Do not ask for sex as refusal may offend!

TRIGGER WARNING – SEXUAL HARRASSMENT

Had a massage this week, which was well deserved after a seemingly very long school holiday break. As I sat and waited I noticed this sign on the wall.

I read it about a dozen times because I could not quite understand its intention. I know that this establishment does not do “happy endings”, but DO NOT ASK FOR SEX AS REFUSAL MAY OFFEND?

Which to me means that they are more concerned about offending someone than actually being sexually harassed. And this did not sit well with me. Maybe the sign should read something like “Sexual Harassment will be reported to the Police.”

The topic of sexual harassment is HUGE this week with Hollywood Heavyweight Harvey Weinstein finally being exposed after decades of sexually harassing and allegedly raping women in the film business. As news unfolded over the week, I knew that this was going to be the tip of the iceberg. I expect this story has only just begun. Weinstein has apparently left the United States a la Roman Polanski style. He makes my skin crawl.

Did you know that one in five Australian women are sexually harassed in the workplace? That means that there is a whole lot of fellas out there who thinks that it is perfectly acceptable to do any of the following. (taken from the Australian Human Rights Commission)

  • staring or leering
  • unnecessary familiarity, such as deliberately brushing up against you or unwelcome touching
  • suggestive comments or jokes
  • insults or taunts of a sexual nature
  • intrusive questions or statements about your private life
  • displaying posters, magazines or screen savers of a sexual nature
  • sending sexually explicit emails or text messages
  • inappropriate advances on social networking sites
  • accessing sexually explicit internet sites
  • requests for sex or repeated unwanted requests to go out on dates
  • behaviour that may also be considered to be an offence under criminal law, such as physical assault, indecent exposure, sexual assault, stalking or obscene communications.

And those numbers are just the ones that are reported. Many do not report it due to the fear of consequences of doing so.

Recently, after the death of Hugh Hefner, I read some particular hideous accounts of what really went down at the Playboy Mansion. Please only read this if you have a strong constitution. The man who boasted to be a champion of women and the leader of the Sexual Revolution was really just a fucked up, dirty pervert who saw women as objects, to de discarded when no longer needed.

But what to do about it?

If it is happening to you, report it. If it is happening to a woman that you work with, support her and urge her to report it. Stand up to it.

For further information about Sexual Harassment and how to report it, please click here.

Have you witnessed sexual harassment of any kind?

Has it ever happened to you?