Employers turning a blind eye to gendered violence are on notice, with the Andrews Labor Government introducing new guidance to help eradicate this unacceptable behaviour from Victorian workplaces.
Women, members of the LGBTIQA+ community, migrants and persons with a disability are more likely to experience gendered violence as well as when a person faces multiple forms of discrimination.
The guidance provides information on identifying, preventing and responding to gendered violence in the workplace, which can range from comments and gestures through to sexual assault and rape.
Work-related gendered violence is any behaviour affecting a person because of their sex, gender or sexual orientation, or because they don’t adhere to socially prescribed gender roles, that creates a risk to health and safety. This can include:
- Stalking, intimidation or threats
- Verbal abuse
- Ostracism or exclusion
- Offensive language and imagery
- Put downs, innuendo and insinuations
- Someone being undermined in their role.
Victorian employers face serious consequences under the Occupational Health and SafetyAct if they fail to provide a safe working environment.
WorkSafe has developed A Guide for employers: Work-related gendered violence including sexual harassment in consultation with the Victorian Trades Hall Council and other employer and employee representative groups.
Where there is a risk of work-related gendered violence causing physical or mental injury, employers have an obligation under the OHS Act to control that risk, in addition to their obligations under the Equal Opportunity Act.
For support dealing with gendered violence in the workplace, find the guidance at worksafe.vic.gov.au/resources.