"Sat, Mar 27, 2010 - The New Paper They'd rather quit than complain
AN EMPLOYEE was quietly asked to resign after making sexually suggestive remarks to a subordinate.
In another case, it was the victim of the alleged sexual harassment who chose to go."
Sex is big news these days with Tiger Wood being the biggest in the international scene and Jack Neo in Singapore.
Sexual harassment at work is big in the USA while it is given as much attention in Singapore. However, with these scandals flying around, it is time to pick this up I guessed for the local media.
Lessons for me are:
1. we need to be very clear about office romance and office sexual harassment. They are not the same thing! For a supervisor, there is no room for behaving inappropriately to the co-workers of the opposite gender. For most of the MNCs, there are strict sexual harassment training program in place as well as strict code-of-conducts guidelines in place to help employees at all levels to understand what is sexual harassment and what one can do when they encountered such a situation. All are warned about the consequences. So, no excuse will be entertained;
2. when the person in authority abused his or her power to sexually harass the co-workers, there is no alternative but to ask him or her to leave no matter how competent he or she may be at work. Of course, the company may adopt a 2-strike and you are out rule with the culprits being given counselling and psychiatric help for the 1st violation IF the victim is prepared to give the abuser a 2nd chance;
3. for the victim to voice out any violation against them will depend greatly on the environment in which he or she worked. If it is tolerant of such behaviors, it will be very difficult for the victim to voice out and be heard. At the same time, sexual harassment charges cannot be banished around carelessly so there must be certain onus placed on any whistler blower to provide solid evidence of such behaviors.
May both parties know their rights, know what they must not do to be burdened with a potential 'sexual harassment' charge, so that all can work in peaceful coexistence and professional harmony to contribute positively to the success of the company they worked for!