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Sexual harassment at work: experiences from an oil refinery

Julia Kiely (Julia Kiely is Reader in Organisational Behaviour at the Business School, Bournemouth University, Bournemouth, UK.)
Alison Henbest (Alison Henbest is currently employed on the Kingfisher Management Development Scheme and is based in Croydon, Surrey, UK.)

Women in Management Review

ISSN: 0964-9425

Article publication date: 1 March 2000



This article explores the issue of sexual harassment within a large oil refinery. It considers the reasons for the occurrence of such harassment and the subsequent effects on individuals and victims. By means of a questionnaire survey, information was gathered on differing perceptions of what constitutes offensive behaviour and the frequency and nature of the incidents. Two vignettes provide a rich picture of the types of harassment, how complaints were handled and the differing impacts on individuals. Senior managers were interviewed to ascertain their perception of issues of harassment. Finally, suggestions are offered regarding future company procedures and management actions required to mitigate the issue of sexual harassment. The research highlights the need for management and employee actions, in terms of training and awareness of issues.



Kiely, J. and Henbest, A. (2000), "Sexual harassment at work: experiences from an oil refinery", Women in Management Review, Vol. 15 No. 2, pp. 65-77.




Copyright © 2000, MCB UP Limited

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