Sexually Harassed at Work

An Overview of the Research in the Nordic Countries

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Available online: https://pub.norden.org/temanord2020-521/ Abstract [en]: Sexual harassment is a major social problem in working life in the Nordic countries, which the Me Too movement of autumn 2017 demonstrated in particular. This research overview has been compiled on behalf of the Nordic Council of Ministers for Gender Equality with the purpose to provide an account of current knowledge about sexual harassment in the workplace in the Nordic countries and to identify the knowledge gaps to form the basis for a Nordic research initiative. The work is based on a survey of the research into the various ways in which sexual harassment is expressed in people's working lives based on occupations of varying nature, in professional situations, in peer relations, and in meetings with customers, patients and clients. The overview is based on a systematic review of the research and other relevant literature from the Nordic countries between the years 2014–2019.

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As countries around the world faced the COVID 19 outbreak in the early spring of 2020, many drew up official lists of ‘key workers’, whose children enjoyed priority to childcare and education. These lists of key workers demonstrate the importance of education, health and social care and other frontline services, not only in responding to a pandemic, but also for the general functioning of our societies. Many of these occupations are dominated by women, abroad as well as within the Nordic countries. Interestingly, some of these occupations also suffer from high rates of sexual and gender-based harassment, exposing power structures not only at work, but in society more generally.

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