Casey Affleck and the normalization of workplace harassment

Casey Affleck and the normalization of workplace harassment

Casey Affleck, younger brother of A-list star, Ben Affleck, took home the title of Best Actor at the Academy Awards on Sunday for his role in Manchester by the Sea. The win immediately spurred controversy as Affleck is accused of sexually harassing multiple female coworkers while making his 2010 mockumentary, I’m Still Here. One of the unsettled lawsuits involve Affleck climbing into bed with a woman while she was asleep and unaware.

We expect that anyone in violation of workplace harassment rules will be disciplined accordingly, whether that be re-educated or removed from their position. Unfortunately, this is rarely the case and scenarios like Affleck winning an Oscar maintain and enforce the normalization of sexual harassment and violence against women.

In a study conducted by Associates of Women for Action and Research (AWARE), 54 per cent of employees say they have been subject to some type of sexual harassment in the workplace, 79 per cent of those surveyed were women.

These incidents are often unreported and regularly disregarded as being in mere “jest”, the victim being silenced or accused of lacking humour. At any rate, sexual harassment, whether verbal or physical, is ignored in spite of strict legislation put in place to protect workers.

Casey Affleck accepting his Oscar at the 89th Academy Awards.

Affleck’s win affirms some of our greatest fears: sexual harassment is not taken seriously in the workplace and even a man in the spotlight with publicly known lawsuits will still be awarded.

The allegations against Affleck, while not yet proven in court, are indicative of an issue that happens in workplaces worldwide. some are arguing that the allegations should not interfere with his talent as an actor or director.

To be clear, Casey Affleck’s Oscar win is not a story of just a male actor with money getting away with harassment. His win is just one example of a larger issue that happens in grocery stores, office settings, warehouses and arguably any other workplace you can imagine. Casey Affleck should not be given the benefit of “being an actor”. He is a man who sexually harassed coworkers at work, an issue for which there should be zero tolerance in any capacity in any workplace.



12 thoughts on “Casey Affleck and the normalization of workplace harassment

  1. OVER HALF of the people surveyed have experienced sexual harassment at work…that’s ridiculous. I can’t believe that many people have to deal with that at work, of all places. Thanks for drawing attention to this issue.

  2. As always, your posts are so well written and very informative. You made lots of great points and I hope that the world will become a better place for us all to live in.

  3. It’s insane to me that in *2017* everyday sexual harassment is still so common place. It’s so common that many MANY women don’t even realize they are being harassed. I remember telling a supervisor that one of my coworkers was acting inappropriately and was told I, “can’t take a joke”.

    Thank you for sharing and continuing to fight the female cause!

  4. The good thing about sexual harassment its not as bad as it used to be. In my twenties, to be beeped and yelled at walking down the street was something you put up with. Same as sexual actions and comments on the job. The tales I could tell.

  5. So many celebrities get away without any kind of discipline or consequences! Society will never change until these A-list celebrities start being publicly shamed for their unacceptable actions. I’m so pissed about Bill Cosby too. Too many female voices are being drowned out by money and and status.

  6. I saw this on the news literally everywhere after the Oscars. I believe it’s not the first I saw something about male actors sexually harassing women at the workplace.
    Seems insane that this still happens at work nowadays.
    Thanks for drawing attention to this again!

  7. I was shocked that he won despite the allegations that surround him. And I agree with you that it does point to a larger problem in society.
    You’d think that with all the political stances some of these actors have taken, they wouldn’t have overlooked this issue.

  8. You have written very true and represented a true picture of society that sexual harassment is a big issue at workplace and women face it now a days. Very Well-written.. I must say..

  9. I had no idea that any of that was going on with him (my own lack of celebrity awareness) but oh my gosh that’s not right in any capacity. You’re right in saying it’s still a major issue that needs to be addressed. It’s 2017, let’s get on with cracking down on sexual harassment in the workplace!

  10. Wow what a startling statistic… 54% of employees say that they have been sexually assaulted at work. Good for you for shedding light on this. Great post, very well written

  11. AWESOME article Celia! You had me engaged the entire time and gave great insight into the circumstance. Thanks for speaking your mind on this issue, that I completely agree, should be handled in a more rigorous manner than it’s being handled right now.

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