Sexual harassment in the workplace has been a major issue impacting employers and employees long before the pandemic. How have changes due to COVID impacted harassment in the workplace? Join me, Eric Sarver, Esq., employment law attorney, and my guest, Matthew Stegmeier, Director of Operations at PROJECT WHEN, to discuss how employers can help stomp out sexual harassment - whether in a virtual or in-person workplace.
Eric introduces his guest Matthew Stegmeir. He is the Director of Operations at PROJECT WHEN, a non profit with a focus on helping victims of harassment and helping employers create a more respectful work environment. They bring awareness of what bystanders can do in order to advocate for their colleagues. Matt will take a holistic approach and look at the practices of the company so that they can find faults before issues become greater. He believes that being compliant with the law is doing the bare minimum and it is really important for companies to look at their practices with an open mind.
Eric asks how Matt has seen how Covid-19 has impacted harassment in the workplace. It is important to note that not all workers have had the option of working from home. For those working from home, Matt has noticed that people are more relaxed and it will be challenging for some to transition back to the professional environment of the office. Matt believes that this may even cause an uptick in harassment cases. One of the things that PROJECT WHEN offers is an Organizational Certification Program for companies that want to make ending harassment a priority. They will also host a roundtable discussion with a company’s leaders so that they may figure out what their blind spots are.
Eric and Matt note that many businesses will look at this issue from the perspective of “what’s in it for me?” First it is important to make sure that you are in compliance with the law, but taking that next step can go a long way. By protecting employees and letting them know that the organization cares about them, employees will feel safe and work productively without fear. It is important to have a plan in place so that if something happens, the company is not caught off guard. Eric lists some of the procedures and resources that he encourages his clients to have in order to protect their employees from harassment.
Harassment in the workplace is a worldwide problem that Eric believes is a pandemic in itself. It is all encompassing in some places, when it strikes it can be hard to eradicate and Eric believes it can be contagious when the workplaces encourage this behaviour. Matt tells us how he coaches bystanders on how to play more active roles in their workplace. One component of the Organizational Certification Program has this lesson. In regards to the Cuomo case, one of his victims stated that what hurt her the most was the lack of action from the people around her. Bystanders have the power to support victims of harassment and acknowledge what is going on. Eric wants employees to understand that if you choose to speak up you are protected by federal and local laws, so retaliation from your employer can be disputed. For more information about PROJECT WHEN visit projectwhen.org.
00:00:40.260 --> 00:00:48.450 Eric Sarver, Esq.: Good evening, welcome to employment law today i'm your host erick solder i'm an employment law and business law attorney.
00:00:49.020 --> 00:00:58.050 Eric Sarver, Esq.: and host of this weekly video podcast and talk radio show Tuesday night to 5pm and i'm here tonight joined by special guest.
00:00:58.320 --> 00:01:09.240 Eric Sarver, Esq.: My colleague Matthew steak Meyer Matthew is the director of operations for a nonprofit organization called project when matt welcome to the show it's great to have you.
00:01:09.600 --> 00:01:23.700 Matthew Stegmeier: thanks for having me on Eric it's great to be here and i'm excited to talk about all things that are happening in the world of workplace harassment and I know that is a topic that is near and dear to your heart as an employment attorney as well.
00:01:25.680 --> 00:01:39.180 Eric Sarver, Esq.: Yes, it definitely is matt it's something i've been addressing behalf of employees and employers mainly employers in recent years, but doing so for the past 22 years hard to believe, but.
00:01:39.750 --> 00:01:46.650 Eric Sarver, Esq.: So it's definitely the topic that I hold and take very seriously and I know you do as well.
00:01:47.010 --> 00:02:01.650 Eric Sarver, Esq.: And i'm going to give you a more proper and thorough introduction to our audience tonight you know just a little bit and but before I do, I wanted to first note that the show a little bit about the show for those listening, for the first time to note that an employment law today.
00:02:02.760 --> 00:02:08.430 Eric Sarver, Esq.: Is on every Tuesday at 5pm Eastern standard time and the purpose of the show is to have guests who can.
00:02:08.730 --> 00:02:18.960 Eric Sarver, Esq.: educate motivate and inspire small midsize business owners out there to help them to understand and navigate the various issues involving employment law.
00:02:19.230 --> 00:02:28.560 Eric Sarver, Esq.: Particularly now in light of the coven 19 pandemic and in light of what the workforce it's transitioning to and changing into in a post pandemic world.
00:02:29.160 --> 00:02:47.880 Eric Sarver, Esq.: So with that and, as the backdrop our shows topic tonight as Matthew mentioned a moment ago is addressing workplace harassment in a post pandemic world, and you know in talking about this topic with Matthew before the show we were talking about how few people would question that.
00:02:49.680 --> 00:03:01.980 Eric Sarver, Esq.: In of itself has had his devastating impact on donations employment, it is dramatically a bend in the workplace and it's caused emotional stress economic harm a toll and employees productivity.
00:03:02.760 --> 00:03:12.720 Eric Sarver, Esq.: But there's also another widespread condition that has taken a toll in the workplace as well and it's been around long before coven 19 and it continues today.
00:03:13.140 --> 00:03:23.370 Eric Sarver, Esq.: And that is workplace harassment, including workplace sexual harassment, discrimination and bullying and aggression and focusing on harassment, in particular.
00:03:24.000 --> 00:03:30.420 Eric Sarver, Esq.: It is arguably epidemic within its own right in that it costs, employers and employees in terms of emotional trauma.
00:03:30.810 --> 00:03:40.860 Eric Sarver, Esq.: Low workplace around litigation bad publicity it can be basically a losing proposition for both employer and employee for all involved so.
00:03:41.250 --> 00:03:48.540 Eric Sarver, Esq.: With that in mind, the question we're addressing tonight is and how has the coven 19 pandemic impacted workplace harassment.
00:03:49.170 --> 00:04:00.210 Eric Sarver, Esq.: What new or novel issues have been coming up, and how can our collective focus on a new workplace environment include safety protocols and inoculation from workplace harassment.
00:04:00.810 --> 00:04:11.820 Eric Sarver, Esq.: So tonight show, as I mentioned i'll be speaking with with Matthew Matthew steak Meyer, the Director of operations their project went to discuss these pressing challenges, along with possible solutions.
00:04:12.480 --> 00:04:17.460 Eric Sarver, Esq.: And with that I want to give back to the promised proper introduction that I mentioned a moment ago.
00:04:19.290 --> 00:04:26.460 Eric Sarver, Esq.: As noted my guest tonight is Matthew state Meyer Matthew is director of operations for project when which an acronym for.
00:04:27.240 --> 00:04:39.330 Eric Sarver, Esq.: workplace harassment and now Matthews background is an organizational change management consulting which offers him valuable insights when considering how corporations.
00:04:39.750 --> 00:04:48.780 Eric Sarver, Esq.: can create a more respectful work environments and a better culture for their employees and project, one is a 501 C three charitable nonprofit.
00:04:49.320 --> 00:05:01.650 Eric Sarver, Esq.: Their mission is to elevate wellness a workplace harassment, to create a sense of urgency and a call to action for organizations to commit to proactively preventing harassment.
