Through out the years there have been many factors that affect the operation of the legal system to help generate just outcomes for women. Historically, women have always held an inferior place to men, but during the 20th century this concept has changed considerably. The status of women has changed in terms of political suffrage, jury duty, economic rights, property rights, social security and minority groups. However, women still suffer disadvantages and to try to resolve particular problems women still confront legal and non-legal mechanisms. The mechanisms are used to resolve political and economic equality in accessing education, training development, gaining promotion, equal pay and sexual harassment. The legal and non-legal mechanism include trade unions, lobby groups, welfare groups and government agencies. Affirmative action and anti-discrimination legislation are also used to try to eliminate women being discriminated against and ensure just outcomes for the individual.
Women’s status under Australian law has changed considerably. Traditionally women have been child careers and homemakers with little activity or influence in public matters. Women are still often cast into these roles, although they now have far greater freedom to adopt other roles, such as working for an income.
In the current workplace women face many challenges and problems. In terms of legal protection women have been offered more opportunities for success that previously, but the attitudes of some parts of society still act to constrain women in the workplace. There have been several responses regarding the problems that women have faced in the workplace. The legal response has been to create laws that seek to protect women by making certain action illegal and requiring that employers behave in certain ways. Non-legal responses include trade unions education, training schemes and the training guarantee. However the extent the effectiveness of the non-legal and legal mechanisms have to generate just outcomes, has not yet fully been utilised.
A Comparison of the Status of Women within Two Ethnic Groups It is not a secret that throughout the history women suffered an underprivileged social status. This particularly applies to Muslim society, where even up to this day women are often thought of as having no soul. With the change of American immigration policy in sixties, the people of predominantly non-White origins started to pour into ...
The workplace is still dominated by gender bias. The human rights and equal opportunity commission (HREOC) defines it as ‘the belief that there exist unwritten language in the law which favours males over females’. It suggests that the law has been created by males and to a large degree excludes women and their experiences. In doing so the legal system does not adequately deal with the needs of women because it does not understand them. Sexual discrimination is another concern for women. It is defined by the HREOC as ‘being treated unfairly because of your sex or marital status or because you are pregnant or potentially pregnant’. There are two forms of sex discrimination, Direct and Indirect. Direct discrimination occurs when someone acts directly to treat someone else differently because of their membership in a particular group in society and Indirect discrimination occurs when an action is taken which results in one group in society being treated less favourable than another. Direct and indirect discrimination against women occurs in the workplace and in many ares of everyday life. Women are more likely to be victims of indirect discrimination than men are.
An article recently published in the law society journal depicts the unsavoury, and quite appalling circumstances that have resulted in everyday working women formalising complaints under the sex discrimination Act (Cth) 1984, Anti-Discrimination Act (NSW) 1977 and The Human Rights and equal Opportunities
Commission Act (Cth) 1986. Unfortunately this case study provides a realistic insight into the working lives of what some women go through, in this case study a young women, Ms Osborne was employed by a small recreational club to undertake a variety of tasks including her work, poker machine pay outs and table service. She stated that during that period of employment the club discriminated against her on grounds of her sex and pregnancy, and that she had also been sexually harassed.
Discrimination Against Women in the Workplace Sheila Canoy Everest University Discrimination Against Women in the Workplace In the United States, gender discrimination is one of the most common types of discrimination. The evolving role of women in the workplace is not readily accepted in society. Despite the illegality of gender discrimination, women are being discriminated against in hiring ...
Ms Osborne said that she had made an internal complaint of sexual harassment, which resulted in her being victimised. She said the victimisation consisted of a denial of further work after the birth of her child, even though she had been employed with the club as a casual for over 18 months prior to the birth.
Ms Osborne’s sexual sexual harassment Complaint Filing Clark">harassment complaint was against two club officials. She stated they made comments such as ‘come back to my place for some sex’ and ‘your tits are getting bigger…. Hows about a root’. Ms Osborne said that one of the officials had touched her stomach without permission when she was well into her pregnancy. Her internal complaint to her supervisor resulted in verbal apologies from the two officials and at the time Ms Osborne was satisfied with the resolution. She subsequently became disgruntled however, believing that her shifts were reduced as a mean of retaliation for having made the internal sexual harassment complaint.
Ms Osborne stated her supervisor asked when she intended to stop working and commented ‘it doesn’t look very nice with you doing table service while you are pregnant’. Due to the reduction in her shifts Ms Osborne left work four weeks earlier than planned.
Claiming that she had always intended to return to work after the birth of her baby, Ms Osborne attempted to regain work with the club on a number of occasions. She was told there was no work available.
