NIOSHTIC-2 Publications Search

Sexual assault of women at work.

Seligman PJ; Newman SC; Timbrook CL; Halperin WE
Am J Ind Med 1987 Oct; 12(4):445-450
Workers' compensation claims for sexual assault filed in Ohio between 1983 and 1985 were reviewed for the occurrence of rape in the workplace. Criteria for the identification of cases included the source of injury as a person other than the person injured, characterization of the injury as multiple or not elsewhere classified, description of the injury as resulting from being struck by someone or something or not elsewhere classified, and a statement that rape or sexual assault had occurred. A total of 23 workers' compensation claims were filed for rape during the 1983 to 1985 period. Two cases of sexual assault against males were excluded from the study. The victims ranged in age from 16 to 41 years, with an average age of 26.4 years. A total of 76 percent of the cases were reported in cities, with 14 and 10 percent, respectively, reported for suburban and rural areas. Rape during daylight hours comprised 53 percent of the sample. A total of 76 percent of the cases involved an unknown assailant. Job categories with the highest percentage of rapes by unknown assailants were convenience food store workers, property management workers, and motel employees. A total of 62 percent of the rapes that occurred after dark involved cashiers and clerks in convenience stores. All of these rapes involved unknown assailants. Statistical analysis revealed that convenience store employees had a significantly enhanced risk of being raped (value of 25.6) as compared to workers at other commercial enterprises. The authors conclude that convenience store cashiers, residential managers, and motel housekeepers are at particularly high risk of rape, and they recommend development of strategies to prevent such assaults.
NIOSH-Author; Epidemiology; Sex-factors; Occupational-sociology; Case-studies; Personality-traits; Job-stress; Industrial-psychology; Workplace-studies; Author Keywords: workers compensation claims; convenience food stores; motels; property managers
Dr. Paul J. Seligman, NIOSH, R-21, 4676 Columbia Parkway, Cincinnati, OH 45226
Publication Date
Document Type
Journal Article
Fiscal Year
Issue of Publication
NIOSH Division
Source Name
American Journal of Industrial Medicine
Page last reviewed: September 2, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division