The #metoo experiences also shook the arts sector in Belgium.

We wanted to explore and analyse the situation we suddenly found ourselves in. A recent online survey conducted by the University of Ghent shows that most cases of cross-border behaviour are mainly communicative in nature. This means unwanted sexual or sexist allusions. Nevertheless, 1 in 4 of the female respondents also underwent unwanted physical advances, while 4% were forced or blackmailed.
These are figures that challenge us to further reflect on the issue.

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At the same time we suspect that the people who are not drawn to this issue because they were never victims, will not be likely to fill in an online survey asking them about it, meaning that those who responded are mainly people who have already seen or experienced cross-border behaviour.
Apart from this observation of the study, our position has always been that 1 case is too many. Therefore the actions you undertake are independent of the number of cases of cross-border behaviour.
What is striking about the study is that most people experiencing cross-border behavior report this to their supervisors. It is also our analysis that the role of managers must not be overestimated when developing an integrity policy.

That is why OKo intends to assist its members as from Autumn 2018 and throughout 2019 in introducing an integrity policy into their organisations and, in cooperation with the social fund for the performing arts, developing a training course on ethical leadership.

Liesbeth Dejonghe

Legal and social affairs at Overleg Kunstenorganisaties