The employer argued that Ms Osborne had requested a reduction in her hours because she was having difficulty coping with the workload as well as attending family responsibilities during her advancing pregnancy, and that she finally resigned from her position and left of her own free will. The employer further argued that all issues to do with the sexual harassment complaint were satisfactorily resolved at the time and that no victimisation occurred as a result of her complaint. Finally Ms Osborne’s supervisor denied making comments about the pregnancy.
Sexual Discrimination in the Workplace Canada is composed of people from all walks of life and from every race, color, creed and ethnic background imaginable. Despite our varied lifestyles and beliefs, we a reall equal and are entitled to the same treatment before the law and in the workplace. Although we have this diversity, discrimination is something that unfortunately, most people have to deal ...
Ms Osborne lodged a complaint under the federal Sex Discrimination Act. The matter was settled with an amount of $7,500 paid to Ms Osborne and the provision of a written work reference.
This case study shows the different ways in which women are treated differently in the work force. The average weekly earnings for a full-time male employee $847.60, compared to $712.20 for women. Not only that but, Sexual Harassment and sexual Discrimination remains the most common grounds of complaint under the Sex Discrimination Act 1984, with 84% of complainants being female. These facts prove that women have not yet been seen as equal to that of men in the workforce.
A workplace free of sex discrimination and sexual Harassment is a human right. Anyone directly affected by discrimination had the right to complain, according to the Human Rights and Equal Opportunities Commission (HREOC).
There are three stages that a complaint must go through; the process is private, confidential and free. Firstly enquires are made and if the commission decides that the complaint comes within the terms of the SDA (or under the other responsibilities of the commission) an investigation will follow, this is to prove that discrimination has occurred. The investigation will attempt to determine what happened and if there is enough evidence to support the complaint, an attempt at a conciliation will occur. If the complaint cannot be conciliated then the complainant may then apply to the federal court of Australia to have the original allegation heard and determined. The decision of the federal Court is legally binding.
Sexual Harassment is a major problem for women in the workforce. It is defined as ‘an unwelcome sexual advance or request for sexual favours or unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature. Many women who have suffered from sexual harassment in the workplace have received compensation under the sex discrimination Act. In the Hill V Water Resources Commission (1985) case, the principle of a vicarious liability of employers in talking responsibility for the actions of the some employees, was established.
Anti-Discrimination policy for women at workplace was coined back forty years ago when U. S congress passed an Equal Pay Act of 1963 allowing women the freedom to receive the same pay as their male colleagues. Moreover, this act was mostly set as an example by almost all other the other countries that later began the process of anti-discrimination and equal opportunity for women in all fields of ...
In a case study involving sexual harassment a sixteen year old girl Ms Krohn reported that she was indecently assaulted and sexually harassed by her Co-worker Mr Stafford. In particular, Ms Krohn said that on one occasion Mr Stafford led her out of sight of the other Co-workers, grabbed her, kissed her on the mouth and placed his hand inside her clothing, touching her genital area and breasts.
Ms Krohn left the employer at lunchtime that day, and was taken by a friend’s mother to the local police station where she reported the incident. She initiated criminal proceedings in the local court for which Mr Stafford was sentenced to weekend detention for aggravated indecent assault. She then lodged a complaint under the federal Sex Discrimination Act. She stated that her employer had neglected to provide any sexual harassment information or training and consequently failed to provide a safe working environment.
This matter was settled at a conference with Ms Krohn receiving a compensation payment of $16000. Mr Stafford payed $5500 and the employer paid $10500
The women of Australia have also fought for the rights of minority groups. These groups in Australia include immigrant and indigenous Australian women and lesbians. Immigrant women are often trapped in isolation from society through their language difficulties. Despite all legislation against discrimination: the Racial Discrimination Act 1975(Cth) and The Anti-Discrimination Act 1977 (Cth), immigrant women are still victims of indirect discrimination in the workforce. Many of these women work in under award conditions and with their lack of English skills, In many cases, they are especially vulnerable to neglect and exploitation. In recent years these women have been provided with centres which offer them information, mediation services and training, in there own languages. Indigenous women have been given the same social security rights as other women. The 1907 referendum changed the constitution so that the commonwealth Government could make laws concerning Aboriginal people and they were made full citizens. Lesbians too are victims of specific discrimination. These women have to fight for their rights in the division of a partners estate, because The Family Provision Act 1982 (NSW) does not make specific mention of homosexual couples. They also cannot access fertility clinics, sperm banks or adoption centres. Because of their lesbianism they often experience both verbal and physical abuse.
