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Commission releases report of national inquiry into sexual harassment

Graphic: Sex Discrimination Commissioner Kate Jenkins with Senator Marise Payne at the report launch

The report is the culmination of an 18-month inquiry examining the nature and prevalence of sexual harassment in Australian workplaces.

Sex Discrimination Commissioner Kate Jenkins has launched Respect@Work, the Australian Human Rights Commission's report of the National Inquiry into Sexual Harassment in Australian Workplaces 2020.

The report is the culmination of a world-first 18-month national inquiry, which examined the nature and prevalence of sexual harassment in Australian workplaces, the drivers of this harassment and measures to address and prevent it.

"I feel privileged that so many Australians shared with us their personal experiences of sexual harassment at work, and I have been dismayed by the harms suffered by victims and the cost to the economy," Ms Jenkins said.


Workplace sexual harassment is prevalent and pervasive: it occurs in every industry and at every level across Australia. This is not simply the story of ‘a few bad apples’.

Australian Human Rights Commission Logo Kate Jenkins, Australian Sex Discrimination Commissioner

  • Data and research to deliver useful industry-based information about the nature of sexual harassment and effectiveness of actions.
  • Primary prevention of sexual harassment through education, media and community-wide initiatives.
  • A refocused legal and regulatory framework, which recognises the mutually reinforcing roles of workplace, safety and human rights laws.
  • Better workplace prevention and responses, which are leader-driven, victim-centred, practical and adaptable.
  • Better support, advice and advocacy for people who experience sexual harassment.

As revealed in Everyone's business, two in five women (39%) and one in four men (26%) have experienced sexual harassment in the workplace in the past five years.

"Sexual harassment is not a women's issue: it is a societal issue which every Australian, and every Australian workplace, can contribute to addressing," Ms Jenkins said.

Read Respect@Work: National Inquiry into Sexual Harassment in Australian Workplaces.

Date: 5 March 2020

Source: Australian Human Rights Commission


Image credits

  1. Sex Discrimination Commissioner Kate Jenkins with Senator Marise Payne at the report launch - Senator Marise Payne, Twitter