Here’s one more reason to hate Harvey Weinstein: he might be this year’s biggest buzzkill.
Company holiday parties will be serving far less alcohol this year over concerns that a boozy bonanza could lead to unwanted sexual advances.
The number of companies serving alcohol at their holiday fetes this year is expected to drop to 49.7 percent from 62 percent last year, and 11 percent are ditching the party altogether, according to a survey from employment consulting firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas.
“We expected this to be a blowout year for holiday parties but this came as a real surprise to us,” VP Andrew Challenger told the Post. “Sexual harassment is at the top of everyone’s mind but particularly the HR department, since they’re responsible for creating a safe environment.”
Corporations across all industries are clamping down on holiday shindigs to prevent potential bad behavior — and the lawsuits that will inevitably follow.
Vox Media — whose editorial director Lockhart Steele in October was fired after a former employee accused him of sexual harassment — will limit employees’ booze consumption to two drinks at their holiday party on Dec. 12 at Brooklyn’s Freehold bar, according to a memo obtained by Huffington Post.
In the world of finance, an employee for a NYC-based hedge fund charged with planning this year’s holiday party says she’s encouraging a “plus one” policy so the soiree remains a family affair.
“At my last company they didn’t let people invite guests and the amount of in-office hookups that night was crazy — whether married, single, whatever,” said the worker, who requested anonymity for herself and her company.
Even if booze is served, one Wall Street exec expects parties to be more self-regulated. “Most women in business know how to enjoy themselves and have a good time without needing to be told how to behave,” said Rita Robbins, president of Wall Street firm Affiliated Advisors. “I expect that many will have the most wonderful party season, knowing that unwanted advances will not be served up this year.”
Entertainment company Viacom, which fired Nickelodeon creative Chris Savino for alleged sexual harassment in October, is going ahead with its party on Dec. 14, but further details have not yet been released. One worker at the company, who expects to enjoy a drink at the bash, said alcohol isn’t the problem. “I’d like to think Viacom understands booze isn’t the reason…