A survey of 750 workers by the Equality and Human Rights Commission in 2018 found that 3/4 of the respondents had been sexually harassed at work. The remaining 1/4 reported that they had witnessed sexual harassment or supported those complaining of sexual harassment.
Nearly all of the people who had been sexually harassed were women. Around 1/4 of respondents hadn't reported their experience of harassment to anyone in the workplace. In around ½ of the cases, where individuals did report the incident, respondents said that employers took no action.
The employment law team at Martin Searle Solicitors will be offering a free sexual harassment helpline throughout June from 4pm to 6pm every Tuesday and Thursday. Employers and employees/workers can call 01273 609911 to talk to employment law specialists about any issues including less favourable treatment where sexual advances have been rejected or submitted to.
During June to September, two University of Sussex interns will be carrying out new research on women in professional services such as law, accountancy and finance and their experience of sexual harassment in the workplace.
If you or your work colleagues would like to take part in our survey, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Fiona Martin, Director and Head of Employment Law, says:
''This rise in harassment is clearly linked to power in the workplace. Sheryl Sandberg, Chief Operating Officer of Facebook, said that it was no coincidence that those responsible had more power than her as 'It's why they felt free to cross the line'.
It is important that employers encourage employees and workers to come forward, whilst discouraging this type of behavior. Speaking out about sexual harassment is difficult with much at stake for the complainant, including reputation, career prospects and the fear of dismissal.''
To support their campaign, Martin Searle Solicitors will produce a series of factsheets, case studies and FAQs for employers and employees covering sexual harassment in the workplace.
For more details, employers can visit http://www.ms-solicitors.co.uk/employer/avoiding-sexual-harassment-in-your-workplace/
For more details, employees can visit http://www.ms-solicitors.co.uk/employee/sexual-harassment/
If you require advice about ensuring equality in your workplace, or your right to take action against sexual harassment, please contact our specialist Employment Law team today on 01273 609911, or at email@example.com.