The Standing Committee of the Shanghai Municipal People's
Congress yesterday passed new legislation that seeks to provide
women with a clearer avenue within which to sue their harassers.
This landmark occasion is the country's first legal ruling giving a
clear definition of sexual harassment.
The revised Shanghai Municipal Measures for Implementing the Law
on Protection of Women's Rights sets down cases of sexual
harassment as including verbal abuse, written text, pictures, text
messaging and physical contact. Victims will now be able to lodge
appropriate complaints to their employer, relevant government
departments or directly to public security organs and take active
measures to ensure the perpetrators are prosecuted to the full
extent of the law.
"Employers must take steps to ensure a positive atmosphere for
their female staff to be able to work without fear of sexual
harassment," says the measure.
Shen Guoming, vice chairman of the Legal Affairs Committee of
the Shanghai Municipal People's Congress, said the Law on
Protection of Women's Rights, adopted back in 2005, was difficult
to enforce given the absence of any clear definition of sexual
"I believe a clear definition of the forms of sexual harassment
in local legislation will both complement and increase the
effectiveness of the national law," said Shen.
(Xinhua News Agency, April 27, 2007)