REFRESHER TRAINING PREVENTION OF SEXUAL HARASSMENT (POSH) Computer assisted training for all civilian employees and for personnel who supervise civilian employees. Scroll Down to Navigate Through Slides
PURPOSE • To provide refresher POSH training • To remind supervisors and employees of their role in preventing sexual harassment • To promote a professional, hostile-free work environments
MANDATORY TRAINING • Refresher POSH training is required every 2 years for all civilian employees and for all supervisors who supervise civilians, regardless of grade level or position • First time supervisors of civilian employees (including military) must attend the initial supervisor’s block provided by the servicing EEO office within 6 months of appointment • Employees new to federal service must attend the initial training provided by the servicing EEO office within 6 months of appointment. Training - Key to Prevention
PROGRAM STRUCTURE • PART 1 - INTRODUCTION • PART 2 – UNDERSTANDING SEXUAL HARASSMENT • PART 3 – SUPERVISOR’S ROLE • PART 4 – EMPLOYEE’S ROLE • REVIEW
TO OBTAIN CREDIT • Review all modules, whether supervisor or employee • Take Final Exam • Submit – your information will be forwarded to the Knowledge Center for documentation.
PROGRAM DEVELOPMENT • This web-based program was developed by: US Army Garrisson Command Aberdeen Proving Ground EQUAL EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITY OFFICE 410-278-1161 DSN 298-1161 GO TO PART 1 TO BEGIN TRAINING
PART 1 INTRODUCTION Table of Contents • References • Army Policy • Key Supreme Court Decisions • Employer Liability • Sexual Harassment • Intent • Effects • 10 U.S. Code Section 1561 – Additional Processing Channel • Executive Order 13087 – Sexual Orientation
REFERENCES • Title VII—Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended • Army policy • MACOM policy • Commander’s policy • Post/community policy Policies Call servicing EEO Office
ARMY POLICY • The policy of the U.S. Army is that sexual harassment is unacceptable conduct and will not be tolerated • The Army is totally committed to creating and maintaining an environment conducive to maximum productivity and respect for human dignity, free of sexual harassment for all its personnel, whether civilian or military
KEY SUPREME COURT DECISIONS • 1986, Meritor Savings Bank vs Vinson:Supreme Court held that harassment need not affect the victim’s economic benefit or create an economic barrier; if the harassment created an offensive or hostile work environment, then it was a violation of Title VII • 1993, Harris vs. Forklift Systems, Inc.: Supreme Court affirmed the holding in Meritor and held that an abusive work environment need not seriously affect an employee’s psychological well being or lead the plaintiff to suffer injury to be actionable
COURT DECISIONS Factors to consider in reaching conclusions about whether conduct is legally actionable: • How often the conduct occurs • How serious the conduct is • Whether the behavior physically threatens the victim, or stops at offensive comments and • Whether the behavior unreasonably interferes with work performance • Generally a few isolated, minor incidents (e.g., single request for sex) are not legally sufficient to show sexual harassment; however, even minor incidents may violate Army Policy and even a single incident may be sufficient to establish harassment depending on severity of behavior (e.g., physical harassment)
EMPLOYER LIABILITY • Employers may be liable for any sexually harassing conduct when the supervisory chain knows or should have known of the conduct of employees • Best (and often only) defense from liability is that immediate and appropriate corrective action is taken once employer is on notice of the behavior • Even though no complaint has been voiced, employer is liable if the harassing acts were such that the supervisors should have known of their occurrence
SEXUAL HARASSMENT • The term sexual harassment has sexual implications (i.e., having sex, dealing with reproductive issues) as opposed to solely gender implications • The victim is in the position where the harasser is asserting power over the victim, rather than seeking sexual favors by the use of sex • An appeals court decision stated: “Sexual harassment…represents an intentional assault on an individual’s innermost privacy…”
INTENT • If discrimination occurs, a person’s claim of having no intention to discriminate is not a valid defense • What counts are the effects of the action KNOW HOW YOUR BEHAVIOR AFFECTS OTHERS!
