Does the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination Prohibit Harassment In The Workplace By Non-Employees?
Among other protections, the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination prohibits unlawful discrimination and “hostile work environment” harassment in the workplace. To state a cause of action for “hostile work environment” harassment in the workplace, an employee must allege conduct which would not have occurred but for the employee’s gender, and was severe or pervasive enough to make a reasonable person believe that the working environment is hostile, abusive, intimidating, or offensive.
Generally speaking, harassment in the workplace is most commonly attributed to the acts of employees in the workplace. However, New Jersey courts recognize harassment in the workplace for the acts of non-employees. Specifically, employers may be liable under the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination for any acts of harassment by non-employees while conducting business in the employer’s work environment or while the employee is conducting company business if the employer is aware (or should be aware of) the harassment and fails to take the appropriate corrective action. See Woods-Pirozzi v. Nabisco Foods, 290 N.J. Super. 252, 269 (App. Div. 1996).
If you have any questions about the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination, and/or harassment/discrimination in the workplace, please contact the Law Office of Frank A. Custode, LLC.