Is my employer liable for harassment by a vendor?
An employer must take steps to end harassment by third parties.
I'm a receptionist for an accounting firm, and one of my job duties is to greet clients, take deliveries, and assist vendors at the front desk of the office. My ancestors are from Ghana, and I honor my ethnicity by wearing garments made from Kente cloth.
Sometimes, other employees or visitors to the office ask about my clothing, and I'm happy to talk to them about my heritage and what the clothing means to me. However, one vendor, who delivers paper, toner, and other office supplies, has been very disrespectful and rude about the way I dress. Whenever I see him, he tells me that I need to dress like an American, that I should go back to Africa, that he can't believe the firm allows me to dress this way, etc. I have no complaints about anyone I work for or with, but the firm has refused to do anything about this vendor. I've talked several times to the human resources department, but they tell me they have no power over the delivery company and can't do anything about his behavior. What should I do?