00:05:02.010 --> 00:05:08.490 Eric Sarver, Esq.: and fostering a culture of respect in the work environment project when seeks to help victims of harassment.
00:05:08.910 --> 00:05:18.000 Eric Sarver, Esq.: By providing them with helpful resources and project when further works with employers to create workplaces where respectful behavior is the norms.
00:05:18.420 --> 00:05:26.100 Eric Sarver, Esq.: So with that, once again, that really glad to have you on the show tonight it's see you also like the fireplace in the background, I must say it's a very nice touch.
00:05:26.370 --> 00:05:27.960 Matthew Stegmeier: It keeps me toasty to.
00:05:29.010 --> 00:05:46.920 Eric Sarver, Esq.: toasty and as a bit of a calming effect, after a hectic Tuesday have definitely okay great and so why don't we dive into the questions definitely might so you can you just tell our listeners a bit more about yourself, including the nature of your work with project when.
00:05:47.550 --> 00:05:57.900 Matthew Stegmeier: Sure, so I won't spend too much time talking about myself, because I, maybe i'm just kind of a humble person I think myself is kind of boring but what what we're doing and creating a project one.
00:05:58.350 --> 00:06:04.170 Matthew Stegmeier: and hopefully you'll see through the course of talking with me is something we're really excited about and passionate about and.
00:06:04.650 --> 00:06:16.950 Matthew Stegmeier: Project when, as you mentioned, is a 501 C three charitable nonprofit the when is w hd and that's an acronym that stands for workplace harassment ends now and.
00:06:17.730 --> 00:06:31.050 Matthew Stegmeier: i'm the director of operations for the nonprofit so my background, as you said during the introduction is through organizational change management this entire workplace harassment and creating respectful work environments.
00:06:31.980 --> 00:06:44.160 Matthew Stegmeier: kind of space or industry is is new to me so as I network with and speak with people in the field like yourself as a service provider who's an expert in this i'm learning something new every day and.
00:06:45.330 --> 00:06:53.790 Matthew Stegmeier: While it's a new area for me it's something that we do to help our focus is really to help.
00:06:54.480 --> 00:07:05.700 Matthew Stegmeier: Victims of workplace harassment and you mentioned sexual harassment that's usually the one that you hear in the news a lot and I think especially for your listeners in New York City in the greater New York area.
00:07:05.910 --> 00:07:13.080 Matthew Stegmeier: You flip on the news, what are you going to see stuff with the governor and sexual harassment, these days, so it's always a hot topic.
00:07:13.710 --> 00:07:22.680 Matthew Stegmeier: We also focus on helping employers, the companies where people work, create a more respectful work environment and.
00:07:23.340 --> 00:07:34.110 Matthew Stegmeier: That it's really at that intersection where project, one is rooted and and where we're focused so some of our goals, and what I help accomplish through the day to day operations is.
00:07:35.130 --> 00:07:42.870 Matthew Stegmeier: Raising awareness, for this issue, working with companies to create a more respectful and productive workplace for everyone.
00:07:43.560 --> 00:07:50.490 Matthew Stegmeier: Eliminating the stigma and fear of retribution for people to speak up for themselves, I think, importantly, for others, if you.
00:07:51.090 --> 00:07:55.440 Matthew Stegmeier: If you see something happened to someone at your company and you're a bystander I think.
00:07:56.130 --> 00:08:04.320 Matthew Stegmeier: bystanders have a super important role in all this and being able to speak up and be an ally for people who are dealing with this and going through.
00:08:05.220 --> 00:08:14.670 Matthew Stegmeier: an incident of harassment so bringing about awareness, for what bystanders can do and educating people on how how they play into it.
00:08:15.210 --> 00:08:19.980 Matthew Stegmeier: And then really increasing the awareness of the severity of it, because we know it's an issue.
00:08:20.400 --> 00:08:27.690 Matthew Stegmeier: A lot of times it's a focus on sexual harassment, but there's all different kinds of forms of workplace harassment and discrimination.
00:08:28.020 --> 00:08:37.290 Matthew Stegmeier: Physical harassment quid pro quo harassment micro aggressions bullying job shaming verbal threats derogatory comments.
00:08:37.920 --> 00:08:47.340 Matthew Stegmeier: You know exclusionary behavior there's there's a lot of offensive con conduct that goes on in in our corporations and work environments these days and.
00:08:47.970 --> 00:09:01.170 Matthew Stegmeier: that's what we're really working hard to you know help help people you know, put an end to that and and move forward from that and and really take a proactive approach, I think a lot of times you hear.
00:09:02.490 --> 00:09:13.170 Matthew Stegmeier: You know, companies in the news for sexual harassment or you know someone who's famous and it's always like a punitive thing okay this happened, what do we, what are we doing.
00:09:13.620 --> 00:09:25.440 Matthew Stegmeier: In response to that, and our approach is more of let's take a holistic look at at your organization and think through how we can change our culture and change our.
00:09:25.920 --> 00:09:36.570 Matthew Stegmeier: Our processes in order to maybe minimize some of those things and mitigate some of those things from from bubbling to the surface, so we don't even get to that point.
00:09:37.080 --> 00:09:38.220 Eric Sarver, Esq.: um yeah.
00:09:39.330 --> 00:09:46.470 Eric Sarver, Esq.: really good points there about what you your project, when what you do what your focus is that you brought up and it's.
00:09:47.160 --> 00:09:56.160 Eric Sarver, Esq.: Some things came to mind if I may just my observation, then just elaborate on them, as well as my experiences and employment law attorney in this realm.
00:09:57.150 --> 00:10:08.640 Eric Sarver, Esq.: I think it's great matt Matthew that project when focuses on both the employer and the employee i've seen so often I think in our society, you know we get down to this like either or.
00:10:08.970 --> 00:10:27.300 Eric Sarver, Esq.: And to polarize side you know which side of the issue, going on you in favor of you know, this side or that side, and so I know many nonprofits that work exclusively with the employees the plaintiffs the victims of discrimination or harassment or they both can be combined.
00:10:28.860 --> 00:10:39.930 Eric Sarver, Esq.: But to hear that you work with employers and employees right that you're helping employers to understand the severity of the situation, but to be aware of it and to create a different culture that's really something.
00:10:41.100 --> 00:10:43.800 Eric Sarver, Esq.: I also think it's great the of the proactive.
00:10:45.030 --> 00:10:49.800 Eric Sarver, Esq.: as well that approach, rather than just hey let's punish after the after the fact.
00:10:50.310 --> 00:11:02.670 Eric Sarver, Esq.: And I can relate to that in terms of helping my company clients with their productivity, you know, and you had a point I think you're about to make so I want to turn the page over to you and your my guests anything that that was jumped out at you there or.
00:11:03.030 --> 00:11:05.400 Matthew Stegmeier: i'm sorry what what.
00:11:06.060 --> 00:11:14.940 Eric Sarver, Esq.: Well i'm sorry I just I thought you about to make a point and I had something I said was there, something you were about to jump in with.
00:11:15.720 --> 00:11:16.560 Matthew Stegmeier: No, there wasn't.
