Woman helping victims of sexual harassment: 'Speak out and go to someone close'

AS MORE WOMEN COME FORWARD WITH SEXUAL HARASSMENT CLAIMS, A LOCAL WOMAN IS DOING HER PART TO HELP THE VICTIMS. SHE TELLS ACTION NEWS JAX REPORTER VARISA LALL DASS WHAT WOMEN AND MEN CAN DO IF THEY FEEL THREATENED.

Action News Jax cameras rolled as one sexual harassment survivor told us her story without showing her face.

The survivor, called Jane Doe said, “He would try to feel up on me and everything. And after he’d try to feel up on me and everything, I just really didn’t know who to talk to about it because I really wanted to keep my job.”

Sadly, her story isn’t unique.

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In a 2017 Equal Employment Opportunity Commission study, the agency found three out of four sexual harassment victims never report it.

We sat down with sexual harassment coach Dr. Valecia Dunbar to learn how women can recognize the behavior.

“It can be stress, anxiety, self-doubt, guilt, fear of loss of reputation,” Dr. Dunbar said.

Dunbar said there are three questions women should ask themselves. First, women should ask themselves how they felt before the incident versus how they felt after. Any uncomfortable feelings should be recognized along with the conduct that triggers it.

Second, she wants victims to ask themselves, “What should I do and what do I want to be the end result?”

Based on the answer she says victims should ask the third question, “What is an immediate step I can take to move to that place I want to get to?”

As for our Jane Doe, she has advice of her own. She said, “I would suggest that they speak out and go to someone close.”

It's advice she said she wishes she would have taken herself.