Sometimes people have a natural attraction and start a relationship. While workplace romances can be complicated, when the feeling is mutual then people can enjoy them. However, when one person is forcing their sexual feelings and desires onto another person, the situation can quickly become tense. A hostile work environment is likely to occur and the person on the receiving end of the attention can become quite uncomfortable.

In some situations, however, people experience unwanted sexual attention from a co-worker even when that co-worker has no sexual desire towards that person. In some cases, people may use sexual jokes, comments or actions to just make their co-workers uncomfortable. People might also think this kind of behavior is funny. But, in many situations, this unwanted sexual advances come as an unwelcome part of a California employee’s workday.

In an effort to stop sexual harassment at work, California Governor Jerry Brown recently signed a new law — SB 292. This law amended a previous California Fair Employment and Housing Act law. Furthermore, it complies with a U.S. Supreme Court ruling on the subject. Under this new employee law, an employee does not need to prove that sexual harassment — or unwanted sexual conduct — at work was motivated by sexual desire.

Therefore, this new law should make it easier for California employees who have suffered from sexual harassment at work to receive justice. In some cases, employees who have faced sexual harassment at work may be eligible for compensation. Employees facing sexual harassment now — or in the past — should recognize that they have legal rights and how this new law impacts them.

Source: Business Management Daily, “Changes to California law address harassment motive,” Nov. 24, 2013