What proof do I need of sexual harassment?

Sexual harassment is unwanted conduct of a sexual nature for the purpose or effect of violating your dignity or creating an intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating or offensive environment for you. This kind of conduct is prohibited by the Equality Act 2010.

Conduct of a sexual nature could include, for example, inappropriate remarks, touching, sexualised comments, or lewd or crude images such as offensive screensavers, Facebook posts or texts.

If you feel this is occurring, keep a diary of the remarks and incidents, your attempts to have the issue dealt with, and any changes in behaviour towards you as a result, for example being picked on by your manager, or suddenly being graded as 'unsatisfactory' when your work has always been regarded as 'satisfactory' in the past.

Keep a copy of any offensive texts, screen shots, postings and so on.

For conduct to amount to sexual harassment, it must be unwanted. Most sexualised attention at work is self-evidently 'unwanted'. Some colleagues may not realise that you find their behaviour offensive. However, certainly as soon as you have made your feelings clear, by explaining how their actions make you feel, there can be no question in anybody's mind that the behaviour is unwanted. As a result, any further continuation of the behaviour is likely to constitute unlawful sexual harassment.

Note: This content is provided as general background information and should not be taken as legal advice or financial advice for your particular situation. Make sure to get individual advice on your case from your union, a source on our free help page or an independent financial advisor before taking any action.