Almost one in ten people in employment has experienced physical violence and harassment at work in their working life. A survey wherein people were asked what kind of violence and harassment they have encountered at work and how frequently, the revelations have been rather alarming.
Globally, 8.5 per cent or 277 million persons in employment have experienced physical violence and harassment in their working life. About 71.8 per cent of these incidents last occurred within the last five years. That means, 6.1 per cent or 199 million of the employed people in the world have recently experienced violence or harassment at work, which includes hitting, restraining or spitting.
More than one in five, that is, about 22.8 per cent or 743 million employed people have experienced at least one form of violence and harassment at work during their working life.
Among employees who have experienced violence and harassment at work, about one-third, that is, about 31.8 per cent have experienced more than one form of harassment, with 6.3 per cent having faced all three forms of harassment and violence — physical, psychological and sexual — in their working life.
The report reveals that men are more likely than women to report experiencing physical violence and harassment.
Alarmingly, psychological violence and harassment is the most common form of violence and harassment reported by both men and women. Almost one in five, that is, 17.9 per cent or 583 million employed people have reported experiencing psychological violence during their working life.
One in fifteen, that is, 6.3 per cent or 205 million employed people have admitted to experiencing sexual violence and harassment at work in their working life.
Women are particularly exposed to sexual violence and harassment at work (8.2 per cent women, compared to 5.0 per cent of men) among the three forms of violence and harassment.
Talking about personal experiences of violence and harassment remains a challenge. Only slightly more than half (54.4 per cent) of victims have shared their experience with someone, and often only after they have experienced more than one form of violence and harassment. The report found that people are more likely to confide in friends or family, rather than other informal or formal channels.
The report was brought out by the Gender, Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Branch (GEDI) of the Conditions of Work and Equality Department (WORKQUALITY) of the International Labour Office, Lloyd’s Register Foundation and Gallup.