The Wrangler

After the Dust Settles: Women in the Workforce

Seriously...+This+needs+to+end
Seriously... This needs to end

Seriously... This needs to end

Jason Zuckerman and Eric Bachman

Jason Zuckerman and Eric Bachman

Seriously... This needs to end

Katie Cao, Photojournalist

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In early October, multiple reports came to light about movie mogul Harvey Weinstein allegedly sexually harassing or assaulting women over the decades. Following Weinstein, some of the most powerful, influential men have been accused of conducting sexual harassment. Some of them include: Kevin Spacey, Matt Lauer, Charlie Rose, Mario Batali, Senator Al Franken, and  Roy Moore. Women all over the country have come forward with their stories of being sexually harassed or assaulted. This led to the #MeToo movement which swept the nation. Women posted their stories all over social media, and the response blew up. Nearly everyday, there have been new stories of sexual misconduct in the workplace. With more women now coming out than ever before, this leaves a daunting question: Do women feel safer going to a workplace with all of these stories breaking or do women feel more scared due to how often sexual harassment occurs?

As someone who has experienced sexual harassment at such a young age at school, I believe that there are both pros and cons to the aforementioned questions.

Although school is not the same as an actual working place, women do get sexually harassed no matter where they are. With many women coming out with their stories, to a certain extent I feel as if women do feel safer entering a workplace because they now know that they can speak up and measures will be taken care of to ensure their safety. What is disheartening is the fact that there have been many sexual allegations for decades, yet it is finally becoming widely covered and talked about. Some girls don’t even realize what has happened to them until stories of this magnitude come out. With such stories publicized Clarissa Lino (12) feels like “the women and men who were affected by sexual harassers had the courage to come out and expose them, which is a really big deal. This is empowering because it gives others a chance to share their story, no matter how public it becomes.”

There is also a stronger sense of fear entering the workplace because some people won’t take the allegations seriously. What is even more disappointing is the fact that the women who do come forward are shut down or their complaints “fall on deaf ears” (Variety). Both Weinstein and Lauer are men who hold a lot of power and influence in their career, so when women complained before no one would really listen. That is a fear still occuring because whoever is sexually harassing a worker could be someone in a much higher position, thus driving the fear of the person being sexually harassed to an alltime high. Their fear would skyrocket because they do not want to lose their job, and some people may not even believe them when they recount what had happened to them.

There is much to consider when questions like these are asked because there are so many layers to consider. Being sexually harassed definitely leaves an undying, unwavering fear because it could happen again. No matter where someone is, they need to be careful and wary of their surroundings and the people they are surrounded by. Although sexual harassment, or assaults, will not cease to exist, people should carefully consider many things before entering a certain situation.

Just because silence is heard does not make it okay for someone to make sexual advances. Speak up, fight back, but be careful. This pivotal moment in history will dictate how the future is shaped.

 

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After the Dust Settles: Women in the Workforce