Inappropriate text messaging in the workplace, AKA textual harassment, is quickly launching a new generation of complaints and allegations of sexual misconduct at the office.
Perhaps textual harassment is becoming a workplace problem because texting is seen as a more secretive, less confronting way to send sexual proposals or comments to one another. However, more than a few cases of quid pro quo and hostile environment sexual harassment via text messaging have already made their way into the courts. And the “he said, she said” defense is being eradicated by plaintiffs’ text archives.
Whether through email, spoken word, unspoken innuendo or now text message, sexual harassment is illegal and should not be tolerated in any form. Employers must be diligent in their enforcement of harassment and discrimination policies and should regularly communicate such policy information to employees and supervisors.