Teamwork2 Project: “Sexual Harassment at the Workplace” - Activity Overview


 February 2024

  • 02nd: Collaborated with the Academy of Drama Art’s dean in Zagreb to address anonymous sexual harassment complaints.
  • 14th-16th: Engaged in follow-up discussions with participants and employers from our initial session, emphasizing established procedures for managing sexual harassment complaints.
  • 19th-20th: Addressed sexual harassment complaints received via our helpdesk and external referrals.

March 2024

  • 27th-28th: Convened with project partners to draft an interim report and strategize upcoming educational sessions and project tasks.
  • 13th: Consulted with a legal expert from Sveti Ivan Psychiatry Clinic in Zagreb regarding their contribution to our educational initiatives.
  • 14th-18th: Organized and prepared for the forthcoming educational training.
  • 19th: Assisted the Academy of Drama Art in refining their internal legal protocols for handling sexual harassment complaints.
  • 27th-28th: Supported the Croatian National Television’s commissioners in processing sexual harassment complaints.

April 2024

  • 06th-10th: Conducted preparatory work for the upcoming educational training, including research and presentation development.
  • 22nd & 26th: Met with Nebojša Taraba of “Drugi plan” to discuss cases involving a prominent director and emphasized the need for robust internal legal frameworks.
  • 29th-30th: Finalized preparations for the educational training conducted on the 30th.

May 2024

  • 20th: Hosted an online session for employers and Law Faculty students in Zagreb, focusing on combating sexual harassment.
  • 21st: Delivered a session at Libertas International University for Sports Management students, covering sexual harassment awareness, legal context, and response strategies. The session included analysis of recent trends and research, with 24 attendees.
  • 27th: Met with the Croatian Audiovisual Centre’s leadership to discuss procedural and legal aspects of sexual harassment.
  • 29th: Facilitated a session for the Society of Croatian Movie Directors, featuring expert insights on violence and legal recourse, in response to a high-profile harassment case. The session, attended by 12 participants, concluded with a call for further workshops.

EU Project on Combating Sexual Violence in the Workplace: Raising Awareness

Since February 14, 2024, when our organization, the CEE Network for Gender Issues, participated in the Women’s Film Festival on the topic of “Violence in Relationships,” we have been featured on the topic of sexual harassment in the workplace on Croatian Radio 1’s program “Civil Society.” We were also present on Top Radio regarding our gathering in Zagreb on February 6, 2024, and we continued to make appearances on television, radio, and in print on the topic of sexual harassment in the workplace on February 26, 2024.

Thus, our communications director appeared on the topic of sexual harassment in the workplace on the largest national portal, which also has studio shows, “Jutarnji list,” on March 8, 2024. There, she spoke about sexual harassment in the workplace as well as other important issues related to women’s human rights and sexual harassment in the film industry.

“Immediately thereafter, a scandal related to sexual harassment in the workplace emerged in public, which was associated with the well-known film and theater director Dalibor Matanić, who was also involved in the ‘Mee2’ campaign and stood out as a fighter for women’s human rights. His producer received a tip-off that the mentioned director was actually one of the sexual predators who offered roles to young actresses in exchange for a favor in engagement in a film. Allegedly, his sexual harassment had been present for over a decade. The director institutionalized himself. Our communications manager Danijela Stanojević was called via video link and commented on the case in the N1 television studio (Regional broadcast) on April 8, 2024.”

“Also, on April 8th, the most-read portal Index published an article about what the communications manager of the project Danijela Stanojević stated regarding the sexual harassment by the film director Dalibor Matanić.”

"In these most-read newspapers, they asked: An isolated case… or? “In the world of film and television, there is generally a very aggressive and violent form of communication,” believes Stanojević. “Many women in Croatia have surely endured some form of torture and have experienced something that is unacceptable. Perhaps the young actresses rebelled because they are younger and it does not suit them, but my generation has also taken a very clear stance. We do not know how to draw the line. This is not business communication,” she emphasizes, adding: “This is how many men in positions of power operate. They have power, and with it comes money, women, cars, and a plethora of series, films, and commercials. All the jobs went to Matanić’s advantage.”

"Regrettably, despite the team’s appeals with the Ombudsperson for Gender Equality to the Help desk opened in our partner’s office, none of the young actresses dared to take the step forward and report their case. Psychologist Radojka Kraljević, working on the Teamwork2 project, appeared on the information program of the Croatian Radio Television on channel 4, public television, where she spoke on the project’s theme: In focus: informal communication at work sometimes leads to harassment, victims rarely report… In this way, she explained in 30 minutes how to empower victims to report violence and the proper way to handle such cases.

Workplace communication is key to successful business operations. In Croatia and Europe, the most issues arise with gender equality at work, i.e., there are many cases of sexual harassment. Sexual harassment is a taboo subject that is difficult to discuss. Handling anonymous reports is possible, but the information must be well disseminated. It is crucial for victims to report such incidents so that perpetrators can be properly prosecuted. Therefore, efforts must be invested in educating workers, employers, students, and through upbringing and education to raise awareness in society.

EU Project on Combating Sexual Violence in the Workplace: Raising Awareness and Empowering Change


Women and Media web portal of the Agency for Electronic Media.