00:11:18.510 --> 00:11:18.870 Eric Sarver, Esq.: A little.
00:11:19.260 --> 00:11:20.610 Eric Sarver, Esq.: blip in the screen, I think it like.
00:11:20.610 --> 00:11:25.680 Eric Sarver, Esq.: Town froze for a split second, so I think I thought it was your your mission and your.
00:11:27.750 --> 00:11:31.680 Eric Sarver, Esq.: But, but I do think it's great that you were going to eliminate the stigma.
00:11:32.490 --> 00:11:41.430 Eric Sarver, Esq.: behind that you also pointed out to our listeners night that you know, there are to your point, there are a lot of forms of workplace harassment and workplace.
00:11:41.790 --> 00:11:50.970 Eric Sarver, Esq.: Aggression as micro aggressions and building and some of these might be outlawed by federal statute somebody city or mystical or state laws.
00:11:51.300 --> 00:12:02.820 Eric Sarver, Esq.: And some might not in of themselves be illegal, but it might lead to the type of hostile work environment that then feeds into harassment that's a lot so great to hear you talking about that.
00:12:02.940 --> 00:12:05.520 Matthew Stegmeier: yeah and I think you know what you said Eric.
00:12:06.630 --> 00:12:18.660 Matthew Stegmeier: As an organization as an employer, we always want to stay compliant we want to do what's required of us by the law and what we saw on the federal level the eeoc is going to enforce.
00:12:19.980 --> 00:12:28.860 Matthew Stegmeier: But it goes deeper than that, I think, in many cases being compliant with the law is really doing the bare minimum and.
00:12:29.760 --> 00:12:36.270 Matthew Stegmeier: I think there's a lot more employers can do, and I know we'll get into this throughout the course of our discussion, but.
00:12:36.930 --> 00:12:47.820 Matthew Stegmeier: As companies become a more welcoming and inclusive place where you can really bring your true self to work I think that's when organizations really thrive and.
00:12:48.570 --> 00:12:58.950 Matthew Stegmeier: What when people are faced with these issues of bullying, or if their direct supervisors harassing them or if there's some some type of inappropriate comments or.
00:12:59.370 --> 00:13:11.400 Matthew Stegmeier: or behavior touching where people are uncomfortable you really have your guard up when you're at work and you're you're not focused on on your your work task, and you know why you were hired and.
00:13:11.970 --> 00:13:22.320 Matthew Stegmeier: I think that is in many ways, something that organizations need to keep in mind when they look at okay if there's a required.
00:13:23.190 --> 00:13:34.380 Matthew Stegmeier: Training for for harassment, sexual harassment or physical harassment it's like Oh, you know, do we really need to do this, or maybe we'll just do it, and you know everyone goes through the course and we call it a day.
00:13:34.800 --> 00:13:49.950 Matthew Stegmeier: And we don't worry about again till next year if you only focus on the bare minimum you're going to get bare minimum results so it's really important to take a holistic look and really look at look at this with an open mind.
00:13:50.850 --> 00:13:58.620 Eric Sarver, Esq.: yeah yeah I think that's very true, I think the holistic approach to think all all things involve.
00:13:59.130 --> 00:14:08.730 Eric Sarver, Esq.: Human interaction and relationships and the workplace is a place for relationships it's relationship between the managers and the employees, you have.
00:14:09.120 --> 00:14:18.480 Eric Sarver, Esq.: subordinates and higher ups and then you also have co workers were lateral and it's just a matter of understanding the human dynamics involved.
00:14:19.380 --> 00:14:30.300 Eric Sarver, Esq.: And i'm glad you also wanted out just the fact that you know, this is something that has some deep repercussions on the adverse side and it's a pretty big issue and so.
00:14:30.660 --> 00:14:37.410 Eric Sarver, Esq.: I, I agree with you Matthew that you know the the bare minimum anything like gets the bare minimum result and so.
00:14:38.310 --> 00:14:45.810 Eric Sarver, Esq.: So i'd like to hear more from you, after the commercial break about ways in which the pandemic may have impacted harassment.
00:14:46.350 --> 00:14:52.260 Eric Sarver, Esq.: in the workplace and also what project When does it specifically to help employers to create this culture.
00:14:52.950 --> 00:14:59.460 Eric Sarver, Esq.: But we need to take a commercial break so folks you're here tonight, listening to or watching employment law today.
00:14:59.910 --> 00:15:13.410 Eric Sarver, Esq.: i'm your host erick sovereign employment law business lottery and the law office of arrogance auburn have here today my guest Matthew steak Meyer director of operations of project when so stick around we'll be right back.
00:18:10.440 --> 00:18:21.360 Eric Sarver, Esq.: Good evening welcome back to employment law today i'm your host erick solver we're here live tonight on talk radio dot nyc and i'm joined by my guest Matthew steak Meyer.
00:18:21.810 --> 00:18:30.960 Eric Sarver, Esq.: director of operations for project when, which is an acronym for workplace harassment ends now so Matthew again great to have you on the show.
00:18:32.100 --> 00:18:35.850 Matthew Stegmeier: Likewise it's really great to be here and talking with you today Eric.
00:18:36.210 --> 00:18:40.050 Eric Sarver, Esq.: yeah I think it's a good conversation, is that I think it's also an important conversation.
00:18:40.410 --> 00:18:47.340 Eric Sarver, Esq.: That I wish more people will be having you know, we in the employment law realm whether it's project when are you try consultants or attorneys.
00:18:47.670 --> 00:18:53.820 Eric Sarver, Esq.: are talking about this a lot and I think, as you mentioned, Governor Cuomo and the allegations that of surface and.
00:18:54.510 --> 00:19:06.840 Eric Sarver, Esq.: That this is an issue that you know it doesn't know boundaries of just private organizations impact people in nonprofit and the government and the highest levels so glad that you brought that up.
00:19:08.010 --> 00:19:19.260 Matthew Stegmeier: Yes, it's it's a big challenge today, and I think, as you know, from someone who deals with this up close and personally went with your corporate clients it's not going away so.
00:19:19.650 --> 00:19:29.880 Matthew Stegmeier: that's why we exist to try to try to lead us, you know culturally as as corporations and employers into the future, to where.
00:19:30.480 --> 00:19:40.890 Matthew Stegmeier: At least this can be minimized somewhat, and you know if we if we can impact one organization that's you know, affecting all their employees and that's that's a big one, so.
00:19:41.370 --> 00:19:58.140 Eric Sarver, Esq.: Yes, sounds like it's me, so let me ask another question that in terms of the pandemic that we've all been living with for over a year now i'm wondering what ways, have you seen as the coconut team, and that may impact sexual harassment in the workplace.
00:19:58.830 --> 00:20:03.420 Matthew Stegmeier: yeah that's a really good question, I think, initially, when you talk about.
00:20:03.900 --> 00:20:13.020 Matthew Stegmeier: The pandemic and cool bed, and how that affects a workplace that at least my thinking is you automatically go to people working from home and.
00:20:13.470 --> 00:20:19.800 Matthew Stegmeier: You know that that is one of the biggest changes, besides, you know people being a little bit more space style and you know wearing masks and I think.
