S&Ds take the lead in preventing and combating mobbing and sexual harassment in the workplace and in politics

#Metoo sexual harassment hastag on words

The Socialists and Democrats in the European Parliament led today a coalition calling for decisive measures to prevent and fight mobbing and sexual harassment at workplace, public spaces and in political life in the EU. The report adopted by a large majority urges member states to put forward preventive policies, confidential procedures for complaints and sanctions for perpetrators. Sexual harassment and mobbing are two of the most extreme and widespread forms of gender-based discrimination, with 90% of the victims being female.

S&D MEP and author of the report on mobbing and sexual harassment, Pina Picierno, stated:

“It is time that we took mobbing and sexual harassment at workplace and in politics seriously. Every second women above 15 year old in the EU (55%) has experienced sexual harassment at least once. Out of those, 45% experienced most serious forms of harassment. The figures are telling. We can no longer turn a blind eye on violence against women. If we want to avoid a repeat of similar cases, we must stop deploring ex-post and act now!

“The report at hand is a major first step towards establishing clear definitions and acting at the EU level. We propose a number educational strategies and means to tackle harassment, including online harassment, and its consequences. Existing legislation fails to address violence and harassment across the EU due to legal and administrative differences among member states. We call on the European Commission to propose a Directive against all forms of violence against women to ensure that legal loopholes will not result in impunity. We must show women that they are not alone. We stand by them!”

S&D Group spokesperson for women’s rights and gender equality, Iratxe García Pérez MEP, added:

“How many #MeToo movements does it take for the EU to act to protect victims of harassment across the EU? The answer should be none. The time for monitoring and assessing is over. Raising awareness is not enough. We need to act pre-emptively and ensure that mobbing, sexual harassment and violence against women have no place at work or in politics.

“We Socialists and Democrats have been fighting against discrimination and violence for years. This report is part of our battle to end violence against women and we have proposed it long before the #MeToo movement started last year. We will continue to speak up when women’s rights are being jeopardised and defend women wherever and whenever they suffer injustice. We need the European Commission and member states on board.”