Proposal - Sexual Harassment Issues in Sungai Petani

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This chapter consist of public awareness on sexual harassment issues in Sungai Petani. It starts with the background of the research, statement of problem, research questions and research objectives. At last, this chapter will explain about the scope of the study and significant of the study.


Sexual harassment occurs in all workplaces especially if the environment traditionally favoured a particular sex. Sexual harassment is considered an ethical as well as a legal problem (Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, 2006). According to Women Aid Organization (WAO) (2010), sexual harassment implies any unwelcome verbal, non-verbal, visual, mental or physical behavior of a sexual nature that may, on sensible ground, be seen by the victim as putting state of sexual nature on his or her employment due to his or her sex. In addition, Sexual Harassment might likewise comprise of an unwelcome verbal, non-verbal, mental pr physical behaviour of sexual nature that may, on sensible grounds, be seen by the exploited person as an affront or mortification, or a risk to his or her prosperity, and has no association with his or her work, WAO (2010). While, in the office sexual harassment includes work related harassment which happen external of the office. For example, work related harassment may include situations that taking place at work-related social meeting such as functions, conferences, and induction sessions and during external work task.

As the Commission of the European Union (2007) states, lewd behaviour dirties the workplace and can have a pulverizing impact upon the wellbeing, certainty, confidence and performance of those influenced by it. The pressure and anxiety produced by sexual harassment generally prompts those subjected to it requiring significant investment off work because of affliction, being less proficient at work, or leaving their business to look for work somewhere else. It has major effect for psychological well-being and employee health (Fitzgerald, 1993; Schneider, swan, & Fitzgerald, 1997).

Fitzgerald, (1997) have come to similar conclusions, they maintain that inappropriate behaviour regularly has a severe and negative effect on women' physical and emotional wellbeing, and the more serious the provocation, the more extreme the response. Nervousness, weight reduction or increase, depression, sleep disorder, loss of desire and migraines are those regularly reported by ladies due to sexual harassment. Scientists have additionally observed that there is a connection between sexual harassment and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.

National Women's Law Centre (1993) states victims of sexual attack can experience a wide range of psychological and emotional disorders, including shock, nervousness, sadness, post-traumatic stress disorder or rape trauma syndrome, and other trauma-related mental health issues. Besides,

the sufferes might like wise experience exasperates rest, loss of respect toward oneself, sexual dysfunctions, and behavioral and dietary issues. Mental and enthusiastic injury can likewise show itself in physical responses, for example, stomachaches, migraines, and back issues. Rape exploited people are more prone to endeavor or to submit suicide

the victims may also experience disturbed sleep, loss of self-esteem, sexual dysfunctions, and behavioral and eating disorders. Psychological and emotional trauma can also manifest itself in physical reactions such as stomachaches, headaches, and back problems. Sexual assault victims are more likely to attempt or to commit suicide.


Workplace sexual harassment is a serious problem in Malaysia and over the world and the dimensions of the problem continues to expand. Follow up study in 1988 reported that about 36,000 federal employees quit their job due to sexual harassment between 1985 and 1987 (Aggarwal, 1992). The US Merit Systems Protection Board estimated The US Merit System Protection Board estimated that it had cost US$267 million for the Federal Government in replacing employees who have quit due to sexual harassment (Aggarwal, 1992).

According to WAO (2010), it’s show PDRM statistic on violence against women that on 2006 the number of people that involve in sexual harassment issues is 107 but on next year, the number been increase goes to 195. Sexual harassment is widespread in the Malaysia or worldwide workplace, and has a profound impact on women. Sexual harassment is a growing problem in the government agencies, schools, and the corporations of the world; however, many corporations are now adopting new anti-harassment policies.

In Malaysia, there are constraint facing for the victim to report sexual harassment due to no establishes procedure to show them how and where to report. Not many managers have do far given protestations or grievance method to reporting lewd behaviour at the enterprise level. There is plentiful of proof everywhere that a high percentage of lewd behaviour cases happening in workplace go unreported. Because of humiliation, vulnerability, and fear of being mocked or more terrible still, of losing their occupation, most of the victims of lewd behaviour were prohibited from raising the issues and as the result they had to endure in hush. It is estimated that approximately 50% of working women (Fitzgerald & Shullman, 1993; Ilies, Hauserman, Schwochau, & Stibal, 2003) and approximately 15% of men have at least one sexual harassment experience at work (U .S. Merit Systems Protection Board, 2004).

Every year there is reported case regard to sexual harassment issues in Sungai Petani. However, according to the officer of Jabatan Kebajikan Masyarakat Kuala Muda Mrs Mazmin (2014), there were still lack of awareness and knowledge among citizens in Sungai Petani. Therefore, this study was conducted to investigate on public awareness on the effect of sexual harassment in Sungai Petani.


This study hopefully will provide answer for those questions:

  1. What are the types of sexual harassment in Sungai Petani?
  2. What is the relationship between psychology and sexual harassment?
  3. What is the relationship between physiological and sexual harassment?
  4. What is the relationship between health and sexual harassment?
  5. What is the relationship between career stability and sexual harassment?

