Higher education perpetuates a sociocultural power imbalance wherein bullying is institutionally enabled as a way to discriminate and marginalize gay people of color

Abusive supervisors often target specific individuals: some pick on their best workers, but poor performers are especially vulnerable. So are those who are different from their adviser, including in gender, ethnicity and sexual orientation”

reasons for unreported incidents of bullying include, but are not limited to:

  • Feelings of insecurity among lab members about their positions and dependence on monthly paychecks
  • Lack of robust and easy-to-access institutional protocols for reporting incidence
  • Fear of being fired
  • Fear of being treated unfairly
  • Concerns over receiving substandard recommendations for future job

In separate surveys of tens of thousands of university students across Australia, the United Kingdom and the United States, upwards of 40% of respondents say that they have experienced sexual harassment. A survey last year by the US National Postdoctoral Association found that 28% of respondents reported experiencing at least one instance of harassment while they were trainees”

When bullying/mobbing occurs, it tends to be long-standing. McKay et al. (2008) found that 21% of their sample reported bullying that had persisted for more than 5 years