LEGAL GUIDE
Written by attorney Karli Jay Study

SEXUAL HARRASSSMENT IN THE WORKPLACE: Knowing Your Rights

Title VII of Civil Rights Act of 1964, (“Title VII”), outlines protected classes which may never be the basis for discriminatory action by employers. These protected classes are: race, color, religion, sex and national origin. In 1980, the Supreme Court determined that the protected classification of “sex” would include discrimination on the basis of sexual harassment. The law under Title VII recognizes that sexual harassment in the workplace, whether through a private employer or with government and labor organizations, requires at least fifteen (15) employees and meets particular factors under two harassment formats: Hostile Work Environment or Quid Pro Quo. If an employer does not meet the minimum requirement of fifteen (15) employees, then Pennsylvania law will govern the claim by and through the Pennsylvania Human Relations Act, Section 5(a).

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