Employees in Washington are legally entitled to be free from sexual harassment in the workplace. This means they should not be forced to work in an environment which subjects them to unwanted touching, requests for sexual favors or required to listen to graphic and inappropriate jokes or other content of a sexual nature. If you are employed in a place and are subject to sexual harassment, you may be able to make a legal claim for damages.
It is very important to follow internal grievance procedures to make the employer aware of the sexual harassment, especially in the harasser is a co-employee. Under the law, an employer is required to conduct a prompt and thorough investigation of a complaint –and in certain conditions, if the employer is unaware of the harassment, it can escape legal liability. One exception is when the harasser is the owner or manager of the business, in which case there can be automatic or strict liability for such conduct.
If you have been subject to harassment, it is wise to speak with an experienced attorney to learn your rights.