EFFECTS OF SEXUAL HARASSMENT • Robs victim of self esteem • Creates unpleasant emotional reactions in the person experiencing them • Creates a hostile working environment • Impacts morale and productivity • Breaks down team concept • Costs money to process and adjudicate a complaint (e.g., In 1992-1994 an estimated $327 million was spent by the Federal Government) May result in discipline or/and possible job loss for person found guilty of sexually harassing behavior
10 U.S. CODE SECTION 1561 (ADDITIONAL PROCESSING CHANNEL) • Alternate channel for filing sexual harassment complaints outside of the EEO complaints process. • EEO can advise who is point of contact (POC) designated to receive section 1561 complaints • Upon Legal approval, employees may also simultaneously file an EEO complaint with the servicing EEO office within 45 calendar days of occurrence
EXECUTIVE ORDER 13087 (SEXUAL ORIENTATION) • President issued 28 May 99 • Amends Executive Order 11478, EEO in the Federal Government, 8 Aug 69 • Sexual orientation is having or being perceived as having a self-image or identity not traditionally associated with one’s biological gender. • Sexual orientation complaints are handled under the DoD administrative grievance procedure, the negotiated grievance procedure (if appropriate), or as appeals to the Merit Systems Protection Board when otherwise appealable actions are involved. • Cannot file under EEO complaint process • May also file with Office of Special Counsel
SUMMARY • Sexually harassing behavior can create a hostile working environment • Employers may be held liable for failing to recognize sexual harassing behavior or for failing to take corrective action • Effect not intent is what counts • Sexual harassing behavior can cost you your job or promotion END OF PART 1
PART 2 UNDERSTANDING SEXUAL HARASSMENT Table of Contents • Definition • Sex Discrimination • Sexism • Employer Liability • Types of Sexual Harassment • Quid Pro Quo • Hostile Environment • Physical Harassment • Sex Role Stereotype • Sex Role Static • Sexual Misconduct • Personal Behavior Measurement Gauge
DEFINITION OF SEXUAL HARASSMENT • Deliberate and/or repeated • Influencing, offering to influence or threatening the career, pay or job of another person in exchange for sexual favors. • Offensive comments, profane language, gestures or physical contact of a sexual nature.
SEXUAL HARASSMENT IS A SUBSET OF SEX DISCRIMINATION • Sex discrimination is a specified form of illegal behavior as defined by various laws and Executive Orders • Per Title VII, Civil Rights Act, sex discrimination is outlawed in employment • It is any practice or policy which results in unlawful differential treatment of an individual because of his or her gender Great training opportunity, but only women applicants will be considered
SEXISM IS DIFFERENT THAN SEX DISCRIMINATION • While sexism may describe many social behaviors and interaction, it does not have a legal basis • Sexism is an encompassing term used by different individuals to mean different things • One definition is: Preference for one sex over another (not necessarily your own)
TYPES OF SEXUAL HARASSMENT • QUID PRO QUO (an equal exchange, “this for that”): • When submission to sexual advances, requests for sexual favors and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature is made either explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of a person’s job, pay or career, OR • When submission to or rejection of such conduct by an individual is used as a basis for employment decisions • HOSTILE ENVIRONMENT: When such conduct has the purpose or effect of interfering with an individual’s performance or creating an intimidating, hostile or offensive environment
COMMON FORMS OF SEXUAL HARASSMENT • Telling obscene jokes • Making sexual comments or innuendoes • Making direct propositions • Threatening one’s career or pay of job in exchange for sexual favors • Leaving personal notes • Displaying sexist cartoons, pictures or magazines • Sending or forwarding e-mails with sexual overtones (e.g., scantily dressed, innuendoes, potentially sexually arousing positions) even when meant to be cute or funny, or in cartoon form. This also may violate the Joint Ethics Regulation which prohibits use of government e-mail to send material that may be offensive to others
