Sexual Harassment in the Workplace: South Africa and Indonesia collaborate

Duration: 2016

Funded by: The funder is CNV International, and this activity is part of project: Decent  Wages Asia 

Partners: LRS (Labour Research Service) South Africa, KSBSI (Jakarta), Mywage South Africa, Gajimu Indonesia

Project Management: Wage Indicator Foundation, Paulien Osse

Representatives from WageIndicator, KSBSI, trade unions, employers, NGOs and government gathered in Jakarta on October 19 to discuss the issue of sexual harassment in the workplace, and to seek collective ways of working to end it. Organised by WageIndicator Indonesia and South Africa branches, and KSBSI, the event took the form of a workshop and discussion to compare legislation, policies and collective bargaining agreements (CBAs) in Indonesia and South Africa, and to look at forging a way forward.

Workers in both Indonesia and South Africa experience sexual violence, in various forms, in the workplace. This can range from sexual comments, to inappropriate touching, to even rape. Both countries have various forms of legislation to combat sexual violence against women. Indonesia has, for example, the Constitution of the Republic of Indonesia, and the Criminal Code of Indonesia. South Africa has several laws including the Labour Relations Act, the Employment Equity Act and the Constitution of South Africa. These are very useful “blueprints” for creating CBAs and workplace policies.

The workshop examined what legislation is currently in place, how useful it is, and how workplaces – including trade union members and employers – can establish safe and effective ways of reporting, resolving, and ultimately ending, sexual violence in the workplace. The workshop explored how establishing strong CBAs and policies will ultimately lead to strong national legislation specifically against sexual violence in the workplace.

The workshop will also generate material, including a booklet and sexual harassment module for trade union members, employers, NGOs and government ministries to use in the fight against sexual violence in the workplace.





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