Recently, a breast cancer survivor endured the trauma of sexual harassment at the hands of her employer, who deceitfully referred to himself as a 'fatherly'-figure. Ana, 49, had initially crossed paths with the septuagenarian, the owner of a foreign labour supply company where she works at, previously.
The employer was known among employees for his lewd nature, often making inappropriate comments that were dismissed as 'old man's jokes.'
Ana resumed work as a secretary at another company, where the man served as chairman. She hoped his behaviour would change but he persisted in making unwelcome advances, attempting to touch her hands, chin, and back. Ana consistently distanced herself and avoided being alone with him in the office.
In May, the man escalated his advances, reaching a point where he groped her breast from behind in the office. Subsequently, Ana filed a police report and encouraged a colleague, who had also been allegedly assaulted, to do the same. Despite initial apprehension, the collective support of friends and fellow association members emboldened them to come forward.
However, most of Ana's colleagues hesitated to report the incidents, viewing the perpetrator as 'fatherly' or 'grandfatherly,' and some regarded his behaviour as a mere jest. In response to multiple similar complaints, the local humanitarian organization expressed concerns, emphasizing that individuals in leadership roles should uphold the values of the Islamic organization they represent.
The organization urged all women who have experienced harassment by these paternal figures to step forward, report the incidents, and ensure that the perpetrators face the consequences of their actions according to the law.