Sexual Harassment at the Bar (Council)

Date: 8 November 2019
Attended by Purani Mogan

Hi everyone, last week Friday (8/11), I attended AWL Conference at Asian International Arbitration Centre. Some of the topics discussed were Inclusion as a new practice area, toxic workspace and 24/7 Access – and it kills. According to Internal Bar Report, 1 in 3 women lawyers has been sexually harassed in workplace. Besides that, there are more than 50% women lawyers and yet only 23% of them are in decision making position (Malaysian Bar and State Bars). Mr Roger, VC of Malaysian Bar said that,” We should stop pretending that the playing field is levelled”.

Next, on the topic of Inclusion, the panellist were Miss Shanthi Dairiam, Datin Mina and Amanda Kong (she is a blind lawyer). Shanthi talked about CEDAW and Gender Equality Bill. “You are disabled only when the environment you live in makes you that way”, Amanda. Datin Mina (Body Shop) said that, “if we are busy working hard, there is no time for hate and discriminate”.
For second session on toxic workspace, the panellist discussed on micro inequalities, sexism, sexual harassment and so on. The session was a forum discussion on how technology has changed the legal field. Lastly, AWL together with Gender Equality and Diversity Committee of KL Bar launched mentorship program for women lawyers.