Male Sexual Harassment in the Workplace: A Legal Roadmap for Nevada Workers

male sexual harassment in the workplace

Sexual harassment in the workplace is a critical issue that affects individuals regardless of gender. Yet, discussions often lean toward scenarios involving female victims. However, male sexual harassment in the workplace is a significant concern, and in Nevada, understanding the legal nuances surrounding this issue becomes paramount for both employers and employees.

If you have been sexually harassed in the workplace as a male employee, know that you have legal rights protecting you. Let’s discuss this more in-depth in this article. 

Understanding Male Sexual Harassment

When it comes to sexual harassment, the prevailing image might involve a female victim and a male perpetrator. But that’s not always the case. Men can also fall victim to unwanted advances, comments, or behaviors of a sexual nature in the workplace. 

Often, male victims hesitate to report sexual harassment due to societal perceptions. There’s an assumption that men should not fall victim to such behavior. However, harassment in any form is unacceptable and requires action to hold harassers accountable. 

Signs of Male Sexual Harassment in the Workplace

Sexual harassment doesn’t only refer to an outright inappropriate action, suggestion, or unwanted advances. Instead, it’s often subtle, which is why, as a male employee, you should know what sexual harassment looks like in the workplace. Know that these behaviors and actions can create a hostile or uncomfortable environment for men. 

Here are several examples:

  • Unwanted Sexual Advances or Requests: This includes unwelcome requests for sexual favors, persistent advances, or explicit propositions that make you feel uncomfortable or pressured.

  • Inappropriate Comments or Jokes: Remarks of a sexual nature, sexual innuendos, or jokes that create a discomforting or offensive atmosphere can contribute to a sexually harassing environment.

  • Physical Contact: Unwanted physical touch from female or male employees, such as hugging, kissing, patting, horseplay, or any form of physical closeness that crosses personal boundaries, can constitute sexual harassment.

  • Display of Explicit Materials: Sharing, displaying, or sending sexually explicit images, videos, or materials within the workplace can create an uncomfortable or hostile environment.

  • Gender-Based Taunts or Insults: Using derogatory language, insults, or making offensive comments related to your gender or sexual orientation can be considered harassment.

  • Hostile Work Environment: Creating an atmosphere filled with sexual comments, gestures, or behavior that makes it difficult for you to perform your job effectively or comfortably.

  • Retaliation for Rejecting Advances: Punishing or retaliating against you if you reject or report sexual advances, such as giving unfavorable assignments or making threats, is also a form of harassment.

  • Online Harassment: Harassment via digital means, including emails, texts, or social media messages of a sexual nature that are unwelcome and create discomfort.

  • Systemic Discrimination: Institutional or systemic practices that discriminate based on gender, leading to unequal opportunities, treatment, or expectations, can contribute to a sexually hostile workplace.

  • Gender Stereotyping: Making assumptions or treating male employees differently based on stereotypical beliefs about their gender or sexual orientation, which can lead to discomfort or a hostile environment.

Nevada, like other states, upholds stringent laws and guidelines against sexual harassment for every female and male worker. The Civil Rights Act of 1964, Title VII, prohibits workplace discrimination based on sex, including sexual harassment. This extends to male employees facing unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, or any other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature.

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) actively investigates complaints related to workplace sexual harassment. You have the same rights and protections as your female counterparts under these laws.

What to Do if Someone Is Sexually Harassing You at Work?

Experiencing sexual harassment at work can be distressing and confusing. When you find yourself in such a situation, you need to take proactive steps toward resolution. Here’s a detailed breakdown of the steps you can take:

Report Harassment

Despite any stigma or assumptions that might exist, reporting the harassment you’ve faced is crucial. Your complaint deserves to be taken seriously. Employers are legally bound to address instances of sexual harassment promptly and effectively. 

Many workplaces have specific protocols in place for making harassment complaints. This might involve speaking with HR or your manager or following a designated reporting process outlined in your company’s policies.

