An inquiry into sexual harassment in the workplace by the Women and Equalities Committee concludes that sexual harassment at work is widespread and commonplace but there has been a failure to tackle unlawful behaviours.
The report published on the 25th July, highlights that 40% of women and 18% of men have experienced unwanted sexual behaviour at work. It also states that employers and regulators have ignored their responsibilities for too long and legal protections are often not available to employees in practice.
The Committee has recommended a plan to put tackling sexual harassment at the top of an employer’s agenda.
(1) Introduce a new duty on employers to prevent harassment.
(2) Require regulators to take a more active role.
(3) Make processes work better for employees.
(4) Clean up the use of non-disclosure agreements.
(5) Collect robust data on the extent of sexual harassment and the number of Employment Tribunal claims.
The #MeToo movement is gathering momentum and campaigning to force companies to disclose allegations of harassment at work ahead of acquisitions and mergers. This, in addition to the Women’s and Equalities Commission pressuring the government to bring in a statutory code of practice on preventing harassment at work, means the topic of sexual harassment will continue to dominate the employment agenda. It is therefore advisable for all employers, whatever their size, to not ignore this subject.
If you need any help or advice to embed the right policies and culture into your organisation, do not hesitate to contact Clover HR today on 0121 516 0299, 01905 824051 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
We can work with you to ensure that your environment is one where all your employees feel safe, protected and valued so can flourish, adding value every day.