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Research conducted by the Young Women's Trust has found that 76% of female HR practitioners believe sexism still exists in most organisations, and 40% believed that their own workplace was sexist. The research also found that 12% of those surveyed working for large employers were aware of sexual harassment going unreported in their organisation.
enei chief executive Denise Keating commented:
“We see from initiatives such as the Everyday Sexism Project that sexism remains rife, especially at low, supposedly “harmless” levels. The problem revealed in this research, that HR is aware of sexual harassment going unreported in 1 in 8 large organisations, is hugely worrying on a number of fronts.
“Firstly, why is this behaviour going unreported; do employees risk repercussions, or does HR not support them or take this behaviour seriously. Secondly, this represents a huge number of women whose career confidence is being damaged, preventing them from reaching their full potential. If these women are leaving their jobs to escape harassment they are missing out, as are employers as their talent jumps ship. Thirdly, with the removal of tribunal fees, employers risk finding out about this behaviour only when they are brought in front of a tribunal, with all the negative attention this brings.
“Encouraging and making it easy to report harassment and discrimination of any form has to be a priority for employers, as resolving an issue early costs far less than dealing with the consequences: replacing an employee, losing talent and tribunal judgments.”