Failing to address harassment allegations can cost employers

Earlier this year, a former University of California student who alleges she was raped by a professor settled for $1.15 million.

Posted: Dec. 2, 2017 2:19 PM
Updated: Dec. 2, 2017 2:19 PM

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - Legal experts know all too well that failing to address allegations of sexual misconduct in the workplace can have expensive consequences for employers.

Earlier this year, a former University of California student who alleges she was raped by a professor settled for $1.15 million over what she says was the school's failure to handle previous accusations against him.

Still, some experts on workplace law say automatically firing the accused could backfire by making some people reluctant to come forward with misconduct complaints. They say the punishment should fit the crime and should include options short of firing, such as mandatory training, suspension or demotion.

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