Equal Opportunities Commission


E-news Issue 186


EOC gives legal assistance in sexual harassment case

On 18 May 2018, the EOC issued legal proceedings under the Sex Discrimination Ordinance (SDO) in the District Court on behalf of a male employee of a Christian organisation. He alleged that on a number of occasions during his employment, he was sexually harassed by a male senior staff member who inappropriately touched his private part.

Under the SDO, sexual harassment is defined as any unwelcome sexual advances, unwelcome requests for sexual favours, and other unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature, where a reasonable person, having regard to all the circumstances, would have anticipated that the victim would be offended, humiliated or intimidated. The SDO covers various fields of activity, including employment.

In 2017, 48% of the complaints handled by the EOC under the SDO were related to sexual harassment, totalling 129 cases. By taking the case to court, the EOC continues its commitment to helping the aggreived seek redress, and hopes to raise public awareness of the legal consequences of sexual harassment.