4.11 – Bully & Harassment
It is the policy of Griffin Properties to provide its employees with a work environment that is free from unlawful harassment by the employer, agent of the employer or by another employee. Griffin Properties believes that every employee has the right to be treated with dignity and respect and is thereby free from harassment.
Griffin Properties will not tolerate unlawful harassment in the workplace, or in any other setting which employees may find themselves in connection with their employment.
The management of Griffin Properties will treat any complaint of unlawful harassment as a serious matter and, where charges are substantial, individuals, regardless of position or seniority will be subject to appropriate disciplinary measures, up to and including dismissal. To the greatest extent possible, all complaints will be kept confidential and employees who see cause to file a complaint shall be protected from retaliation.
DEFINITION OF WORKPLACE HARASSMENT
To engage in a course of offensive or embarrassing comments or conduct that is known, or ought reasonably to be known, to be unwelcome. Harassment includes, but is not limited to sexual harassment, psychological harassment and harassment based on age, sex, race, colour, sexual orientation, religion, creed, political belief, record of offences, place of origin, ancestry, ethnic origin, citizenship, marital status, family status, disability, source of income or any other prohibited ground of discrimination. A poisoned or hostile environment is also a form of harassment and prohibited by law.
HARASSMENT includes many forms of behaviour, such as:
- Insulting, intimidating, annoying, embarrassing or otherwise offensive behaviour
- Inappropriate or unwelcome focus or comments on a person’s physical characteristics or appearance
- Bullying or cyber bullying
- Isolation and shunning, gossip, rumours, negative blogging, insults, name-calling
- Slamming doors, throwing objects and physical contact
SEXUAL HARASSMENT is defined as:
- Unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature that detrimentally affects the work environment or leads to adverse job-related consequence for the victim(s) of harassment.
- Unwelcome comments, solicitations or requests of a sexual nature (direct or indirect) or conduct of a sexual nature which is intimidating or humiliating where the conduct or comment is unwelcome or unwanted and has the effect of creating a workplace which is hostile or offensive.
- Sexual advances, requests for sexual favours, or other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature where:
- Submission to such conduct is made explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of employment, or
- Submission to or rejection of such conduct is used as the basis for decisions affecting employment, promotion or movement within an organization.
Managers or Supervisors must report such conduct, if known to them, to the General Manager or Human Resources Manager IMMEDIATELY.
Examples of unlawful harassment include, but are not limited to, the following:
- Unwanted sexual advances, flirtations, propositions or demands for sexual favours
- Unwelcome remarks, jokes, innuendoes, gestures or taunting about a person’s body, attire, sex, sexual orientation or marital status.
- Posting or circulating of offensive photos or visual materials
- Practical jokes, pushing, shoving, etc., which could cause awkwardness or embarrassment.
- Unwanted physical contact such as touching, patting or pinching
- Stalking, leering or other gestures of a sexual nature
Unlawful harassment is not be confused with normal social and interpersonal relations between coworkers. Rather, it is behaviour that is forced, threatening or unwanted. This includes direct contact or contact by voice, written or electronic media.
Griffin Properties will investigate and respond to all reports of unlawful harassment.
Retaliation as a result of an employee reporting harassment is against Company policy and is prohibited by law.
HARASSMENT COMPLAINTS PROCEDURE
Griffin Properties encourages all employees to report ALL incidents of unlawful harassment, regardless of who the offender may be.
Steps to take if you believe you are being harassed:
- Ask the harasser to stop immediately. The harasser may not realize that you find the behaviour offensive.
- Make your objections known. Inform the harasser that the behaviour is unwelcome or distasteful to you and that it is against Company policy. If you are uncomfortable confronting the harasser, inform your Supervisor/manager or the Human Resources Manager.
If the offensive behaviour persists:
- Outline your complaints fully to the Human Resources Manager
- The Human Resources Manager will be responsible for the investigation of the specific complaint. On occasion an outside investigator may be retained.
- The complainant and the alleged harasser will be advised that an investigation has begun.
- The complainant, the alleged harasser and the witnesses, if any, will be interviewed.
- The findings will be summarized and the Human Resources Manager and appropriate levels of management will reach a decision on recommended action. The results of the investigation will be documented and conveyed to the parties.
- Griffin Properties will not disclose the name of the complainant or the alleged harasser except where required by law or otherwise.
Appropriate disciplinary measures will be taken. The measures taken will be influenced by a variety of factors such as persistence of the harasser, severity of the behaviour, cooperation and willingness to change and other behaviours.
Should this situation not be resolved at this point, the Human Resources Manager’s recommendations will be shared with and acted upon by the appropriate level of management.
The Manager of Human Resources will conduct a follow-up investigation within three months of the initial investigation.
If your employer has not taken reasonable steps to address the incident, you can call the Prevention Information Line to contact an officer to discuss the incident.
Phone: 604-276-3100 (Lower Mainland)
Toll-free: 1-888-621-7233 (1-888-621-SAFE) (Canada)
If the matter is still not resolved after reporting to your employer and speaking with a prevention officer, you may submit a Bullying and Harassment Questionnaire from the WorkSafeBC website.