A Quarter of Job-Hunting University Students Sexually HarassedWork Society Economy Gender and Sex
Sexual harassment in the workplace is coming under increasingly harsh scrutiny in Japan. A recent government survey, though, found that many job hunters also encounter inappropriate behavior. A Ministry of Health, Labor, and Welfare study revealed that one in every four students who participated in job-hunting activities or internships has been sexual harassed by a worker at a potential employer. The percentage of victims among men and women was roughly the same at 26.0% and 25.1%, respectively, and was particularly high among graduate students.
The most common form of sexual harassment, experienced by 40.4% of victims, was the telling of sexual jokes, followed by persistent dinner or date invitations (27.5%), and sexually related questions (23.6%). Women in particular were subjected to jokes of a sexual nature.
The highest proportion of sexual harassment was experienced by interns, at 34.1%, followed by individuals who participated in a company’s information session or seminar, at 27.8%.
The largest segment of perpetrators of sexual harassment were fellow employees met during an internship, at 32.9%. There were also a considerable number of harassment cases involving individuals in positions of authority, with 25.5% of victims being harassed by a job interviewer and 11.0% by an executive at a prospective company.
A feeling of anger, frustration, and anxiety was the most common impact among victims of harassment, cited by 44.7% of respondents, followed by decreased motivation for job hunting, mentioned by 36.9%.
The survey, conducted online in October 2020, involved 1,000 individuals who graduated from a vocational school, junior college, university, or graduate school between the 2017 and 2019 academic years.
(Translated from Japanese. Banner photo © Pixta.)