A factory worker was left feeling “uncomfortable, objectified and degraded” after a fellow employee looked at her breasts instead of her face when he spoke with her.  After reporting the behaviour, the factory worker was told by her supervisor “you are Indian, I don’t like Indians, they always cause problems“.

The factory worker was then transferred to a different workplace, directed to take annual leave, and felt “disbelieved” by the employer.

The Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal made findings of unfavourable treatment, racial discrimination and victimisation and ordered the employer to pay the factory worker $53,200, including $38,000 in damages.

See: Kumari v Bervar Pty Ltd

Take Out Point: Responding to sexual harassment complaints requires sensitivity and compassion. Employers now have a positive duty to prevent sexual harassment. Employees need training to ensure compliance with the new sexual harassment provisions and discrimination laws.

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