Sexual harassment and bullying facilitators soon in Victorian hospitals

The NSW Government will soon establish a new trial of independent facilitators to provide staff the power to speak up against inappropriate behaviour and sexual harassment as well as an access to the support they need.

Minister for Health Jill Hennessy announced $ 400,000 in funding to take action to prevent, respond to and better manage sexual harassment within Victoria’s health services, following an independent investigation by Charles Scerri QC.

Significant work has been underway to establish stronger awareness, improve leadership and accountability, deliver new workforce training and improve processes for reporting and responding to these incidents.

“Everyone deserves to work in a safe and professional environment. We are taking further action to ensure our hospitals are safe, respectful and healthy for all,” said Ms. Hennessy.

The cornerstone of these initiatives is the rollout of the trial of two new independent facilitators who will provide a confidential and independent avenue for staff to speak up and raise concerns, without fear of reprisal, if staff don’t want to use their workplace complaints processes.

“These independent facilitators will give staff confidence to stand up and speak up against unacceptable behaviours without fear of reprisal,” the Minister said.

There will also be a targeted education campaign for the healthcare sector to raise awareness of inappropriate behaviours and responses.

These initiative further delivers on the Bullying and Harassment in Healthcare Advisory Group’s recommendations to reduce harassment and workplace bullying , in their report.

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