The #MeToo movement has been a monumental phenomenon in the last few years. The movement continues to empower women and fight for more workplace protections against sexual harassment. However, the big news stories tend to focus on female professionals in Hollywood or at major media outlets. While these stories are important, we hardly hear how the movement affects the average woman in America.
Are low-wage and middle-class female workers experiencing any of the benefits of the #MeToo movement? Thankfully, there is evidence suggesting the answer is yes. Here are some examples.
Women who work in the hospitality industry often face harassment. In fact, a shocking 50 percent of hotel housekeepers have been victims of sexual harassment by guests. Now, hotel trade associations and city councils are listening. Five huge hotel chains have promised to equip cleaners with panic buttons they can press to quickly get help in a distressing situation. The chains are Hilton, Marriott, Hyatt, InterContinental and Wyndham.
Fast food employees
Franchise fast food restaurants can be inadequate when it comes to protecting workers from sexual harassment. That said, employees are not backing down. They continue to fight for change. Many female McDonald’s employees across the country have participated in walkouts to urge their managers and higher-ups to take action against sexual harassment. There have also been numerous workers who filed charges with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC).
Workers’ legal options
If you have been sexually harassed at work, it’s important to know that New York law offers some of the world’s strongest protections for workers. To understand your options for putting a stop to harassment and moving on to a brighter future, talk to an employment law attorney. An experienced employment lawyer can guide you through the legal process and help you obtain the justice you need and deserve.