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Naming the Unnamed Sexual Harassment in the Church (1982)

In 1978, the General Assembly of the United Presbyterian Church assigned to the Council on Women and the Church responsibility to “study the problems of sexual harrassment, and to explore ways of involving the church in ministering to victims of sexual harrassment.” The Council appointed a committee which developed a working definition for sexual harassment: Any unwanted sexual advances or demands (verbal/physical) which are perceived by the recipient as demeaning, intimidating or coercive. The committee sought to find out how widespread was the incidence of the problem, what forms it took, and what sorts of solutions had been developed within the church.