On 14 March 2018 WLA ACT held a panel event with Prue Bindon, Barrister of Key Chambers, Jennifer Wyborn, Partner at Clayton Utz, and Simone Ey, a human resources professional and Managing Director of Citron Consultng. The panel explored what the #MeToo Movement means for legal practice and legal workplaces.
The panelists discussed the meaning of sexual harassment and emphasised that an act can be sexual harassment even if the perpetrator would not consider it to be so - it is more important to examine how the receiving person perceived the conduct. The panelists emphasised the need for further training and education on sexual harassment and noted that the lack of reporting of incidences of sexual harassment is a huge issue.
Some general advice to employers from the panel is to:
understand that sexual harassment is a bad thing and a big issue,
have a policy in place to deal with sexual harassment in the workplace,
have regular training on sexual harassment and the associated policies, and
make sure the organisation and its leaders act in line with its policies, including to build trust with employees and make available more access to complaint avenues.
The #MeToo movement has generated much discussion about this issue and the panelists encouraged us all to continue having a conversation about it and to take action.
WLA ACT extends its thanks to Prue, Jennifer, and Simone for taking the time to share their experience and views. We would also like to thank Clayton Utz for their generosity in hosting this event.