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In Brazil, the work environment is the place where women experience the most harassment, according to 2021 data.

Source: Public Security Forum and Datafolhante: Fórum de Segurança Pública e Datafolha.
This issue also affects historically marginalized groups of people, such as black, LGBTQIA+ and disabled peoples.

It’s important to know that we can always help!

Any type of harassment is an experience that generates negative impacts on victims, regardless of the situation in which it occurs, including the work environment. Often, these people don’t know how to deal with this problem, so it is important to know how to REACT when suffering or witnessing sexual harassment.
Mulher olhando para o lado. Ela usa camisa azul e está segurando um celular.

Fotógrafo: xxxx

7

3

3

1

*Number updated daily

People have already done our REAGIR training

Our positioning

Vale repudiates all forms of violence, intimidation and discrimination, as established in our Code of Conduct.

More than that, the company invites everyone to take this matter into their own hands, say "no" to harassment and report it.

On this page we provide information on how to combat harassment and thereby help make our workplaces and society healthier.
Duas mulheres sentadas lado a lado em um espaço arborizado. Elas usam roupas sociais e têm expressões de aflição.

Fighting harassment at Vale

Ícone em verde e amarelo representando um balão de conversa com um ponto de exclamação dentro.
In 2021, our Whistleblowing Channel received 6,248 reports, including allegations, inquiries and complaints. 

Ícone em verde e amarelo representando uma mulher
In all, 11 cases of sexual harassment in our company in Brazil were confirmed in 2021. In all these cases, the victims were women.

Ícone em verde e amarelo representando um balão de conversa com um círculo um um ponto de exclamação dentro
All the cases were classified as high or very high severity, in line with our Consequence Management Policy, so they resulted in layoffs.

Ícone em verde e amarelo representando um balão de conversa com um megafone.
Anyone who feels victimized by harassment or discrimination can and should raise the matter with management or report the situation to our Whistleblowing Channel.

Ícone em verde e amarelo representando um balão de conversa com uma lupa
Cases are investigated by our Audit and Compliance Department in a completely confidential and thorough way. All confirmed cases lead to the appropriate consequences.
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Duas mulheres paradas lado a lado olhando para um celular. Duas mulheres paradas lado a lado olhando para um celular.

Fotógrafo: Ricardo Teles

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Acolhimento Channel

In April 2022, we launched the Acolhimento Channel, our support channel, which is run by a specialized and independent team, to listen to, support and guide employees and contractors who have experienced sexual harassment or discrimination. The Support Channel is a humanized listening channel. Those who seek it out are advised as to the possibility of registering a complaint, which will be investigated in complete confidentiality by the Reporting Channel team.

Unwanted sexual advances x sexual harassment

The first step in the fight against harassment is to know about your rights as a citizen.

Although unwanted sexual advances and sexual harassment are both forms of sexual violence, subject to legal punishments, and they can cause irreversible trauma to victims, they are not the same thing under the law.
An unwanted sexual advance is defined in Article 215-A of the Penal Code as the act of “committing a libidinous act against someone and without their consent, with the aim of satisfying their own lust or that of a third party.” This may happen in any kind of environment. A grope, sexual joke or invasive question about your sex life are examples of unwanted sexual advances and the penalty for these actions can vary from one to five years in prison in Brazil.
According to Article 216-A of the brazilian Penal Code, sexual harassment is considered a crime and it can lead to one to two years of imprisonment. Sexual harassment is defined as the act of “embarrassing someone with the aim of obtaining a sexual advantage or favor.” Despite being commonly used in all cases, this term was designed in the Penal Code to exclusively refer to harassment in the workplace. This is because it is a type of intimidation in which the aggressor benefits from their hierarchical position. However, sexual harassment is also considered a crime when it is committed by colleagues, peers or subordinates.
Duas mulheres sentadas lado a lado em um espaço arborizado. As duas usam roupas sociais. Enquanto uma está chorando, a outra está consolando. Duas mulheres sentadas lado a lado em um espaço arborizado. As duas usam roupas sociais. Enquanto uma está chorando, a outra está consolando.  
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Ícone em amarelo e branco representando um círculo com um ponto de exclamação dentro.

Did you know?

Unwanted sexual advances were criminalized in Brazil recently. The respective law only came into force in 2018. The need to define this as a crime in the Penal Code was widely discussed after a man ejaculated on a young woman on a bus in São Paulo in 2017. The judge stated that rape had not been committed and the aggressor was released two days later.

