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One in 10 women sexually harassed at work: survey


An overwhelming majority of Australian working women say that respect is their top priority at work, but one in 10 are still being sexually harassed.

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The findings are contained in a wide-ranging survey of 2100 working women and 500 men, who shared their thoughts on everything from job security, equality, skills and aspirations.

While being treated with respect was crucial for 80 per cent of women, only two-thirds believed they actually were treated respectfully by their manager.

Fewer than a third of women thought men and women were treated equally at work, while half of men surveyed did.

Ten per cent of women said they had been sexually harassed at work.

Women with a disability, or who were from culturally diverse backgrounds, or studying were most likely to have been sexually harassed.

The report noted that there were a number of women in the survey who worked in male-dominated workplaces including policing, law enforcement or corrective services and had experienced discrimination and sexual harassment.

“Those women who had experienced sexual harassment discussed the difficulties of raising the problem, and were all concerned that in doing so, it would limit their progression and that their employer would not sanction the perpetrator in any meaningful way,” the report said.

The research was carried out by researchers from the University of Sydney’s Women, Work & Leadership Research Group and released on Tuesday.

“We are urgently calling on the government to facilitate and implement a public policy framework that supports young women’s career aspirations,” one of the study’s co-authors, Dr Elizabeth Hill, said.


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