TWITTER SPACE ON SEXUAL HARASSMENT AT WORKPLACES
As part of the commemoration of the 16 Days of Activism against gender-based violence, Uganda Youth and Adolescent Health Forum (UYAHF) hosted a Twitter space on 26th November 2021 under the topic: Ending Sexual Harassment Against Women at Workplaces
16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence is an annual international campaign for the Elimination of Violence against Women that kicks off on 25 November and runs until 10 December, Human Rights Day. Sexual harassment is one of the most common forms of GBV among others.
Sexual harassment is a form of behavior characterized by the making of unwelcome and inappropriate sexual remarks or physical advances in a workplace or other professional or social situation.
Sexual harassment at the workplace in Uganda is a common occurrence that goes unnoticed by many and there are many incidents that are not reported to the authorities for a number of reasons. Women who are targets may experience a range of negative consequences, including physical and mental health problems, career interruptions, and lower earnings.
Despite increased advocacy especially by CSOs and women’s rights activists on ending sexual harassment and assaults in Uganda, there are still many women silently undergoing harassment and assaults. Most of them are afraid of reporting due to fear of among others losing their jobs and lack of knowledge about their rights.
As a result, the Twitter space aided vulnerable women in learning about their rights and encourage them to speak freely about workplace sexual harassment. The Twitter space also alerted CSOs to the critical need to intervene in this vicious cycle that is making workplaces unsafe for women.
The key objectives were; to encourage women to open up about their experiences of sexual harassment in their work environment. to inform women about their rights especially about their bodies in any environment, to increase knowledge about sexual harassment at the workplace in Uganda among others.
The panelists were; Namataka Grace – National Advocacy Officer, Sebintu Patrick – Gender and SRHR Advocate, Shakirah Namwanje – Policy research and Advocacy Officer, and Kirabo Marion – Founder Present Women. The tweet chat ran with two harsh tags #EndSexualHarassment and #BooksB4BabiesUg
The two-hour Twitter space ran from 2:00 to 4:00 pm. had over 20 participants, 1,800 reach, 30 retweets, 34 tweet replies, and 110 likes.