Violence between close relatives and sexualised violence are serious problems in society and an obstacle to true gender equality.

Violence and threat of violence takes away personal control of one’s own life as well as the opportunity for participating in and influencing society. Hate-based crime and racist statements also hinder equality between different groups.

The Gender Equality Act, the Anti-Discrimination Act and the Working Environment Act all include a ban on harassment.

The Anti-Discrimination Act defines harassment as actions, omissions or statements that are perceived as, or intended to be, offensive, frightening, hostile, degrading or humiliating.

Employers and the management of organisations or educational institutions are obliged to prevent and stop harassment. LDO shall contribute to enforcement of the regulations prohibiting harassment. With respect to sexual harassment, the courts are in charge of deciding whether the law has been broken.