The Biggest & Best Portal to the Professional Property, Workplace and Built Environment Community

Sunday, 25 February

Sexual Harassment - Alive and Well in a Workplace Near You

More than half (52%) of women, and nearly two-thirds (63%) of women aged 18-24 years old, said they have experienced sexual harassment at work, according to a new research from the TUC in collaboration with the Everyday Sexism Project published Wednesday 10.

The study is the largest of its kind for a generation and cited by leading academic Dr Jane Pilliger as one of the most extensive pieces of research on sexual harassment at work in Europe.

It was carried out by YouGov and is based on the opinion of women who are working or who have ever had a job, and were happy to be surveyed about this topic from an overall sample of British adults.

 

It reveals that of those surveyed:

  • Nearly one in three (32%) of women have been subject to unwelcome jokes of a sexual nature while at work.

  • More than one in four (28%) of women have been the subject of comments of a sexual nature about their body or clothes at work.

  • Nearly a quarter (23%) of women have experienced unwanted touching – like a hand on the knee or lower back at work.

  • A fifth (20%) of women have experienced unwanted verbal sexual advances at work.

  • Around one in eight (12%) women have experienced unwanted sexual touching or attempts to kiss them at work.

Sexual harassment at work can take many forms, from suggestive remarks, jokes about a colleague’s sex life, circulating pornography, to inappropriate touching, hugging or kissing or demands for sexual favours. In the vast majority of cases (88%), the perpetrator of the sexual harassment was male and nearly one in five (17%) women reported that it was their line manager or someone with direct authority over them.


Still just a bit of banter?

The survey, called Still just a bit of banter?, also finds that around four out of five (79%) women who said they experienced sexual harassment at work did not tell their employer about what was happening.

Of this group, some thought reporting it would impact negatively on their relationships at work (28%) or on their career prospects (15%), while others were too embarrassed to talk about it (20%) or felt they would not be believed or taken seriously (24%).

The study is also the first to include the opinion of women who identify as black, minority and ethnic origin (BME) who say they have been harassed at work. More than half (52%) said they have experienced sexual harassment in the workplace.

TUC General Secretary Frances O’Grady said: “How many times do we still hear that sexual harassment in the workplace is just a bit of ‘banter’?

“Let’s be clear – sexual harassment is undermining, humiliating and can have a huge effect on mental health. Victims are often left feeling ashamed and frightened. It has no place in a modern workplace, or in wider society.

“Employers must be clear they have a zero tolerance attitude to sexual harassment and treat any complaint seriously. It’s a scandal that so few women feel their bosses are dealing with the issue properly.”

Laura Bates, founder of The Everyday Sexism Project, said: “Many people would like to think that workplace sexual harassment is a thing of the past. In reality, it is alive and well, and having a huge impact on tens of thousands of women’s lives.

“This is shameful behaviour that has no place in 2016 and employers need to take urgent action to tackle the problem.”

Picture: Women are still being sexually harassed at work in large numbers according to a new survey


 


 

Article written by Cathryn Ellis

Share



Related Articles

Workplace Week - Children In Need

Hello Fresh, Macquarie, Zpg, Expedia and Moo are just some of the big names participating in Workplace Week 2017 to showcase workplace innovation...

 Read Full Article
The Balancing Act

Monday Oct 2 marked the beginning of National Work Life Week, a campaign aimed at giving both employers and employees the opportunity to focus on creating that all...

 Read Full Article
Half Of British Offices Are Not Fit For Purpose

In the week ending Sept 22, Leesman launched ‘The Next 250k’, a global report based on the evaluation results from more than 250,000 employees across 2,200+...

 Read Full Article
Nine to Five & Five to Nine - We Want the Airwaves

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has encouraged leading TV and radio broadcasters to work with him to help inform Londoners in particular and the country as a whole about...

 Read Full Article
Gov to Conquer GoT Nightmare

The government’s £400 million Digital Infrastructure Investment Fund (DIIF) is set to unlock over £1 billion for full fibre broadband and kick-start...

 Read Full Article
If Wellness Matters, Take the Survey

In April 2017 the British Council For Offices (BCO) commissioned a major research study entitled 'Wellness Matters: Health and Wellbeing in Offices and What to do...

 Read Full Article
Happy Talk - Talk About Things You'd Like To Do

JLL has conducted a piece of global research in to attitudes in the workplace. The report reveals how engaged, empowered and fulfilled workers are around the world and...

 Read Full Article
Speaking-up About Difficult Conversations

A Chartered Institute of Professional Development (CIPD) report has found that 53% of managers are not trained or qualified to handle ‘difficult...

 Read Full Article
Stopping Sexual Predators In Their Tracks

A new hard hitting campaign to encourage people to report unwanted sexual behaviour on public transport has been launched by Transport for London (TfL), British Transport...

 Read Full Article
London, New York - Two Sculptures, Different Inspirations

Two very different sculptures got special treatment in the week ending March 30 - New York's famous Fearless Girl was sponsored to stay standing-up to fear &...

 Read Full Article