CSC revises rules on sexual harassment

Published May 17, 2021, 2:49 PM

by Gabriela Baron

The Civil Service Commission (CSC) has revised its rules on sexual harassment to “further deter sexual harassment in the public sector” and to harmonize with the Safe Spaces Act.


Sexual harassment offenders in government include those who commit sexual harassment acts through text or email, online, or in streets and public places, according to the amended rules on sexual harassment by the CSC.

CSC Resolution No. 2100064 amends certain provisions in the 2017 Rules on Administrative Cases in the Civil Service (RACCS), specifically those pertaining to the administrative proceedings for sexual harassment complaints where the offender is a government employee.

“The changes in the 2017 RACCS were primarily made to further deter sexual harassment in the public sector as well as to harmonize said rules with Republic Act No. 11213 or the Safe Spaces Act and its implementing Rules and Regulations,” CSC said Monday, May 17.

Under the said resolution, the definition of “sexual harassment” is expanded into four categories: sexual harassment in the workplace; sexual harassment in education and training institutions; sexual harassment in streets and public spaces; and online sexual harassment.

Sexual harassment in the workplace is defined as one that is “done verbally, physically, or through the use of technology such as text messaging or email that has or could have a detrimental effect on the conditions of an individual’s employment or education, job, performance, or opportunities.”

Meanwhile, sexual harassment committed by a government employee in a work-related, training, or education-related environment between peers, or by a subordinate to a superior, has long been recognized as an administrative order under the Administrative Disciplinary Rules on Sexual Harassment Cases and under the 2017 RACCS.

Consistent with the Safe Spaces Act, the amended rules consider sexual harassment in streets and public spaces those acts such as catcalling, wolf-whistling. and misogynistic, transphobic, or sexist slurs committed in alleys, roads, and similar types of public spaces.

Gender-based online sexual harassment is defined as “acts that use information and communication technology in terrorizing and intimidating victims.”

Sexual harassment may be classified as light offense, less grave offense, or grave offense depending on the act committed and may be meted a penalty ranging from a reprimand to outright dismissal from the service.