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Sexual harassment particularly difficult for military men

Sexual harassment may typically be seen as a mostly female issue in the workplace. However, men are also victims of sexual harassment while on the job, and for some it can be even more damaging. A recent Michigan State University study revealed that men in the military may be hit particularly hard after being sexually harassed.

According to data that the Michigan State researchers examined, 19 percent of men in the military reported that they had been sexually harassed. While this is considerably less than the 52 percent of female military members that reported the same harassment, the impact on men was strikingly more severe. Apparently, male military service members were much more likely to be unable to cope with the harassment.

Researchers believe that his may be attributed to the sad fact that, while still traumatizing, women tend to know that there is often the possibility of harassment. Particularly in the male-driven military environment, most men simply don't expect it. This can make it more difficult to manage the ensuing negative emotions from harassment from either a superior or fellow worker.

No matter the work environment, every employee is granted by law the right to a harassment free workplace. As these Michigan researchers have pointed out, male military members in particular might have a more difficult time recovering from the trauma of unwanted advances or touching that can be associated with sexual harassment. While reporting the act of misconduct is always the first step, a victim may also choose to pursue a sexual harassment claim against the perpetrator. Although no amount of financial recourse can erase the pain of being violated at work, if the claim is successfully litigated, it may be the first step towards a sense of peace and justice for the victim.

Source: Business Standard, "Military men more distressed by sexual harassment than women", , March 28, 2014

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