Sexual harassment

I’m a 19 years old female typist working with a number of men of all ages. A couple of them are doing things to embarrass me – putting semi-nude pictures of males and females on my desk – even staring at my large breasts. I made it clear I won’t have any of that nonsense. But they won’t stop. I don’t want to lose the job if I complain. What can I do?

 

What they are doing is ‘sexual harassment’ and there is an effective law in Australia against it. There are precedents where in similar circumstances the offenders in sexual harassment cases were fined rather heavily – the maximum fine being $40,000. You have rights where you work not to be offended or insulted or harassed directly or indirectly because of your gender. There are strict laws to protect employees from unfair sexual harassment. But note carefully, you must not encourage any of the unpleasant conduct directly or indirectly. You have to take the matter further because if you do not complain or not do anything about the claim, that could be interpreted that the offensive behavior is not negatively affecting you or that you consent to it. I suggest you see a solicitor immediately or apply to legal aid if you qualify for it.

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