Japan survey: Fire department harassment widespread

The nationwide survey polled 3,200 male and 800 female firefighters; 28 percent of women experienced sexual harassment in the workplace last year

By FireRescue1 Staff

TOKYO — A government survey found that 28 percent of women working at fire departments nationwide have experience sexual harassment at work in the past year.

The Japan Times reported that the survey of 733 departments also found 17.5 percent of male employees experienced power harassment. Power harassment, which involves the intimidation of a subordinate, was the most common among male workers.

A third-party investigative panel found a male firefighter's suicide was the result of power harassment, according to the report.

The survey polled 3,200 men and 800 women; 2,951 responded. Female victims reported verbal abuse the most, including obscene or sexist remarks. The survey found that 2.2 percent of male workers experienced sexual harassment.

Despite the startling numbers, 37.5 percent of departments provided no place for victims to report workplace bullying.

A plan is underway to boost resources within departments to handle complaints and offer counseling.

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