New York, NY- Most of us would like to think that if were being sexually harassed or saw one of our coworkers being harassed that we stand for ourselves or our coworker. But a study shows that many workers won’t actually take action to stop sexual harassment.
In a 2001 study from the University of Utah, which was conducted through a series of surveys and experiments, researcher wanted to know what a woman would do if she was sexually harassed. One group was asked what they would do if during a job interview a man asked them a sexually inappropriate question. Eight-three percent said they would confront the interviewer, report him or walk out, according to Live Science.
Presented with a similar scenario, the majority of the online group, 86 percent, said they would also confront the harasser. But when the university group was sent to a fake job interview as part of an experiment not even one of the women addressed the comments or became confrontational.
Researchers said that in the context of a job interview study participants are more concerned about getting the job and pleasing the interviewer to call out their behavior.
The results of these studies show that women may think they will stand up to a sexual harasser but when it comes down to actually being sexually harassed they actually don’t. Researchers believe that being aware of this will help women when the actually since it gives them time to think about how they would react and practice how they should respond in the event they are sexually harassed.
There are a number of reasons why a women—or man for that matter—may be reluctant to stand up to a harasser. Many workers just want to keep the peace and believe that speaking up will create too much turmoil. There is also the issue of retaliation, a common knee-jerk reaction and one that can cost the person complaining their benefits, pay raises, promotions and their jobs. Many victims also let sexual harassment go because they don’t think their employer will take them seriously and their complaints will just be dismissed, which is often the case.
If you are experiencing sexual harassment, don’t be afraid to speak up. Not addressing the behavior won’t make matters any better and can encourage the harasser to ramp up their behavior. It is true that people who report sexual harassment are also often the victims of retaliation, but that should discourage a person from taking a stand because they have legal recourse.
When a victim of sexual harassment can’t get their employer to do anything or have been retaliated against, USAttorneys can help you get in touch with an experienced and dedicated sexual harassment attorney in New York to get you compensation for your emotional distress and loss of wages. Contact one of our sexual harassment attorneys today and learn how to stop the hostile work behavior.