A recent survey from Association of Flight Attendants has revealed some disturbing statistics about sexual harassment in the field. According to the survey, 68 percent of respondents said they have experienced sexual harassment during their career. Even when isolated to just the past year, 35 percent reported verbal harassment and 20 percent physical harassment. This is a significant jump over a nationwide poll, which shows 38 percent of respondents experienced workplace harassment in their careers, according to an SF Gate report. The survey that addressed all women, released by Stop Street Harassment, Raliance, and Center on Gender Equity and Health, showed 81 percent of women have experienced sexual harassment in general, whether inside or outside the workplace.
This could explain why the number is much higher for flight attendants than other workers. In other work environments, workers are often interacting with other employees. There is more oversight and potential consequence for sexual harassment. Employees see each other every day, so there is no anonymity. If the company acts with integrity, there are strict rules and prevention strategies already in place. Even with all of those factors, a shocking number of people still face harassment. But on an airplane, attendants are interacting with strangers every day. They are in tight quarters and sometimes serving drinks to guests. Not to mention, flight attendants have long been sexualized in media and advertising, adding fuel to the fire of people who think they are entitled to harass others. Continue reading