Young women complain of bullying and more, says union survey

EXPLOITATION, bullying and harassment, discrimination and wage-theft are widespread and structural, according to the experiences of young women in Canberra reported in a survey by UnionsACT.

The new report, “Sick of It: What young women feel about wage-theft, harassment and casualised work”, looked at the experiences of 220 young workers aged under 25 years who were surveyed earlier this year, in-person and online.

The main findings in the report include:

 More than half of young women are employed casually, and more young women than men are employed casually.

 67.7 per cent of young women claimed they had experienced wage-theft in the past 12 months.

 Almost a third (27.4 per cent) of young women claimed to have been been bullied or harassed by their employer in the past 12 months.

UnionsACT secretary Alex White says the report should be a wake-up call for businesses, politicians and regulators.

“It is not acceptable for young women to experience bullying and harassment at work, or to be threatened with the sack if they complain about unsafe work,” he says. 

“It is clear that the workplace laws that should protect young women are rigged against them and need to be changed. There is a structural problem and a problem of sexism and discrimination.”

The report is available here. 

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