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Sexual Harassment

  1. Shantel Fernandez,
  2. Rochelle F. Hanson

Published Online: 30 JAN 2010

DOI: 10.1002/9780470479216.corpsy0858

Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology

Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology

How to Cite

Fernandez, S. and Hanson, R. F. 2010. Sexual Harassment. Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology. 1–3.

Author Information

  1. Medical University of South Carolina

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 30 JAN 2010


Sexual harassment is illegal and occurs in a variety of settings. Laws have been developed to protect individuals from this problem in workplace, housing, and educational contexts. Both females and males experience sexual harassment. However, women are more likely to experience sexual harassment than men (Nora et al., 2002; Street, Gradus, Stafford, & Kelly, 2007). According to a study of federal employees, approximately 44% of women and 19% of men have experienced sexual harassment over a 2-year period (United States Merit Systems Protection Board, 1995). In 2007, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) received 12,510 charges of sexual harassment, with only 16% of those charges filed by males. Additionally, charges of sexual harassment can be quite costly. According to the EEOC web site (, in 2007, 11,592 sexual harassment charges were resolved by the EEOC, with $49.9 million in monetary benefits recovered for charging parties and other aggrieved individuals. Importantly, this amount did not include monetary benefits obtained through litigation.


  • sexual harassment;
  • sex discrimination;
  • civil rights