00:20:20.280 --> 00:20:32.940 Matthew Stegmeier: I think one it's important to keep in mind that not everyone is working from home there, there are lots of businesses that it was business as usual or or as an added stress of people, you know, having to deal with.
00:20:33.660 --> 00:20:38.820 Matthew Stegmeier: craziness in the world, and you know, like if you're working in a grocery, for instance, or.
00:20:39.150 --> 00:20:53.040 Matthew Stegmeier: You have a car shop, you know you don't shut down it gets tougher, so I think for for for many people, the commonality regardless of where you were is it's a stressful situation to be in and.
00:20:53.610 --> 00:21:11.850 Matthew Stegmeier: And I think about you know we were talking about our personal, family lives having having young kids and toddlers and for those of us who are working from home it's an added stressor and I think that is and anytime you're in a stressful situation.
00:21:13.110 --> 00:21:17.610 Matthew Stegmeier: it's it's tough to to maintain your composure and I think.
00:21:18.990 --> 00:21:28.740 Matthew Stegmeier: If anything in terms of you know what what's happening with with harassment cases, you know we've heard from.
00:21:29.280 --> 00:21:49.410 Matthew Stegmeier: From organizations and from individuals that there, there have been more you know people texting, because you know they're not in person and it might be mean they're people on video calls maybe being a little bit impolite or you know worse, I think.
00:21:51.060 --> 00:21:55.080 Matthew Stegmeier: For me, one of the things that comes to mind that that might.
00:21:55.650 --> 00:22:04.350 Matthew Stegmeier: Be why why thinks of changes, you know when you're working from home it's a little bit more of a casual environment, you have your guard down a little bit here at home.
00:22:04.590 --> 00:22:16.770 Matthew Stegmeier: You know people might not be as formal in their attire even so just naturally your your mind is thinking okay it's a little more casual, so I think from people being in that environment for a year.
00:22:17.820 --> 00:22:28.950 Matthew Stegmeier: You know there and I think you might have even mentioned that Eric is you know, like the flirtation through zoom calls where something like that is inappropriate and.
00:22:29.460 --> 00:22:36.810 Matthew Stegmeier: For me, I even think about when when this is all over and people start to go back to the office, and of course there's discussions.
00:22:37.140 --> 00:22:41.880 Matthew Stegmeier: Are we going to stay virtual and people be remote or people will be back in office, but at some point.
00:22:42.360 --> 00:22:53.700 Matthew Stegmeier: There will be some influx of people back into the workplace, and I think that is going to be an interesting time and I would imagine there is going to be an uptick in harassment cases because.
00:22:54.390 --> 00:23:10.140 Matthew Stegmeier: People are kind of out of sorts, and they they're used to being in a more casual environment, and you know you get back to the office and it's like Okay, you need to make sure to be professional again, so I think that will be an interesting challenge for organizations moving forward.
00:23:11.400 --> 00:23:16.260 Eric Sarver, Esq.: Absolutely Matthew I really think so, too, you know i'm glad you remind our listeners tonight that.
00:23:16.770 --> 00:23:24.690 Eric Sarver, Esq.: While many people have been going virtual working remotely in certain fashion, there are a lot of employers out there, and a lot of.
00:23:25.110 --> 00:23:33.840 Eric Sarver, Esq.: jobs that are structured such that you cannot work remotely right if you're a restaurant and even if you're curbside pickup or partial capacity limited capacity.
00:23:34.320 --> 00:23:41.190 Eric Sarver, Esq.: If you're, as you mentioned very good example mechanic and I have clients that are dry cleaners clients that are restaurants clients that are.
00:23:41.760 --> 00:23:46.950 Eric Sarver, Esq.: Car washes, and so they don't work remotely it doesn't work, but you can watch the Korean War so.
00:23:47.340 --> 00:23:52.620 Eric Sarver, Esq.: So it's really important to note that, and you know I, as I mentioned, I defend companies who are.
00:23:52.950 --> 00:24:00.570 Eric Sarver, Esq.: In a pickle and a half an implementation case pending but also try to help my clients practically much like you mentioned project, when does.
00:24:00.900 --> 00:24:07.890 Eric Sarver, Esq.: Practically follow these laws, because if they know what the lock and can means to them, they know.
00:24:08.220 --> 00:24:16.590 Eric Sarver, Esq.: What happened if they break certain Federal and State laws around discrimination and harassment, then understand the damages and the negative present exposure.
00:24:17.580 --> 00:24:24.690 Eric Sarver, Esq.: it's really something to motivate them to seek help, so I see a sort of his allies, or I see that I help companies in lot of ways to compile it.
00:24:25.170 --> 00:24:32.820 Eric Sarver, Esq.: to know the long comply with that you help them to build a culture in the workplace and so just glad that you mentioned.
00:24:33.420 --> 00:24:43.080 Eric Sarver, Esq.: That point about the non remote workers and last thing I just wanted to comment on is your point about stress know that and we're all under more stress and.
00:24:43.500 --> 00:24:54.210 Eric Sarver, Esq.: you add the additional stress to the fact that people are in their home environments and maybe more casual casual dress and they're using their during the bedroom graphs or their.
00:24:54.600 --> 00:25:06.330 Eric Sarver, Esq.: Their lights sons what room or whatever the case, maybe they're just not that some are not as geared towards like i'm in the conference room in the middle of the city wearing a suit and time so yeah yeah.
00:25:07.170 --> 00:25:12.870 Matthew Stegmeier: yeah and I think it's um you know you look at where organizations are today and starting to.
00:25:13.590 --> 00:25:23.190 Matthew Stegmeier: plan out how we're going to be when we get back to normal, or you know when things kind of some side with a pandemic, and I think it's really a perfect time for organizations to.
00:25:23.670 --> 00:25:37.410 Matthew Stegmeier: really take a holistic look at how how their workplace operates and really go through a structured process to address the stomach harassment before it occurs, and one of the things that we offer is.
00:25:38.250 --> 00:25:53.250 Matthew Stegmeier: an organizational certification program that we just launched for companies who are really excited and really want to make this a priority moving forward, where they can be certified by our our organization as as an organization that's really trying to do things the right way.
00:25:53.640 --> 00:25:57.360 Matthew Stegmeier: And you know, create a welcoming culture for everyone.
00:25:58.680 --> 00:26:11.490 Eric Sarver, Esq.: right that certification program sounds like a really good thing to have in place and i'm i'm curious to kind of segues into another question I have that maybe we can talk a bit about.
00:26:12.900 --> 00:26:21.480 Eric Sarver, Esq.: Can you tell us a bit about how project when helps businesses to recognize and remedy signed the workplace.
00:26:22.830 --> 00:26:32.010 Matthew Stegmeier: yeah that's a really good question Eric and I think it's it's helpful the I have not described exactly what we do and what we don't do and.
00:26:32.280 --> 00:26:40.680 Matthew Stegmeier: You know, one of the things that it's sometimes it's helpful to talk about what we don't do you know project when we're not employment law attorneys we're not.
