Time Has Run Out for Sexual Harassment and Discrimination Training

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As incredible as it may seem, there are still many organizations that do not have a formal training program to educate all employees on the subject of Sexual Harassment and Discrimination. The risk of ignoring this important training is shared by the Employer and Personal Liability for any employee. The stakes are extremely high, especially in comparison to the low cost of training.

One study found that 50% of women who filed a Sexual Harassment complaint in California were fired; another 25% resigned due to stress associated with the process of filing the complaint. A study of Federal Employees reported that those who have been harassed lose $4.4 Million in Wages and 973,000 Hours of Unpaid Leave each year.

90% to 95% of sexually harassed women suffer from some debilitating stress reaction, including anxiety, depression, headaches, sleep disorders, weight loss or gain, nausea, lowered self-esteem and sexual dysfunction.

The costs are borne not only by the victims of harassment; they create financial havoc for employers as well. Sexual Harassment costs a typical Fortune 500 company $6.7 million per year in absenteeism, low productivity and employee turnover. That does not include additional costs for litigation expenses, executive time and tarnished public image should a case wind up in court.

Many employees are not familiar with the many different types of harassment defined by the law. Sexual Harassment can be physical, verbal, visual or associated with gender related favors. Gender Harassment can include pregnancy, childbirth or gender related medical conditions.

According to Government Code 12940(j)(3), individual employees can be held personally liable for Sexual Harassment. “An employee of an entity subject to this subdivision is personally liable for any harassment prohibited by this section that is perpetrated by the employee, regardless of whether the employer or covered entity knows or should have known of the conduct and fails to take immediate and appropriate corrective action.”

The risk associated with Sexual Harassment and Discrimination is enormous. The results impact the victim, employer, company moral and public reputation. By contrast, implementing a formal training program to provide education on prevention, response and responsibilities can have a dramatically positive impact on an organization. Understanding risk and responsibilities reinforces avoidance of inappropriate activity. To nurture a positive work environment requires the additional aspect of reinforcing respect, with acceptance of personal dignity and differences.

A low cost toolkit for trainers has just been posted at http://www.ExecutiveBlueprints.biz This toolkit includes a slideshow presentation for the instructor and a companion workbook guide for each individual to take personal notes. The presentation and workbook are readily available online for convenience return reference.

There are several elements that make this training toolkit special. The materials contain reference to real situations. Exercises and examples were developed using relevant court cases, which makes discussion more interesting and insightful. These court cases initiate open dialogue regarding perspectives on harassment and discrimination, as well as the associated risks. The combination of workbook with presentation enables every participant to make personal notes and observations for future individual reference. Information on this training toolkit, and training tools for other topics, can be found at http://www.InstituteforAdvancedLeadership.com

California AB1825 requires organizations with 50 or more employees to provide all supervisory personnel with at least two hours of sexual harassment training by January 1, 2006. Additional training must occur once every two years. Training must be of High Quality, interactive, provide practical guidance regarding federal and state statutory laws, information on correction and remedies, and practical examples for prevention. Any organization conducting business in California must have completed this initial round of training by January 1, 2006. Truly responsible organizations recognize the benefit of training all employees, with formal procedures for training new employees, and documented internal processes and policies.

“Executive Blueprints is eager to help employers address this critical issue in a positive manner. Training materials are designed to be interesting, engaging, relevant and interactive. Executive Blueprints can also assist with developing internal policy, conducting and scheduling formal training classes to assist organizations in promoting an environment with dignity and respect,” said John Mehrmann.

Time has run out for Sexual Harassment and Discrimination Training. Ignoring the ticking time bomb will not make it go away. The alternative to rising risks is responsible and practical action that promotes a positive working environment. Executive Blueprints has designed solutions to meet the needs for small, medium and corporate organizations. Solutions are readily available as toolkits for trainers, or to provide interactive classroom training.

Visit http://www.InstituteforAdvancedLeadership.info for more information.

About Executive Blueprints Inc.

http://www.executiveblueprints.com
Executive Blueprints Inc provides High Impact, Less Interruption Training, Coaching and Consulting Services.

Contact:

Public Relations

Executive Blueprints Inc

Phone 877-290-2503

Fax 480-247-5481

http://www.ExecutiveBlueprints.com

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John Mehrmann