(photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM/THE JERUSALEM POST)
Sexual abuse at the office will be considered a workplace accident for the purpose of filing compensation claims, if a bill proposed by Meretz chairwoman Zehava Gal-On becomes law.
“Recognizing sexual abuse as a workplace accident has declarative value that could make it easier for victims to realize their rights and demand compensation,” Gal-On said.
The proposal, which will go to a vote in the cabinet’s Ministerial Committee for Legislation on Monday, would also allow a victim of workplace sexual abuse to file for compensation up to three years afterwards, instead of only a year as in other cases of workplace accidents.
The bill was written in cooperation with the Clinic for Women’s Rights at the College for Management and Academic Studies, and with the Department for the Advancement of Women’s Rights at WIZO.
“Sexual abuse in the workplace can have serious repercussions for the abused worker, his or her ability to work or find an alternative job, and effects on his or her family,” Gal-On said.
According to Gal-On, increasing the amount of time a person has to file a claim gives the victim time to understand what happened, gather the courage to deal with it and the abuser.