Panel Discussion: An evidence-based case study driving cultural change

Panel Discussion: An evidence-based case study driving cultural change

With the shocking prevalence of sexual harassment in Australian workplaces firmly established, attention now needs to turn to action if the problem is to be resolved.

Past initiatives have failed to reduce, and in some cases have exacerbated sexual harassment. Ineffective, superficial, and tokenistic measures have widened the rhetoric versus reality gap, and enabled perpetrators, while silencing victims, collectively actively maintaining the status quo.

Building on the immediately preceding keynote, the panel will discuss a state-wide change management program currently being rolled out across the legal profession to address rampant issues with sexual harassment. Premised in WHS law and intersecting with Uniform Law (LUPL), the case study features in the national inquiry report as an example of what can be done to drive much needed and overdue change efforts. Adopting an evidence-based approach, the program first aims to reduce barriers to reporting sexual misconduct, as a precursor to increasing regulatory action. The longer term objectives lie in primary prevention through effective deterrence mechanisms, ultimately contributing to cultural change.