Mary asks "I have just been sexually harassed by a colleague. What can I do?"

Hi Mary,

  • If you feel you are able to do so you should tell the harasser directly to stop and emphasise that their behaviour is offensive and unwelcome.
  • You may seek the assistance of your trade union rep or a workplace colleague if this is difficult.
  • If approaching the harasser directly is not appropriate or has not made a difference, then you can approach your union rep for advice on the procedures for making a complaint to your employer.
  • You should take note of the times and dates of the incidents including any witnesses and steps taken by you to address the behaviour so that you may call upon these as required.
  • You cannot be victimised for making a complaint of sexual harassment in the workplace.
  • If you are penalised or treated less favourably at work for rejecting the behaviour, you should make note of this.
  • Your employer is responsible for the sexual harassment suffered by you.
  • You are entitled to be treated with dignity and respect and your employer must show that they took reasonable steps to prevent the harassment from occurring, to reverse the effects of it and to prevent its recurrence.