Sexual Harassment in the Workplace - Technical Consultation

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1. Sexual Harassment in the Workplace - Introduction

 
Who should respond to this consultation
This technical consultation invites views on the legislative framework surrounding the issues set out above. We welcome the views of organisations and from individuals with a detailed knowledge of the relevant laws.

If you are an individual who would like to share your personal views or experiences of harassment and discrimination, please respond to our public consultation.  

Background
The Government is committed to tackling sexual harassment in all its forms, both at work and outside it. Sexual harassment has been against the law for decades and strong, clear laws against it are set out in the Equality Act 2010. However, even though these laws are in place, recent reports, including those of the #metoo movement, have shown that there is still a real, worrying problem with sexual harassment.

We want everybody to feel safe at work so they can succeed and thrive. We’re therefore looking at whether the current laws on this issue provide the protections they’re supposed to, considering whether there are any gaps, and thinking about what more can be done at a practical level to ensure people are properly protected at work.

To help us with this we want to understand people’s experiences, focussing on some particular issues we might be able to tackle through changes to the law:
  • How best to make sure employers take all the steps they can to prevent harassment from happening
  • Strengthening and clarifying the law so it’s clear employers should protect their staff from being harassed by clients, customers, or other people from outside their organisation
  • If interns and volunteers are adequately protected by current laws and
  • If people should be given longer to take a harassment, discrimination or victimisation claim to an Employment Tribunal

Use of responses
The information we gather through both parts of the process will be used to help us review the existing laws on sexual harassment, and to decide if any changes are required. The responses will also help us to develop non- legislative ways to tackle the problem of sexual harassment in the workplace.