New Poll Reflects Disagreement, Uncertainty About What Constitutes Sexual Harassment

A recent (December 2017) Reuters/Ipsos poll, discussed at The Ladders, indicates that Americans hold wildly different views about what constitutes sexual harassment.

For example, the poll reflects[1]Source that

  • 7 out of 10 men, and 8 out of 10 women, believe that “intentionally touching anywhere on your body without consent” is sexual harassment,
  • minorities are more likely than whites to label “hugging you without your consent” as sexual harassment, and
  • sending “pornographic pictures” to someone without their consent is deemed more permissible by millennials than by older generations.

While there are no bright-line rules regarding what constitutes sexual harassment, it is troubling that anyone would believe that, e.g., intentional touching without consent or sending pornographic pictures to another employee would be considered permissible under any set of circumstances.

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