How society silences victims of sexual harassment


Bombshell allegations against Harvey Weinstein Kevin Spacey Roy Moore
Al Franken Reporter Glenn Thrush
Congressman John Conyers Charlie Rose
Matt Lauer Sexual harassment in the workplace is pervasive. In 2017, every damn woman still has a story. 1 in 3 women and 15% of men experienced it. And that’s a conservative estimate. If the EEOC wanted to have nothing but a docket
of sexual harassment cases, they could fill their docket completely with sexual harassment
claims. In 1986, the Supreme Court declared sexual
harassment in the workplace to be a violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Anita Hill: I do
Joe Biden: Thank you. And then in 1991, What happened next and telling the world about it are the 2 most difficult things — experiences of my life. That’s Anita Hill testifying about now-Supreme
Court Justice Clarence Thomas He talked about pornographic materials, depicting
individuals with large penises, or large breasts involved in various sex acts. Unfortunately, her testimony had repercussions
she didn’t anticipate. It was suggested that I had fantasied, that I was a spurned woman, and that I had a martyr complex. And it’s not so different today. In fact, it’s one of the biggest reasons
why three out of four individuals who experienced harassment never report it. We don’t have a culture right now in the
workplace that allows for women or victims to come forward and not
receive consequences. And to be quite honest there’s not very
many victims of harassment that want to even go through with a charge because of all of
the impediments. Impediments like, how do you actually report
a claim in the workplace? Do you go to HR? Only if you think it would be good to call
the KGB to complain about Putin. The human resources department is not actually
a resource for humans it’s a resource for the company and it’s
there to protect the company from liability. If a victim of harassment decides to take
legal action, they may be forced into arbitration, which is written into some employment agreements. You’ve given up your 7th amendment right
to go in front of an open jury process. You will go to a secret proceeding called
forced arbitration, and nobody will ever hear about what happened to you. Some victims of harassment would actually
chose arbitration. i think that aspect of it that is a concern
is when it is forced in every situation. Companies also often use non-disclosure agreements
which ensure that neither side can ever go public. Secret confidential settlements is a way to
shut us up. Though, given the potential for backlash — confidentiality
might not be such a bad thing. Sometimes the nondisclosure agreement is actually
in the victim’s best interest as well. The problem is not the non-disclosure agreement,
the problem is the company. If the company uses the non-disclosure agreement
as a shield for that employee then it’s the company’s fault, it’s not the victims fault. Confidentiality leaves victims less vulnerable
to retaliation — but it’s not a perfect shield. I have been slut shamed. I have been harassed. I have been maligned. And you know what, I am just like you. 75% of employees who spoke out against harassment
experienced retaliation. We’re not just talking about getting fired,
any negative change after you’ve reported harassment could be retaliation. And if your report is public, it could even
extend to your future employment opportunities. Imagine you’re a low wage worker or a worker
with uncertain immigration status, that’s an impossible impediment. It’s similarly impossible to weigh the staggering
impact on society. How many women have been forced out of the
labor force based on sexual harassment or assault or other types of discrimination that
they’ve experienced in the workplace? You just think of like all of the women who
could have been. We’re fooling our culture into thinking
we’ve come so far. Why? Because we’re not hearing about it. That is, by far the biggest problem. Between retaliation, and the fact that most
perpetrators walk away unscathed, it’s no wonder that so many victims decide not to report. I’ve experienced sexual harassment myself. I didn’t want to file a complaint, I didn’t
want to necessarily let anybody in the company know what was going on. I just really wanted it to stop. People are calling this moment: A watershed moment A watershed time
A watershed moment Reckoning
Turning point Turning point Maybe it is. But it’s not enough for just a handful of
men to face consequences. We’re in a kind of this epidemic of accountability
and I just want to keep it going. But you know, then we have to think and do
the hard work. What does accountability look like? Sure. This is a moment where powerful people are
being held accountable in a way that they’ve never been before. But this problem is big. And unless the structures that perpetuate
it are dealt with, this moment won’t make a damn difference.

2 thoughts on “How society silences victims of sexual harassment

  1. When you're a guy and that happens to you nobody takes you seriously, nobody wants to get involved oh, and they will get rid of you at the work place, if you're a man they will put the blame on you! they will say you probably did something to cause it! it just doesn't go just for women it goes for anybody that gets any kind of harassment, nobody wants to get involved! probably because it makes them feel very uncomfortable!

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