00:26:41.400 --> 00:26:51.000 Matthew Stegmeier: You know HR consultants are diversity and inclusion consultants we our goal is to raise awareness, for this issue and help companies move forward and help victims and.
00:26:51.690 --> 00:27:04.680 Matthew Stegmeier: In many ways, it's helping organizations and victims find the resources that can help them through their their particular challenge now one of the things that we will do for organizations, I mentioned their certification Program.
00:27:05.220 --> 00:27:15.900 Matthew Stegmeier: we're also developing a individual Sir certification credential with human resources certificate institute the HR ci that will be launching soon.
00:27:16.410 --> 00:27:25.020 Matthew Stegmeier: And it's great for people who are service providers in the area or internal practitioners, who are are leading an organization internally.
00:27:25.320 --> 00:27:32.640 Matthew Stegmeier: But one of the things that we do for for companies is to host a project one round table where we can bring.
00:27:33.150 --> 00:27:39.840 Matthew Stegmeier: Your internal leadership team together and talk in the very comfortable virtual setting or in person at some point.
00:27:40.620 --> 00:27:51.240 Matthew Stegmeier: and talk through what are, what are the issues that we need to resolve where our blind spots as an organization, one of the things we need to focus on Where have we struggled.
00:27:52.170 --> 00:28:00.750 Matthew Stegmeier: What what might we do to take the next step to get to move forward and be a better place for our employees to work.
00:28:01.050 --> 00:28:13.530 Matthew Stegmeier: And it's really just kick starting that dialogue and giving them a path forward with some ideas of things that they can do as an organization then point them to the right direction of the service providers who might be able to help them with that.
00:28:14.850 --> 00:28:29.730 Eric Sarver, Esq.: Interesting the way you broke it down into what you're doing don't do, and this course that certification is that something that people companies could do on a recurring basis, or is it a short type, of course, like a one shot dealer.
00:28:30.360 --> 00:28:39.060 Matthew Stegmeier: that's a great question, so our organizational certification is you, your organization would go through this process that it takes.
00:28:39.870 --> 00:28:47.580 Matthew Stegmeier: Approximately three months, based on all the steps involved, but the first thing we would do would be to have a company.
00:28:47.910 --> 00:28:55.020 Matthew Stegmeier: launches survey that we would conduct for all their employees asking about what are, what have they seen in terms of.
00:28:55.320 --> 00:29:12.360 Matthew Stegmeier: Harassment what are some of the challenges they're facing what does it feel like to work at the company, the Culture things of that nature to give us a flavor for what what it's like to be an employee there and what some of the issues are then our team will review that survey.
00:29:13.650 --> 00:29:23.730 Matthew Stegmeier: And then come back with some and then also review some of their documents and processes about you know, do they have a formal guide about.
00:29:24.810 --> 00:29:27.900 Matthew Stegmeier: Anti harassment what's expected of have employees.
00:29:28.890 --> 00:29:41.070 Matthew Stegmeier: You know how do we review cases as they come in and I reported internally and then we'll come back to the company with a set of recommendations that we think they need to implement and then it'll it'll be.
00:29:41.880 --> 00:29:51.390 Matthew Stegmeier: A bi annual process where they would repeat the survey to get to to maintain their certification as an Anti harassment certified organization by project when.
00:29:52.320 --> 00:30:01.500 Eric Sarver, Esq.: sounds very thorough just magic and detail it's really something really to for companies to consider it strongly to explore.
00:30:02.040 --> 00:30:11.040 Eric Sarver, Esq.: And I want to talk more with you about this and other topics as well, but as you might guess be taking a commercial break for us where's my sponsor so.
00:30:12.030 --> 00:30:18.240 Eric Sarver, Esq.: folks you're listening to employment law today I am your host erick savoured employment law business law attorney.
00:30:18.600 --> 00:30:31.920 Eric Sarver, Esq.: i'm here with my special guest tonight Matthew state Meyer director of operations for project when we're discussing workplace harassment and ways to eradicate it so stick around we'll be right back.
00:33:19.710 --> 00:33:30.870 Eric Sarver, Esq.: Welcome back to employment law today i'm your host erick solver i'm here tonight with Matthew stay Meyer director of operations for project when and we're talking about.
00:33:31.440 --> 00:33:40.350 Eric Sarver, Esq.: Eradicating workplace harassment, particularly in a post polemic world and so we've covered some really good points tonight for those that might be joining us a little recap.
00:33:40.740 --> 00:33:47.820 Eric Sarver, Esq.: discussing some of the causes of workplace harassment is discussing the stigma involved and how to raise awareness around that.
00:33:48.180 --> 00:33:52.740 Eric Sarver, Esq.: We talked about some of the factors of the pandemic that might be exacerbating.
00:33:53.220 --> 00:34:02.490 Eric Sarver, Esq.: workplace harassment, including the added stress and also the combined sort of meshing of boundaries and lack of clear cut.
00:34:02.820 --> 00:34:10.380 Eric Sarver, Esq.: Professional boundaries, when people are working from home and often they're there in a more casual dress in a more casual environment so.
00:34:10.890 --> 00:34:20.970 Eric Sarver, Esq.: I think that's really good all good points to make, and really appreciate Matthew you're sharing with us project wins certification program and process, so I want to thank you for sharing all that so far.
00:34:21.540 --> 00:34:22.620 Matthew Stegmeier: Definitely thanks Eric.
00:34:23.640 --> 00:34:32.580 Eric Sarver, Esq.: Sure sure thing I was wondering if we can discuss and some other aspects of recognizing and remedying you know workplace harassment.
00:34:33.720 --> 00:34:48.000 Eric Sarver, Esq.: Mainly presser we can talk a little bit about some of the benefits like you mentioned the benefits to businesses in doing the work right to really root out harassment, it was it was sort of like what's in it for them selfish kind of way.
00:34:48.990 --> 00:34:56.880 Matthew Stegmeier: yeah, and I mean, as if you're a business owner it's always what's in it, for me, I mean you, you need to make sure.
00:34:57.240 --> 00:35:05.280 Matthew Stegmeier: I think, from a harassment standpoint and work with discrimination one you want to make sure you're in compliance with the law.
00:35:06.270 --> 00:35:17.700 Matthew Stegmeier: So you're protected if something happens or you're at least you know, on the right track, but I think you know take things, the next step and take it a little bit further.
00:35:18.510 --> 00:35:33.180 Matthew Stegmeier: The the more healthy and welcoming and I think inclusive your workplace is, if you are an employer, that the better off you're going to be and we talked about this a little bit earlier we alluded to it.
00:35:33.750 --> 00:35:39.000 Matthew Stegmeier: But if you're if you're an employee and you're dealing with being harassed at work or bullied or.
00:35:39.720 --> 00:35:45.630 Matthew Stegmeier: you're uncomfortable being yourself and and letting letting your true colors show, so to speak.
00:35:45.960 --> 00:35:58.830 Matthew Stegmeier: you're going to be guarded you're not going to be as productive because you're you're focused on protecting yourself from from something bad happening, whereas if you know, there are allies in the workplace.
00:36:00.210 --> 00:36:06.300 Matthew Stegmeier: If you know the organization welcomes you with who you are, and you know.
