Ending Sexual Harassment in the Workplace
06 April 2018
In the wake of various high profile sexual harassment stories in both the UK and the US, the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) have taken several steps to improve the situation for employees in the UK. This has led to them publishing a report in March this year entitled “Turning the tables: ending sexual harassment at work”.
Just some of the key recommendations of the report include:
- A mandatory legal obligation on employers to proactively take steps to prevent harassment in the workplace;
- Increasing the time limit for an employee to bring a claim of harassment from 3 months of the date of the act to 6 months post completion of an internal grievance; and
- Banning non-disclosure agreements which seek to prevent disclosure of future acts of harassment/discrimination and a statutory code to set out when the use of non-disclosure agreements regarding past acts of harassment will be void and a best practice guide for confidentiality clauses in settlement agreements.
While the report does not change the legal position, it sets out the direction things are moving in and with the current climate it is clear that employers will need to change their practices and take a more proactive stance on these issues. Furthermore, employers will be well advised to seek advice on any confidentiality clauses they intend to use when settling case of sexual harassment.
Clarkslegal, specialist Employment lawyers in London, Reading and throughout the Thames Valley.
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