Few political staffers on Parliament Hill report sexual misconduct: survey

Sixty-five of the 266 survey respondents said they had personally experienced at least one incident of sexual harassment.

The majority of political staffers who told The Canadian Press they had personally experienced sexual misconduct on the job chose not to report it, with many saying they worried doing so would mean negative consequences for their careers.

The Canadian Press distributed a questionnaire to those working in offices of MPs, senators and cabinet ministers in Ottawa last month, asking them to share their opinions and experiences with sexual assault and sexual harassment on Parliament Hill.

Related: Female MPs unsure what #MeToo movement means for Parliament Hill: survey

Sixty-five of the 266 survey respondents said they had personally experienced at least one incident of sexual harassment.

Twenty said they had been the target of at least one incident of sexual assault.

Only six of the respondents who said they had been the target of sexual harassment in their role as a political staffer said they reported the incident that had the biggest impact on them.

Of the 57 people who said they did not report the sexual harassment, 61 per cent of them listed not thinking it was serious enough to merit a complaint as one of the reasons.

About 47 per cent, meanwhile, said they were afraid it would have a negative impact on their career; the same percentage said they did not believe reporting the incident would make a difference.

Thirty-five per cent said they were worried they would be disbelieved or not taken seriously, while one-third said they did not know where to report it.

Related: Change in politics, society on sexual misconduct ‘not fast enough,’ says Trudeau

There were a couple of respondents, however, who said not reporting it was the right thing to do.

“(I am) of the view that you deal directly with the individual to let them know you feel it is inappropriate,” one wrote.

Only two respondents said they reported their experience of sexual assault that made the biggest impact.

Neither woman said she was satisfied with how their complaints were handled: one said her story was ignored and the other said she was not believed.

Joanna Smith, The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Lack of security: why Vancouver Island food production is on the decline

Big Read: agriculture a big, expensive commitment as advocates push to make us more food secure

RCMP investigate sexual assault in Courtenay

Comox Valley RCMP officers are investigating a reported sexual assault at Sandwick… Continue reading

Comox Strathcona Waste Management board approves tour of Nova Scotia advanced recycling plant

Three CVRD representatives will tour Sustane Tech. plant while in Halifax for FCM conference

Comox opts for ‘blank sheet’ when it comes to cannabis bylaw

Comox council unanimously approved a bylaw to prohibit the sale of cannabis within the town.

Big Read: locked out of the woods

Vancouver Islanders struggle to balance back country public access with private land protection

VIDEO: Moose found licking salt off B.C. man’s pickup truck

Tab Baker was in his garage in Prince George when the small moose gave his truck a clean

CONTEST: Win a whale-watching tour for four

Where in the world are the Snowbirds?

B.C. student makes short-list for autism advocacy award

Brody Butts honoured for his role as a mentor and self-advocate

Austin Powers ‘Mini-Me’, Verne Troyer, dies at 49

Facebook page confirmed his death Saturday afternoon

Alberta man dead after snowmobile collision on B.C. mountain

The incident occurred on Boulder Mountain Friday morning

B.C. parents grieving teen’s overdose death say it started with opioid prescription

Elliot Eurchuk, 16, died at his Oak Bay home Friday, after taking street drugs

16 of 20 fastest improving B.C. schools are public: Fraser Institute

Independent elementary schools remain at top of the chart in think tank’s annual report card

UPDATED: 1 person dead after highway crash in Nanoose Bay

Accident happened just before 4 p.m. near Hillview Road

NAFTA: Talks continue through weekend in scramble to get a deal

Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland called negotiations ‘perpetual’

Most Read