Understanding, Confronting, Eliminating Workplace Harassment

Course Preview

Course Author(s)

Melba Pearson Esq.

Course Summary

Why is it important to learn about workplace harassment? Because it's a problem that affects everyone. We all have a role to play in creating a safe and harassment-free workplace. By learning about workplace harassment, we can better understand the problem and how to prevent it. Additionally, we will learn about how harassment can spill out into the public, destroying the hard-earned trust of the communities served.
Here are some of the benefits of learning about workplace harassment:
You can better understand your rights as an employee.
You can learn how to identify and report harassment.
You can help to create a safe and harassment-free workplace.

At the end of this training, along with the listed outcomes, you will:
Feel more confident in your ability to deal with harassment if it happens to you.
Be more supportive of others who are being harassed.
Help to create a more inclusive and respectful workplace environment for everyone.

Law enforcement has made great strides in workplace diversity over the last thirty years. This growth has increased our cultural awareness and improved the quality of law enforcement service to our communities. It has also contributed to a workforce that is better prepared to meet the needs of the communities it serves by increasing our understanding of different cultures, customs, and traditions.

However, one of the biggest challenges facing law enforcement agencies has come, not from the outside, but from the inside, generated by law enforcement officers themselves. Part of the challenge of assimilating these differences has been learning how to work together—that is, how to treat each other appropriately in the workplace. Because we are all human, we are prone to mistakes. From time to time, each of us is misunderstood, giving offense even when none was intended.

Let’s focus for now on the importance of preventing conduct that can undermine our working relationships. We simply cannot succeed without the support of our coworkers. Not surprisingly, the citizens in our communities look to us for leadership and direction. Citizens are more likely to accept our authority if they believe that they are being treated fairly and without bias. When a community sees itself reflected in its law enforcement agency, it gains confidence in more balanced treatment.

Segments of the citizenry who may be suspicious of law enforcement because of historic problems with bias and prejudice tend to be more confident when they see members of their ethnic groups participating actively in law enforcement services. In many cases, they become more comfortable with officers whom they believe are more likely to appreciate and value their unique qualities, rather than demonstrating an automatic disrespect. Citizens who believe that they are being treated fairly are more likely to trust us and consequently are more likely to give us their cooperation and support.

Course Syllabus

  • Module 1 - Introduction

    • Course Goals and Objectives
    • Introduction by Melba Pearson, Esq.
    • Introductory Exercise
    • Law Enforcement Diversity
    • Eliminating Hostile and Offensive Behavior
    • What Are the Consequences of Harassment?
    • Module Assessment
  • Module 2 - Harassment

    • Federal Laws that Protect Against Harassment
    • Theories of liability
    • Statutory Requirements
    • The Need for Policy, Discipline
    • Grievance Procedures
    • Module Assessment
  • Module 3 - Perceptions

    • Perception
    • Danger Zones
    • Email, Touching, Nicknames
    • Stereotypes
    • Sexual Jokes, The MeToo Movement, Dating
    • Summary
    • Module Assessment
  • Module 4 - Offensive Conduct

    • Conduct - Part 1
    • Conduct - Part 2
    • Confronting Harassers
    • Sexual Harassment Example
    • Personal Experience with Harassment, with Melba Pearson, Esq.
    • The Law and Diversity
    • Module Assessment
  • Module 5 - Final Assessment

    • Assessment