Safe, Inclusive and Respectful Workplaces: Bystander Intervention Strategies


Susan Lomas, Me Too Mining Association

Workplace harassment has a direct link to worker safety, and this is no different for sexual harassment.  Workplace sexual harassment and other inappropriate behaviours create unsafe and unhealthy work environments.  All workers have the right to be physically and emotionally safe in their workplace, but sexual harassment can compromise both and leave workers at risk for physical injury and poor physical and mental health outcomes. Studies show that sexual harassment in the workplace decreases job satisfaction, increases worker absenteeism, work related stress and long-term exposure can cause depression and anxiety, while traumatic exposures can lead to PTSD and CPTSD. The presentation will introduce Me Too Mining Association, a non-profit organization seeking to address sexual violence, sexual harassment, discrimination, and intimidation inherent in mining, mineral exploration and mining impacted communities. The goals of the organization are to: Start the conversation about inappropriate workplace behaviours experienced by workers in mining.  Create policy, procedures and training packages to message that inappropriate behaviours in the workplace are not tolerated, bystander intervention strategies are supported and that a safe, inclusive and respectful workplace culture is the goal. Provide education around active bystander intervention strategies through our DIGGER Program. Establish a knowledge database on the MTM website for access to studies and data, reporting options and support services listed by country. By the end of the talk the audience will have guidance on actions to take back to their companies and what to do when sexual violence/harassment, discrimination or intimidation happens to them or in their presence.