15 Jun 2017
your-small-business-avoide-discrimination-harassment

Keep your business clear of discrimination and harassment in the workplace.

As an employer, you have the responsibility to maintain a workplace that is free of discrimination and harassment. Not only is this your legal obligation, but it also makes good business sense. If you allow prejudice and violations in the workplace, you will pay a high price in poor employee morale, low productivity, and lawsuits. Most businesses can’t afford the cost of any legal claim, let alone an employment practices liability claim, one of the most costly disputes around. Luckily, there are ways to stay on the right side of the law and avoid discrimination and harassment in the workplace.

Recruit and Hire Correctly
It’s illegal to bar certain individuals or groups of people from employment based on race, color, sex, national origin, religion, age, or disability. Your job postings should not contain discriminatory language and should not hint at discrimination.

Be Fair with Dismissals
While there’s nothing wrong with dismissing an employee for legitimate reasons, ‘wrongful termination’ is something to consider. If an employee feels that he or she has been terminated on unfair or prejudice grounds, he or she could file a suit.

Create Written Criteria
Before you make major decisions within the business, make sure you write out criteria on how you plan to evaluate applicants and employees. That way, you’ll have a physical document to guide your decisions and justify your choices if someone questions your motives.

Adopt Clear Harassment Policies
You can’t enforce your business’ harassment policy if it’s not written out. Your policy should clearly state that harassment of any kind won’t be tolerated. All policies should outline disciplinary procedures, instructions on how to file a claim, and details about how an investigation will be documented.

Train Your Team
The best way to avoid harassment and discrimination in the workplace is to teach your team that it is not okay. Ask every member of your team to undergo workplace harassment training, and always intervene if a situation calls for it!

Issues occur all too easily these days. Fortunately, safeguarding your company has never been easier! At Patterson & Associates, we work with you to understand your risks, exposures, and insurance protection. Visit our team today to get started on securing your policy!

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