When people think of sexual harassment, they often think of women as the victims. However, this is not always the case. Men are also victims of harassment at the workplace and more males have come forward to report this offense. According to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, 7,609 people filed sexual harassment reports in 2018. Approximately 15.9% of those claims were filed by males, a substantial increase from the 11% of claims that were filed in 1997. This number is thought to be even higher, however, as some men are too embarrassed or ashamed to report these types of incidents.
Sexual discrimination can come in a number of forms, including unwanted sexual advances, comments or requests for sexual favors. Employees may be told they are not able to advance in their career if they do not submit to the advances or bribed with an incentive if they go along with the unwanted behavior. Men can be harassed by other male or female co-workers or managers.
In one case, an aide to the Homeland Security Secretary was put on administrative leave after reports accused her of making harassing comments to male workers. Furthermore, several corporations have recently been under scrutiny and paid settlements out to male workers who were victimized by sexual harassment from female co-workers. Although the EEOC reports that females are six times more likely than males to be victims of sexual harassment, the devastating consequences this abuse has on male workers should not be undermined. It is important to keep in mind that all workers have the potential to become victims of sexual harassment and everyone should have access to resources should this occur.