Workplace Sexual Harrassment

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2024 National Women's Conference
12 October 2023
Carried as Amended

Workplace Sexual Harassment

Numerous surveys run over the course of the pandemic have demonstrated an increase in workplace sexual harassment, with most experiences being online. Homeworking has left women workers unsafe and unprotected from sexual harassment at work. Current protections are clearly not enough.

Women have experienced harassment on various online platforms and felt unable to challenge behaviours as they have been delivered in a jokey manner. Women have felt their privacy invaded as colleagues have been able to see their homes. There is a sense that there is a lack of boundaries because we are no longer in a typical work environment.

These risks are not limited to online incidences, with workers in health services feeling unable to address such behaviours through formal policies because efforts were diverted to clinical management issues because of the strain COVID placed on services.

Furthermore, physical working spaces are less populated because of social distancing and work from home guidance, leaving workers feeling more exposed and vulnerable.

In response to these trends, members of the women’s committee have developed a toolkit addressing workplace sexual harassment and a presentation has been successfully delivered in Cwm Taf local authorities.

The Cymru Wales Women’s committee is calling for National Women’s Committee to work with the NEC, UNISON and TUC to:

• Produce a toolkit to be rolled out across the union.

• Arrange training for activists and members that is accessible and meets working times of all members to ensure those working shift patterns are able to attend

• For guidance on WTUC resources to be shared, accessed by branches and utilised.

• To encourage regions and branches to raise the matter through the Workforce Partnership Councils with the aim of seeking a cross public sector policy addressing sexual harassment in the workplace.

Cymru Wales Women’s Committee