00:36:07.410 --> 00:36:15.900 Matthew Stegmeier: You, you know that it's it's an inclusive place you're going to be more comfortable being yourself and you're not going to have to worry about some of those things that I think.
00:36:16.860 --> 00:36:28.230 Matthew Stegmeier: You know, even as an organization things things happen and it's important to have the right policies and procedures in place, and I think that's something you help.
00:36:28.560 --> 00:36:42.930 Matthew Stegmeier: Your clients with Eric get getting people prepared for, if something does happen, you know how do you how do we handle this so you're not caught off guard and it's really important to have a plan for for these types of things.
00:36:44.280 --> 00:36:52.200 Eric Sarver, Esq.: I agree with you hundred percent Matthew on this, you know it kind of brings you back to an overarching Another theme that I try to impart on my to my clients.
00:36:52.560 --> 00:37:02.490 Eric Sarver, Esq.: Who are business owners and all different industries and all sizes and that was a happy employee makes for a more productive workplace and more productivity.
00:37:02.940 --> 00:37:08.880 Eric Sarver, Esq.: I mean what employer doesn't want their employees to be more productive, if you had the question would you rather your employees be drained.
00:37:09.180 --> 00:37:19.170 Eric Sarver, Esq.: Right morale shot and low productivity and possibly high turnover, or would you want your employees to be content satisfied hyperactivity hire them around.
00:37:19.500 --> 00:37:25.260 Eric Sarver, Esq.: Or at least a better chance of that happening right what which would you choose, they would say the ladder in a heartbeat.
00:37:25.770 --> 00:37:33.240 Eric Sarver, Esq.: But I think often people when they look at and say employment law what's prohibited a sexual harassment creation.
00:37:33.720 --> 00:37:40.770 Eric Sarver, Esq.: A lot of clients asked me okay what what I have to do to get in compliance and I tell them that you have to have certain complaint procedures in place.
00:37:41.340 --> 00:37:48.300 Eric Sarver, Esq.: Employee handbook should have information about where an employee, you can go to being harassed and you should have channels and place to investigate.
00:37:48.630 --> 00:37:58.110 Eric Sarver, Esq.: Complaints discrimination or workplace bullying or harassment have capacities and I help my clients with set those out but I always think about the Florida theme that.
00:37:58.920 --> 00:38:10.230 Eric Sarver, Esq.: If you do, and you mentioned earlier, if you do more than the minimum, then you will ultimately have more content employees and being them their true selves.
00:38:10.890 --> 00:38:26.760 Eric Sarver, Esq.: it's like what you hire them, for you know you hired people to bring their experience or knowledge, their passion to whatever they're doing and so it's good to be for business owners, remember that you can't you need to foster that in a very inclusive way.
00:38:28.020 --> 00:38:37.680 Matthew Stegmeier: yeah and it's it's almost like car insurance, if you think about it, like you can drive uninsured and maybe you don't get an accident and everything's fine but.
00:38:38.040 --> 00:38:46.320 Matthew Stegmeier: If you don't have the policies and procedures and you're not looking at your organization holistically and seeing you know what can we do to improve.
00:38:47.250 --> 00:38:52.980 Matthew Stegmeier: Things there's a better chance, things are going to bubble to the surface and even to take it a step beyond that.
00:38:53.640 --> 00:39:03.930 Matthew Stegmeier: you're better off not you're better off looking at this and trying to improve your corporate culture and and make people more welcome and allow them to be themselves and.
00:39:04.170 --> 00:39:16.080 Matthew Stegmeier: And to root out some of these things as they pop up and address it in the moment and have those difficult conversations because that's going to lead you to a better place as a business and your people are going to be healthier.
00:39:16.620 --> 00:39:24.810 Matthew Stegmeier: physically and mentally and they're going to do a better job, and I think that with that you have kind of the hidden factor.
00:39:25.440 --> 00:39:33.000 Matthew Stegmeier: of employee loyalty if if employees know that you have their back and you're creating a great workplace for them.
00:39:33.450 --> 00:39:37.290 Matthew Stegmeier: there's an increased chance that they're going to want to stay for you and they're going to want to work hard.
00:39:37.650 --> 00:39:50.580 Matthew Stegmeier: And it's a place they're going to want to be so it really behooves benefit behooves organizations to focus on, you know, making making your your work culture one that's healthy and inclusive.
00:39:52.320 --> 00:40:00.840 Eric Sarver, Esq.: yeah no I think that's a really good point to make Matthew I think that, and it really is a type of Karma right, because what you.
00:40:01.380 --> 00:40:07.740 Eric Sarver, Esq.: put out in the workplace gets reflected in mirrored back to you so often maybe not in an exact tit for tat way but.
00:40:08.310 --> 00:40:24.930 Eric Sarver, Esq.: it's a general vibe that employees have is that their workplaces just barely do what they have to to keep people from breaking the law it doesn't always foster a safe inclusive environment, and so I think it's a really good point that you're making.
00:40:26.310 --> 00:40:35.910 Eric Sarver, Esq.: Also i'm curious to hear about some any interesting service providers and project when has found they work most readily hand in hand with.
00:40:36.780 --> 00:40:48.390 Matthew Stegmeier: Well, I think it it really depends on the organizations approaching us and what challenges they're having you know who who we can point them in the direction of and obviously.
00:40:49.440 --> 00:40:59.610 Matthew Stegmeier: You know, we focus more than just the the employers, we focus on the victim side, so we have we have a lot of resources on our website that we've developed that.
00:40:59.940 --> 00:41:14.760 Matthew Stegmeier: That spell out what you can do if you've been harassed at work, how do you how do you report an incident of workplace harassment, what do you do if you're a bystander and you and you observe this even breaking it down by each state that people work in in the United States.
00:41:15.840 --> 00:41:34.830 Matthew Stegmeier: we've we've come up with resources on the website about what each different type of harassment is that, like that that he oC tracks, so you know it's not just sexual harassment it's not just physical harassment, you know there's age discrimination there's sex based harassment.
00:41:36.540 --> 00:41:42.060 Matthew Stegmeier: there's so many different kinds of things that the employees are challenged with so.
00:41:42.660 --> 00:42:00.030 Matthew Stegmeier: You know, are we always try to if someone approaches us and they need help, we always try to connect them with with someone that we can help, depending on what what they're facing as either a victim or as as an organization that's trying to improve or or navigate an issue.
00:42:01.800 --> 00:42:02.040 Matthew Stegmeier: that's so.
00:42:02.100 --> 00:42:09.450 Eric Sarver, Esq.: interesting to know, and I think it's a good point you raised that there are different resources available for whether you're on the employee side of the employer.
00:42:10.440 --> 00:42:17.190 Eric Sarver, Esq.: That project when can connect people with so if we have listeners tonight at home, who are say employees of companies.
00:42:17.490 --> 00:42:24.450 Eric Sarver, Esq.: Maybe they don't own their own business, maybe they're working somewhere that they can go to your website, they can reach out to project when.
00:42:25.260 --> 00:42:37.050 Eric Sarver, Esq.: and get help, and I think it's important to note that, while they may be different resources for each each party here the employer and the employee that some of the underlying.
