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16 Tactics to Stop Sexual Harassment at Meetings

Respondents to MeetingsNet’s sexual harassment survey shared their ideas for reducing the potential for sexual harassment at meetings and in the workplace.

Hundreds of respondents to MeetingsNet’s June 2018 survey on sexual harassment submitted tactics to reduce the potential for sexual harassment at meetings and in the workplace. Most focused on producing a clear harassment policy that eliminates the fear of repercussions for the victim and outlines consequences for harassers and training staff to implement it. Here are 16 additional suggestions they shared:

• Eliminate or limit alcohol at professional events.

• If you do serve alcohol, provide food at the same time.

• Ask questions in RFPs about your vendors’ policies around sexual harassment. Inform them of yours.

• Support legislation that requires hotels, restaurants, and other venues to issue “panic buttons” to staff.

• Add a statement in promotion and registration materials that says, “This is a harassment-free environment. Thank you for respecting others in attendance.”

• Have staff work in pairs or groups.

• Hold leadership accountable and encourage openness so harassment does not stay in the shadows.

• Never leave food or drink unsupervised. 

• On site visits, look at guest rooms alone, or make sure the door is always open.

• Offer sessions about sexual harassment at your conferences to build awareness.

• Remind attendees that while they’re away from the office, they are still accountable for their behavior. 

• Provide tips on how to read body language.

• Encourage a, “If you see something, say something,” mentality. 

• Offer escorts for people going back to their rooms later in the evening.

• Consider hiring additional security, or designate staff to walk around and monitor the situation, especially for evening events that are social and alcohol-infused. 

• Encourage dialogue. Take claims seriously, investigate thoroughly, but allow the accused due process and the opportunity to clarify misunderstandings. 




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