Sexual misconduct — in the workplace and otherwise — is a very grave matter. In spite of that, such offences often go unreported, in large part because of the consequences women fear they might face for coming forward with the truth. This is true even in the workplace, and today, we’re going to take a look at how making a report of sexual misconduct can adversely impact a woman’s career and security.
Fear Of Termination
Perhaps one of the biggest threats a woman faces for reporting sexual harassment, according to these Los Angeles lawyers for wrongful termination, is the fear of being fired from her job as a form of revenge. In some cases, that’s due to the face that the one they are reporting holds a position of authority (it could be the woman’s direct superior, for instance).
In other cases, the culture at a company may be one that minimizes the concerns of women and would prefer to sweep allegations under the rug than deal with them appropriately, resulting in backlash against women who would report abuse.
No matter the specifics, though, just the fear that doing the right thing might come back to bite them can be crippling to some women in the workplace, and more than enough to cause some to forego reporting in the first place.
Fear Of Stigmatization
Even in cases where reporting wouldn’t get them fired from their jobs, women still might feel pressure to not report because they fear that doing so would negatively impact their reputations at work. Being stigmatized could, for instance, impact their chances at promotion, at getting a raise, at advancing their career in any significant way.
The subsequent “blackballing” that could take place follows women who report around like a scarlet letter, impacting their careers for years to come if not outright killing it in some of the more extreme cases.
Beyond that, there’s a possible emotional toll because of how others may come to view women who decide to report on incidences of sexual misconduct. Some people might label them as deceitful, manipulative, or overly-sensitive.
Others might assume women who report are trying to game the system for their own selfish gains, others still just might find them unlikable simply because they decided to report a case of sexual harassment, and shun them because of that.
The list of potential repercussions goes on, of course, but suffice to say that the many potential negative side effects give many pause before they take the step of reporting sexual misconduct, so it continues to go under-reported to this day.