Is it illegal for two male supervisors to take a female employee into a small closed office and intimidate her?

UPDATED: Sep 30, 2022

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Is it illegal for two male supervisors to take a female employee into a small closed office and intimidate her?

I was told to sit while my male supervisors stood above me in a small closed room
and reprimanded me in a very demeaning and harassing way. I felt I had no choice
but to sit there feeling violated and sacred to leave because that might be
interpreted as insubornation.

Asked on August 9, 2016 under Employment Labor Law, Texas


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

It is only illegal if you believe the reason they did this was because you were a woman; if they harass you or treat you worse than other employees becasue you are female, that may be illegal sex-based employment discrimination; if you feel this may have been the case, speak with the federal EEOC or your state's equal/civil rights agency to see if you can or should file a complaint.
But bear in mind that, as stated, it is only illegal if the reason for the behavior was that you are female. If that wasn't the reason--if they treat male employees similarly, for example (e.g. they demean everyone)--then this is not sexual harassment or discrimination; the fact that you happen to be female does not transform behavior they do to everyone, regardless of sex, into illegal discrimination. They must have treated you worse of differently because you are a woman for this ot potentially be illegal.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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