Sexual Harassment National Inquiry Report Released

The Australian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) has recently released their report, Respect@Work: Sexual Harassment National Inquiry Report (2020), which follows on from their 2018 research into this issue.

In their 2018 Survey the AHRC found that 61% of women say they have experienced some form of sexual harassment when provided with its legal definition, an increase from 21% in 2012.  In response to these statistics CSA undertook a survey within Christian schools as outlined here.

The AHRC Report largely contains high level recommendations for Commonwealth and State/Territory governments and their agencies.  Of potential impact for schools is Recommendation 10 that proposes: “All Australian governments ensure children and young people receive school-based respectful relationships education that is age appropriate, evidence-based and addresses the drivers of gender-based violence, including sexual harassment.”  Certainly elements of this are addressed in the Thriving in Community resource and in school programs more broadly. 

The provision of greater support material and amendments to clarify expectations and responsibilities under workplace and health and safety law would certainly be welcome – although arguably this behaviour should be self-evidently unacceptable.