'Don't Sexually Harass People': Blunt Workplace Training Divides Viewers

A now-viral video showing a snippet of a workplace training lesson about gender discrimination and sexual harassment has divided viewers.

TikTok user @binoloves posted the clip that showed a portion of the training video she said was offered by New York State to her account where it was viewed more than 1 million times.

The training urged men to not avoid working with women out of fear of receiving a sexual harassment complaint, noting that a complaint would not be filed if sexual harassment did not take place.

Workplace Training
A woman's video that shows advice from an anti-discrimination program has gone viral and divided viewers. Here, a stock image of a woman leading a business meeting. Rawpixel/iStock

According to HG Legal Resources, sexual harassment prevention training is meant to establish a safe workplace.

"An increased feeling of safety at work can contribute to better employee confidence, improved relationships and better productivity in the long run," a piece published by the organization stated.

These programs may also convey that leadership cares about the well-being of their employees.

In her video, @binoloves showed the screen that displayed the workplace discrimination program.

One slide of the presentation stated that 60 percent of male managers said they are uncomfortable working alone with a woman out of fear of receiving a complaint of sexual harassment.

"Men. Do not avoid working with women because you're afraid of sexual harassment complaints," the next slide read. "That is gender discrimination. To avoid sexual harassment complaints, do not sexually harass people."

The blunt advice prompted viewers to weigh in, some writing that they were surprised it needed to be said at all.

"Sad that men need to be told this," a viewer wrote.

"You can feel the 'I can not believe we have to say this' in his voice," wrote another.

Some wrote that it was "simple" advice, while others suggested that sexual harassment claims are not taken seriously.

"The fear is even funnier because of the countless cases where a female employee came forward and was silenced & punished by her own company/HR," a viewer wrote.

However, some viewers pushed back against the idea is as simple as it is presented.

"I've been accused by a woman I had never met, who swore up and down about," a viewer wrote. "Almost lost everything but the days she said it happened was on vacation."

"It's an understandable fear, even if there's no proof of any kind just the accusation (even if proven false) can have major repercussions," commented another.

"Are people failing [to] realize the amount of false allegations are going around lately," one wrote.

Newsweek reached out to @binoloves for comment.

There have been other instances as they relate to workplace safety.

A woman's sexual harassment claims against a coworker were dismissed after a message inadvertently came off as suggestive due to spellcheck, and a financial expert shared a now-viral video explaining "toxic workplace phrases,"

A teenager was found dead in a breakroom after she reportedly rejected a coworker.