Filing Complaints with BOLI and the EEOC
The unfortunate reality is that many employers fail to appropriately respond to sexual harassment complaints. Companies will fail to take allegations seriously or will fail to meaningfully discipline offenders, especially if the perpetrator is someone valuable to the business. Keep in mind that human relations departments are designed to protect the company and will not serve as your advocate.
If you are not satisfied with your employer’s response to your reports of sexual harassment, you will need to consider filing a sexual harassment claim with BOLI, the state-level agency that manages sexual harassment issues, or the EEOC, the federal agency that oversees workplace discrimination complaints. We are familiar with both agencies’ processes and can assist you with filing.
The Complaint Process
When you submit a complaint to BOLI or the EEOC, the agency will conduct an investigation into your allegations. This may involve interviewing witnesses, reviewing evidence, requesting a statement of position from your employer. Your employer cannot retaliate against you for filing a complaint with BOLI or the EEOC.
Our attorney can assist you throughout the investigation of your sexual harassment claim in Portland. We can help you respond to requests for information and ensure that all submitted evidence and documentation supports your case.
Right to Sue
If BOLI or EEOC determines that there is reasonable cause to suspect sexual harassment occurred, you and your employer will be invited to seek a resolution through conciliation. If reconciliation is not possible, BOLI and the EEOC have the right to sue the employer on your behalf. Should they choose not to sue, you will be given the right to file a lawsuit.
Should BOLI or EEOC feel that there is not sufficient evidence to support your allegations, they will dismiss the case and provide a notice of rights. This authorizes you to pursue direct legal action against your employer within 90 days of receipt.