Exclusively Employment Law

Taking the “Sexual Desire” Out of Sexual Harassment

by | Aug 23, 2018 | Harassment

California’s Fair Employment and Housing Act (the “FEHA”) prohibits sexual harassment in the workplace. Notably, the California legislature amended the FEHA in 2014 so that it now states as follows: “Sexually harassing conduct need not be motivated by sexual desire.” (Cal. Gov. Code Section 12940(j)(4)(C).) In other words, as a result of this amendment, a sexual harassment victim does not need to prove that the alleged harassment was motivated by sexual desire.

This amendment is significant, especially for employees who are victims of same-sex sexual harassment. For instance, a homosexual male might be subjected to numerous sexually explicit, homophobic insults in the workplace by his heterosexual coworkers – but not necessarily because his heterosexual coworkers are “motivated by sexual desire.” Prior to the amendment to FEHA, such conduct would not have constituted sexual harassment under California law; now, as a result of the amendment, such conduct likely constitutes sexual harassment.

If you believe that you have been subjected to sexual harassment at work, call 916-612-0326 or email ([email protected]) Finley Employment Law today. We serve clients throughout California, including Sacramento, Folsom, Roseville, Granite Bay, and Elk Grove.

The information in this blog post is for general informational and advertising purposes only and is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice. Instead, you should speak with a California employment attorney for advice regarding your individual situation.