Anyone with a workplace sexual harassment complaint in B.C. can now access up to five hours of free, confidential legal advice through the SHARP Workplaces program, which launched on Mar. 10, 2020. (PxHere)

New program offers free legal advice to victims of workplace sexual harassment in B.C.

SHARP Workplaces program offers up to five hours of free, confidential legal advice

Anyone with a workplace sexual harassment complaint in B.C. can now access free, confidential legal advice from a new program launched this week.

Called SHARP Workplaces, the program provides free legal advice, education and information to address workplace sexual harassment in the province.

ALSO READ: Me Too At Work — Sexual assault and harassment in the B.C. workplace

According to a release, individuals can access up to five hours of legal advice through the program. Lawyers will provide advice on legal options, help with reviewing or drafting documents, coaching to guide clients through a complaint or legal process, and referrals to services for additional support, including counseling, peer support and employment services.

With funding from the Department of Justice, the Community Legal Assistance Society (CLAS) and the Ending Violence Association of British Columbia launched the program to help workers facing sexual harassment on the job.

ALSO READ: 4% of Canadian women report being sexually harassed in the workplace

“Half of working women say they have experienced sexual harassment in the workplace,” CLAS Executive Director Jacqui Mendes said in the release.

“We know that many vulnerable groups — including Indigenous, LGBTQ2S+, ethnic and cultural minorities, people with disabilities, and seasonal and temporary workers — are particularly vulnerable. With this program, we aim to put more power into the hands of workers to know their rights, know what actions they can take and connect them with support.”

Anyone can access SHARP Workplaces legal advice by calling 604-673-3143 or 1-888-685-6222, emailing SHARPWorkplaces@clasbc.net, or visiting clasbc.net.

ALSO READ: Bystander training gains traction as tool to prevent sexual harassment, violence



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