Human Rights Commission slammed over internal sexual harassment

A young woman cut short her internship after she was allegedly groped.
A young woman cut short her internship after she was allegedly groped. Photo credit: Getty

The Human Rights Commission (HRC) is being criticised for its handling of a sexual harassment case.

It's been revealed a young American woman cut short her internship there after she was allegedly groped by a male staff member at a work party.

Diversity Works chief executive Bev Cassidy-Mackenzie says the incident is worrying.

"Given that they're the watchdog and regulatory body for businesses and individuals in this space, it's a concern to us," she told RadioLIVE.

Ms Cassidy-Mackenzie says her organisation is one of many that passes on queries for further investigation, and they need to have confidence in the HRC.

"A lot of those queries are around discrimination, bullying and harassment," she says.

"If they don't have their house in order - in good order - then how can we have confidence in them to be able to undertake that service?"

A spokesperson for the HRC has defended the way it handled the complaint.

"The Human Rights Commission takes complaints of this nature from its employees very seriously," they told Newshub.

"The Commission does have policies and procedures in place for the treatment of internal sexual harassment complaints and these have been in place since 2009.

"This complaint was dealt with in accordance with this policy. Nonetheless we are looking at all aspects of our operations and checking for any opportunities for improvement."