What is sexual harassment?
There is nothing worse than having to put up with unwanted sexual behaviour.
It is called sexual harassment, and it is unlawful.
Sexual harassment is any unwelcome behaviour that is sexual in nature, that offends, humiliates or intimidates another person.
It can take many forms, including jokes and comments, touching, staring or leering, or displaying of offensive posters, signs or screen savers.
It can also include constant requests for dates or sex.
It does not have to be repeated to be unlawful, and it doesn’t only happen in the office or at the work site.
Sexual harassment can happen anywhere that is work-related – so that includes hotels and bars and nightclubs, function centres, cafes and even in taxis.
It can also happen on social media and via text messages.
Both men and women can be victims of sexual harassment.
Who Can Be Guilty of Sexual Harassment?
Sexual harassment can be committed by just about anyone, including employers and work colleagues, students over the age of 16, room mates, and in some instances, staff or customers involved in the provision of goods and services.
There is both federal and state legislation that protects all Australians from sexual harassment.
The law differs slightly in each state and territory, but in general, it is unlawful for a person to sexually harass another person in the areas of employment, education, accommodation, and in the provision of goods and services.
To find out which legislation applies to your situation, please contact our team of specialists at Harassment Claims who can support you, and advise you of your best options moving forward.
How We Can Help
Reporting sexual harassment can be a difficult thing to do and usually takes a lot of courage, but rest assured that our team at Harassment Claims is on your side, and will support you as we guide you through your options moving forward.
If you choose to make a complaint about sexual harassment or sex discrimination:
- we can take immediate legal action to ensure that the offending behaviour is stopped, and will ensure that you are no longer in a situation where you are exposed to that behaviour
- we can handle all negotiations with your employer, and/or the perpetrator involved
- we can lodge all formal documents in the Human Rights Commission or Industrial Relations Commission, or any other relevant court or tribunal
- we can advocate on your behalf in any court ordered conciliation or mediation meetings
- we can represent you in any formal hearings in relevant courts or commissions
- we can negotiate substantial compensation payments for you for shock and distress
How sexual harassment can affect you
Sexual harassment can have a devastating effect on victims, and can lead to anxiety, depression and in severe cases, post traumatic stress disorder.
If you are experiencing difficulties, make sure that you talk to a friend, or your local doctor, or you can call:
Lifeline on 13 11 14
Beyond Blue on 1300 22 4636
Kids Helpline on 1800 55 1800