Sexual harassment must not be tolerated, the Law Society’s most senior officers have reminded solicitors.
In a joint statement, president Joe Egan, vice-president Christina Blacklaws and deputy vice-president Simon Davis say: ‘Solicitors have professional and ethical obligations that mean sexual harassment may result in disciplinary action by the regulator as well as any civil or criminal proceedings.
‘Sexual harassment is illegal. Just as anyone is protected by the law, they should also be protected by employers – law firms included… Working environments should be safe for all.’
The Law Society has clarified that it is not proposing different reporting requirements to those set by the SRA. The question of whether a finding (following an investigation or admission) needs to be reported to the SRA should be made by reference to the SRA’s own requirements. Any allegation should be promptly and responsibly investigated. A decision as to any report should follow completion of that investigation.
The Law Society’s factsheet on harassment has been withdrawn for clarification and will be republished.