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Sexual Harassment

What is sexual harassment?

Sexual harassment is any unwanted, unwelcome, or uninvited behaviour of a sexual nature and occurs if it could be reasonably expected, that the behaviour (s) would make the recipient feel offended, humiliated or intimidated by the conduct.  Sexual harassment is unlawful anywhere. CQUniversity’s commitment to personal safety and wellbeing means we are proud to support the national Universities Australia “Respect. Now. Always.” Campaign. This campaign highlights the determination of Australia’s universities to ensure that our students and staff are safe from violence, sexual assault and sexual harassment. For more information about the campaign and university support and security please go to www.cqu.edu.au/respectnowalways.

Sexual harassment does not arise from mutual attraction and consent, but is a wide range of behaviours of a sexual nature which are uninvited, unwelcome, persistent and unreciprocated. The behaviours may be physical and/or verbal and may include:

  • unwelcome sex orientated comment's and gestures;
  • comments and questions about another persons sexual conduct and or private relationships;
  • persistent unwelcome invitations;
  • requests for sexual activity in exchange for favours in the workplace, or grades for students;
  • inappropriate displays of pictures or publications which may cause offence;
  • intimidating or demeaning sexist comments;
  • teasing or taunting with sexual innuendo and/or talk about sex which is causing offence;
  • unnecessary close physical proximity;
  • unnecessary physical contact, such as brushing against someone or touching, pinching, fondling, kissing or embracing someone against their will;
  • actual molestation;
  • sexual assault.

This list is not exhaustive and behaviours of a sexual nature that are regarded as harmless trivial or a joke may be sexual harassment to those who find offence.

Sexual assault is any sexual activity against a person's will or to which a person does not consent and could include

  • Unwanted touching, fondling or kissing
  • Being made look at, or pose for, pornographic shots
  • Being exposed to flashing or masturbation
  • Drink spiking for the purposes of non-consensual sex

Sexual assault, indecent assault, rape are criminal offences and should be reported to police