Teens Are a Target for Sexual Harassment in Certain Jobs

No matter your age, you expect to be treated fairly in the workplace. It should not matter what your age, race, religious belief or gender is; nor should it matter if you are disabled or you are about to go on maternity leave. All employees should be treated fairly and equally, and any deviation from this norm can and should be punished.

However, a new study seems to suggest that, whether you are a teenager that lives in here in Houston, Texas or another part of the country, you have a higher likelihood of suffering a sexual harassment incident than any other worker.

The study comes from Illinois State University, which surveyed 116 teenagers in "low-opportunity jobs" (described as retail or restaurant positions). Of these teens, about 54 percent of the females and 37 percent of the males experienced some sort of sexual harassment in the past two years.

It could have been a joke; or an unwanted sexual advance; or comments that unfairly criticized a teen for their gender; but in any case, researchers believe these numbers are higher than what other age demographics experience. In addition, teens that did not hold "low-opportunity jobs" fared better in the workplace.

Harassment at that age can be worse for the employee, too. It can stunt their professional development and make it harder for them to learn vital workplace skills. It can also make them less likely to interact with their co-workers; and because of their younger age, they may feel embarrassed or afraid to report the incident, no matter how disparaging it was.

Source: Yahoo!, "Teens More Likely to Face Sexual Harassment on the Job," Chad Brooks, Dec. 26, 2012