DIVERSITY MANAGEMENT PROGRAM AND SEXUAL HARASSMENT AWARENESS
It is the policy of the City of Miami Beach to
provide equal employment opportunity for all, regardless of race, gender,
color, national origin, religion, age, disability, marital status, familial
status, citizenship, or sexual orientation. As part of its continuing diversity
management efforts, in keeping with the guidelines on sexual discrimination
issued by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the City of Miami Beach
fully supports legislation to protect and safeguard the rights and opportunities
of all people to seek, obtain, and hold employment without being subjected to
sexual harassment or discrimination of any kind in the work-place. It is the policy of the City of Miami Beach
to provide an environment free of sexual harassment.
Sexual Harassment Awareness
Sexual harassment is a violation of Title VII of
the Civil Rights Act of 1964. As such,
each City of Miami Beach employee, male or female, as a condition of
employment, and in accordance with the policies of the City, commits to uphold
and affirm such Harassment Policy as the City has adopted and in so committing
agrees to: not making unwelcome sexual
advances or requests for sexual favors or other verbal or physical conduct of a
sexual nature a condition of any employee's employment; not making employment decisions based on
submission to or rejection of such conduct; and not creating an intimidating,
hostile, or offensive working environment by any such conduct.
Sexual harassment refers to behavior that is
personally offensive, fails to respect the rights of others, lowers morale and,
therefore, interferes with work effectiveness.
Sexual harassment may be overt or subtle. By definition sexual harassment is insulting
and demeaning to the recipient and cannot be tolerated in the work-place. A victim of sexual harassment does not have
to be the harassed person; it includes anyone affected by the offensive
Sexual harassment is unwelcome conduct of a sexual
nature and may consist of sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and
other verbal or physical conduct. Conduct may constitute sexual harassment when
it explicitly or implicitly affects an individual's employment, unreasonably
interferes with an individual's work performance, or creates an intimidating,
hostile, or offensive work environment.
The victim’s supervisor, an agent of the employer,
a supervisor in another area, a co-worker, or a non-employee can be a sexual
In each case, the victim decides whether behavior
is welcome or unwelcome. It is the impact of the behavior on the victim that
counts, not the intent of the harasser.
All complaints filed with the Labor and Employee
Relations Division of the Human Resources Department is taken seriously. Each
case is reviewed for sufficiency and investigated based on its merit. The sex of the complainant has no bearing on
With the technological advances sexual harassment
now includes "Textual Harassment,"
which is “texting” offensive or other inappropriate messages, and "Sexting," which involves
sending of sexually explicit messages, and also includes, but is not limited
to, photographs or other pornographic material and jokes.
Sexual harassment may take different forms
- Verbal: Innuendos, suggestive comments, jokes of a
sexual nature, sexual propositions, threats.
Sexually suggestive objects or pictures, graphic commentaries, suggestive or
insulting sounds, leering, whistling, obscene gestures.
- Physical: Unwanted physical contact including
touching, pinching, brushing the body, sexual assault.
Each management employee, including first-line
supervisors, is responsible for maintaining a work environment free of sexual
harassment. This responsibility includes,
but is not limited to, reminding employees under their supervision of the City’s
policy against engaging in sexual harassment.
When a manager or supervisor becomes aware of a
sexual harassment incident, it is their responsibility to inform Yvette
Thornton in the Labor and Employee Relations Division of the Human Resources
Department whether or not the affected individual wishes to have his/her
situation reported or does not wish to seek remedial action. Ms. Thornton can be reached by calling
Given the seriousness of this type of
discrimination, the City recognizes that invalid, unfounded, or false
accusations of sexual harassment can have serious and deleterious effects on
innocent individuals. If the complaint
is found to be false and a deliberate misrepresentation of the facts, and made
with malicious intent, the party filing the false complaint shall face
Appropriate disciplinary action shall also be taken
against any employee who violates this policy.
Filing a Sexual Harassment Complaint
Any employee who believes he or she has been the
subject of sexual harassment should report the incident(s) immediately to his
or her supervisor, department director or Ms. Thornton.
If a complaint is against a Department Director,
the complaint shall be filed directly with Ms. Thornton.
Complaints shall be investigated in a confidential
and timely manner. Information
concerning a complaint will not be released to third parties or to anyone
within the City who does not have a need to know. The purpose of this provision is to protect
the confidentiality of an employee who files a complaint, to encourage employees
to report any incidents of sexual harassment, and to protect the reputation of
any employee wrongfully accused of sexual harassment.
Investigating complaints will usually include
conferring with the parties involved and any named or apparent witnesses. Employees shall be guaranteed impartial and
fair treatment. All employees shall be protected
from coercion, intimidation, retaliation, interference, or discrimination for
filing a complaint or assisting in an investigation.
If the investigation reveals that the complaint is
valid, prompt attention and disciplinary action, designed to stop the
harassment immediately and prevent its recurrence, will be recommended to the appropriate
authority within the City.