Non Traditional approach
Do the startling: Name the behaviour. Whatever the harasser has just done, say it, and be specific.
· Hold the harasser or sexual harasser accountable for his/her actions. Don’t make excuses for the harasser; don’t pretend it didn’t really happen. Take charge of the encounter and let people know what the harasser did. Privacy protects harassers, but visibility undermines them. don’t suffer in silence. (not sure about how to do this, give us a call).
· Make honest, direct statements. Speak the truth (no threats, no insults, no obscenities, no appeasing verbal fluff and padding). Be serious, straightforward, and blunt. If need be, make notes, bullet points, so when you put your complaint in, or confront your harasser, “your on point”, your not going to get distracted, or “brushed off” by the employer.
· Demand that the harassment stop. Don’t ask, don’t mention, don’t suggest. Make it clear that all people have the right to be free from sexual harassment. Objecting to harassment is a matter of principle.
· Stick to your own agenda. Don’t respond to the harasser’s excuses or diversionary tactics. Some employers want to drag the conversation back to your performance, its your excuse because you haven’t meet your KPI’s, whatever. Keep going back to why your there. Don’t get into some legal argument or the what sexual harassment means or the dictionary definition of sexual harassment is. Stick to the facts.
. Some sexual harassers cleverly try and try and turn it around on you, they are the victim for you accusing them “when i told my mum that i had a complaint of sexual harassment against me, she collapsed and had to go to hospital”, that’s your fault, no its not. You have rights
· The harasser’s behaviour is the issue. Say what you have to say, and repeat it if the behaviour persists. Become for powerful within your self, reinforce your message, your complaints, if it stops good. If not when you take your complaint to the Fair work Commission or a human rights body, your claim will be even stronger. none of this “i didn’t know about it”, states the employer, “she only mentioned it once”, and we never heard from her again, “we didn’t know that was a complaint”.
· Reinforce your statements with strong, self-respecting body language: eye contact, head up, shoulders back, a strong, serious stance. Don’t smile. Timid, submissive body language will undermine your message. They must get the message your serious, that you will do something about it, if your sexual harassment or harassment complaint is not satisfactorily dealt with. Keep your self respect, stand up for what’s right.
· Respond at the appropriate level. Use a combined verbal and physical response to physical harassment.
. Keep records: Keep track of what happens in a journal or diary and keep any letters or notes or other documents you receive. Keep copies of any offensive material at the workplace. Write down the dates, times (including frequency of offensive encounters), places, and an account of what happened.
. In allot of complaints there isn’t any evidence of the sexual harassment or harassment, that’s not the test, its on the balance of probabilities, so don’t be put off, or distracted by the employer saying “what evidence do you have?” If you have evidence copy if, keep a copy at home, show your employer, they then they have no choice but to deal with the sexual harassment or harassment.