Sexual harassment awareness campaign launched
A joint awareness strategy between the Australian Human Rights Commission, the Australian Council of Trade Unions (ATCU) and the Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ACCI) is set to highlight the prevalence of sexual harassment in the workplace.
The ‘Know Where the Line Is’ awareness strategy is set to run in workplaces to help both employers and workers recognise what can be deemed sexual harassment and what to do next.
Sex Discrimination Commissioner, Elizabeth Broderick, said that one in five people who say they haven’t experienced sexual harassment are able to describe personal situations that would constitute abuse.
“From the research the Commission has done on the prevalence of sexual harassment, we know that many people who experience it know that they are experiencing something that is not right, but are not sure what it is, or that it is unlawful,” she said.
The strategy will feature a video and a number of posters that illustrate what questions are acceptable and which aren’t. The posters will also offer advise for people in this situation, including bystanders.
“For example, one of the posters reads ‘how was your weekend… /…did you get any?’,” Ms Broderick said.
CEO of ACCI Kate Carnell said the campaign targets witnesses who need to stand up for silent victims in their workplace.
“We want people and businesses – small, medium and large – to ‘see’ the sexual harassment that may occur around them and recognise those behaviours that cross the line,” she said.
“But we also want people to ‘talk’ about this issue and to raise awareness in their teams about how harmful harassment is not only for the individuals who experience it, but for workplaces as a whole.”
Business looking to put structures in place around sexual harassment and bullying incidents could invest in HRMS software which can track reported abuse cases and allow the firm to manage them in a timely manner.