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Sexism at work on the increase


Workplace sexism is rising, with almost three quarters (72 per cent) of women claiming they have been bullied because of their gender.

Women in 2006 feel more bullied at work than they did in 2002, legal services company Peninsula reports. The survey of 2,067 female staff found the amount of women feeling bullied at work rose from 67 per cent in 2002 to 72 per cent this year.

Only eight per cent of women surveyed said they would report an incident of bullying to their employer.

More than four in five (82 per cent) women think their gender has damaged their ability to progress in their career, up four per cent from 2002.

Managing director of Peninsula Peter Done said equal opportunity policies are an important part of employment contracts and business should communicate this to staff to avoid legal problems.

"Tribunals are increasingly looking at written policies and procedures enforced by employers and will almost certainly find an employer to be failing in their duty of care if they do not have a written and well-publicised equal opportunities policy," he said.


4 Responses

  1. Small business culture is often better than in larger organisati
    Equal Opportunities Policies are only as good as those people who implement and monitor practices in the workplace. It is essential that a policy is well communicated and becomes a living breathing part of the culture in the workplace. Small businesses are often the best practitioners as the culture is often more benevolent and less discriminatory. However, this does not mean that some small business employers still have an opinion that discriminates against women and the impact of maternity leave. This is usually the greatest area of discrimination and leads to most dismissals or redundancies.

  2. Interesting…
    …in that these surveys never look at men being bullied by women in positions of authority.

    Which in my experience is actually more common than vice-versa and men often feel far more intimidated when it comes to complaining about this treatment than women do.

    That’s not to say that all women bosses are bullies (far from it, I have had some excellent female bosses myself) but that it’s time that it was recognised that they exist and need dealing with as much as male bosses in the same position.

  3. Lazy journalism
    Per-lease – no link to the research itself so we cant see the quesions asked and how subjective or open to interpretation they are. Second its published by a legal services company (as they always are). Thirdly people ‘feeling’ more this and more that.
    One day I FEEL tired the next I dont, it doesnt mean I am tired or stressed, its just a vague perception that may or may not have a foundation.

    The increase is 5%, (approx 155 staff), it takes one bad employer to make that number. The sample size is too small.

    “Tribunals are increasingly looking at policies…” what’s the increase? – again no specifics to back this nebulous statement up.
    If you tell people the world is against them long enough then they start to believe you.

  4. Really Bullying?
    Sorry if I sound like I am defending bullies, I am not but is it really a case of they are being bullied more or is it as my 72 year mother says women in the 50’s 60’s and 70’s could handle men better.

    I am at the front of the queue to dealing and go ballistic when I hear a Headmaster say “but we don’t have a bullying problem” when a yet another child kills themselves because of bullying but over the past 5 years I have come across an increasing number of cases where employee have claimed their manager was bullying them and the investigation has shown they were doing no more that trying to get the employee to do some work.


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