The sexual harassment of women continues to be a global problem. While it can happen to men too, women bear the brunt of most of it. Much of it happens in the workplace and a new report shows that it is particularly rife in industries where the majority of workers are male.
Women have worked hard to break into male-dominated industries and show that they are just as capable as men. Sexual discrimination is partly a reaction to this. It’s certain men trying to exert power over these women and say they do not belong.
What sort of industries?
The report mentions construction, utilities, mining, transportation and warehousing as examples, but there will also be more industries, or sectors within particular industries, where the sexual harassment of women is above average. The police, the military and fire departments for example.
It’s not just outright sexual harassment that women have to put up with
Working in a male-dominated industry can also lead to other discriminatory issues. For example:
- Bosses may overlook women for promotion or training opportunities
- Women who do break the mold to become supervisors or managers may face dissent from men under their charge who are not used to, or happy about, taking orders from a woman
- Colleagues may expect female employees to do any domestic chores that crop up in the course of the job, such as making the coffee or tidying up after a meeting
The devastating effects of sexual harassment and discrimination help to keep these industries male-dominated. Reporting incidents of either is crucial to changing things and protecting your rights and those of the women that follow in your footsteps.