Prevalence and impact of sexual harassment on female journalists: A Fiji Case Study

Fiji Women’s Rights Movement
The University of South Pacific Journalism Programme

This report is a follow-up on two ground-breaking Fiji Women’s Rights Movement (FWRM) studies in 2002 and 2016 into the incidence and nature of sexual harassment of women in the workplace in Fiji’s four major economic hubs in the country: Suva, Nadi, Lautoka and Labasa. The first study found that around 33 percent of the respondents had experienced sexual harassment at the workplace, whereas the second study found that the rate of incidences had dropped to 20 percent. The FWRM utilised the 2002 and 2016 studies to lobby and advocate against sexual harassment in the workplace. This included providing inputs into a decision to adopt a broader definition of sexual harassment for legislation being developed at that time.

Currently, the FWRM conducts Sexual Harassment Awareness and Prevention Training with different organisations in order to increase awareness and prevent incidences at the workplace. The FWRM’s internationally-designed toolkit through local evidence generation will help organisations increase their awareness and develop their own sexual harassment policies. The target audience for this training is employees, managers, supervisors, contract workers and volunteers.

The 2002 and 2016 reports inspired this third study for a more focussed look at into a particular profession or industry. Journalism was chosen because of its public interest role and because up to half the workers are women. Existing researches indicate that female journalists are a potentially high-risk group with regards to exposure to sexual harassment. It is envisaged that this study will achieve similar results as the 2002 and 2016 FWRM studies in educating the media sector about sexual harassment and adopting further safety measures. A key achievements for FWRM as part of the women’s movement in the National Action Plan to Prevent Violence Against Women and Girls (NAP) is the successful inclusion on the issue of sexual harassment in the workplace as a key priority area of concern. FWRM is hopeful that the findings of this research as well as existing work done will inform key action and approaches to prevent sexual harassment in the workplace for women in the world of work.

Research Type(s)
Report – Not peer reviewed
Submitted by Almah Tararia
June 14, 2022
Published in

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