Migrant and refugee women’s attitudes, experiences and responses to sexual harassment in the workplace
Migrant and refugee women remain largely overlooked in major national studies and national commitments to ending sexual harassment in the workplace.
This project will undertake a national study to investigate migrant and refugee women’s understanding of, experiences and responses to sexual harassment.
This project builds on the knowledge that migrant and refugee women are more likely to be in precarious employment (i.e. non-permanent, casualised or contract labour) and that factors such as limited English proficiency, non-permanent visa status, race-based bias and discrimination, and disparate cultural expectations can contribute to the likelihood of experiencing work-based sexual harassment.
This research aims to build a detailed national picture of the experiences of a diverse group of migrant and refugee women to inform more targeted engagement with women and workplaces regarding unacceptable workplace behaviour. It will lay the groundwork for developing more informed and responsive systems that are attuned to the social and systemic factors that influence how migrant and refugee women in Australia negotiate and respond to experiences of sexual harassment as bystanders and/or targets.
This will be a multi-methods design involving an online survey, interviews and focus group discussions.
A key driver for this research is to support and enhance the Roadmap for Respect, where it is indicated that a whole-of-society response is necessary for preventing and responding to workplace sexual harassment. There is a commitment in the Roadmap for Respect to ensuring that the experiences of culturally and linguistically diverse, migrant and refugee women are adequately captured and accounted for. This project will offer a timely examination of whether contemporary responses are sufficient or adequate in meeting the needs of these groups of women. The findings will also enhance the development of educational and training resources for government, law enforcement, unions and workplace regulators.
Professor Marie Segrave, Monash Gender and Family Violence Prevention Centre, School of Social Sciences, Monash University
Dr Shih Joo Tan, Monash Gender and Family Violence Prevention Centre, School of Social Sciences, Monash University
Prabhapriya Bogoda Arachchige, School of Social Sciences, Monash University
Dr Rebecca Wickes, Monash Migration and Inclusion Centre, School of Social Sciences, Monash University
Chloe Keel, School of Social Sciences, Monash University
Harmony Alliance: Migrant and Refugee Women for Change, Professional Migrant Women Group, AMES Australia, Culturally Diverse Women/MindTribes, Settlement Services International, and additional employer/industry representatives
$159,995 (excluding GST)
This project is funded by the Australian Government Department of Social Services.