April 18, 2017

NYT Article -- Ombuds May Improve Sexual Harassment Reporting

An article in last week's New York Times explored the reasons why women do not report workplace sexual harassment. "Only a quarter to a third of people who have been harassed at work report it to a supervisor or union representative, and 2 percent to 13 percent file a formal complaint," according to one analysis. The Times offers some remedies and includes an Ombuds.
Here are some other ideas from the commission and researchers in the field:
  • Authorize dozens of employees throughout the organization to receive complaints, so that people can report to someone they’re comfortable with.
  • Hire an ombudsman.
  • Promote more women to positions of power.
  • Train people not in what not to do, but in how to be civil to colleagues, and how to speak up as a bystander — and have senior leaders attend the training sessions.
  • Put in proportional consequences, so that low-grade instances can be handled with conversations instead of firings or legal action. 
(NY Times, The Upshot.)

Related posts: IOA Releases Memo Providing Legal Grounds for Ombuds Confidentiality in Title IX Matters; Huffington Post Blogger: Uber Sexual Harassment Charge Shows Need for Ombuds; Facing Class Action Arbitration, Jewelry Giant to Establish Ombuds for Workers.

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