Time for respect: Fifth national survey on sexual harassment in Australian workplaces
In 2022, the Australian Human Rights Commission conducted the fifth national survey to investigate the prevalence, nature and reporting of sexual harassment in Australian workplaces. For the first time, the survey also asked about workers’ views on the actions taken by their employer’s action to address workplace sexual harassment.
The survey provides vital information about the scale of workplace sexual harassment and the need for prevention and response initiatives. The survey was conducted with over 10,000 people aged 15 years or over, using a sample that is representative of the Australian population in terms of gender, age and geographic location. The Commission conducted and reported on similar sexual harassment surveys in 2003, 2008, 2012 and 2018.
In 2022, it is time for action in workplaces and, most importantly, time for respect.
- Sexual harassment continues to be an unacceptably common feature of Australian workplaces, with one in 3 workers experiencing workplace sexual harassment in the last 5 years.
- Most sexual harassment in Australian workplaces is carried out by men.
- Half of incidents are repeated and of those, half are ongoing for more than one year.
- Reporting remains low with only 18% of sexual harassment incidents reported
- Only a third of Australian workers think their organisation is doing enough.
The survey was designed to collect data concerning:
- the prevalence and nature of sexual harassment experienced by Australians aged 15 or older across their lifetime (at any time or anywhere)
- the incidence and nature of sexual harassment experienced by Australians aged 15 or older in the workplace
- who the harassers are
- the characteristics of workplaces where sexual harassment occurs
- the industries where workplace sexual harassment occurs
- the reporting of workplace sexual harassment and the outcomes of formal reports and complaints
- the impacts of workplace sexual harassment on those who experience it
- the responses of people who witnessed or heard about sexual harassment in their workplaces.
- the views of workers on actions taken by workplaces to prevent and respond to sexual harassment
- Australians’ levels of awareness of where they can access information about sexual harassment.
Download the full report on the top right-hand-side of this page. You can view infographics detailing the key findings via the link below.