The Role of Surveillance in Reducing Workplace Harassment

While workplace harassment is typically equated with unwarranted sexual advances from coworkers, it goes beyond that. Harassment is a discriminatory behaviour against someone’s race, beliefs, age, gender, sexual orientation, or physical traits, among many other things.
In most scenarios, different types of workplace harassment intersect, and are generally directed towards women. Now, with the #MeToo movement gaining momentum worldwide, women who were subjected to sexual harassment at work are coming forward with their previously untold stories.

Even though “#MeToo” offered a chance to many to break their silence, one of the biggest problems in tackling workplace harassment is a lack of evidence. Statistics and data show that most harassment cases are rejected by courts, or are never reported due to the absence of documented evidence.

What Can be Done?

The first step in reducing or preventing workplace harassment is understanding what the term entails. Employers, at the most basic level, need to highlight the importance of the deterrence of such behaviours and introduce zero-tolerance policies.
Conducting multiple training sessions on workplace harassment and adding a harassment clause in the terms of employment can prevent unwarranted advances, bullying and sexual coercion.
Organizations also need to be more proactive in providing employees with an environment where they feel safe; security systems can help with that.
While surveillance in the workplace remains a controversial topic, organizations need to adopt a clear approach that’s based on employees’ demands and needs.
Despite well-set-up surveillance cameras, employees still face workplace harassment in subtle and often restrained ways. Verbal threats, constant micro-aggressions and intimidation through body language can be hard to document or record, even with security cameras.
However, physical assault, severe forms of bullying and any other such evident attempts can be deterred with the presence of surveillance.

Not only that, but surveillance cameras can be immensely helpful in taking legal action or filing a discrimination suit against the perpetrators, in case of an unfortunate incident. At Alarmtech, we work with hundreds of commercial clients and business owners for installation and maintenance of high definition video surveillance systems that keep employees and workers safe.
You can know more about our video surveillance systems and integrated security solutions here. We offer life safety devices, access control and CCTV security system to industrial, commercial and home-based businesses. Talk to us about the security of your home and office if you’re based in Ontario.