Below are the objectives that are essential to be achieved for the purpose of completing the ultimate intention of this research which is as follow:

  1. To know the types of sexual harassment in Sungai Petani.
  2. To know relationship between psychology with sexual harassment .
  3. To know the relationship between physiological and sexual harassment.
  4. To investigate the relationship between health and sexual harassment.
  5. To study the relationship between career stability and sexual harassment

This research will discuss about public awareness on the effect of sexual harassment. In this study, the researcher will examine the data that shows the number of sexual harassment problem and what will be the effect toward the victim.


This research will be conducted in Sungai Petani.


The respondent may come from various categories like worker, public servant and also public at large.


The data for this study was collected within three week.


This study aims to gain an understanding on the sexual harassment at workplace in Malaysian small and medium industry; actions that victims of sexual harassment normally choose to take in overcoming it as well as the effectiveness of those actions. Meanwhile, this study is conducted in order to improve the level of awareness, to gain the opinions and to determine the attitudes towards the sexual harassment. Other than that, regarding to the sexual harassment in the workplace, this study also includes a look at the existing legal environment for redress for victims, and at some best-practice company policies and the practices that are attempts to prevent the problem and protect victims. With the well awareness about the sexual harassment, this will contribute to a better understanding of the issue and stimulate discussion and thinking on the most effective ways to address it.

Besides, it also highlighted the implications of sexual harassment towards victims in what terms they are suffered. For example, in the psychology, physical and mental terms. Some of them are facing mental illness due to the sexual harassment. Furthermore, this study is attempts to understand the victim’s sexual harassment experiences and coping the responses in Sungai Petani. The responses from the public will be helpful in order to gather the information about the sexual harassment.

    1. Sexual Harassment

According to Equals Employment Opportunity Commission (2010), sexual harassment can be defined as unlawful to harass an individual (a candidate or worker) due to individual's sex. Harassment consists of "sexual harassment” or unwelcome sexual gesture, demand for sexual favours, and other verbal or physical nuisance of sexual nature. According to the Ministry of Human Resources (MOHR, 2013), sexual harassment can be divided into two classification, which are sexual coercion and sexual annoyance under the Code of practice on the Prevention and Eradication of Sexual Harassment in the Workplace (2013). Therefore from this definition it can help this study in order to know what the type of sexual harassment and how to define sexual harassment in Sungai Petani.

  1. Physiology

Kerkhoff (2014) stated that physiology is the study of how the various parts of the body work together. This includes the molecules, cells, organs, muscles and all of their chemical processes and functions. These can include a variety of physiological ailments for the victim ranging from headaches and stomach problems to increased risk of heart attack. Victims also often find it difficult to focus on performing their tasks safely and correctly due to increased stress. Also, when involved in a pattern of intimidation, victims often receive inadequate training and may even be reluctant to raise valid safety issues for fear of further ridicule.

Its help this studies to know what is the effect of sexual harassment towards victim in Sungai Petani in terms of physiology. In this study, the researchers will focus on few element on physiology effect such as increased dependence on alcohol (Ulman et al,2005) and as well as headaches (Golding, 1999).

  1. Psychology

James (1890) defined psychology as the description and clarification that is the investigation of the reasons, situation and prompt effect so far as these can be determined , of condition of awareness like sensations, feelings, desires, cognitions, reasoning, decision, volitions, and the like in human beings. Its cause an impact at victimized where sometimes, the victim is so disturbed by the harassment and endures serious emotional and to not be able to perform her work accurately. In this study, the researchers will focus on the elements of psychology affect which are anxiety, depression, sleep disorder, and lower self-esteem (Bergman, Bruce, & Lichty, 2008). This key term of psychology for this study is referring to the psychology effect towards victim of sexual harassments in Sungai Petani.

  1. Health

Health as defined by the WHO (1946) is a complete state of physical, mental, and social wellbeing, not merely the absence of disease or infirmity. Sexual violence will contribute to the burden of disease toward victim such as physical injuries, adverse impact on reproductive health, mental wellbeing and worst part is death. Consequently, the victimized are suffering poor mental wellbeing for almost two-third of this load of disease as stated by VicHealth (2004).

In this study, the researchers will focus on few elements under the health effect which are heart disease, mental health, insomnia and others health illness. This key term for this study is referring to the health effect toward the victim of sexual harassment among Sungai Petani’s citizen.

  1. Job Related

Job related is associated with work. It simply refers to when a person perceives the work environment in such a way that his or her reaction involves feelings of an inability to cope. Health and Safety Authority (HSA) (2010) Specific job-related consequences include decreased satisfaction (Gruber, 1992; Morrow, McElroy, & Philips 1994; Schneider & Swan, 1994). The sexual harassment experiences, coping responses, and job-related and psychological outcomes of 447 female private-sector employees and 300 female university employees were examined. Most of them are facing job stress. The job done by the victims become less productivity and the victims also always absent from the workplace due to the sexual harassment. Therefore, throughout the definition, job related is totally related to the research that has been conducted by the researchers.


Sexual harassment and discrimination have existed in the workplace, in public society, and in the family for centuries. Sexual harassment can happen to women, men, or children, and victims should be protected from such abuse as a basic human right. This study is important to find out how widespread the problem is, and to raise awareness among women. Thus, sexual harassment is totally become a serious problem in organization.