[Name of Business] strives to maintain an environment free from discrimination and harassment where all individuals treat each other with respect, dignity, and courtesy.  Each employee has the right to work in an environment free from illegal conduct including discrimination and sexual harassment.

This policy applies to all phases of employment, including but not limited to, recruitment, testing, hiring, promoting, demoting, transferring, layoff, termination, pay, benefits, and training.

Prohibited Behavior

[Name of Business] does not and will not tolerate any type of harassment of our employees, applicants, contractors, or our associates.  Discriminatory conduct or conduct characterized as harassment as defined below is strictly prohibited by this policy, as well as the law, including Title VII, the Illinois Human Rights Act, Chicago Municipal Code, and the City’s Human Rights Ordinance.

The term harassment includes, but is not limited to, slurs, jokes, and other verbal or physical conduct relating to a person’s gender, ethnicity, race, color, creed, religion, sexual orientation, national origin, age, disability, marital status, military status, or any other protected classification that unreasonably interferes with a person’s work performance or creates an intimidating, hostile work environment.

Sexually harassing behavior in particular includes unwelcome conduct such as: sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, offensive touching, or other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature. Such conduct may constitute sexual harassment when it:

  1. is made an explicit or implicit condition of employment;
  2. is used as the basis for employment decisions;
  3. unreasonably interferes with an individual’s work performance; or
  4. creates an intimidating, hostile, or offensive working environment.

The types of conduct covered by this policy include making demands or subtlety putting pressure on another for sexual favors accompanied by a promise of favorable job treatment or a threat concerning employment. Specifically, it includes sexual behavior such as:

  1. repeated sexual flirtations, advances, or propositions;
  2. continued and repeated verbal abuse of a sexual nature;
  3. sexually related comments and jokes;
  4. graphic or degrading comments about an employee’s appearance;
  5. the display of sexually suggestive objects or pictures including cartoons and vulgar email messages; and
  6. any uninvited physical contact or touching, such as patting, pinching, or repeated brushing against another’s body.

Such conduct may constitute sexual harassment regardless of whether the conduct is between members of management, between management and staff employees, between staff employees, or when it is directed at employees by nonemployees conducting business with [Name of Business], regardless of gender or sexual orientation.

Any supervisor who is aware of or reasonably should be aware of sexually harassing conduct, but fails to report such conduct, may be subject to discipline.  Reports should be made to [Name of Point of Contact].

Harassment by Nonemployees

[Name of Business] will also endeavor to protect employees, to the extent possible, from reported harassment by nonemployees in the workplace, including customers, clients, and suppliers.

Any employee who encounters or witnesses harassment from a nonemployee, including clients, customers, and suppliers, MUST report it immediately to [Name of Point of Contact].

Retaliation

Any employee who, in good faith, files a complaint alleging harassment or discrimination will not be retaliated against or discharged because of the complaint; nor will their terms and conditions of employment be adversely affected. Employees are protected from retaliation under this policy, as well as the whistleblower protections under the State Officials and Employee Ethics Act, the Whistleblower Act, and the Illinois Human Rights Act.

In addition, we will not tolerate retaliation against any employee who, in good faith, either makes a complaint or cooperates in the investigation of a complaint.  Anyone who engages in such retaliatory behavior will be subject to appropriate discipline, up to and including termination.  Any person who believes that he or she has been subjected to retaliation should immediately report such conduct to [Point of Contact].

Complaint Procedure and Investigation

Any employee who wishes to report a possible incident of unlawful harassment, discrimination, or retaliation should promptly report the matter to [Point of Contact]. If that person is not available, or you believe it would be inappropriate to contact that person, contact [Alternative Point of Contact].

[Name of Business] will conduct a prompt investigation as confidentially as possible under the circumstances. Employees who raise concerns and make reports in good faith can do so without fear of reprisal. Employees have an obligation to cooperate with [Name of Business] in enforcing this policy and investigating and remedying complaints.

Any employee who becomes aware of possible harassment or other illegal discrimination against others should promptly advise [Point of Contact] or any other appropriate member of management.

Anyone found to have engaged in such wrongful behavior or to have violated [Name of Business]’s policy will be subject to appropriate discipline, which may include termination. Anyone found to have made a false report, or to have acted in bad faith will also be subject to appropriate discipline, which may include termination.

A determination that this Policy has been violated is not a determination of discrimination, harassment or retaliation under federal, state, or local law.  Conduct that may not be considered unlawful under applicable federal, state, or local law may nevertheless violate this Policy and result in disciplinary action, up to and including discharge.

Nothing in this Policy is intended to nor shall it be construed to affect the right of any person to seek legal recourse by making a charge of discrimination at any local, state, or federal agency with jurisdiction over such claims.

WHILE THIS POLICY COMPLIES WITH THE REQUIREMENTS UNDER THE LAW, THIS IS NOT BEING GIVEN AS LEGAL ADVICE AND THE USE OF THIS DOCUMENT DOES NOT CREATE AN ATTORNEY CLIENT RELATIONSHIP.  FOR MORE INFORMATION, PLEASE CONTACT htristan@tristancervantes.com.