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3 factors that increase the risk of workplace sexual harassment

On Behalf of | Mar 23, 2023 | Sexual Harassment

Many different variables contribute to how likely sexual harassment is to occur in a particular Indiana work environment. Everything from how a company operates and what it values to who it caters to and what product or service it provides makes a difference in terms of how likely this type of treatment is to occur.

Per the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, certain environmental and organizational factors have the potential to breed sexual harassment more than others. Some of the factors are as follows.

1. Notable power disparities

Sexual harassment is more prevalent in work environments where some employees have significant levels of power over others. Many hospitality environments have such structures, and female employees are particularly at risk because they tend to hold fewer positions of power than their male peers.

2. Party atmospheres

Sexual harassment is also common in work environments that tolerate or encourage alcohol consumption, especially around young people. In fact, a young workforce is another risk factor for sexual harassment, so work settings that pair alcohol and young people together are often hotbeds for sexual harassment.

3. Employees who rely on tips

Sexual harassment may, too, occur more often in work environments where employees have to depend on tips. Because a worker’s pay depends to some degree on a customer’s satisfaction, that worker may become more likely to tolerate sexual harassment than he or she would normally.

Many victims of workplace sexual harassment never come forward. Many who neglect to do cite a fear of retaliation among their reasons for not speaking out.


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