A 2003 study reveals that during an economic downturn sexual harassment cases spike in the work place. South Africa has faced two economic downgrades this year and has been declared to be in a technical recession.
“Harassment in the workplace increases when gender identity is threatened. The prototypical male stereotype of not being reliant on others is threatened, and comes to the fore when times are tough,” said Mariella del Valle, intern organisational psychologist at Cliffe Dekker Hofmeyr.
The study by economist Kaushik Basu also reveals that half of women and 10% to 20% of men are sexually harassed at work and only 6% of those who face harassment actually lodge a complaint.
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