The sexual harassment scandal that closed the door on Fox News media titan Roger Ailes and led to a $20 million payout for his accuser has cast a spotlight on a subject that has long been kept secret. Now, more and more women are deciding to stand up for themselves by opening up a discussion on sexual harassment in media. Newsweek published the stories of 53 women and two men who experienced sexual harassment related to their jobs in journalism. Middletown sexual harassment lawyers report that the participants recounted their experiences of varying degrees of sexual harassment – from inappropriate comments and unwanted advances to physical and sexual assault.
Key Survey Findings
As illustrated by the Ailes case, sexual harassment can happen to anyone regardless of how advanced they are in their career. However, most of the Newsweek respondents said they were sexually harassed when they were just starting out as journalist. Several of the victims said they were still in college and working as interns when the misconduct took place, including one who claims she was sexually assaulted. The survey participants described harassment that included:
- Comments/jokes about sex or appearance (53 percent)
- Intimidation that included threats and attempts to start relationships (18 percent)
- Unwanted physical conduct (11 percent)
- Sexual violence (13 percent)
- Other (5 percent)
While the most common sources of harassment were supervisors (40 percent) and colleagues (24 percent), women journalists are often subject to harassment by those outside the office. Working with the public can be risky, especially when working in a chaotic environment or in a part of the world that does not offer legal protection against sexual misconduct.
Sexual Harassment in Journalism Often Goes Un-Reported
Sexual harassment in the media industry is far more pervasive than most people realize. In 2013, a study conducted by the International Women’s Media Foundation found that nearly two-thirds of women journalists have experienced some form of sexual harassment on the job. Of the 822 women polled, most never reported the incident to a supervisor and many said that they still work with the offender.
Reporting sexual harassment is never easy, but the nature of the media industry makes it especially difficult for journalists. The most commonly cited reason victims failed to report incidents was fear of retaliation. Most of the respondents said they were reluctant to burn any bridges because of the tenuous nature of their jobs and because the chances that they would end up working with the offender again at some point are extremely high.
Middletown Sexual Harassment Lawyers at McOmber McOmber & Luber, P.C. Advocate for Victims of Sexual Misconduct
Victims of sexual harassment or sexual assault should never feel like they must sit in silence. If you or someone you know has been a victim of sexual misconduct in the workplace, the Middletown sexual harassment lawyers at McOmber McOmber & Luber, P.C. can help you find your voice. Contact us online or call today to discuss your rights and legal options with one of our dedicated and highly skilled New Jersey employment lawyers. Reach us at our Marlton, New Jersey office by calling 856-985-9800 or our Red Bank office by calling 732-842-6500 to arrange a free and confidential consultation.