Sexual harassment in Japan

I was somewhat surprised to learn that this is still an issue here.  I remember when I first came to Japan I had to battle sexual harassment on a nearly daily basis, not only in the workplace (I actually quit two jobs because of unbearable harassment from male colleagues) but on the trains too, as I’ve posted before.  Most people turned a blind eye to it.  However, the issue has come to the forefront in recent years, and public awareness has greatly increased as a result.  Young men especially are very aware of the ramifications of being accused of this sort of behaviour.  In fact, in my workplace the men are unfailingly polite and take great pains to keep their distance from their female co-workers, even to the point of avoiding being alone in a room with us.  I actually feel sorry for them sometimes (and a bit sorry for myself … I kind of miss the innocent workplace flirtations.  Don’t you?).


4 comments on “Sexual harassment in Japan

  1. Karen says:

    Good God. That’s primeval. I don’t think that would have been tolerated here even 100 years ago. It must be awful for women there.

  2. Miko says:

    I certainly don’t have a very good image of Japanese men as a result of my experiences. Japan has a way to go, all right. (BTW, at least one of my workplace harassers was an American guy, who knew full well that he’d never get away with that kind of behaviour in the States. It’s probably one of the reasons he was in Japan in the first place.)

  3. Karen says:

    Undoubtedly, that’s why the American guy was there. He’d have been unemployed here. I’m sure it still goes on here, particularly with men preying on women who are afraid to speak up for fear of losing their jobs. But we have come a long way from the days when a man could pretty much say anything & get away with it. The knife cuts both ways, too. There have been some women who have been sued for sexual harassment in the workplace.

  4. See? It’s really a world wide issue. Why people wants to do what’s improper.

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