In general, civil harassment is defined as abuse, threats of abuse, stalking, sexual assault, or significant harassment by someone you have not dated and with whom you do not have a strong connection, such as a neighbor, roommate, or acquaintance (that you have never dated). Such conduct may consist of any one or more of the following: physical acts, such as punching, kicking, and pushing/shoving; verbal acts, such as calling you names, insulting you, and threatening you; electronic acts, such as sending you messages on social media or posting photographs of you online; and other acts, such as blocking your exit with your car or sabotaging your property.
Harassment can be done in the form of words, actions, or conditions created either directly or through third parties. For example, if a colleague repeatedly insults you outside of work hours, this would be considered harassment. So would photographing you without your consent and distributing those photos online, or spreading rumors about you that cause others to treat you negatively.
If you think that you are being harassed, then it is important to take action now. Harassment has many forms, so no matter what type of behavior you experience, you should report it to someone who can help, such as a friend or family member, your employer, or your local law enforcement agency.
Reported cases of harassment are investigated by police departments or other agencies across the country.
According to civil harassment statutes, "harassment" is defined as: unlawful violence, such as assault or battery or stalking; OR a credible threat of harm, and the violence or threats substantially fear, irritate, or bother someone for no legitimate cause. Harassment can be either verbal or non-verbal. Examples of verbal harassment include calling someone names or making derogatory comments about their race, gender, religion, sexual orientation, or disability.
Non-verbal harassment includes physical acts, such as throwing something at someone or hitting them with an object. This type of harassment can be done in a public space or where there is no chance of being caught. Physical harassment can also be done in private spaces through actions such as punching, kicking, or beating up on someone. Sexual harassment occurs when someone uses their status or influence over you to make you feel uncomfortable or unsafe. This may include sexual advances, inappropriate comments, and other verbal or non-verbal behaviors that would make you feel humiliated or intimidated.
Harassment can come in many forms, but if you are being harassed, it is important to tell someone about the situation. If nothing is done about the harasser, they might continue to act inappropriately with out notice. But if you report the incident, then the person harassing you will be punished if charged with a crime.
California has some of the strongest anti-harassment laws in the country.
Under the Protection from Harassment Act of 1997, harassment is both a criminal offense and a civil action. This implies that if someone harasses you, they can face criminal charges. It also means that you can sue the individual in civil court. When is something considered harassment under the Act? That depends on how much harm is done as well as who is doing the harassing. If you are being repeatedly followed or harassed in your workplace, that would be considered harassment. The same thing would happen if you are being sent letters at your home address even though there is no such address listed anywhere else on our state's records. In addition, if a person makes threats against you then that would be considered harassment.
What does "harassment" include? Under the Protection from Harassment Act of 1997, harassment includes:
Abuse of an authority position. An abuse of an authority position includes but is not limited to threatening violence against others, using your position to get someone fired, intentionally causing emotional distress, etc.
Stalking. Stalking is repeated behavior meant to alarm or torment another person. This may include following them, phone-calling them repeatedly, sending emails or texts excessively often, etc.
Nondue advertising. Nondue advertising is any public communication that unreasonably interferes with another person's privacy rights.
Harassment is defined as inappropriate behavior that offends you or makes you feel scared or embarrassed. It can occur on its own or in conjunction with other types of discrimination. Unwanted behavior might take the form of verbal or written remarks, as well as abuse. Abusive emails, tweets, or social networking site remarks are all forms of harassment.
What does harassment look like? Harassment can be anything from insulting comments to more serious forms of violence. In reality, it takes many forms and it's not easy to identify one specific type of behavior as harassment. For example, one form of harassment may be being called names such as "beaner" or "gringo," while another form could be physical assault. What matters is how you feel about it: if you find the comments or actions uncomfortable or unpleasant, then they have crossed the line into harassment. If you feel afraid or intimidated you have been harassed. Violence against any person (including yourself) will always be wrong and should never be ignored or tolerated.
Who is allowed to harass others? Anyone can harass others, but there are some groups who may be more likely to do so. For example, people who are unemployed are more likely to harass others out of jealousy. This type of harassment can be done verbally or through acts. Someone who is lonely or unhappy at their job may go around making other people's lives miserable by calling them late at night or sending them email attacks.