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DOI:10.5593/SGEMSOCIAL2017/HB11/S12.110

A COMPARISON OF HARASSMENT AND SEXUAL HARASSMENT IN THE CZECH REPUBLIC AND IN THE UNITED KINGDOM AS A POINT OF DEPARTURE FOR FUTURE EUROPEAN POLICIES

L. Cviklova
Tuesday 25 July 2017 by Libadmin2017

References: 4th International Multidisciplinary Scientific Conference on Social Sciences and Arts SGEM2017, www.sgemvienna.org, SGEM2017 Conference Proceedings, ISBN 978-619-7105-93-3 / ISSN 2367-5659, March 28-31, Book1, Vol.1, 879-886 pp, DOI:10.5593/SGEMSOCIAL2017/HB11/S12.110

ABSTRACT
In its analysis of various legal regulations and data from the United Kingdom and the Czech Republic concerning harassment, and namely sexual harassment, the article highlights how sociological discourses and legal decisions have reflected upon this specific form of discrimination, which is regulated by international, European as well as national means. The article first considers two major principles of sexual harassment − ’quid pro quo’ and a ’hostile working environment’; later, international, European as well as national provisions such as conventions, directives and various other acts are presented. In the Czech Republic, the most important measures to protect prospective victims against harassment and sexual harassment are the Charter of Fundamental Rights and Freedoms and the Labour Code, and in the United Kingdom respective measures are the Sex Discrimination Act 1975, the Equality Act 2010 and the Protection from Harassment Act 1997. The central part of the article is an elucidation of the differences concerning the settlement of harassment and sexual harassment cases in the two countries; they are explained in the context of sociological data and relevant case law. Firstly, while in the United Kingdom sociologists as well as ordinary citizens are more or less aware of the negative effects of the phenomenon, in the Czech Republic, media discourses as well as decision makers of the judicial system have tendencies to underestimate it or even to ridicule prospective victims. Secondly, despite sharing similar structural features of international, European and national provisions concerning harassment and sexual harassment, examples of case law in the Czech Republic and in the United Kingdom have demonstrated substantial differences between the nature of complaints adjudicated by the national courts.

Keywords: Anti-Discrimination Law, the Czech Republic, Discrimination, the European Court of Human Rights, Harassment, Sexual Harassment, the United Kingdom


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