Third of Japanese women with mental health issues blame workplace harassment: report

A woman leaves an office building in Tokyo, Japan (file photo).

(CNN)A little over a third of Japanese career women with mental health issues say their suffering was caused by some form of harassment at work, according to a government survey published Tuesday.

Japan remains a male-dominated society and discrimination against women in the workplace is rife. The country is ranked 110 out of 149 countries in the World Economic Forum's (WEF) latest global gender gap index.
The country also ranks bottom among the G7 countries for gender equality, despite Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's pledge to empower working women through a policy called "womenomics."i
    The survey was carried out by the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare on a sample of 2,374 people suffering from mental health issues who were identified between January 2010 and March 2017.
      Of the 740 women who took part, 19.7% said they were victims of sexual harassment and 16.6% of harassment, bullying and abuse of power by superiors. Another 21.9% of the women said their mental health issues were caused by a traumatic event, such as witnessing a serious accident or a natural disaster.
      The survey was published as part of a government white paper on the prevention of death by overwork. Japan, known for its "salaryman" culture and punishing work hours, has struggled for years to t