Few political staffers on Parliament Hill report sexual misconduct: survey

Sixty-five of the 266 survey respondents said they had personally experienced at least one incident of sexual harassment.

The majority of political staffers who told The Canadian Press they had personally experienced sexual misconduct on the job chose not to report it, with many saying they worried doing so would mean negative consequences for their careers.

The Canadian Press distributed a questionnaire to those working in offices of MPs, senators and cabinet ministers in Ottawa last month, asking them to share their opinions and experiences with sexual assault and sexual harassment on Parliament Hill.

Related: Female MPs unsure what #MeToo movement means for Parliament Hill: survey

Sixty-five of the 266 survey respondents said they had personally experienced at least one incident of sexual harassment.

Twenty said they had been the target of at least one incident of sexual assault.

Only six of the respondents who said they had been the target of sexual harassment in their role as a political staffer said they reported the incident that had the biggest impact on them.

Of the 57 people who said they did not report the sexual harassment, 61 per cent of them listed not thinking it was serious enough to merit a complaint as one of the reasons.

About 47 per cent, meanwhile, said they were afraid it would have a negative impact on their career; the same percentage said they did not believe reporting the incident would make a difference.

Thirty-five per cent said they were worried they would be disbelieved or not taken seriously, while one-third said they did not know where to report it.

Related: Change in politics, society on sexual misconduct ‘not fast enough,’ says Trudeau

There were a couple of respondents, however, who said not reporting it was the right thing to do.

“(I am) of the view that you deal directly with the individual to let them know you feel it is inappropriate,” one wrote.

Only two respondents said they reported their experience of sexual assault that made the biggest impact.

Neither woman said she was satisfied with how their complaints were handled: one said her story was ignored and the other said she was not believed.

Joanna Smith, The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Province announces $100-million grant funding for Northwest communities

The Northern Capital and Planning Grant will go to four regional districts and 22 municipalities

All Native Basketball Tournament Day 5: Recap

Highlights and results from day 5 at the All Native Tournament

All Native Basketball Tournament Day 6: Preview

Look ahead to all the action scheduled for Feb. 16 at the All Native Tournament

All Native Basketball Tournament Day 4: Recap

Results and highlights from day 4 at the 2019 All Native Basketball Tournament

All Native Basketball Tournament Day 3: Recap

Highlights from around Day 3 of the tournament

B.C. students win Great Waters Challenge video contest

Video, mural and song about saving the salmon claims the top prize

B.C. athlete takes home gold in freestyle aerials at Canada Games

Brayden Kuroda won the event with a combined score of 121.65.

Cabinet likely to extend deadline to reconsider Trans Mountain pipeline

The can’t decide the pipeline’s fate until a new round of consultations with Indigenous communities

B.C. government provides $75,000 towards salmon study

Study looks at abundance and health of Pacific salmon in Gulf of Alaska

Murdered and missing honoured at Stolen Sisters Memorial March in B.C.

‘We come together to make change within the systems in our society’

UBC researchers develop inexpensive tool to test drinking water

The tricoder can test for biological contamination in real-time

Disgraced ex-Congressman Anthony Weiner released from prison

He was convicted of having illicit online contact with a 15-year-old North Carolina girl in 2017

B.C. communities push back against climate change damages campaign

Activists copying California case that was tossed out of court

Most Read