Small.biz: hotbed of sexism?

Majority of female employees feel harassed

A massive eight in ten female employees feel that they have been subjected to sexism in the workplace, placing thousands of small firms at risk of legal action, according to new research.

A survey by Peninsula found that 82 per cent of women polled had been discriminated against because of their gender.

Worryingly, 78 per cent said that they would consider taking their employer to court if the harassment bothered them.

Over half said they had been told a sexist joke in the workplace, while three quarters have received a sexist email, possibly containing porn.

The research will make alarming reading for small businesses that cannot afford to go through lengthy and costly court cases bought by unhappy female staff.

Peter Done, managing director of Peninsula, warned that the current culture in which we live at the moment is a filled maze of litigation: "Employers must become aware and accustomed to this generation of face the serious consequences of facing payouts to employees for the simplest of errors.

"In the case of sex discrimination, employers must be especially wary as in a lot of the cases the successful tribunals find that the employers did not make mistakes, it just simply did not attempt to implement a cultural change within a company," he said.

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