimination is brought to their attention, the employer needs to investigate it and take steps to ensure that the behavior does not repeat.
What Should an Employer Do?
An employer can do a few things to address these kinds of situations. They can:
- Advise the third party that this conduct must stop immediately
- Report the behavior of an outside vendor to their employer
- Stop customers from coming back if they continue to exhibit poor behavior
- Develop policies that denounce this type of behavior from customers toward employees
- Allow the employee to work in a different area where they would not encounter this third party
- Consider whether law enforcement needs to be involved
Taking no action in this kind of situation is simply unacceptable.
How Can a Workplace Harassment Attorney Help?
A workplace discrimination and harassment lawyer can help you document these incidents of harassment and pressure your employer to act. Telling your employer to take action is one thing. Having a lawyer who has built a case on your side is another.
Contact an Employee Rights Lawyer
If you are dealing with any kind of harassment or discrimination in the workplace, you need an attorney who is ready to fight for you. Contact Ben Barrett Law today and schedule a consultation. We look forward to putting our decades of experience to work for you.