00:42:38.070 --> 00:42:49.950 Eric Sarver, Esq.: issues that come out there's their commonality and common theme here around just promoting environment and culture of respect in the workplace, and you know i'm also glad you mentioned, we talked about.
00:42:50.400 --> 00:43:00.000 Eric Sarver, Esq.: workplace harassment may introduce the topic I dimension, there are many kinds of workplace bullying right there's there's a micro aggressions their race, based discrimination.
00:43:01.110 --> 00:43:09.300 Eric Sarver, Esq.: In a hostile work environment there's all kinds of ways that people can lash out, and I think it's so important for the company.
00:43:09.720 --> 00:43:20.190 Eric Sarver, Esq.: To to create a culture where the employees, know that no, this is not the norm, because I find often that just modifications here and.
00:43:20.580 --> 00:43:28.350 Eric Sarver, Esq.: Very often, the tone get set from the top down, and so, if you look at companies where if the people in charge are insensitive to.
00:43:28.830 --> 00:43:42.570 Eric Sarver, Esq.: unaware of, or even partaking in some kind of saying bullying harassing environment right it's going to trickle down and it's going to be like sort of the the unstated rule of the land, and this is how the lay of the land is.
00:43:42.840 --> 00:43:46.050 Eric Sarver, Esq.: Yes, and we found with your interaction with employers over the.
00:43:46.050 --> 00:43:52.680 Matthew Stegmeier: years, it is, and you know I know we'll we'll shift gears here in a minute, but.
00:43:54.150 --> 00:44:06.450 Matthew Stegmeier: And I love to talk about some of the industries we've seen where there's commonalities and there's a big challenge of harassment, but one one of them is the alcohol industry and in the alcohol and beverage industry and.
00:44:07.530 --> 00:44:10.350 Matthew Stegmeier: You know we've we're actually putting on an event.
00:44:11.370 --> 00:44:16.860 Matthew Stegmeier: A Roundtable discussion for people in that industry to kind of talk through what their challenges are and what they're seeing but.
00:44:17.490 --> 00:44:25.200 Matthew Stegmeier: From one one of the people who is sponsoring the event, they mentioned us a lot of these breweries are family owned.
00:44:25.710 --> 00:44:34.860 Matthew Stegmeier: And they kind of use that as a crutch like Oh, you know we're family business that's just kind of the way we are, and I think it's you know kind of an excuse.
00:44:35.460 --> 00:44:51.090 Matthew Stegmeier: To maybe not look at things like like a real business or like Oh, you know we can let that slide because that's and that's unacceptable, obviously, and you know that's that's not the way to conduct business so yeah.
00:44:51.780 --> 00:44:57.930 Eric Sarver, Esq.: very true you know I we can talk more about that in a moment, because i've seen that dynamic as well and i'd love to.
00:44:58.350 --> 00:45:17.670 Eric Sarver, Esq.: explore that a bit, but before we do we have to take a another commercial break so we're i'm Eric Sava host of employment law today, you want to talk radio's I nyc Tuesdays at 5pm tonight my guest is Matthew steger de Meyer from project when so stick around we'll be right back.
00:47:33.960 --> 00:47:50.520 Eric Sarver, Esq.: Welcome back to employment law today i'm your host erick solver joining me tonight is my guest Matthew steak Meyer director of operations for project when which stands for workplace harassment and now and we've been discussing Matthew i've been discussing.
00:47:51.780 --> 00:48:07.050 Eric Sarver, Esq.: harassment in the workplace, including but not limited to, as we say in legal speak the sexual harassment, but also but workplace bullying micro aggressions implicit bias, and you know Matthew is interesting, if I may just some observations, if I may, to chime in with them.
00:48:08.220 --> 00:48:17.370 Eric Sarver, Esq.: When when we started the show off, and I said that I think that harassment in the workplace could argue bb equated to a pandemic and its own right, I mean it's.
00:48:17.790 --> 00:48:21.540 Eric Sarver, Esq.: been around is its world as a worldwide problem is an international problem.
00:48:22.410 --> 00:48:33.570 Eric Sarver, Esq.: It is all encompassing in some places it when it strikes, it can be very hard to eradicate and my opinion I think it's contagious in that if a company has.
00:48:34.410 --> 00:48:44.700 Eric Sarver, Esq.: A few bad actors who are fostering or promoting or even engaging in harassment, then it tended to spread and people get the messages as okay.
00:48:45.030 --> 00:48:53.310 Eric Sarver, Esq.: So I like how you talked about the cow project when can recognize that factor and you might talk a few times about the.
00:48:53.670 --> 00:49:05.340 Eric Sarver, Esq.: Brain encouraging bystanders to step in so i'm wondering, can you talk more about how project when might train bystanders to says what their role is to stand up to workplace harassment.
00:49:06.060 --> 00:49:16.200 Matthew Stegmeier: yeah that's a great question Eric and i'll coach this maybe with a little legal speak of my own that i'm not a specialist in this particular area.
00:49:16.770 --> 00:49:31.740 Matthew Stegmeier: Again, my my role at project, one is to kind of run the day to day operations, but the the aspect of what bystanders can do it is really important, and I think it is something in our individual.
00:49:33.240 --> 00:49:41.760 Matthew Stegmeier: certificate course that we're developing with the HR ci it's a five course module then it'll it'll take people through.
00:49:42.420 --> 00:49:49.440 Matthew Stegmeier: Recognizing what workplace harassment is all the different types of harassment and then one component of.
00:49:49.950 --> 00:50:04.560 Matthew Stegmeier: One of the courses gets into detail about what bystanders can do because it's it's really if there's someone in your workplace that's getting harassed and you see it, you have a super important role.
00:50:05.460 --> 00:50:09.960 Matthew Stegmeier: You know it's like you've been placed in this situation it's uncomfortable for you, but.
00:50:10.890 --> 00:50:17.040 Matthew Stegmeier: I think it's almost like a challenge for you to be a better person, you know what are we going to do about this, we saw this and.
00:50:17.850 --> 00:50:27.990 Matthew Stegmeier: And if that's easier said than done, because you think about like the Cuomo situation, for instance, I saw the woman, I think the first woman who came out the allegations saying.
00:50:28.680 --> 00:50:36.540 Matthew Stegmeier: That while you know his actions and how he assaulted me hurt what hurt the most was the people who.
00:50:37.080 --> 00:50:52.170 Matthew Stegmeier: knew this was going on, it didn't do anything and and it sometimes it's tough when someone in who's doing the harassing or the discrimination is at the top of the organization like, how do you deal with that and that's something that that is covered.
00:50:52.830 --> 00:51:00.570 Matthew Stegmeier: You know in in our training material, but as a bystander you know the the person who this is happening to.
00:51:01.200 --> 00:51:11.250 Matthew Stegmeier: they're not helpless, but I think in many instances they feel helpless it's usually a power thing it's someone above them they feel that many times it happens to women, then.
00:51:11.790 --> 00:51:20.490 Matthew Stegmeier: You think of you know, someone if it's a single mother, for instance, and you she's faced with a decision of Okay, do I.