The latest figures show how much the law on unwanted sexual advances was needed. In Brazil, in 2021 alone, 7,143 cases were recorded.

Types of harassment

Harassment in the workplace can manifest itself in many different ways.

Although sexual harassment is the highest profile kind, harassment in general and online harassment can also impact victims’ dignity and have serious consequences. 

SKnowing how to identify different types of harassment is essential in order for victims or witnesses to put an end to the situation. Therefore, learn about the main characteristics of general, sexual and online harassment in the world of work and, if you see any sign, report it! 
Homem parado ao lado de uma mulher que está sentada em uma mesa de escritório com uma expressão incomodada

Fotógrafo: xxxx

How to identify harassment?

Harassment in the workplace can happen in different ways, and victims and witnesses often find it hard to identify whether what happened was really an episode of harassment or just a misinterpreted situation.

Now that you’ve done this training course, see if you know how to identify the situations below. Take our quiz!
Swipe to see the questions below and hover to see the answers.

Is giving compliments, without any sexual connotations, harassment?

No. After all, there’s nothing wrong with giving someone compliments, as long as it’s respectful and the person doesn’t feel intimidated by the compliment. However, if you feel uncomfortable about a comment, you should let the person know.

Is sending inappropriate messages on social media to coworkers harassment?

Yes. A relationship of respect must be maintained, whether in the physical or virtual environment.

Is indiscreetly asking about the sex lives of co-workers sexual harassment?

Yes. Sexual harassment is not just about physical acts. Questions of this nature may embarrass people, and whatever happens in the private lives of employees and colleagues is not anyone else’s business.

Can insistent stares be considered harassment?

Yes. From the moment you observe someone insistently, to the point of making them uncomfortable, you are invading their personal space and disrespecting them.

If I flirt with someone and they show interest, that’s OK, but if they don’t, is it harassment if I persist?

Yes. The keyword is consent! There is nothing wrong with flirting with someone. However, if you flirt with someone and your advance is rejected, INSISTING and carrying on flirting constitutes harassment. And if you are on a higher level in the company hierarchy or otherwise have influence over the person’s work, that could make the person especially uncomfortable.
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Homem e mulher parados lado a lado em um espaço de escritório.

Harassment – key number

Harassment and inequality are two terms that are intertwined when we talk about women in the labor market. Here are some of the findings of a survey titled “The cycle of sexual harassment in professional environments,” carried out in Brazil in 2020 by social innovation consulting firm Think Eva, in partnership with LinkedIn:

47.12%

of participants reporting having experienced sexual harassment in the workplace.


52%

are black women.


30.2%

of harassment victims earned between 2 and 4 minimum salaries.

1 out of 6

victims of sexual harassment at work ended up resigning.

5%

of women reported cases to HR.

78.4%

of interviewees did not report incidents as they believed the perpetrators wouldn’t be held accountable.

of women who spoke out the most about harassment were in management positions. 
of the surveyed women associated sexual harassment with unsolicited physical contact.
of women who witnessed harassment reported it to HR.
of women earning up to 2 minimum salaries said their professional performance was affected by harassment.
of victims were assistants. 
of victims did not report sexual harassment as they were not sure whether it really was sexual harassment.
ícone em branco e amarelo representando um megafone.

Whistleblowing is the best way

Reporting is crucial to prevent harassment situations from occurring in the workplace. In 2020, the Labor Prosecutors’ Office received approximately 5,000 complaints of general harassment and around 300 complaints of sexual harassment across the country.

Despite these alarming numbers, many other cases go unreported. 

Many victims remain silent out of fear of retaliation or impunity, but this is the only possible way to put an end to the situation. If you are a victim of harassment, seek support from a trusted person and be sure to record your complaint. There are several safe channels to file a complaint. Check out some of them:
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Vale Whistleblower Channel

Report situations occurring within Vale with guaranteed confidentiality.


Brazilian Labor Prosecutors’ Office

Report the case to the  Office's website.


Foto de rosto de uma mulher negra olhando para a câmera.

Fotógrafo: Ricardo Teles

Break the cycle

Everyone can be an ally in the fight against harassment

Reporting or discussing the subject with someone who is experiencing harassment is not easy. However, our attitude toward situations like this can help those who do not see a way out.  

Each of us can play an active role in the process of tackling this violence. Sometimes we can share our own stories and give victims inspiration. In other situations, we can scold a colleague who makes offensive and inappropriate jokes.  

Tell your story so others know they are not alone. Offer support. Join this movement and let’s show together how we can break this cycle!