SPECIAL NOTE ON USE OF GOVERNMENT E-MAIL • Government personal computers must not be used for material involving pornography, chain letters, unofficial advertising, soliciting or selling via e-mail, and other uses incompatible with public service or that further any unlawful activity or personal commercial purposes. • E-Mail users are responsible for the appropriate use of Army telecommunications systems and will not use them in a way that would interfere with official duties, undermine readiness or reflect adversely on DoD, Department of the Army, MACOM and subordinate units • E-Mail users who receive inappropriate e-mail messages that fall into any of the above categories should not pass the information on; print it, delete it and deliver it to your Information Assurance Security Officer (IASO)
PHYSICAL SEXUAL HARASSMENT • Pinching • Bumping • Grabbing • Cornering • Kissing • Hugging • Ogling • Obscene gestures • Touching, stroking
SEX ROLE STEREOTYPE • A fixed unchanging idea about someone’s gender which may have little relationship to fact. It is a fixed idea about how men and women behave. For example: • Women are not aggressive enough for the business world • Men can work longer hours because they don’t have to worry about taking care of the household
SEX ROLE STEREOTYPE -2 • Becomes an EEO issue when sex role stereotypes are used in making employment decisions: • A woman is not selected for a job because the boss feels that women belong at home • Men are given TDY assignments because they do not have home obligations • Only women are given the tasks of tidying up the office, sponsoring new arrivals, or running social events • Only men are assigned the job of picking up leaves near the office • Supervisors who act according to stereotypes interfere with the proper assignment and accomplishment of the work to be done WHAT STEREOTYPICAL IDEAS DO YOU HAVE?
SEX ROLE STATIC • Everyday customary or colloquial remarks and actions based on gender stereotyping, unthinking and undirected--may or may not be discriminatory or harassing • These types of remarks should be avoided • Examples: “Hi Doll”, “Honey”, “Stud” This does not mean you cannot tell someone of the opposite sex that they look good, as long as it does not have sexual overtones!
SEXUAL MISCONDUCT Sexual misconduct is a completely separate issue dealing with potentially criminal behavior: • Act of imposing consensual or non-consensual sexual desires upon another • Consensual misconduct includes fraternization and adultery • Non-Consensual sexual misconduct includes rape, forcible sodomy, indecent assault and indecent language Don’t do it, it’s not worth it!
PERSONAL BEHAVIOR CRIMINAL BEHAVIOR Violation of criminal law, including extortion, assault and battery, and sex crimes • TARGETED SEXUAL HARASSMENT • Offensive comments, profane language, gestures or physical contact of a sexual nature. • Deliberate and/or repeated. Influencing, offering to influence or threatening the career, pay or job of another person in exchange for sexual favors. SEX ROLE STATIC –Every day customary remarks/actions (unthinking, undirected); may or may not be sexual harassment
SUMMARY • There are many forms of sexual harassment • Know what constitutes sexually harassing behavior • Anything with sexual overtones is prohibited in a business environment • Just because it is cute or intended as a joke does not change the fact that it has sexual overtones and is sexually harassing behavior END OF PART 2
PART 3 SUPERVISOR’S ROLE IN PREVENTING SEXUAL HARASSMENT Table of Contents • Create Discrimination-Free Work Environment • Train Employees • Prevention Tips • Perceptions
CREATE DISCRIMINATION-FREE WORK ENVIRONMENT • Support Army policy • Periodically remind employees of your commitment to preventing sexual harassment and act consistent with that belief • Continually assess the organization for signs of sexual harassment • Brief and put in a conspicuous location the process for reporting actions that could be construed as sexually harassing behavior
CREATE DISCRIMINATION-FREE WORK ENVIRONMENT -2 • Let employees know they can talk to you about inappropriate behavior • Make employment decisions based on job needs, performance requirements and work rules rather than on personal characteristics • Treat all employees with respect and apply rules the same for all • Deal promptly and decisively with allegations of sexual harassment and take appropriate action to correct it
CREATE A DISCRIMINATION-FREE WORK ENVIRONMENT -3 • Avoid sexual gestures, talk, jokes, innuendo and the like • Avoid touching subordinates • Avoid behavior that could be perceived as sexual; for example: • Hug • Giving roses instead of the daisies you normally • give to others • Remarks (even in jest) such as: • “I know a quiet place for us to lunch” • “Your life would be easier here if you were • friendlier”
