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Ten thousand Australians to be surveyed about sexual harassment

Discrimination Sex Discrimination

The number of people involved in the world-leading survey on sexual harassment has been significantly expanded from 2,000 to 10,000 participants.

The Australian Human Rights Commission has undertaken regular surveys on workplace sexual harassment since 2002.

The Sex Discrimination Commissioner Kate Jenkins said the latest survey, being conducted over the next 6-8 weeks, has been expanded in the wake of the #MeToo movement.

"Over the past six months, the global conversation has exposed the magnitude of sexual harassment in our workplaces and communities and the harm it causes to individuals

“The #MeToo movement has created an appetite for change. It's essential we build on the momentum and continue working to prevent sexual harassment,” she said.

Despite being outlawed for more than 30 years, sexual harassment remains a significant problem in Australia.

In the last survey, conducted in 2012, 1 in 4 women and 1 in 6 men reported that they had been sexually harassed in the workplace in the past 5 years.

Commissioner Jenkins said the fourth survey will provide important information about the nature, prevalence and reporting of Australians’ experiences of sexual harassment.

As well as expanding the number of participants, the survey will for the first time, provide data on sexual harassment within major industry sectors.

“Obtaining the data will allow us to analyse whether there are any industry specific trends or issues which are contributing to the prevalence of these behaviours.

“The data will also provide guidance to employers to develop more targeted interventions to prevent sexual harassment and to meet their legal obligations to employees," she said. 

The survey results are expected to be released in mid-2018.

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