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Blog | 05 March 2024

Sexual harassment training: More than a tick-box exercise!

We take a look at how Sexual Harassment and The Workplace Training can benefit your team!

Many of us spend a sizeable chunk of our waking weeks in the workplace. As such, it is vital that in these environments, everyone feels comfortable and safe. 

Sadly, this isn’t always the case, and sexual harassment remains prevalent in many work environments. Studies have shown that 52% of women have experienced sexual harassment in the workplace, with this rising to 68% of women with disabilities. Alongside this, nearly 3 in 10 men, and 7 out of 10 LGBT people are affected by these experiences at work. Incidents of sexual harassment, no matter how small, can have profound effects on an employee’s mental and physical health, their relationships, and can even seriously impact their ability to do their work.  

If we’re honest, we’re all probably aware that sexual harassment training has often been considered a tick-box exercise, but we know this undermines its essential purpose by reducing it to a mere formality. True engagement with this training is vital for creating a workplace environment where employees not only grasp legal boundaries but also internalise the values of mutual respect, communication and consent.

When treated superficially, the profound impact that comprehensive training can have on preventing harassment and promoting a safe and inclusive workplace is lost, and the risk of fostering a culture of complacency persists.   

However, there is good news on the horizon. We are pleased to see the Worker Protection Act, (known as the Amendment of Equality Act 2010), receiving Royal Assent towards the end of last year. This means from 25th October 2024 employers will have a proactive duty to undertake measures that ensure the prevention of sexual harassment in their workplaces.  

As a responsible employer, you must take reasonable steps to prevent sexual harassment of your staff – not only is there a significant human impact of sexual harassment, but should there be a breach of this duty, the potential compensation award you might be liable for could be increased by up to 25%.

So, how can we help? Our training options provide engaging and sensitive sessions, delivered by experts on the topic of sexual harassment and violence in the workplace.  

"[We had] a really useful and thought-provoking training session which the whole team benefited from."

Team Leader from Sexual Harassment and The Workplace Session.

We help employers take proactive steps in creating a safer and more comfortable workplace for everyone. We understand that these discussions can be difficult, but due to our extensive experience in the sector of sexual violence, we are more than familiar with navigating these topics carefully, whilst not shying away from difficult conversations. We also hold an intersectional lens to these dialogues, as we appreciate that people do not live single-issue lives, so may have compounded challenges they are experiencing.  

We offer a range of training options, including online and in-person sessions, that will equip you and your teams with the necessary skills and knowledge to help prevent sexual harassment at work. Our training is designed to educate employees on what sexual harassment is, how to recognise it, how to report it, how to support others, and how to prevent it.  

"The trainer was brilliant, knowledgeable and engaging and created a safe atmosphere for the group for this important training!"

Team member from Sexual Harassment and The Workplace Session.

We pride ourselves on providing high-quality training, and the best part is that all the money raised from our training sessions goes back into essential services for survivors. So, if you’re looking to fulfil your legal obligation, hold interesting sessions with staff, create a safe and comfortable workplace environment, and contribute to a meaningful cause, then please do get in touch to chat about how we can work together. 

To get in touch about booking your team or organisation on one of our sessions you can find more details HERE or email our Training and Partnerships Officer Helen at training@survivorsnetwork.org.uk