Editor's note: This item appeared in the Dec. 30 edition of Dairy Exec newsletter, published by Dairy Herd Management.
Dairy operations can benefit by having well-crafted anti sexual harassment policies and by training supervisory personnel in sexual harassment avoidance. Preventing sexual harassment charges requires more than checking all the seemingly required boxes. It is important that employees know that management is serious about not tolerating sexual and other types of harassment or illegal discrimination.
Your operation also needs to designate employees who can listen and react to sexual harassment complaints and not make matters worse. These employees may be supervisory personnel, part of HR, or other individuals who you feel have the interpersonal skills to hear complaints, are respected by colleagues, and are comfortable with public speaking. It is suggested that both men and women are represented in this important role.
All employees need to be aware of the company’s anti-harassment policies and who to contact if they have been victims of harassment. It is important for employees to receive regular training and reminders and know that there are contacts who are there to listen, help, and respond.
University of California is offering a one-day Spanish-speaking seminar this Feb. 2, 2012, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30p.m., in Modesto, Calif., on sexual harassment prevention at the farm. The training will be directed to those who you have selected to receive complaints. The training will meet and exceed the two hour training requirement imposed by California AB 1825 regulations. While seminar participants will not be qualified by law to train other supervisors, they will learn how to give brief presentations to farm workers and other non-supervisory farm personnel on related matters.