Detroit, MI-Women are most often the target of sexual harassment, but a new study out of Australia shows that more and more men face sexual harassment in the workplace.
The study, published in the journal Work, Employment and Society, found that women made up the majority of sexual harassment victims, about 78 percent, but the number of men who filed a formal complaints grew. Researchers found that 11 percent of men complained about sexual harassment from a male coworker while 5.7 of cases involved a female coworker, Phys.org reported.
Professor Sara Charlesworth from RMIT and Professor Paula McDonald of QUT Business School, the two main researchers for the study were surprised to learn that men were being sexually harassed at a higher rate.
“Men are overwhelmingly responsible for sexual harassment against women in the workplace, but men are also the targets of sexual harassment far more commonly than typically assumed by researchers or the community at large,” Professor McDonald said.
Men who were harassed by other men typically faced homosexual comments and accusations that they were gay. In filing from this week, an Iowa man working for the Tyson farms filed a federal harassment suit alleging that his supervisor made disparaging, homophobic comments about him.
The majority of male-on-female and female-on-female victims said the harassment took from in unwanted touching and groping. In the majority of cases, a supervisor or boss is the harasser.
This study was conducted in Australia but the findings appear to echo the American workplace. Statistics from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission show that a man is the victim in over 16 percent of annual sexual harassment complaints they receive each year.
Although researchers were surprised by some of their findings, they said that no matter who the victim is this abuse can have long-term emotional effects on the victim, causing them to suffer anxiety and depression. Sexual harassment also impacts the workplace as a whole, leading to high turnover and low morale.
In many cases, an employee—male or female—will endure the harassment for months, sometimes even years. The victims feel like they have no choice but to tolerate the behavior. Too often, complaints of sexual harassment are accompanied by retaliation. Victims also face backlash from their coworkers, as well. So the victims stay silent and put up with the abuse because they feel like they have no choice and no one to protect their interests. But that if the victim retains a sexual harassment attorney, they do have someone to speak up for them and someone who will fight to get them the justice they deserve.
If you are being sexually harassed, USAttorneys can connect you with a sexual harassment attorney near your Michigan location. With an employment lawyer on your side, you can recover compensation for your emotional distress and loss of wages. Contact a sexual harassment attorney today and allow them to get started on your case so you have a better chance of securing a generous settlement.