Judgment No. 3413
1. The impugned decision is set aside.
2. The matter is remitted to the IAEA to further investigate the complainant’s complaint of sexual harassment.
3. The IAEA is ordered to pay the complainant moral damages in the amount of 20,000 euros.
4. It shall also pay her 4,000 euros in costs.
The complainant successfully impugns the decision to dismiss her appeal against the rejection of her sexual harassment complaint.
complaint allowed; decision quashed; case sent back to organisation; sexual harassment
Sexual harassment of a staff member in the workplace is a serious violation of her or his rights and is all the more egregious if the harassment is by a senior staff member. An apparently bona fide complaint of sexual harassment has to be investigated promptly and thoroughly. Equally it has to be reinvestigated if circumstances warrant further investigation. In the present case, the IAEA’s failure to reinvestigate involves a serious breach of its duty towards the complainant. Even if the sexual harassment had not occurred, the pursuit of the allegation would doubtless have been traumatic for the complainant. The trauma would have been compounded by the failure to reopen the investigation as she requested. Of course if the sexual harassment had occurred then almost certainly the trauma caused by the failure to reopen the investigation is likely to have been significant. In the Tribunal’s view, the complainant is entitled to moral damages of substance. They are assessed in the sum of 20,000 euros.
moral injury; sexual harassment