00:51:21.120 --> 00:51:30.300 Matthew Stegmeier: You know, speak up and risk losing my job, and then i'm out on the street and i've got a you know feed my kids I don't know how the heck i'm going to do that or do I just put up with it and.
00:51:30.720 --> 00:51:51.450 Matthew Stegmeier: And that's where by standards bystanders have a lot of power and of themselves to to support that person to acknowledge that it's happening, and hopefully in an organization where that's going on to have some type of avenue to report that harassment that they've witnessed.
00:51:52.530 --> 00:52:01.320 Eric Sarver, Esq.: You know, as an employment law attorney over the years I represented employees who were a bias energies broke out and.
00:52:01.620 --> 00:52:09.390 Eric Sarver, Esq.: The goal of course is to protect them from retaliation is unlawful and if there is some to, of course, to stand up for it against it because it's against the law.
00:52:10.080 --> 00:52:12.330 Eric Sarver, Esq.: I think that, as from the employer side.
00:52:13.140 --> 00:52:25.350 Eric Sarver, Esq.: so important, I believe it is crucial to educate employers that they are not if they retaliate take an adverse action against someone who opposes harassment in the workplace.
00:52:25.620 --> 00:52:31.530 Eric Sarver, Esq.: Even if the person is opposing it is not the victim they're asking themselves that person who's opposing objecting.
00:52:31.920 --> 00:52:44.970 Eric Sarver, Esq.: To harassment still has federally protected rights under employment termination laws and state and city laws as well, where they can sue the company, I mean i've had clients over the years were defending where they.
00:52:45.450 --> 00:53:03.180 Eric Sarver, Esq.: took action against say a white heterosexual young a body male who stood up for an African American woman who was lesbian and being harassed in the workplace, and you know, he was terminated and he fired or whether he was fired he sued the company one.
00:53:04.260 --> 00:53:14.640 Eric Sarver, Esq.: This is a while back because of the unlawful retaliation division and the company didn't even seem to realize that a man who was white and heterosexual and able bodied in his 30s.
00:53:15.630 --> 00:53:29.520 Eric Sarver, Esq.: Whatever claiming discrimination and retaliation against them, but so I think that's worth pointing that out, as I think I heard you talk about maybe some other motivations that can inspire bystander they know you're protected by the law.
00:53:30.210 --> 00:53:39.000 Matthew Stegmeier: yeah and companies aren't permitted under the water to escalate things in that situation, so if you do speak up, I mean you're protected, but I think.
00:53:39.840 --> 00:53:45.420 Matthew Stegmeier: Also, the the flip side of that is you are protected, but it's still.
00:53:46.230 --> 00:53:51.930 Matthew Stegmeier: Tough a tough situation if you are terminated for that and you're going to have to pursue that legally and.
00:53:52.320 --> 00:54:04.980 Matthew Stegmeier: You know what type of settlement, do you get so it's that's why it's an important conversation for us to be having today and for companies to be having internally about how do we handle these situations because it's.
00:54:05.670 --> 00:54:11.310 Matthew Stegmeier: You know in in theory and in in actuality as you gave with example.
00:54:11.940 --> 00:54:27.120 Matthew Stegmeier: You know you're protected but there's there can still be fallout from that which is you know why we want to transform corporate cultures to where people feel free to speak up and and hopefully it's a more welcoming place where some of this stuff doesn't even happen.
00:54:28.200 --> 00:54:34.440 Eric Sarver, Esq.: Absolutely Matthew you know that's one of the points you get us some employees a lot there's that employees, well then see.
00:54:34.710 --> 00:54:43.140 Eric Sarver, Esq.: what the law says, and as a quote unquote real world of fear of retribution that you know, even if the law says i'm protected to want to have to go through a lawsuit.
00:54:43.680 --> 00:54:52.650 Eric Sarver, Esq.: And you know this has been a great conversation and really just getting into all the the the actions that your company your nonprofit does.
00:54:53.310 --> 00:54:58.920 Eric Sarver, Esq.: identifying some of the coven related factors that can exacerbate harassment and then ways we can.
00:54:59.340 --> 00:55:06.570 Eric Sarver, Esq.: Work to eradicate this issue we've got about three minutes left before we need to end for tonight show I wish we could talk to the hour because it's been such a great conversation.
00:55:06.870 --> 00:55:14.640 Eric Sarver, Esq.: But I want to give you a couple minutes, maybe take two minutes to talk about an upcoming projects webinars or just happy with the REACH you they have a question.
00:55:15.930 --> 00:55:31.800 Matthew Stegmeier: And thank you for that Eric I really appreciate it so again project, one is a 501 C three charitable nonprofit so we get our funding from doing events or from donations from individuals or from corporate corporation so.
00:55:32.370 --> 00:55:42.570 Matthew Stegmeier: What I mentioned one of the things we we do to kind of help organizations and and change that dialogue is the host of project one Roundtable where we can meet.
00:55:42.900 --> 00:55:50.010 Matthew Stegmeier: Internally, with your organization to kick start that dialogue about what what we need to do to improve things that's also something.
00:55:50.820 --> 00:56:07.890 Matthew Stegmeier: That service providers, if you're in this space if you're a big employment law firm, for instance, you might consider sponsoring a round table to bring together some potential clients and you know we can we customize these events, based on the attendees and what happened.
00:56:09.000 --> 00:56:23.940 Matthew Stegmeier: And what their challenges are so even as large employers, you know, like a tech a tech firm, for instance, you might want to put something on for people in your industry to network and talk through what challenges they're facing and that's something we can do.
00:56:24.540 --> 00:56:30.570 Matthew Stegmeier: To help out and so we're actually doing one, we have a brewery in Kansas city crane brewing.
00:56:30.960 --> 00:56:45.030 Matthew Stegmeier: Company they're actually making a project one beer, for us, this month, which is really cool and they're going to donate some of the proceeds from that so there's information on our website project one.org but we're hosting a Roundtable.
00:56:45.240 --> 00:56:50.550 Matthew Stegmeier: discussion with with folks from the alcohol industry talking about what their challenges are.
00:56:51.600 --> 00:57:03.900 Matthew Stegmeier: What they've seen in in the space, and you know what companies can do better to create better, more respectful working environments in the industry and that information that's open to the public that events happening.
00:57:04.620 --> 00:57:06.720 Matthew Stegmeier: Next Thursday night and that information.
00:57:06.720 --> 00:57:08.670 Matthew Stegmeier: is on our website at project one.org.
00:57:09.240 --> 00:57:18.000 Eric Sarver, Esq.: Wonderful Matthew Thank you so much, it was a pleasure, having you on the show tonight i'm Eric Sabra host of employment law today Matthew stigma everyone from project when.org.
00:57:18.810 --> 00:57:27.780 Eric Sarver, Esq.: If you'd like to show tune in Tuesdays 5pm to 6pm on talk radio nyc and have a wonderful evening and a great rest of the week Matthew Thank you once again.
00:57:28.380 --> 00:57:29.760 Matthew Stegmeier: Thank you Eric you.
00:57:30.030 --> 00:57:30.570 Eric Sarver, Esq.: Have a good night.