Women in New York might be facing more sexism in the workplace overall even though they may be encountering less sexual harassment than they were just a few years earlier. A study conducted by researchers at the University of Colorado interviewed more than 500 women around the country in September 2016 and again in September 2018. In that time, the percentage who said they had experienced unwanted sexual attention in the workplace dropped from 66% to 25%. However, in 2018, 93% of women said they experienced sexism compared to 76% in 2016.
Despite the rise of the #MeToo movement and public exposure of prominent sexual harassers, many women in New York and around the country fear to report inappropriate behavior, although some have come forward about their experiences in the workplace. Even when they do, they are sometimes criticized for taking time before reporting the issues. Some believe that all employees need to do is report the problem in order to solve it. In reality, retaliation is a very serious concern.
While people in New York are now more aware of sexual harassment, it continues to pose a serious problem on the job for many women. The #MeToo movement shed light on harassment and sexual coercion in major industries, including entertainment, politics and technology. While it may have bolstered some women's willingness to report inappropriate treatment on the job, the movement has not stopped sexual harassment from taking place. Indeed, women are still facing firing, demotion or attempts to force them out of their jobs, especially after reporting harassment incidents.
Over the last couple of years, the problem of sexual harassment (in all areas of life) has come into sharper focus and greater public awareness. Even many women who have personally experienced sexual harassment or assault did not know the true scale of the problem because it was seldom discussed publicly. Thankfully, that is changing.
Bringing awareness to a serious issue can often help find a resolution to the problem. Just over a year ago, the #MeToo movement began, and now, several states are addressing the issue of sexual harassment by mandating workplace training regarding the issue. At this point, however, states do not seem to be working together to create a cohesive training program, and some states have not mandated such training at all.
Everyone wants to have places to go where they feel they can conduct themselves and their activities safely. While many individuals consider their home one of these places, their workplaces should also fall into this category. Unfortunately, for many female workers, their work environments feel anything but safe due to the sexual harassment they face.
Some workplace environments can allow individuals to feel as if they have a family in their co-workers and a home away from home. Unfortunately, many employees in various industries do not have such benefits. In fact, their work environments can be hostile, and they can face mistreatment from their co-workers, including in the form of sexual harassment.
Even with the awareness of just how rampant sexual misconduct is in the workplace, efforts have not resulted in employees finding themselves free from harassing behaviors. Unfortunately, many individuals in New York and elsewhere continue to suffer from sexual harassment while on the job. Additionally, many employees continue to face negative repercussions for complaining about the harassment as well.
It is not unusual for people to take drastic action in hopes of seeing changes take place. Employees may go on strike, file lawsuits and take other steps in hopes of seeing changes to toxic work environments. In particular, sexual harassment has become more of a focus as workers fight for change in hopes of ending this mistreatment on the job.
Employers have important responsibilities when it comes to protecting their employees. These responsibilities can include providing necessary safety equipment and ensuring a hospitable work environment. When policies and procedures regarding sexual harassment in the workplace are not in accordance with the law, a considerable number of troubles could result.