Sexual Harassment in the Workplace

Topics: Gender, Abuse, Female Pages: 2 (637 words) Published: October 8, 1999
Sexual Harassment is a growing problem in today's workplace. This paper will establish the signs and causes of harassment. and the growing number of cases through statistics and actual cases.

What exactly is sexual harassment? Many people cannot actually define the term properly and give reasons. Many misconceptions of harassment have been conceived. The term sexua l harassment is defined in legal terms, "Sexual harassment is any unwelcome sexual advance or conduct on the job that creates an intimidating, hostile or offensive working environment." (Petrocelli, Repa, pg. ½). Women of all ages, backgrounds, races and experience are harassed on the job. Many acts of harassment can fall into this category, and range from severe to minor.

Signs of harassment can range from meager comments such as comments on a women's breasts or hips to unwanted "accidental" fondling or offensive pictures being brought to their attention. Harassment can also occur in the form of demeaning or belittling comments about a specific gender. In this specific case where, "Two male employees whose supervisor threatened to fir them if they refused to participate in various sexual antics including strip poker and striptease performances at the worksite after

hours." (Petrocelli, Repa pg. 1/3), a boss or higher position person will request sexual favors or acts by using threats. Since sometimes threats are used, many cases of harassment are not reported because of fear.

Many ideas of why sexual harassment occurs have been conceived. The basic statement of sexual harassment is, "Sexual harassment results from a misuse of power-not from sexual attraction." (Petrocelli, Repa, pg. 1/5). This can be considered a broad statement and many ideas can be built upon it.

There has always been a great battle of the sexes. The relationship between the sexes in modern America indlcudes a great deal of violence against women. One out of every ten American women are reaped or...
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