Ontario is training bartenders, servers and others in the hospitality sector to identify and intervene in instances of sexual violence and harassment among employees and patrons.
Women’s issues Minister Tracy MacCharles says Ontario will spend $1.7 million over three years to provide workers with the tools to intervene safely and support survivors of sexual violence and harassment.
The funding will support training for frontline workers in the hospitality, health, education, and community services sectors.
MacCharles says the majority of the almost half a million servers and waiters in Ontario are young women, and not all of them know exactly what sexual violence or harassment looks like.
MacCharles added “We know Ontarians want to respond to sexual violence and harassment when they see it. These training projects will empower frontline workers to step in and give them the tools to do so safely and effectively.”
Earlier this year, Ontario also passed the Sexual Violence and Harassment Action Plan Act. The Act will make workplaces safer and improve support for survivors through legislative amendments that come into effect on September 8.
The training and legislation are part of It’s Never Okay – Ontario’s Action Plan to Stop Sexual Violence and Harassment. The plan is helping to change attitudes, improve supports for survivors and make workplaces and campuses safer and more responsive to complaints about sexual violence and harassment.