Sexual Harassment at Workplace

The article “Organizational Sexual Harassment Investigations: Observers’ Perceptions of Fairness” by Elkin et al (2008) describes the case of sexual harassment on the workplace and its impact on human relations. The authors underline that despite of great improvements in social relation legislation, sexual harassment is still a main problem took place at workforce. Female’s experience of harassment is not simply in the immediate action, but is compounded by the attitudes of social institutions to abuse, discrimination, harassment, and aggression that perpetuate and reproduce the violence in lives of women employees. Female’s experience of violence and the social and institutional attitudes to this sexual abuse of rights vary by the identities of women and perpetrators and the specific workplace and social contexts. The main signs of sexual harassment involve blaming of women employees, the apathy towards them, the indifference, and sometimes contempt and hostility women face from top management, from other personnel and from judges. The typically negative responses to female employees who experience violence are often as cutting as the actions because they reinforce the information that female employees are to blame, that female employees deserve to be abused, that women accept sexual harassment and that they are unworthy of social justice. “Research has found that the more actions taken by an employer to address sexual harassment , the more favorably employees viewed the organization” (Elkin et al 2008, p. 88).

The legal concerns are that such behavior is illegal when it is used by managers and makes employees decide whether to hire or fire someone; when it is used to determine salary, promotion, or job performance; and when it creates a hostile, or unpleasant work environment. In the last twenty years, the diversity and antidiscrimination struggle to end sexual harassment against female employees has sought to create messages to describe, to protest, and to transform the conditions of female lives. Women activists created and developed terms such as “battered woman, ” “wife battering, ” and “sexual violence, ” among women, to simplify the social and political issues of interpersonal/institutional harassment and discrimination based on gender differences against women. Yet this language often gets included into a social structure that violates rights of women rather than critically analyzes the social problems of the sexual harassment. Sexual harassment involves the victimization, the oppression, the lack of support, the pain of betrayal, or the despair of battery and rape at workplace. Female employees go on to live in societies where intimate, group abuse and sexual harassment are not documented and it’s necessary to describe their painful experience (Elkin et al 2008).

In sum, sexual harassment against female employees is illegal and unlawful. Speaking out about the harm done and labeling the emotional pain of women caused by such issues as battering, rape, incestuous assault, and/or attempted murder are essential issues of healing, revival, self-development and social transformations. When critics only describe the damage caused to each woman and when critics exclusively seek corroboration and support for the female pain endured, it results in depression and despair. Strict legal actions against sexual harassment and additional training would be effective. Sexual harassment is an product of individual and institutional sexist behaviors. Often sexual harassment takes a significant amount of courage for female employees to report such cases. The main characteristics of sexually harassed women are embarrassment, intimidation, and stress. Female employees are real victims of unpleasant situations and frequently suffer from stress-related problems.


Dobrich, W., Dranoff, S., Maatman, G. (2002). The Manager’s Guide to Preventing a Hostile Work Environment. McGraw-Hill.

Elkins, T. J., Phillips, J.S., Ward, S. G. (2008). Organizational Sexual Harassment Investigations: Observers’ Perceptions of Fairness. Journal of Managerial Issues, 20 (1), 88.

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