1. Definition. Sexual harassment is a form of discrimination that involves unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature when:
a. Submission to such conduct is made either explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of a person's job, pay, career, or;
b. Submission to or rejection of such conduct by a person is used as a basis for career or employment decisions affecting that person, or;
c. Such conduct has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with an individual's work performance or creates an intimidating, hostile, or offensive working environment.
2. This definition emphasizes that workplace conduct, to be actionable as "abusive work environment" harassment, need not result in concrete psychological harm to the victim, but rather need only be so severe or pervasive that a reasonable person would perceive, and the victim does perceive, the work environment as hostile or abusive. (Note: Due to the unique nature of military life, "workplace" is an expansive term and includes conduct on or off duty, 24 hours a day.)
3. Any person in a supervisory or command position who fails to correct, or uses/condones any form of sexual behavior to control, influence, or affect the career, pay, or job of a military member or civilian employee is engaging in sexual harassment. Similarly, any military member or civilian employee who makes deliberate or repeated unwelcome verbal comments, gestures, or physical contact of a sexual nature in the workplace is also engaging in sexual harassment.
4. Commanders, supervisors, managers, and all others in leadership positions will neither tolerate nor fail to correct sexual harassment by their subordinates, nor will they allow the existence of hostile work environments. Any such violations of Marine Corps policy are subject to appropriate disciplinary or administrative action, when substantiated.
5. Sexual harassment is a criminal offense punishable under the UCMJ as a violation of U.S. Navy Regulations.
6. Willfully submitting false allegations is a violation of U.S. Navy Regulations and is punishable under the UCMJ.
7. DON policy on sexual harassment, contained in SECNAVINST 5300.26 and MCO 1000.9, requires commanders to take appropriate action in each substantiated incident of sexual harassment. Appropriate action includes, but is not limited to, formal or informal counseling, non-punitive letter of caution, security clearance revocation, adverse fitness report, nonjudicial punishment (NJP), or court-martial.
Additionally, officers and enlisted personnel of the Navy or Marine Corps will be processed for administrative separation on the first substantiated incident of sexual harassment that involves any of the following circumstances:
a. Threats or attempts to influence another’s career or job for sexual favors; or
b. Rewards in exchange for sexual favors; or
c. Physical contact of a sexual nature that, if charged as a violation of the UCMJ, could result in a punitive discharge.