Fighting sexual harassment

Most people believe sexual harassment is when a man grabs hold of a woman and tries to molest her, against her consent. But what if a man doesn’t touch you at all and just passes abusive comments, or when a group of men make a woman uncomfortable by making fun of her using offensive language? Can these incidents of eve-teasing be addressed under sexual harassment acts?

As per law, any unwelcome sexual advances by a man, whether physical or verbal, are both  seen as a case of sexual harassment. There are cases where a man my show a woman his genitals or my make obscene gestures, and these too are included in sexual harassment. The sexual harassment law covers all these things, and the basic idea of establishing this law is to provide safe and harassment free work environment for women. But despite the law being there to safeguard a woman’s interests, sexual harassment is still widespread, and thousands of women become victims of sexual harassment each day.

Public authorities and several women’s organizations have continuously been working to curb down this social evil, but still the number of sexual harassment cases has been on the rise. There are TV shows, news broadcasts and several other awareness programs, through which these organizations are trying to create awareness in the public. Still sexual harassment of women continues at all levels, right from schools to workplaces. In most cases the culprits go unpunished because most women don’t know about their rights and how law can help them to get the miscreants behind bars.

Lots of school girls are regularly victimized by boys, in locker rooms, in school corridors and even in places outside the school premises. And 90% of the girls simply drink in the humiliation or suffer within, because they don’t know how they are supposed to act or react to the situation. So if you don’t want your daughter to become a victim of sexual harassment, then here are some things you can do.

•    Help your girl to understand what activities are normal and what sort of activities can be counted as sexual harassment.

•    Make you daughter more confident to handle such awkward situations and to be able to discuss things with you if she felt some guy was trying to do something wrong with her.

•    Get her enrolled for some self defense martial arts classes so that she can learn the basics of self defense and can escape the scene if some harasser tries to trouble her.

•    Make her understand that there is a law and there are several agencies that help in getting the sexual abusers punished, so she should never let go any act of sexual harassment without getting the culprit punished.