Questions and answers about sexual harassment

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What is sexual harassment?
According to the Discrimination Act, sexual harassment includes words, comments, intrusive looks, unwelcome compliments, insinuations or acts of a sexual nature. It is the victim’s own experience that determines whether sexual harassment has taken place.
Where is the limit?
Anyone who offends another person must understand that the behaviour is not appreciated and know how it is perceived for behaviour to be regarded as sexual harassment. That means the victim must speak up, either directly or through a safety officer, colleague or manager. Writing an e-mail or a letter is also a good method.
What must the employer do?
If an employer is aware of a case of sexual harassment, an investigation of the incident is obligatory. If the investigation shows that harassment has taken place, the employer is obliged to take adequate measures to stop it.
How is harassment stopped?
Necessary measures are assessed on a case-by-case basis, but the first stage is often telling the offending person. After that comes a warning, relocation and, as a last resort, giving notice to the offender.
What does a person do if their manager is offensive?
The victim can go to a safety officer, a more senior manager or directly to the discrimination ombudsman. If they are in the trade union they can also go to the nearest shop steward for support and help.

Source: Discrimination ombudsman:

Read more about sexual harassment and abuse in the workplace at www.do.se.

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