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Would you leave your job if you were being sexually harassed?

I work at a mental health facility that values consumers(patients)as $ more than it does as people. Case in point, several consumers have been sexually harassed by a particular consumer. I have also been harassed by said consumer. When I confronted my boss about it she said there was nothing anyone could do about his behavior because he was under "protected status", whatever the f that means. I mean what is it going to take, a rape? in order for them to listen and do something like kick him out of the welcome center. A load of crap if you ask me.

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Asked by dizzy77702 at 6:57 PM on May. 12, 2009 in Money & Work

Level 6 (106 Credits)
Answers (11)
  • Can you file a complaint with the labor department?

    Answer by Anonymous at 6:59 PM on May. 12, 2009

  • Nope... I worked in a resturant for almost 8 years. I was on the "bar shift' most of the time. I was harrased every night... Never bothered me! And the co-workers were dicks... But it paid the bills... I didn't see it as a big deal.

    Answer by SabrinaMBowen at 7:01 PM on May. 12, 2009

  • It is a big deal if you are uncomfortable!

    Answer by Anonymous at 7:03 PM on May. 12, 2009

  • You work at a mental health facility. I am going to take a guess that his "protected status" refers to him having some type of mental disorder/problem/etc. that perhaps they feel causes him (or her, sorry) to do this, or that this is a symptom of?

    Working in a mental health facility I have to think that you will often see or be subjected to things you wouldn't ordinarily and that wouldn't be acceptable elsewhere, but that b/c of the nature of the business and the problems of it's customers, you'll have to deal with them. Don't get me wrong, physical violence of any sort would be wrong, no matter where you are. But I'm thinking that even though sexual harassment is wrong, this situation might be different.

    I'm not saying you are wrong to be uncomfortable. You have every right to feel that way, and I probably would, too. But under the circumstances, I think you either have to deal with it or look elsewhere for a job.

    Answer by tropicalmama at 7:14 PM on May. 12, 2009

  • Here's the thing, I'm a Social Worker and have been harassed many a time by the mentally ill myself. I accept it because behaviors (ESPECIALLY sexual behaviors for some reason) come with the territory of the severely mentally ill. Since it is a facility specifically established to deal with the mentally ill, sexual behaviors are going to come along with it. You can't kick someone out just because you dislike the nature of their mental illness IF your facility does have the means to care for/serve them. That would be discrimination. However, if the nature of their mental illness exceeds the capabilities of the facility to care for them or them become of iminent physical harm to themselves or other patients, they can be removed. Depending on the situation, such an action can only be done if a fitting facility is found to care for the person instead as well as the consent of their guardian is given.

    Answer by NovemberLove at 7:20 PM on May. 12, 2009

  • These rules male transferring people from place to place almost impossible, let me tell you.

    You've got to be skilled at re-directing the behaviors. Never assist this person alone, always have a witness. I am NOT trying to be rude but if it really bothers you, yes, perhaps a different job may suit you better.

    I'm making a generalization but a lot of charity care comes with the territory of caring for the mentally ill. Many people who need the assistance of facilities have to use some sort of government assistance to do so. When a facility takes government assistance, they are most likely accepting well below their going rate for those services. For instance in my nursing home, it costs $250 per day to care for someone but medicaid only pays $88 per day. Perhaps your facility really DOES care about the patient rather than the $ more than you realise? It's just a thought.

    Answer by NovemberLove at 7:24 PM on May. 12, 2009

  • Then again, I'm not sure what type of facility you're working in (day care, nursing home, mental hospital, rehab ect.) so some of my assumptions may be off just based on that.

    Good luck! :-)

    Answer by NovemberLove at 7:25 PM on May. 12, 2009

  • I would file a complaint with the EEOC

    Answer by rkoloms at 8:23 PM on May. 12, 2009

  • Sexual harassment by other workers, bosses, etc falls under the law and you can complain and or sue but I would say ask an attorney about if a patient does it. I'm guess it's reasonable to believe that a patient who has a mental illness can't control himself therefore might fall into the category of work related occurances that should be expected, just like the bar tender said about her customers. The company you work for can't be responsible for the actions of clients, normally but it's worth calling a lawyer to see.

    Answer by admckenzie at 8:25 PM on May. 12, 2009

  • He may be under protective status but mental or not someone should have the balls to talk to him and tell him what he is doing is not right and that it needs to stop ASAP there should be some kind of discipline rules in a mental home anyways. He probaly has gotten by with it for so long that he thinks it is alright. I would definately ask a lawyer or talk to the labor board or someone higher up than your boss. Good Luck!

    Answer by heavenlypeace at 9:31 PM on May. 12, 2009

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