To the Employer:
Many employer policies require that an employee who has witnessed sexual harassment or believes sexual harassment is occurring must make a report to either (1) the employer or (2) the state or federal government. If a report is not made, some employer policies say that the employee who did not make the report may be punished for not reporting possible sexual harassment.
Under both Oregon and Federal law, it is unlawful for an employer to take consequence against an employee who reports, in good-faith, possible sexual harassment or believes that sexual harassment is occurring.
Many employees are afraid to report sexual harassment even if their employer says they must make the report. For instance, some employees are concerned that if they report possible sexual harassment that they will get in trouble with the employer or supervisors, managers or co-workers. We regularly represent employees who are facing this dilemma – to report or not report. Each situation should be professionally evaluated on a case-by-case basis.
To the State or Federal Government:
Portland and other Oregon employees have several options. The most common report is made to either (1) the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries or (2) the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (Federal Government).
In nearly all cases, an employee is wise to strongly consider meeting with a licensed attorney who regularly practices in this area of law before filing a formal report with the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries or the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.
How soon do I have to make the report?:
Reports to the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission are usually called “charges”.
In some cases, charges under Oregon law must be filed within 180 days of the unlawful conduct, actions or comments. In most cases, charges under federal law (in Oregon) must be filed within 300 days of the unlawful conduct, actions or comments.
Employers may have policies which set deadlines to make an internal report.
Each case is different. In some cases it is advisable to make a report right away, in other cases it is advisable to wait.
Please remember the choice of a lawyer is an important decision and should not be based solely upon advertisements.
This is provided as a guide only, and not legal advice. Because of this, it is important you contact a Portland sexual harassment lawyer.