Being at the pinnacle of success, is a dream, almost every individual has. The urge to be the cynosure of all eyes is something every individual feels. Skills and talent, along with immense hard work and the will to create a distinct mark for oneself, is all it takes for every dream to be accomplished. So at a very tender age, individuals begin dreaming and pondering over how their ideal life can be accomplished. They determine goals, and fervently work towards them with utmost diligence and dedication. One after the other, they conquer all the stages of life, be it overcoming all the obstacles of growing, or responsibly completing their education.
The eagerness of manifesting their desires into reality, and the intrigue to explore the unparalleled domains of the professional world, generally transforms into the propulsion to sustain. The working realm can be extremely luring and enticing. It provides all with exposure, experience and opportunities to learn and devise the best version of themselves. However, it cannot be denied, that this captivating and inviting place can also seem immensely appalling. Every place of work has an alluring side to it, which is evident and ubiquitous to the world. The dark side though is hidden and concealed, and only divulges itself when reality strikes.
Sexual harassment at work stations is one such negative side of the professionalism, which people are well acquainted with. Oodles have been written and printed about how the culprit always escapes from the plight, leaving the victim in a disturbed and traumatic condition, along with a marred career. However, there is another presage at work places, which has an almost negligible mention about it. This menace, is hardly spoken about but is an actuality in itself. It is the peddling of sexual favors, to mount the ladder of triumph and success. Unearth any occupation, the media industry, the entertainment industry or the banking industry, each of them have their own rendition of a casting couch.
Imagine, you approach your boss for a promotion with regard to all the efforts you have invested to yield profits for the company. Suddenly, all your hard work, outcomes and foreseen promotion, becomes subservient and your boss assures you a promotion if you agree to copulate with him/her. This type of harassment is often referred to as quid pro quo sexual harassment, which implies that your employer expects sexual favors in a lustful trade for promotions or an increment.
Characteristically, quid pro quo cases are very evident. These cases may range from extremely heinous means like sexual assault, to a very tenuous demeanor of requesting dates for an augmentation. Quid pro quo harassment is illegal in the eyes of the law. However, if the victim succumbs to the pressure of the possibility of incapacitating his or her career, the act can no longer be bound by the law, because it becomes a consensual activity. It can then prove to be immensely taxing for the victim to evince any coercion because in most instances, the offender tenably falsifies any charges against him or her.
Where most people capitulate to the demands, in order to safeguard their vocations, there is also a faction of people, who repudiate any such proposals and choose to progress through fair and equitable means. The decline of the superior’s attempts at a quid pro quo arrangement, often elicits a dissentious retaliation. The victim suffers a demotion or discrimination and the working relationship turns prejudiced, intolerable and uncomfortable. The environment of work becomes belligerent and that is a corroboration of harassment.
In today’s times, when rapes and sexual assaults evoke a humongous hue and cry, a quid pro quo arrangement is often neglected and unvalued. It has been conveniently accepted as an inextricable part of the professional world, and the silence of the victims due to fear and inferiority adds fuel to the fire. Another unnoticed aspect of this barter, is that the people at power, who are generally the wrongdoers, are not always men. In a study, 37% of men complained about being sexually harassed at work places, by their female employers in some form or the other.
Being a victim of quid pro quo harassment, it is natural to feel isolated and restricted from confiding about it to the human resources or anybody for that matter. Testifying against your employer for sexual harassment can seem like a disconcerting task. It is imperative though, to raise your voice, and strive to protect your rights.
Picture Credits : grammarly