Sexual Harassment at Workplace Law in Brazil

Overview of Sexual Harassment at Workplace Law in Brazil


Sexual harassment in the workplace is a pervasive issue that has gained increased attention globally. Brazil has taken significant steps to address this problem, with the latest legislative measures aiming to prevent and confront sexual harassment and other crimes against sexual dignity. Law 14,540/23, promulgated on April 3, 2023, establishes the Program for the Prevention and Confrontation of Sexual Harassment and other Crimes against Sexual Dignity and Sexual Violence within the Public Administration.


An article published on 9th January 2024, shed light on a recent survey by the Brazilian Academy of Sciences that highlights the prevalence of sexual harassment, especially among female researchers. The report reveals that 47% of women in academia have experienced sexual harassment, emphasizing the urgent need for legal measures and systemic changes. The report urges for comprehensive approaches, including education campaigns, victim protection, and ethical committees, to combat harassment in academia.

Legislation and Amendment

In September 2022, Law No. 14.457 introduced the “Employ + Women Program,” promoting the employment and retention of women in the labour market. This program included the obligation for employers to establish an Internal Committee for Accident Prevention and Harassment (formerly CIPA) to combat harassment and violence against women in the workplace.

Later in April 2023, Law 14,540/23 was introduced, and it sets clear parameters for characterizing sexual harassment and violence, incorporating definitions from the Criminal Code and special laws like the Maria da Penha Law and the Law of Guarantee of the Child or Adolescent Victim or Witness of Violence. The legislation focuses on prevention, training, and educational campaigns.

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An additional ordinance from the Ministry of Labour, effective from March 2023, amends regulations for employers’ internal health committees (CIPA), emphasizing the implementation of measures to fight harassment. The ‘Employ + Women’ program mandates actions for employers, including a reporting channel, periodic training, and explicit rules of conduct.

Applicability and Procedure of Inquiry as per the New Program

Law 14,540/23 applies to all public entities and private entities providing public services. It sets guidelines for clarifying harassment elements, providing educational materials, implementing good practices, disseminating legislation, and establishing reporting channels and procedures for forwarding complaints with confidentiality and due process.


Brazil’s legislative and regulatory initiatives demonstrate a commitment to addressing sexual harassment in the workplace. The newly enacted laws and programs signify a shift toward creating a safer and more inclusive environment. However, the prevalence of harassment, as revealed by recent studies, highlights the ongoing challenges.

-By Adv. Deeksha Rai

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