The state of New Jersey employs more temporary workers than almost any other state in the country, thanks in significant part to the work done at the Port of Newark. Until recently, it appears that this “invisible” workforce has been disproportionately victimized. In addition to significantly larger numbers of workplace deaths and injuries, many of these workers, mostly female, have also been exposed to sexual harassment in the workplace.
According to the Center for Investigative Reporting, one of the biggest challenges in dealing with the exploitation of temporary workers has been that many of them get jobs through unlicensed employment agencies, a violation of New Jersey law. Because the agencies are unlicensed, they tend not to follow state and federal employment and labor laws that prohibit such things as advertising only for females for certain jobs. Such practices are legal only in limited circumstances. When employers work with unlicensed agencies, they can use those agencies to bring in a steady stream of young, inexperienced and exploitable women.
Authorities say that temp workers, especially those who obtain jobs through unlicensed agencies, do not have any type of a relationship with a human resources department or officer, and may not even understand what that is. With the well-respected agencies, workers receive training and guidance regarding how to report incidents of exploitation or harassment, but can often still feel like they have no place to go when they have been victimized. In addition, many simply choose not to report wrongful behavior for fear of losing their job.
CONTACT THE LAW OFFICES OF MALLON & TRANGER
To learn how we can help you if you have been the victim of sexual harassment, contact us online or call us at 732-702-0333 (toll free at ). There is no charge for your first meeting. We have offices in Freehold and Point Pleasant.