Sexual harassment scandal prompts workplace training

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A Wellington employer which found itself embroiled in a sexual harassment scandal has responded by providing workplace training to tackle the issue.

Hospo Gurus – which operates five venues in the capital – sparked outrage on social media after it failed to adequately address sexual harassment complaints made by two patrons.

Employees at Vinyl Bar allegedly told the two customers that the unwanted touching they had been subjected to was “to be expected” because they were in a bar.

Bosses later apologised, admitting they had failed the patrons and wider community – now, the company has followed up with compulsory employee training.

"Sexual harassment is a form of violence experienced by far too many women," said owner Leon Magowan-Wilson. "Those who come forward about it should expect to be taken seriously and be met with a swift, sensitive and competent response.”

Sexual Abuse Prevention Network facilitated a sexual violence prevention workshop for employees at the organisation earlier this week – the program, ‘It’s Our Business’ is created specifically for hospitality staff and owners.

“It is great to see Hospo Gurus taking the events that occurred last month seriously. Not just the sexual harassment itself, but also their response to the incident in the following days,” said Fiona McNamara, general manager or Sexual Abuse Prevention Network.

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