Georgian Women Can Now Seek Justice With New Law Criminalizing Sexual Harassment
Sexual harassment will now be considered a form of discrimination in the country of Georgia. Any victim of sexual harassment will now be able to file a report with the court against the perpetrators, as well as receive compensation and overall justice.
The country amended a previous law that outlawed sexual harassment in the workplace but did enforce the law. Perpetrators walked away with no consequence. This law allows law enforcement to impose fines on those accused of sexual harassment and holds them accountable for the crime.
The sexual harassment of a female journalist who fought and won her case against an employer through a progressive interpretation of the law is what led to a change in policy on this issue. The #MeToo movement, advocacy on women’s rights from international human rights organizations and a push for integration with European policies are all credited with pushing this law forward.
The Realist Woman's take:
This story sounded a bit familiar due to the trend of worldwide governments criminalizing and enforcing sexual harassment. Chile has also outlawed the crime, punishing perpetrators with fines and jail time.
This is a historic step for Georgia, as they are the first of the former Soviet states to pioneer a law of this kind. Hopefully, other countries in the region will follow.