Documenting the Incident

Keeping a record of the harassment incidents is invaluable. Note down details such as dates, times, locations, what was said or done, and any witnesses present. These details can serve as vital evidence if the situation escalates or if legal action becomes necessary.

Seeking Support

Navigating a situation involving sexual harassment can indeed feel overwhelming. Seeking guidance from an experienced sexual harassment lawyer is advisable. Consulting with a sexual harassment attorney not only ensures that your rights are protected but also helps you understand the legal options available to you. 

A lawyer can assess your situation, provide clarity on your rights, and guide you on the best course of action based on your specific circumstances.

Understanding Your Rights

You need to be aware of your rights as an employee. Laws exist to protect individuals from sexual harassment in the workplace, regardless of gender. Understanding these rights empowers you to make informed decisions regarding your situation.

Consider Alternative Avenues

In some cases, filing sexual harassment complaints and resolving the issue internally within the company might not lead to a satisfactory resolution. If your employer fails to address the situation adequately or if you face any form of retaliation for reporting the harassment, go for external options. This could involve filing a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) or pursuing legal action.

Taking Care of Yourself

Dealing with sexual harassment can take an emotional toll, and for male victims, social stigma can make it hard to reach out. You should prioritize self-care during this challenging time. Seek support from friends, family, or a counselor if needed. 

Remember, you’re not alone, and reaching out for help is a sign of strength.

Proactive Measures for Employers and Employees

Employers play a pivotal role in fostering a safe work environment. Implementing policies and providing training on sexual harassment prevention are vital steps. Bystander intervention training helps employees recognize and intervene in potential harassment situations before they become sexual harassment complaints.

As an employee, understanding your rights and the avenues available for reporting sexual harassment is crucial. Documenting incidents and keeping a record can strengthen your case if legal action becomes necessary.

male sexual harassment in the workplace

Contact Experienced Sexual Harassment Attorneys at BLG

Male victims of sexual harassment in the workplace is a serious issue that demands attention and action. By understanding your rights, recognizing the legal framework, and seeking appropriate guidance, you can take proactive steps toward resolution. 

At BLG, we understand the complexities surrounding male sexual harassment in the workplace. Our experienced sexual harassment attorneys are here to support and guide you through this challenging situation. Whether you’re considering filing a complaint, seeking legal action, or need advice, our team is ready to assist.

If you or someone you know has faced male sexual harassment in the workplace, take the first step towards resolution. Contact us for a free consultation.


Q: What should I do if I experience sexual harassment at work?

A: Report the incident to your company’s HR department, follow their reporting procedures, document the harassment incidents, and consider seeking advice from a sexual harassment lawyer.

Q: What is an example of male harassment?

A: Male harassment can include unwelcome sexual advances, inappropriate comments, explicit jokes, unwanted physical contact, or any behavior that creates a discomforting or hostile environment based on gender.

Q: When should I go to HR for harassment?

A: It’s advisable to approach HR as soon as you experience or witness harassment. Prompt reporting allows for a timely investigation and resolution of the issue.

Q: What qualifies as a hostile work environment?

A: A hostile work environment refers to a workplace atmosphere that is intimidating, offensive, or abusive due to unwelcome behavior or actions, including sexual harassment, that interferes with an individual’s ability to work comfortably and effectively.

Q: Are there laws protecting male employees from sexual harassment?

A: Yes. Laws such as Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibit sexual harassment in the workplace, offering protection to employees regardless of gender.

Q: Can a one-time inappropriate comment or action be considered sexual harassment?

A: Yes, even a single incident, if severe enough, can constitute sexual harassment. It’s the impact on the victim that matters, not just the frequency of the behavior.

Q: What if my employer doesn’t take my complaint seriously?

A: If internal procedures fail or lead to retaliation, and your employer refuses to address sexual harassment in your workplace, you can consider contacting the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) or seeking legal advice.

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