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Dignity at Work campaign launched by union BECTU to challenge harassment and bullying

The #metoo campaign has helped bring sexual harassment in the industry into the open. Photo: Shutterstock

A major new campaign that aims to tackle issues including sexual harassment, bullying and long working hours has been launched by union BECTU.

The campaign ties together different strands of the entertainment union’s work to send a “clear core message” that members should be “treated with dignity wherever they work”.

By shining a light on different issues affecting workers, BECTU hopes to champion employees’ rights and roll out best practice across the sector.

Dignity at Work was launched in response to a survey conducted by BECTU last year, which revealed that more than half of women and a quarter of men working in the creative industries had encountered sexual harassment or bullying at work.

Exclusive: Study reveals extent of harassment in theatre [1]

BECTU covers the media and entertainment industries, including off-stage theatre workers.

The union has launched the Dignity at Work campaign with a video [2] focusing on sexual harassment and a pledge to work with employers across the sector to protect workers’ rights.

BECTU head Philippa Childs said: “We’re clear that sexual harassment in the workplace is a trade union issue – it’s up to all of us to take a stand and stop this damaging behaviour being accepted as the norm. Many of our members are freelance workers, who fear they have to put up or shut up if they want to continue to receive work.”

She added: “Our Dignity at Work campaign is about challenging and working with employers to do more to protect workers’ rights, and it’s about ensuring that we hear and act on our members’ concerns so that together we can make creative workplaces safe spaces for everyone.”

Full details of the campaign are to be released, but a spokeswoman said it will include further work on the union’s Eyes Half Shut campaign, which challenges a culture of long working hours in the industry.