South Eastern Centre Against Sexual Assault & Family Violence

Information for apprentices about sexual harassment

For Family & Friends, Female Survivors, Male Survivors, Teachers, Workers, Young People

Tags: Legal Information, Sexual Harassment

Author: South Eastern CASA

The following information is for apprentices who are:

  • being sexually harassed by another apprentice.
  • being sexually harassed by a co-worker.
  • being sexually harassed by a boss or supervisor.
  • being sexually harassed by someone at their learning institution.
  • being sexually harassed by a customer.

How do you know what is sexual harassment and what is 'just a joke'?

Sexual harassment is any unwanted or uninvited sexual behaviour that is offensive, embarrassing, intimidating or humiliating. It has nothing to do with mutual attraction or friendship.

Sexual harassment is not just about the behaviour of another person, it is also about how it affects you. It can alter your concentration and attitude towards work, which in turn can affect your work performance and chance of promotion.

Source: Australian Council of Trade Unions

What can I do if I am sexually harassed?

Here are some options for action:

  • You may be able to resolve the situation quickly yourself by explaining to the person who is harassing you that their behaviour is unwanted;
  • Speak to your employer;
  • Many large companies have an Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) Officer. This person may be able to resolve the situation.
  • For advice about your particular situation or to get more info, contact the Australian Human Rights Commission (Phone: 02 9284 9600, Complaints: 1300 656 419) as sexual harassment is covered by equal opportunity laws.

More info: Australian Human Rights Commission

Other organisations that may be able to help

Officers from the Australian Apprenticeships Centres in each State and Territory will come out to inspect the workplace and try to resolve disputes between apprentices and employers.

Their contact details can be obtained by calling: 13 38 78 or visiting the Australia Government website.

The Australian Government funds a range of employment and employment related services and support, including training and apprenticeships, for people with disability. You can search the range of services and support using the A-Z list at: Australian Job Access website.

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