As a woman, you could probably share various personal experiences of wage inequality, sexual harassment and parental discrimination in your workplace. Whether your employer denied you a promotion you earned, coworkers spoke disrespectfully or people touched you inappropriately, you might wish you had a right to speak up. And you do.

Unfortunately, many women hesitate to file a report about sexual harassment at their place of employment. This is often because they do not want to cause trouble, are afraid of retaliatory action or believe nobody would do anything about it. However, a new reform bill could change women’s work environments – for the better.

Three ways new laws support working women

Despite the #MeToo movement and women’s continued self-advocacy efforts, many male employees mistreat their female counterparts. And sometimes legislators violate the very laws they enact to protect women from unwelcome advances, comments and requests.

The new sexual harassment law affects places of employment throughout New York, including legislators, by:

  • Extending the statute of limitations on filing sexual harassment complaints to three years
  • Changing the language used regarding non-disclosure agreements (NDAs)
  • Broadening the criteria for filing an allegation of sexual harassment

This change is a step toward allowing you more opportunities to take a stand about mistreatment while performing your job-related duties. And it could pave the way to increased financial compensation for women who hold those who violate workplace sexual harassment laws accountable.

There is no reason for you to be subject to unwelcome attention or degradation at work. It is both unacceptable and illegal. And by filing a sexual harassment claim, you can not only hold someone accountable for their actions but also empower yourself to maintain your dignity.