Harassment or bullying in the workplace covers a whole range of behaviour, from actual physical assault and unwelcome verbal banter, to intimidatory teasing and behaviour.
The effect can be to seriously undermine the victim’s confidence and well-being, and if not tackled promptly the consequences can be serious for all concerned. The Employer may find they have to deal with a complaint from the victim.
If an Employee brings a complaint of Harassment or Bullying to the attention of the Employer, they will then need to follow a fair and reasonable process in dealing with the issues raised.
For the Employer, there is a duty to ensure that harassment does not take place, and the onus is on the Employer to show that they have taken all reasonable and practical steps to prevent the acts complained of. Failing to tackle this head on can give rise to a claim for damages against the business.
The Attwaters Jameson Hill Employment Law team has a proven track record of successfully assisting and representing Employers in dealing with the challenges of these principles and procedures, providing guidance as to best practice.
Best practice suggests Employers should ensure that they already have a Staff Handbook and processes in place to prevent inappropriate behaviour.
Complainants should be encouraged to raise their grievances informally in the first instance, which should be dealt with by the Employer in confidence, promptly and fairly.
And when cases go to court or Employment Tribunal, Attwater Jameson Hill’s high quality Employment Law solicitors have the record to prove that tenacity in demonstrating our client’s good practice is effective against litigants seeking to take advantage of an employee compensation culture.