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Oversight & Monitoring

Laws on sexual harassment should provide for the establishment of an oversight and monitoring body. [Cross link to Monitoring Chapter] This government body should have the power to receive complaints from victims, assist victims with gaining redress, gather data on the problem of sexual harassment, and make recommendations for reform when necessary. 

Examples:

Austrian law establishes an Ombudsman for Equal Treatment (Anwältin für die Gleichbehandlung von Männern und Frauen in der Arbeitswelt) which can receive complaints from victims of sexual harassment and request information from employers.

Costa Rica: If an employer in Costa Rica ignores a claim or if the harasser is the general manager of the corporation, employees may bring their complaints to the National Directorate and Inspector of Labour. See: Sexual Harassment Prevention, Ius Laboris, 2012.

Pakistan: Sexual harassment legislation in Pakistan establishes the position of an Ombudsman for each of Pakistan’s regions, under the National Commission on the Status of Women, who has the power to receive and address claims of sexual harassment. The Prime Minister of Pakistan also appointed an Implementation Watch Committee to monitor implementation of Pakistan’s sexual harassment laws. The Implementation Watch Committee released a report in 2012 documenting the fact that more than 1000 cases of sexual harassment were addressed by employer inquiry committees, and that more than 50 cases were lodged directly with the police under the Penal Code. Finally, a national website, Sexual Harassment Watch, also monitors implementation of the law and provides information to the public.

(See: Protection Against Harassment at the Workplace Act; Farahnaz Ispahani, Towards Women’s Empowerment, new Pakistan, (March 13, 2010); Fouzia Saeed, A closer look at sexual harassment laws, The Express Tribune, May 29, 2012.