Perceptions are important! (SPECIAL NOTE) DO NOT GET PERSONALLY INVOLVED WITH EMPLOYEES! • This does not mean you should never have lunch or dinner with employees • Just be aware of how your participation is being perceived • For example, not accepting a lunch or party invitation because you wish to retain a professional relationship may be carrying it to extremes Remember, you are the supervisor
CREATE A DISCRIMINATION-FREE WORK ENVIRONMENT -4 • Do not make light of efforts to prevent sexual harassment • Recognize when stereotyping is influencing one’s decision-making or behavior • Hold each person accountable for his/her own behavior
TRAIN EMPLOYEES • Ensure all employees complete refresher POSH training every two years • Ensure first-time supervisors of civilian employees (includes military who supervise civilians) attend the initial block of instruction within 6 months of appointment to a supervisory position (contact servicing EEO office) • Ensure employees new to federal service attend the initial block of instruction within six months of employment (contact servicing EEO office)
PREVENT IT • The most common harassing behavior includes telling obscene jokes; making sexual comments or innuendoes; and displaying sexist cartoons, pictures, and magazines. • If anyone tells you about sexually harassing behavior, don’t treat it lightly even if they work in another office, report it to an appropriate person • Call the servicing EEO office if you need assistance in dealing with a situation. The goal is to correct the situation and rebuild team cohesiveness
SUMMARY Supervisors are responsible for: • Creating and maintaining discrimination-free work environments • Taking prompt and decisive action to stop or prevent sexually harassing behavior • Avoiding behavior that could be perceived as sexual • Ensuring employees attend POSH training as required END OF PART 3
PART 4 EMPLOYEE’S ROLE IN PREVENTING SEXUAL HARASSMENT Table of Contents • Be Pro-Active • Be Assertive • Check Your Own Behavior • Report Harassment
BE PRO-ACTIVE • Support Army policy • Be alert to sexual harassment cues • Do not protect offenders; intervene by telling the supervisor or other management official about the behavior even if you are a bystander and not the victim • Let others know that you do not condone nor will you tolerate this type of behavior Preventing sexual harassment is your responsibility too!
BE PRO-ACTIVE -2 Policies • Promote a professional work environment • Remember your work area is government owned and should reflect the Army’s policy of proper decorum • Remember that TDY assignments are considered duty-related environments • Know and protect your personal rights
BE ASSERTIVE • Assertive behavior is standing up for one’s rights without violating the rights of others • Goal is to find a mutual solution by using a communication style that is clear and straight to the point • Assertiveness eliminates sex role static and miscommunication AN ASSERTIVE RESPONSE CAN HELP STOP SEXUAL HARASSMENT
CHECK YOUR OWN BEHAVIOR • Avoid touching others • Avoid sexual gestures, jokes, talk, innuendo and the likeand don’t give cards or gifts that are sexual in nature to co-workers or supervisors • Keep talk about sexual encounters or conquests away from the work environment • Keep romantic gestures outside the work area • Accept “No” from a co-worker whom you would like to date or help
CHECK YOUR OWN BEHAVIOR -2 • Be mindful of what others find offensive • Refrain from using colloquialisms when greeting others, such as: “Hi honey,” “dear,” “sexy,” “beautiful,” “gorgeous” or similar words • Keep walls and work areas free of items with offensive sayings or pictures (e.g., posters, books, coffee cups, etc.) • Do not use government e-mail or other government telecommunications to circulate sexual jokes, pictures or stories
REPORT IT • Report this type of behavior even if you are not directly involved • Tell the supervisor or another management official • Go up the chain of command if necessary • Use other official channels, such as servicing EEO Office, Civilian Personnel Advisory Center, Equal Opportunity Office, Inspector General, etc. Remember, the time period for filing EEO complaints is within 45 calendar days of occurrence
Summary Employees have a role in preventing sexual harassment, even if they are not the victim: • Promote a professional work environment • Check their own behavior • Report sexually harassing behavior • Complete POSH training as required END OF PART 4