What to do if my brotherand I arebeing harrased at work by my boss and co-worker?

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What to do if my brotherand I arebeing harrased at work by my boss and co-worker?

My foreman smacks my button numerous occasions, tells me I’m cute and blows kisses to me. He once swiped a pair of scissors between my brother’s buttcheeks. I do not reciprocate any of the actions yet also have not spoken against it. I do not want to lose my job. On other occassions another employee berates and cusses at me (for the past 6 months) and has twice threatened to “take me outside”. I complained to management each time he’s threatened me but nothing was done. I am male aged 23.

Asked on December 6, 2011 under Employment Labor Law, Pennsylvania

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

There is, unfortunately, no general rule that says that supervisors or coworkers can't harass you...obviously, if you are ever actually attacked by the coworker, you could sue him for assault, and possibly also the employer, if it knew of the threats and risk and did nothing; but so long as he confines his comments to cussing at you and empty threats, there's nothing to do.

As for the supervisor...it is possible that the behavior you describe would constitute sexual harassment. If  it does, you may have a cause of action, but probably not otherwise--again, as a general matter, supervisors may harass employees, so long as they don't do so in a specifically prohibited way (like sexual harassment). You may wish to speak with an employment law attorney about whether the air kissing, comments, and touching your brother's rear constitute sexual harassment against one or both of you.


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