William and Mary

Sexual Harassment Guidance - Employee Scenarios

These hypothetical situations are designed to help employees know when and how to bring a sexual harassment-related matter to an appropriate administrator's attention.  They are part of the Sexual Harassment Guidance.  Employees who have supevisory responsibilities should also read the Supervisor Scenarios.

You are an employee, and a colleague tells you that she filed a sexual harassment report.  You do not need to take any action; the matter has already been reported.  You should not tell others about the sexual harassment report or discuss it at work; talking about these matters can violate privacy and can comprimise the integrity of an investigation.

You are an employee, and Steve, a co-worker, tells you that a friend of his in another department has been sexually harassed, but that the friend “doesn’t want to do anything about it.”  Steve needs to report the matter, unless it has already been reported.  If Steve does not report it, you should do so.   Contact a Title IX Coordinator.  You may tell Steve that you are going to tell someone about this, but you don't have to tell him if you are not comfortable doing so.   

You are an employee working in Arts & Sciences.  An acquaintance who works in the Business School tells you that her supervisor is a male chauvinist who doesn’t respect women.  You do not need to take action.  Although the disrespect of woman may be sexual harassment, it is not clear.  You should encourage your acquaintance to talk to Human Resources or another campus resource

See also the FAQs on retaliation and on confidentiality, anonymity, and reluctant reporters.