This article explores the extent of, and factors associated with, sexual harassment of young female migrant workers in the carpet and garment factories in Kathmandu Valley. Information is drawn from a survey of 550 female workers aged 14 to 19 and 12 in-depth case histories. Bivariate and multivariate techniques were applied to identify the factors associated with harassment. The survey found that 1 in 10 young women had experienced sexual harassment or coercion. Those who were exposed to pornographic movies were more likely than those with no exposure to any kind of movies to report sexual harassment. Perpetrators included coworkers, boyfriends, employers, and relatives. Case histories revealed that the inability of young women to communicate effectively with their peers and sex partners, lack of self-esteem, job insecurity, and other socioeconomic problems made them vulnerable to these abuses. The results suggest the need for advocacy and a range of factory-based interventions.
Journal of Interpersonal Violence 22 (11) 1363-1381 [doi:10.1177/0886260507305524]