Your Organization’s Role in Responding to #MeToo: Creating a Culture of Anti-Harassment and Inclusion


The current social climate has left many communities feeling unsafe and vulnerable to harassment and discriminatory treatment.  The workplace is comprised of people with various identities—racial and ethnic minorities, women, parents, caregivers, people with disabilities, people who identify as LGBT, and veterans, just to name a few.  All employees, regardless of their backgrounds, should feel comfortable in bringing their diverse identities to the workplace, feeling assured that their diversity will not subject them to harassment or discriminatory treatment.
Federal civil rights laws only provide protection for a limited group of protected classes.  Furthermore, under Title VII of the Civil Right Acts, conduct is considered harassment only if it is “severe” and “pervasive.”  As such, federal laws leave a gap in the categories of protections that they offer for all people and set too low of a standard if organizations are relying on their mere compliance with federal law to create a culture of inclusiveness.
With the groundbreaking #metoo movement that recently erupted on social media, it is apparent that cultures of harassment remain a problem that organizations around the country must address.  The business case for broadly embracing diversity and creating an anti-harassment culture has never been so compelling.
This session will discuss the rationale for why organizations should aim to create a culture of inclusion and anti-harassment that spans beyond what is legally mandated.  Creating a culture of inclusiveness and anti-harassment requires that organizations not only comply with legal regulations for protecting civil rights, but go beyond what the law requires to ensure that all people within its doors feel welcome and can be the most productive employees that they can be.  Creating an inclusive and anti-harassment culture may be an organization’s most powerful tool in responding to #metoo.
What you will learn:

  • The Importance of “Talking the Talk” and “Walking the Walk”: Why Organizations Should Have Both Have Anti-Harassment Policies and Anti-Harassment Practice
  • Why a Clear Understanding of Your Organization’s Values Are Critical to Creating a Culture of Anti-Harassment 
  • Simple Daily Steps Your Organization Can Take to Create a More Inclusive Culture


Jessica Childress

Managing Attorney, The Childress Firm