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The initiatives and actions of the Greek government to prevent, deal with and combat cases of violence and harassment of employees, as well as for their protection, were presented by the Deputy Minister of Labor and Social Affairs, Maria Sirengela, responsible for demographic and family policy and equality between the sexes, reports BTA.

Maria Sirengela reported to Parliament on the subject of sexism in the workplace at a meeting of the Special Standing Committee on Equality, Youth and Human Rights.

She stressed that "the right to a safe working environment, free from discrimination, harassment or violence, is of central importance" to the Greek government.

"From the first moment we were appointed, our goal was to fight all forms of violence," Sirengela said.

More than 100 female students accused two professors in Thessaloniki of sexual harassment

The Labor Law protects women and men from sexual harassment at work, with Greece becoming one of the first countries to ratify Convention 190 of the International Labor Organization (ILO) on the elimination of violence at work.

According to the deputy minister, employers have express obligations to protect employees, create a safe working environment and investigate complaints.

At the same time, as Sirengela mentioned, in Greece an "independent department in the Labor Inspectorate to monitor the manifestations of violence and harassment in the workplace" was created.  

According to the Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs, "in 2021 the Labor Inspectorate received more than 80 complaints of violence in the workplace, while the corresponding complaints in 2020 were only 21, while for 2022 the numbers that soon to be announced, it is expected to be almost double." Deputy Minister of Labor and Social Affairs Maria Sirengela said that "the silence has begun to break", and pointed out that complaints of workplace harassment, while there were " hesitant' at first, now 'gaining momentum'.

"We have taken very important steps so that women can feel empowered and live in a safe environment.

But we won't stop.

We continue with persistence, systematicity and consistency to eliminate stereotypes, violent behavior and harassment in the work environment and beyond.

The development of society ultimately presupposes absolute respect for human rights.

We must all respect and protect them!” Maria Sirengela concluded.


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