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Sexual harassment, sexism a big problem at tech companies

In recent years, stories regarding harassment, discrimination and intimidation against women in the technology industry have consistently cropped up. In fact, these stories are becoming so common that mistreatment of women has become something of an ugly trend at companies that are otherwise rapidly evolving.

This mistreatment of women seems especially egregious when you stop and consider the fact that tech companies often thrive because of their modern approach to work. Many places tout flexible work hours, fun workspaces, creative compensation packages and energetic leadership. Still, women are targeted for harassment and discrimination.

You might wonder what this can all mean for companies right here in New York. How do harassment claims at a tech company in Silicon Valley affect a small business here in New York City?

The answer lies in the actions taken by companies like Uber. The company faced considerable backlash after a former engineer revealed the harassment she endured during her time at the company, which the management allegedly covered up or ignored.

Her report sparked action by the CEO of Uber in the form of an investigation into her claims. Perhaps more importantly, though, was the company's resignation request to a new executive accused of sexual harassment in a previous role.

This and other individual instances of harassment have put the entire industry under the microscope. Awareness has increased and companies are making efforts to prevent similar instances of harassment, and the similarly bad press that follows.

Of course, the problem is not solved, and there are still countless women in tech companies and other industries who suffer though harassment and mistreatment at work. However, as this situation should remind readers here in New York, speaking up and holding an employer accountable for violations of employee rights can have a much more powerful effect that people may realize.

If you have experienced sexual harassment on the job, you don't have to suffer in silence. You can consult an attorney who can protect your rights and help you speak out about unlawful conduct.

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