In a bid to open up the #MeToo movement to the Greek Australian community, the Food For Thought Network (FFTN) is hosting an event next month to start the dialogue in a safe environment.
Recognising the significance of the movement in the fight against harassment in the workplace and beyond, founder Varvara Ioannou and her team have put together an impressive panel of speakers to discuss sexual harassment, raise awareness and share experiences.
Taking place on Wednesday 2 May, opening the FFTN’s #MeToo seminar will be Minister for Women and Minister for the Prevention of Domestic Violence, Natalie Hutchins.
“We must break the silence and speak up as there is no room for sexual harassment in the workplace,” said Ms Ioannou, who is a former HR manager.
“One in four women experience sexual harassment in the workplace; this is unacceptable.”
While there can be huge negative impacts on the victim’s physical and emotional health, Ms Ioannou says that there are costly consequences for all parties involved.
Sexual harassment can harm an organisation’s reputation, in addition to facing financial costs, legal liability, decreased productivity, employee turnover, increased sick leave, and an overall negative atmosphere.
Taking part in the seminar are head of social policy at Maurice Blackburn, Jennifer Kanis; Jen Hargrave who presented at the Royal Commission for Domestic Violence and heads policy with Women with Disabilities Victoria; and Professor Hannah Pieterman who looks at the workings of gender in the workplace, and what helps and hinders processes.
“We are very fortunate to have been able to secure three outstanding speakers who will discuss the rights and responsibilities of victims, perpetrators, managers and organisations,” said Helen Tachos, Deputy Chair of FFTN and convener of the event.
There will also be a special guest speaker who will share her experiences as a whistle-blower against her harasser.
The #MeToo seminar will take place on Wednesday 2 May at the Greek Centre (168 Lonsdale St, Melbourne) from 6.30 – 8.30 pm. Attendance is $50 (refreshments included). To book, visit trybooking.com/UNNF. Bookings close on Wednesday 25 April. For more, visit fftn.org.au