Academic Article


  • 2012

Background: Exposure to workplace sexual harassment (SH) has been associated with impaired mental health, but longitudinal studies confirming the relationship are lacking. Aims To examine gender differences in prospective associations between SH and psychological distress. Methods: Baseline questionnaire survey data were collected in 2005 in a representative sample of Norwegian employees. Follow-up data were collected in 2007. SH was measured with the Bergen Sexual Harassment Scale. Psychological distress was measured with the 25 item Hopkins Symptom Checklist (HSCL-25) with cases of psychological distress defined as having a mean score of <1.75. Variables were measured at both baseline and follow-up. Logistic regression analysis was used to analyse data. Results: Response rates were 57% in 2005 and 75% in 2007 when the final cohort comprised 1775 respondents. After adjusting for baseline distress and age, exposure to SH at baseline was associated with psychological distress at follow-up among women [odds ratio (OR): 2.03; 95% confidence interval (CI): 1.2–3.39] but not men (OR: 1.32; 95% CI: 0.72–2.43). Baseline distress was significantly related to SH at follow-up among men (OR: 3.03; 95% CI: 1.74–5.26) but not women (OR: 1.15; 95% CI: 0.69–1.92). Conclusions: The study found that SH contributed to subsequent psychological distress among women....

Nielsen, Morten Birkeland; Einarsen, Ståle
Occupational Medicine 62(3): 226–228
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