Men and women alike can be victims of workplace bullying. Bullying may include:
- physical or verbal abuse
- yelling, screaming or offensive language
- excluding or isolating employees
- psychological harassment (cruel verbal comments, actions or gestures)
- assigning meaningless tasks, unrelated to the job
- giving employees impossible jobs
- deliberately changing work rosters to inconvenience particular employees
- undermining work performance by deliberately withholding information needed to do the job.
Bullying and harassment can have a devastating effect on your self esteem. It can lead to depression, anxiety, addictive behaviour and suicide. If you’re being bullied or harassed you dread or fear going to work each day.
If this is happening to you, YOU MUST DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT IMMEDIATELY.
Bullying and harassment is a work health and safety matter. Every employer has a duty to provide a safe workplace for all employees.
Sexual harassment can take various forms. It can involve unwelcome or unwanted:
- touching, hugging or kissing
- suggestive comments or jokes
- invitations to go out on dates or requests for sex
- insults or taunts of a sexual nature
- sexually-explicit emails or text messages.
Did you know?
- Both men and women can experience sexual harassment at work.
- Young people can experience sexual harassment from older managers or co-workers and it is most commonly experienced by women.
- An individual can experience sexual harassment from someone of the same sex.
What you can do
- Talk to someone, preferably someone who can help you to take steps to make it stop, especially if you feel uncomfortable, unsafe or frightened.
- There are also many people outside work who can help you, such as older friends or family members, teachers or school counsellors.
- You may not want to complain because you don’t want to make a fuss or risk losing your job, but it is important to tell someone in your workplace (e.g. your union representative or health and safety representative).
- If you want to make a complaint about bullying behaviour contact the Australian Human Rights Commission:
Phone: 1300 656 419 or 02 9284 9888
SMS: 0488 744 487 (0488 RIGHTS)
TTY: 1800 620 241 (toll free)
Fax: 02 9284 9689
- Contact WorkCover Inspectors in your state or territory. Contact the Fair Work Infoline on 13 13 94 or chat online with a Live help adviser if you feel you are being harassed or discriminated against at work.
- Find more information on young people’s rights in the workplace.
- Find out more about bullying and harassment by searching for bullying at Reach Out.