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  HOME PAGE 24/01/2022 10:33 
30.11.2021 17:57 News >> Report Finds Rampant Sexual Harassment In Australian Parliament

Report Finds Rampant Sexual Harassment In Australian Parliament

Set the Standard review makes 28 recommendations for reform within parliamentary workplaces.

One in three people currently working at the Australian parliament has experienced some form of sexual harassment, a new report revealed on Tuesday.
The report titled Set the Standard, submitted by Sex Discrimination Commissioner Kate Jenkins after a seven-month investigation, details experiences of people working at the Australian parliament, also known as Commonwealth Parliamentary Workplaces.
The high-profile inquiry into parliament's workplace culture was formed after parliamentary staffer Brittany Higgins alleged she was raped in a ministerial office in 2019.
According to the report, 37% of respondents had personally experienced bullying, 33% had personally experienced sexual harassment, with 1% experiencing an actual or attempted sexual assault.
The review found gender inequality, power imbalance and a lack of accountability as the key drivers of bullying, sexual harassment and sexual assault within the parliamentary workplaces.
After interviewing over 1,723 individuals and 33 organizations, the report that was tabled in the federal parliament made 28 recommendations for reform. Those include a joint Statement of Acknowledgement that owns and accepts the problem, establishing a new Office for Staffing and Culture to support parliamentarians, and the creation of an Independent Parliamentary Standards to hold people to account for misconduct.
In a statement, Higgins welcomed the report and hoped it will inspire "immediate action."
"I want to thank the many brave people who shared their stories which contributed to this review. I hope all sides of politics not only commit to but implement these recommendations in full," she said in a statement sent via the Australian National University, where she is now a visiting fellow.
Morrison welcomes 'important' review
Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison thanked all those who contributed to the report, saying "these experiences, observations and insights will be crucial to driving the positive change that is required."
He said "every single Australian has a right to feel and to be safe at work, and it is clear that "practical and cultural changes" are necessary to make the country's parliamentary workplaces safer.
To drive this change, he said, Finance Minister Simon Birmingham and the Special State Minister Ben Morton will consult with the opposition, minor parties and the independents on a way forward to respond to the report.
*Writing by Islamuddin Sajid -



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