In The News

CJIA sexual harassment scandal… Red Thread lends solidarity to victims with protest

By Kaieteur News Staff

In an effort to bring awareness to sexual harassment in the workplace, members of the Red Thread Association yesterday, staged a protest in front of the Ministry of Social Protection on Brickdam.

The protest was also done to lend support to the alleged victims of the CJIA sexual harassment scandal that has shocked the country.

On June 16 Kaieteur News reported that a worker at the Cheddi Jagan International Airport (CJIA), Timehri, made a complaint to the management of that state-owned entity.
She claimed that a senior official at the airport sexually harassed her when she visited his office.

The worker complained to management and it was only recently after enquires that she was told that the matter was “addressed.”

A few days after that article was published, another former female staffer came forth with her disturbing details of sexual assault and victimization, which she endured at the hands of another top official of the airport.

Just one of the victims have made an official police report, but investigations are currently being conducted into the scandal.

Susan Collymore, one of the members of Red Thread, is calling for other women, and even men to speak out against actions of sexual assault committed against them in the workplace.

She said that she expects “from the protest that the perpetrators are brought before the courts, which would in turn mean justice for those who genuinely deserve it.”
“I think that this act of sexual harassment needs to stop. Employers should come forth and support victims who are harassed,” Collymore added.

The Red Thread member believes that the victims are going through a second phase of harassment by now being out of a job. “She is being victimized and jobless. How will she support her family?”

The woman strongly accepts that sexual harassment only happens because the victims are not considered high in the social class, and so they are perceived as helpless.

“All we can do is hope that policies and laws are implemented in the workplace so that issues like this can desist, and those laws also need to be stringent, not only at the workplace level but even at the enforces of the land.”