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We can push back sexism

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Issue 2588
Its great to see so many out on Womens Marches
It’s great to see so many out on Women’s Marches (Pic: Guy Smallman)

A Fawcett Society report this week laid bare the scale of sexual harassment in Britain.

Half of all women have suffered sexual harassment at work and nearly two thirds in public places. A fifth of women over 16 have been sexually assaulted.

The findings follow a year-long review of sex discrimination law by the charity.

It said women who suffer violence, abuse and harassment “lack access to justice”. Women’s sexual history is being used inappropriately in court hearings.

And more than a third of people hold women’s behaviour totally or partly responsible for sexual assaults they suffer

Experiences

The Unite union is surveying its members about their experiences of harassment at work.

It found that many women are made to feel that they are overreacting if they make a complaint.

Nearly half said harassment had affected their mental health. The Fawcett report recommends changes in the law to try and protect women.

Many laws, such as the Equal Pay Act, have been important steps forward for women.

But we will need more than legal changes to stamp out abuse and harassment.

That’s why it was good to see so many women, and some men, taking part in Women’s Marches last weekend.

Collective action can push back sexism.

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