Victoria Legal Aid

Our expanded sexual harassment law services in 2023

We have received funding to expand our specialist law services to respond to the ongoing issue of workplace sexual harassment, and are seeking referrals to our newly expanded services.

Tuesday 13 December 2022 9:30pm

Sexual harassment continues to be an unacceptably common feature of Australian workplaces. As recommended in Kate Jenkins’ Respect@Work: Sexual Harassment National Inquiry ReportExternal Link , we are expanding our sexual harassment law services to provide even more assistance to workers experiencing sexual harassment.

The fifth national survey on sexual harassment in Australian workplacesExternal Link , conducted by the Australian Human Rights Commission and released in November, found that one in three workers reported experiencing workplace sexual harassment in the last five years, yet reporting rates remain very low.

To help address this ongoing workplace issue, we were one of a number of legal services that recently received additional funding from the Australian Government to increase the number of legal services we provide to workers experiencing sexual harassment.

Our Equality Law Program has been representing victim-survivors of sexual harassment for over a decade and has a trauma-informed practice with deep legal expertise. Having recruited additional staff ready to deliver this service, we are now actively seeking client referrals.

We want to share our expertise with victim-survivors of sexual harassment so that they know all the options that are available to them. We can support victim-survivors to respond in a way that best meets their interests and needs.

In the coming months, we will be working to connect with potential clients through warm referrals from partner service providers.

A digital media campaign in the new year will also aim to connect directly with those who may be experiencing sexual harassment in the workplace.

Program Manager Equality Law Melanie Schleiger says that the negative impacts of sexual harassment at work can be extremely detrimental for workers.

‘The survey confirmed what our clients tell us every day. It found that 67 per cent of people harassed in the workplace experienced negative mental health impacts,' she said.

'More than half also experienced negative impacts related to decreased job satisfaction, self-esteem and confidence, decreased commitment to their organisation, and negative impacts on employment, career or work and productivity at work.

'Everyone deserves to work in safe workplaces free from abuse, harassment and discrimination, and to have their complaints about these issues taken seriously.

'In expanding our sexual harassment law services, we aim to provide additional support and advice to workers in responding to their experiences, and ensure that the outcomes are positive and, wherever possible, help to prevent future occurrences of sexual harassment.’

Contact our sexual harassment specialist law services

If you are working with a person who needs help dealing with discrimination or sexual harassment that they have experienced, or want to know more about our service, you can contact us at or on (03) 9269 0416.

Individuals who have experienced sexual harassment or another form of discrimination can contact us for free, confidential legal information by calling our Legal Help line 1300 792 387 or messaging our online Legal Help Chat, who will be able to connect you with our specialist services.

More information

Learn more about sexual harassment and what you can do about it.

Reviewed 13 December 2022