Sexual harassment within the police force and the fire service will now be considered a disciplinary offence, the Council of Ministers decided on Tuesday, approving a proposal tabled by the justice ministry.

Speaking after a cabinet meeting on Tuesday, Justice Minister Anna Procopiou said that until now, such behaviour was considered inappropriate, but not distinct in a context where disciplinary offences were being considered.

She emphasised that the justice minister’s proposal and its consequent approval by the cabinet, show zero tolerance for sexual harassment phenomena, which is part of the policy of both the ministry and the government as a whole.

The justice minister also underlined the importance for the message to reach all recipients, adding that, along with the symbolic importance of the decision, there is also a tangible strengthening of women’s voices, who usually fall victim to sexual harassment and feel the need to report unprofessional behaviour in the workplace.