Sexual harassment in the media and entertainment industries is a pervasive problem. Approximately 41 percent of women working in the media and entertainment industry report that they’ve been sexually harassed in their careers. The survey indicates that employees in the media and entertainment industry report experiencing the highest rate of sexual harassment among white-collar industries.
Have You Experienced Sexual Harassment? We Can Help
Lipsky Lowe LLP has advocated for actors, recording artists, writers, directors, and producers to pursue justice after experiencing sexual harassment in the workplace. Our employment attorneys understand the private and confidential nature of protecting your career in the entertainment industry. We offer complimentary and confidential consultations so you can learn more about your legal options and rights. Connect with one of our sexual harassment attorneys to learn whether you may be entitled to compensation for your sexual harassment claim.
Why Is Sexual Harassment so Prevalent in the Media and Entertainment Industry?
There are two main types of unlawful sexual harassment: hostile work environment and quid pro quo harassment. Quid pro quo means “this for that,” and this type of sexual harassment is common in the entertainment industry partly because of the significant power imbalance. Directors, managers, agents, and other powerful higher-ups can take advantage of their positions of power to offer potential actors a successful career in exchange for sexual favors.
For example, a director may offer an actor a role in a major film in exchange for sexual favors. Hostile work environments can also occur due to gender biases in a male-dominated industry. Women may be stereotyped as sexual objects, and child actors can be taken advantage of by older individuals. Nearly every aspect of the media and entertainment industry can be pervaded by sexual harassment and assault, from auditions for movie roles to film and production.
We Represent Employees Working in All Areas of the Entertainment Industry
Hollywood is typically considered the central hub of the entertainment industry, but many media groups are located in New York City. Unfortunately, even in the most high-profile movie studios and media agencies, employees can be exposed to unwanted sexual advances, sexually explicit comments, and hostile work environments.
The attorneys at Lipsky Lowe LLP have extensive experience representing media and entertainment employees in New York City in sexual harassment claims. Our skilled attorneys represent employees working in all areas of the media and entertainment industry, including the following:
- Movie extras
- Reporters and news anchors
- Executive and personal assistants
- Make-up artists
- Costume designers
- Talent agency employees
- Sound, digital, and photography employees
- Recording studio employees
- Film and television studio employees
Do I Have a Valid Sexual Harassment Claim?
An employee needs to be able to prove that you’ve experienced unwanted conduct of a sexual nature to have a valid claim for sexual harassment. It’s unlawful to harass a job applicant or employee because of their sex. Requests for sexual favors, unwelcome sexual advances, and other types of physical or verbal harassment can constitute sexual harassment. If you work in television, film, or the music industry and have experienced any of the following unwanted requests, you may be entitled to compensation:
- Unwanted requests for sexual favors
- In-person or online stalking
- Sexual text messages or emails
- Offensive jokes of a sexual nature
- Unauthorized release of photos or sexual internet content without your knowledge
- Online or verbal harassment of a sexual nature
The best way to determine whether or not you have a valid sexual harassment claim is to discuss your case with an experienced employment attorney. At Lipsky Lowe LLP, our attorneys offer potential clients a complimentary initial consultation. During your consultation, we will learn more about your case and help you understand whether you have a valid claim for compensation.
Pursuing Financial Compensation for Sexual Harassment in the Entertainment Industry
Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 made sexual harassment a form of unlawful discrimination based on gender. When an employee in the music, television, or motion picture industry experiences sexual harassment in the workplace, the employee has the legal right to file a lawsuit for damages. Victims of sexual harassment lawsuits can file a claim when another actor, co-worker, agent, producer, director, manager, or third party engages in unlawful sexual harassment of them in the workplace. Successful plaintiffs in sexual harassment lawsuits can pursue the following types of compensation through a lawsuit:
- Past and future medical expenses
- Past and future lost wages
- Emotional distress
- Pain and suffering
- Attorney’s fees and litigation costs
New York State and New York City Human Rights Law
New York State and New York City provide even stronger protections for employees who’ve been subjected to sexual harassment. The New York City Human Rights Law defines sexual harassment as “unwelcome verbal or physical behavior based on a person’s gender.” If you’ve experienced sexual harassment in the media or entertainment industry, you can pursue a federal or New York-based claim.
Pursuing a claim under New York’s laws can be strategic because plaintiffs often have an easier time establishing a violation of state or city law than federal law. For example, employers can’t say that they exercised reasonable care to prevent and correct sexual harassing behaviors to excape liability. Employees can hold employers accountable even if they failed to report harassment.
What If My Employer Retaliates Against Me?
Many victims of sexual harassment are concerned about being fired for reporting sexual harassment and pursuing a legal compensation claim. Under federal, state, and local employment laws, employers cannot retaliate against an employee for pursuing a claim. Employees who have been fired, demoted, or otherwise discriminated against for voicing sexual harassment concerns can pursue additional financial compensation based on employer retaliation.
The Benefits of Working with a Skilled Sexual Harassment Attorney
Sexual harassment cases in the media industry can be particularly complex, especially because that industry can revolve around gender and sexuality. Obtaining compensation requires extensive knowledge of New York employment law and the entertainment industry in general.
The attorneys at Lipsky Lowe LLP understand that clients who work in the public eye must protect their reputations from continuing to be successful in their careers. We know how to navigate the claims process while developing an effective strategy to pursue the total amount of compensation our clients deserve.
Contact an Experienced Sexual Harassment Attorney in New York City
Have you been one of the many employees in the entertainment industry to experience sexual harassment in the workplace? You may be entitled to compensation through an employment lawsuit. Taking a stand against the person or corporation responsible can prevent incidents from happening in the future. At Lipsky Lowe LLP, our New York City employment attorneys know how to advocate for victims of sexual harassment in the media industry. Contact Lipsky Lowe LLP to schedule a free case evaluation.