Equal Opportunities Commission


Press Releases

Press Releases

Equal Opportunities Commission Launches "Prevent Sexual Harassment in the Work Place" Campaign


Over two million passengers travelling daily on the Mass Transit Railway, Kowloon Canton Railway and Light Rail Transit will learn more about sexual harassment from a public education campaign launched at stations in Hong Kong, Kowloon and the New Territories as of 27 April 2001. This month-long campaign features a poster ad, highlighting different scenarios of sexual harassment in the work place, and educates employers about their vicarious liability for employees' actions.

"Employers and employees cannot afford to ignore this issue. Sexual harassment can affect the work environment and productivity. It undermines morale, efficiency and job satisfaction." Dr. Priscilla CHUNG Ka-tak, Director (Gender) of the EOC emphasized.

Under the Sex Discrimination Ordinance (SDO), sexual harassment in the work place is unlawful. An employer is vicariously liable for the actions of its employees and needs to formulate policies and provide training to ensure that the work place is safe from sexual harassment.

Dr. Chung added, "Sexual harassment cases have increased substantially over the past few years. Although the number of complaints increased 22% from 54 in 1998 to 66 in the next year, this number rose sharply to 93 in 2000, an increase of 41%. In the first quarter of 2001, we have also received 23 sexual harassment complaints, which accounts for the largest category of complaints received under the SDO. Of the sexual harassment cases received by the Commission, over 87% were employment related."

The "Prevent Sexual Harassment in the Work Place" campaign also offers free talks and promotional materials such as posters, leaflets and videotapes on preventing sexual harassment for both employers and employees. These are available to members of the public at the EOC. The Training Module on Preventing and Dealing with Sexual Harassment, produced by the Commission, is now on sale. The training module is targeted at assisting employers, employees, human resources practitioners and other interested parties to set up policies to prevent and deal with sexual harassment in their organizations.

Members of the public are welcome to contact the EOC at 2511-8211 or visit our website at http://www.eoc.org.hk for assistance and enquiries about sexual harassment.

For media enquiries, please contact Mr. Sam Ho, Equal Opportunities Officer (Promotion), at 2106-2187. Copies of the campaign posters are available from the Information Services Department. (Address: Room 802, Murray Building, Garden Road, Hong Kong) .

Enquiry: Mr. Sam HO 21062187