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the current economic downturn found prevention to be valuable in com-
bating sexual harassment in a male-dominated workplace. Bernstein
(1994) suggested that some of the following guidelines may be useful for
preventing sexual harassment:
￿ Clear anti-harassment policies that are effectively communicated;
￿ Special training and education for managers and supervisors;
￿ Designated ombudspersons to deal with reported complaints;
￿ Formal grievance procedures and alternatives to them;
￿ Disciplinary treatment of those who violate the policies.
Sexual harassment needs to be openly addressed and treated as a serious
and legitimate workplace issue ( Kauppinen-Toropainen & Gruber, 1993;
Cole et al., 1997 ). During the recent economic downturn the impact of
sexual harassment may be even more difficult to determine. Because work-
ers may fear reporting sexual harassment, there may be a greater possibility
that they will become the next person blamed, humiliated, or fired.
During normal economic cycles or when major economic downturns
occur, sexual harassment is always unacceptable and should never be toler-
ated. There are a number of effective ways for offended and victimized
people to mediate the negative effects of workplace sexual harassment,
whether it is psychological, physical, or social. Other writers have found
that victims can remain affected or return to more normal socialization,
reestablish positive personal relationships, regain social approval, and
recover the ability to be productive in educational and work environments.
Many writers have recommended that immediate psychological and
legal counseling should be provided in the event that sexual harassment
has been determined. Self-treatment may not adequately release stress or
remove trauma. Simply reporting to authorities may not resolve a prob-
lem. If treatment is ignored or delayed, further injury may lead to more
harmful psychological, social, or other negative circumstances.
The following list includes some of the common psychological, aca-
demic, professional, financial, and social effects of sexual harassment:
￿ Psychological stress and health impairment;
￿ Decreased work or school performance as a result of stress conditions;
increased absenteeism in fear of harassment repetition;
￿ Firing and refusal for a job opportunity, which can lead to loss of job
or career, loss of income;
￿ Having to drop courses, change academic plans, or leave school (loss
of tuition) in fear of harassment repetition and/or as a result of stress;
￿ Being objectified and humiliated by scrutiny and gossip;
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