According to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, there has been an increase in the number of sexual harassment claims filed by men, doubling from 8% in 1990 to 16% in 2009, and a large portion of those claims have involved men who have harassed other men.
A workplace anti-sexual harassment consultant, Susan Strauss, recalls cases that involve men who are being harassed because they don’t fit a masculine stereotype, come off as, or are gay, in which they face a type of ‘sexualized hazing’.
Since the 1988 Supreme Court that defined same-sex harassment as a valid claim under federal anti-discrimination laws, cases have continued to increase as workers realize there is now something they can do about it, but some men are still hesitant to admit the situation.
“All sexual harassment victims feel humiliated, lacking control and power,” Mary Jo O’Neill, regional attorney in the EEOC’s Phoenix District office, said. “This has a different twist because everyone expects that they would be able to handle it and take care of it themselves.”
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