All workers deserve to have a good working environment. There are some aspects of job locations that can’t be controlled, but others, like the actions of workers, can be controlled. One thing that no worker should ever have to deal with is sexual harassment.

Many people think that sexual harassment does not occur often. In fact, there are a lot of misconceptions about sexual harassment that you shouldn’t believe. Here are a few of those, as well as the truth about each point.

Only women are victims

All employees can be victims of sexual harassment. This includes men. The victim can be of any gender, as can the harasser.

Physical contact is not necessary

Sexual harassment comes in many forms, including physical contact. It can also occur if a person is subjected to hearing or seeing sexually explicit comments or materials. A person can be the victim of sexual harassment if they have to hear crude jokes or comments. A person who has to see sexually explicit materials can also be a victim. This means that the definition of sexual harassment is much more inclusive than what many people think.

Only supervisors can sexually harass employees

Workers can be harassed by anyone they come into contact with during the workday. This includes other workers, supervisors, vendors and customers. Even though it is difficult, employers are expected to provide a workplace free of any sexual harassment. This means that they have to keep very strict rules in place to combat sexual harassment.

Victims did not ask for sexual contact

In order to be classified as sexual harassment, the actions have to be unwanted. A person can’t lodge a sexual harassment complaint if they wanted the contact from the other party. For example, a worker who is flirting with a customer can’t file a sexual harassment claim if the customer flirts back.

Employers cannot punish victims for making reports

Workers who report sexual harassment can’t be retaliated against. As long as the report is valid, the employer can’t fire, demote or give a pay cut to the victim. As part of the rectification of the issue, the worker might be given a different shift or something similar to keep him or her away from the person who is doing the harassing.