What’s Been Happening in Australia in Relation to Sexual Harassment, Discrimination and Bullying from 4 – 10 July 2022

Making Businesses Stamp Out Sexual Harassment ‘A No-Brainer’ For Gender Equality

Victorian experts have expressed views that many employers are not prepared for legislative changes regarding sexual harassment. Dr Niki Vincent, Victoria’s Commissioner for Gender Equality in the Public Sector has recently said that putting the onus on workplaces to educate and stop the behaviours is a “no brainer”. She said that many people do not recognise when they have experienced sexual harassment, so education is a key starting point. Most employers are not ready to meet “the positive duty” and that comprehensive policies will be needed for guidance. She called for employers to get organised for when new laws are introduced as a consequence of the Labor government’s commitment to implement all 55 recommendations from the Respect at Work Report.

Case Alleging Workplace Bullying Against Auditor-General Settled

The Victorian Auditor-General Andrew Greaves has been accused of bullying a former director, Kyley Daykin. She alleged that Andrew Greaves took adverse action against her by terminating her employment following a breakdown. The state of Victoria was a co-defendant in the lawsuit. The terms of the settlement are confidential. It is known that Ms Daykin left the organisation. She said that she had no history of mental illness before the incidents with Mr Greaves leading to two separate admissions to the Royal Melbourne Hospital.

Victoria Police Launches Service for Reporting Harassment On Public Transport

The Victorian Police is introducing a service that allows passengers on public transport to report sexual harassment and offensive behaviour. This is an Australian-first initiative. The tool, called STOPIT, provides a reporting mechanism for victims or witnesses to stop harassment on transport services. STOPIT even provides options for people to attach photographic evidence to their claim. The Superintendent Alison Boyes stated that “any situation which makes someone feel unsafe or uncomfortable” is reportable. People can text ‘STOPIT’ to 0499 455 455 to access the service while travelling.

FIFO Employers Urged to Do More To End Sexual Harassment Against Women

The Enough is Enough report into sexual harassment against women in the FIFO industry in Western Australia has been released. It includes recommendations on how to reduce sexual harassment including ensuring allegations being taken seriously. The report found that “significant work” is needed across the industry to address sexual harassment. This includes having better processes and systems of control in place to ensure workplace safety.