Portugal: Social partners aim to tackle sexual harassment at work

Harassment at work has gained growing attention in Portugal and a new guide for employers aims to raise awareness of the issue among workers.

In March 2013, the Commission for Equality in Labour and Employment (Comissão para a Igualdade no Trabalho e no Emprego - CITE) published an information guide on 'Prevention and fight against harassment at workplace: a self-regulation support instrument’.  The publication  of this guide is the result of a collaborative process involving a large number of public bodies and social partners under the coordination of CITE. The parties include the Working Conditions Authority [Autoridade para as Condições de Trabalho - ACT]; trade unions (General Workers’ Union [União Geral de Trabalhadores - UGT] and General Confederation of Portuguese Workers - National Trades Union (Confederação Geral dos Trabalhadores Portugueses - Intersindical Nacional – CGTP-IN); and employer's organisations (Confederation of Portuguese Industry [Confederação Empresarial de Portugal - CIP]; Portuguese Trade and Services Confederation [Confederação do Comércio e Serviços de Portugal - CCP]; Portuguese Confederation of Farmers [Confederação dos Agricultores de Portugal - CAP]; and Portuguese Confederation of Tourism [Confederação do Turismo Português - CTP]).

While they cooperated in the discussion of the guide, in the end the employers decided not to include their name as participants in the drafting of the document. Therefore, the employers’ associations are not contributing to the dissemination of the guide.

The guide is informative and aims to be a support instrument for employers of every sector and company dimension, public or private. The main goal of the guide is to contribute to raising workers’ awareness regarding sexual and moral harassment in the workplace.

In addition, a large project, promoted by CITE in partnership with several and diverse organisations, including a Norwegian partner, is on-going. This project includes research activities, such as a large-scale national survey and qualitative interviews, and awareness-raising and training activities. The final results of the study are due later this year.


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