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UN report reveals harassment at workplace has affected over 1 in 5

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Two colleagues brainstorming over paper.— Unsplash
Two colleagues brainstorming over paper.— Unsplash

According to a recent study, about 23% of those who are employed had encountered violence and harassment at work, whether it was physical, verbal, or sexual.

The International Labor Organization (ILO), Lloyd’s Register Foundation (LRF), and Gallup collaborated to produce this groundbreaking report.

It demonstrated that the Americas, followed by Africa, had the highest prevalence of workplace violence and harassment.

“It’s painful to learn that people face violence and harassment not just once but multiple times in their working lives,” Manuela Tomei, ILO assistant director-general for governance, rights, and dialogue, said at a press conference, reported Andalou Agency.

Psychological violence and harassment are the most prevalent across countries, and women are particularly exposed to sexual violence and harassment,” Tomei added.

She claimed that the report, which does not split down countries, informs us of the size of the effort required to put an end to workplace violence and harassment by providing regional, not national analyses.

The paper urges the regular gathering of comprehensive data on workplace violence and harassment at the national, regional, and international levels.

It also looks at things like shame, guilt, a lack of faith in authorities, or the perception that such unacceptable acts are “normal” that may hinder people from sharing their experiences.

Only half of the victims worldwide acknowledged their experiences to someone else, and sometimes only after they had been subjected to many acts of violence and harassment, according to the survey.

“Waste of time” and “concern for their reputation” were the most often cited justifications for not disclosing.

Globally, 8.5% of employed men and women reported having encountered physical violence and harassment at work, with more men than women reporting having done so. Nearly 18% of employed men and women reported having encountered psychological abuse and harassment.

Over 6% of respondents said they had experienced sexual abuse and harassment, with women being especially vulnerable.

Young people, migratory workers, and wage and salaried workers are those most at risk from violence and harassment.

Young women are more likely than young males to have experienced sexual assault or harassment, and migrant women are almost twice as likely to report such incidents as non-migrant women.

The ILO-LRF-Gallup study was based on interviews with nearly 75,000 employed people aged 15 or older conducted in 2021 as part of the Lloyd’s Register Foundation World Risk Poll in 121 countries and territories.

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