The Croatian Employers’ Association (HUP) hosted an education on combating sexual harassment and sexual violence in the workplace on December 20 and 21, 2023, as part of the European project “TEAMWORK#2: combating sexual harassment in the WORKplace vol_2”. The project, which is supported by the Ombudswoman for Gender Equality and implemented by the Center for New Initiatives and the CI Europe Network for Gender Equality, aims to improve the prevention and protection of victims of gender-based violence in the workplace. The project is funded under the European Commission’s Programme for Citizens, Equality, Rights and Values and involves several countries.

The main objective of the project is to build the capacity of employers and other organizations to create internal legal frameworks, encourage coalitions and cooperation among different organizations, and improve the provision of specialized services and referral mechanisms for survivors of gender-based violence in the workplace.

The aim of the education is to train commissioners for the protection of the dignity of workers and other employees in public and private institutions. The education was attended by representatives of various organizations, institutions and employers, including the Croatian Chamber of Commerce (HGK), Croatian Radio Television (HRT), the City of Zagreb, the Academy of Dramatic Art in Zagreb (ADU), some faculties of the University of Zagreb, and some local, regional and regional self-government and schools. The education and project are open to all interested parties who want to improve their legal framework and procedures for dealing with sexual violence.

The Center for New Initiatives (CNI) from Zagreb is collaborating with a number of organizations to tackle the problem of sexual harassment as part of the EU project Teamwork2. The partners include Deisis from Belgium, the Chamber of Commerce and Industry Yambol from Bulgaria, Surt from Spain, CARDET from Cyprus, the Italian branch of Oxfam, KMOP from Greece, the Institute for Entrepreneurship Education and Training (IVEPE - SEV, who are also the project leaders) from Greece, the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of the city of Paphos in Greece, Adecco Training from Italy, CGIL TOSCANA, “DAF - united against violence” from Bulgaria and the Union “Education” (SEP) from Bulgaria. At the invitation of the Zagreb CNI, the project was also joined by the Office of the Ombudswoman for Gender Equality.

After the initial phase of the project (Teamwork), during which research was conducted in partner countries, Croatian partners joined the second phase. The first phase indicated the need to raise awareness of employers and employees about the problem of sexual harassment and to strengthen their capacities for prevention and resolution of such cases. Also, the goal is to involve as many sectors as possible at the local, regional and national levels in solving this problem. It is planned to achieve this through training of trainers and multipliers who will be able to recognize and solve the problem of harassment within their work environments. This also includes intersectoral cooperation and the involvement of a larger number of employers and institutions. Also, the project aims to improve the protection of victims and promote the results of research. The project is implemented from April 2023 to January 2025.

Workers Rights portal (Radnička prava) Radnička prava is a web portal that provides an overview of news, articles, and video materials related to workers’ rights and labor struggles. It was established in 2012 with the aim of informing and educating the public about current issues and challenges faced by workers in Croatia and around the world. Additionally, it advocates for union organizing and solidarity among workers across different sectors and countries. Radnička prava is part of the Network for Workers’ Rights, which brings together various organizations and initiatives dedicated to labor-related issues.

If we blindly believed statistics, we might conclude that Croatia is a society of equality where cases of sexual harassment in the workplace occur sporadically. However, behind the small number of reported cases lies a painful truth: women, as well as victims of other types of violence, do not report incidents because there simply isn’t a functional system in place to protect them at work.

The team at the Office of the Ombudswoman for Gender Equality is acutely aware of this. “Labor laws stipulate that a mechanism for protecting workers’ dignity must be established, but creating such a mechanism doesn’t guarantee it will function. The knee-jerk reaction, especially among large companies, is to cover up these incidents. Our employers are not educated to recognize the value of processing such cases for the benefit of the workplace,” explains Nebojša Paunović, a key member of the Office’s team.

Together with 16 civil society organizations operating in seven European countries, this institution participates in the Teamwork 2 project, which aims to establish a functional system for victim protection.

Nikos Moraitis from the Industrial and Business Training Institute in Greece succinctly describes the project: raising awareness within companies about the issue of sexual harassment in the workplace, empowering workers to come forward and report incidents, and assisting companies in improving mechanisms to combat sexual harassment through workshops and education.

Lovorka Marinović from the Center for New Initiatives highlights the grim reality we face: prejudices against women have not improved over the past decade.

OTV - Open Television is a local television talk show hosted by journalist Nikša Marević. In a 60-minute episode, Nikša engages in a full conversation with two experts from the TemWork2 project. These experts are Nebojša Paunović, a legal advisor, and Radojka Kraljević, a psychologist. The discussion centers around the project’s topic and the increasing awareness about its implementation





Za bolju budućnost – For a Better Future

DJELIMO SA VAMA RAZGOVOR O POLOŽAJU RADNIKA U SRBIJI/LESKOVCU koji je naša članica Međunarodnog Odbora Tamara Tripić organizirala i vodila. Položaj radnika u regiji nije mnogo drugačiji pa se možda mnogi „nađu“ u ovom razgovoru.

WE ARE SHARING WITH YOU A CONVERSATION WITH THE WORKERS IN SERBIA/LESKOVAC led by our International Board member Tamara Tripić. We are certain that many workers in this region live in similar circumstances.

8 March 2021 / 8. Mart 2021.

Happy International Women's Day / Sretan Međunarodni dan žena

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Daša Šašić Šilović je predsjednica regionalne Centralno istočno europske mreže za rodnu ravnopravnost te Korčula Think Tank-a koji se bavi transformacijom politika iz perspektive rodne ravnopravnosti. Obnaša i dužnost predsjednice Europskog partnerstva za okoliš sa sjedištem u Bruxellesu.

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