Aussie group calls for 'urgent' action on sexual harassment
MOST women have experienced sexual harassment in their lifetime and more needs to be done to stop the behaviour in the workplace.
That's the message from a group of concerned Australian organisations that have banded together, calling for urgent action to ensure more protections in the workplace.
Today, leaders from the Australian Council of Trade Unions, Women's Health Victoria and law firm Maurice Blackburn will represent more than 70 organisations at a press conference in Melbourne.
According to the group, 85% of Australian women have experienced sexual harassment in their lives.
The media appearance will highlight key parts of a joint submission to the National Inquiry into Workplace Sexual Harassment.
The Inquiry was announced in June 2018 following a national survey investigating the prevalence, nature and reporting of sexual harassment in Australian workplaces.
The survey also considered the wider community and more than 10,000 Australians participated - five times the number of participants in previous years.
The joint group's submission calls on Governments, both State and Federal, to "take urgent and coordinated action" by implementing a five-point plan.
That plan includes dedicated prevention efforts to address "underlying gendered drivers of sexual harassment'", stronger and clearer legal duties, access to an appropriate complaints process, advocacy and support workers, and ways to report sexual harassment in the workplace safely.
What is sexual harassment?
Sexual harassment is defined in the Sex Discrimination Act 1984 (Cth) as any unwelcome sexual advance, request for sexual favours or conduct of a sexual nature in relation to the person harassed in circumstances where a reasonable person would have anticipated the possibility that the person harassed would be offended, humiliated or intimidated.