Introduction Discrimination[->0] against female[->1] children has been a topic of debate. It has been a subject of concern and sociological significance. This subject raises the cultural aspects about the role of a female child in society, what her human rights[->2] are as a human being and a number of sensitive issues.This issue is important because there is nearly universal ...
Women still encounter disadvantages today, although there is still a limit to the amount of assistance women receive today even though things have changed considerably over time.
When the Whitlam government was elected in Australia, it introduced some mechanisms for women to achieve justice. The mechanisms that were needed to resolve particular problems confronting women included: Political and economic inequality in accessing education, training and development, gaining promotion, equal pay and sexual Harassment.
In terms of equality and access to women’s education and training, the government has been pro-active. Since the right to enter high education was given to women early in the 20th century, women’s access to and participation on education has almost equalled that of men.
The increasing number of women going through year 12 has also increased their chance to enter tertiary education. In the area of tertiary qualifications, women have faced an up hill battle. It was not until 1967 that women were allowed to study at university in Australia, but their range of subjects was limited. Now women are given the right to enter the subject of their choice.
However women are given fewer opportunities that men to under go on-the-job-training due to discrimination and childcare commitments. Due to the lack of training, women are less likely to be in a position to again promotion especially in senior managing positions. This inability of women to gain such positions is not just because of their lack of training but the glass ceiling effect. This refers to and invisible barrier created by male prejudice, which prevents women from being promoted above a certain level.
Male prejudice, male dominated work practices and the unwillingness of organisations to take into account women’s career paths are all factors, which contribute to the glass ceiling. A mechanism aimed at changing this is the equal employment opportunity legislation says that large companies are required to provide more opportunities for women.
Education: Equal Opportunity? The U. S. Educational system has historically divided into two objective groups. The first objective focuses on increasing opportunity. The second objective focuses on stabilizing an unequal society. The objective of increasing opportunity has mainly emphasized on more than discussions of schooling. Thomas Jefferson implemented a plan in 1779, it promised the laboring ...
The glass ceiling effect is only one reason why the pay for women is not equal to that of the pay of men. Today, women earn an, average, 79% of the average male income. Equal pay for equal work has been a legal reality, but the pay gap between men and women is still obviously wide.
The main reason for this is that the area of work dominated by women attract lower wages, women are more frequently cast in the role of home makers, cuts in child care funding which has made it difficult for women to participate in the workforce, discrimination in being promoted, and of course the glass ceiling effect. The mechanisms used to improve management positions for women have only improved 0.15%p.a.
At this rate, it will take approximately 177 years for women to gain equality.
Federal legislation to provide opportunities for groups that have historically been the subject of discrimination is know as Affirmative Action. It’s principle is to create an employment atmosphere where equality in opportunity exits in the workplace. This principle was established by the Affirmative Action (Equal Employment Opportunity for Women) Act 1986 (Cth), which was later amended in 1999 to become the Equal Opportunity for women in the Workplace Act (Cth).
This act requires higher education authorities and companies, employing over one hundred people to implement affirmative action programs. Men are not discriminated against by this legislation because the Act only promotes opportunities for advancement for women. Though affirmative action has seemed to improve the position of women in the workforce, it has still been limited in its effectiveness. Reasons for this limitation include: legislation not applying to workplaces less than one hundred employees; lack of adequate penalties for non-compliance with the legislation; lack of redressing some fundamental problems faced by women workers; and attitudes of men towards women.
State legislation, which protects women from discrimination in the workplace, is Anti-Discrimination legislation. Discrimination in this way involves sexual harassment, direct discrimination, indirect discrimination and discrimination because of pregnancy. No one can be discriminated against because he/she is single, married, divorced, or living in a de-facto relationship. Like the Affirmative Action Act, it requires the implementation of affirmative action programs, but on a state level.
Education and training schemes are being set up by the NSW government to let women know of its initiatives to build a safer community. Community and government to let women know of its initiatives to build a safer community. Community and government agency expert will ensure that the government is informed about all types of violence against women and how to stop such violence. Public education campaigns about reducing violence will be coordinated also.
The NSW police service has carried out an extensive campaign to encourage victims of domestic violence to call the police.
In conclusion all factors affecting the legal systems operations, to generating just outcomes have changed considerably over time. However women are still disadvantaged in many ways and to resolve this, legal and non-legal mechanisms have been introduced, including trade unions, lobby groups, welfare groups and government agencies. Many mechanisms available for women to generate just outcomes in the Australian legal system, have made a big difference to women and have made it far more easier to achieve justice in society. However, as has been seen, women still suffer greater disadvantages in many ares of daily life.