5 Ways Sexual Harassment Awareness Is Changing in the Workplace
Sexual harassment….Perhaps no two words have claimed more national attention in recent days. High profile cases involving Hollywood celebrities, media moguls, and members of Congress have helped to spark a nationwide focus on sexual harassment. This focus is changing sexual harassment awareness in workplaces all over America. Whether that workplace is a large corporation or a small, local business, the following changes are beginning to take effect:
1. Improvement in Sexual Harassment Training
According to Harvard sociologist Frank Dobbin, over 90% of major U.S. businesses have sexual harassment training in place. However, these trainings have had little effect on reported sexual harassment. Many experts believe this is because these training programs have often been viewed as a way to prevent lawsuits rather than a way to change behavior in the workplace. New, updated sexual harassment trainings are seeing a shift in focus from mere legal compliance to action involving real steps to prevent sexual harassment in the workplace.
2. More Emphasis in Addressing Inequality in the Workplace
Gender inequality has been identified as one of the top risk factors for sexual harassment in the workplace. Businesses that are serious about putting a stop to sexual harassment are addressing this issue by placing more women in leadership positions and by sending the message that sexual harassment will not be tolerated in the workplace.
3. Increased Openness in Discussion of Sexual Harassment Issues
Discussions involving sexual harassment can be awkward and embarrassing. However, the recent media attention has helped open the door to workplace discussions that have the potential to create positive change. Colleagues might be more willing to talk about situations that make them uncomfortable or make suggestions that can help reduce the likelihood of sexual harassment in the workplace.
4. New Focus on Creating Respectful Workplaces
Updated training programs and workplace discussions are contributing to a new focus on creating respectful workplaces. Both employers and employees are seeing the need to eliminate the hostile work environment brought about by disrespectful or questionable behaviors. Most acts of sexual harassment can be avoided by simply treating all employees and colleagues with respect.
5. Both Victims and Co-workers Feel More Empowered to Speak Up
The recent attention on sexual harassment has given many victims the courage they need to speak up. However, victims are not the only ones who can report sexual harassment. Co-workers are increasingly seeing the need to be advocates for their colleagues. This might involve reporting cases of harassment to the human resources department or speaking personally to someone when you think their comments or actions are offensive to a co-worker.
Sexual Harassment Awareness Training (4 Hours)
Includes 4 independent lessons:
- Introduction to Sexual Harassment (1 Hour)
- Sexual Harassment Awareness Overview (1 Hour)
- Sexual Harassment in the Office (1 Hour)
- Sexual Harassment: Prevention and Response (1 Hour)
Since late 1990s, sexual harassment has become one of the largest areas of concern for most employers.