Harassment & Discrimination Policy
For a printable, pdf copy: Harassment and Discrimination Policy.
ACG is committed to providing an environment where clients, staff, and volunteers enjoy mutual respect, compassion, and dignity. ACG recognizes the right of all employees to work within an environment where harassment and discrimination are not tolerated. ACG is committed to addressing all instances of harassment and discrimination.
All complaints of harassment or discrimination against an employee will be investigated and dealt with according to ACG Human Resources Dispute Resolution policy and procedure.
Harassment & Discrimination
Harassment and discrimination based on race, ancestry, place of origin, colour, ethnic origin, citizenship, creed, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, record of offences, marital status, same-sex partnership status, family status or disability are illegal under the Ontario Human Rights Code. Examples of harassment and discrimination include, but are not limited to the following:
- Racial or ethnic slurs, slang or name calling, racist/homophobic jokes, threats and/or intimidation;
- Verbal abuse;
- Repeated teasing or annoyance;
- Imitating someone’s accent;
- Written racial or ethnic slurs, slang or name-calling, racist/homophobic jokes, threats and/or intimidation;
- Touching another person without that person’s consent;
- Discriminatory decisions with respect to evaluation, placement and promotion;
- Racial or ethnic stereotyping;
- Refusing to work with or train someone because of her or his race, ancestry, place of origin, colour, ethnic origin, citizenship, creed, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, record of offences, marital status, same-sex partnership status, family status or disability;
- Abuse of authority which undermines performance or threatens career (including discriminatory work allocation to less desirable shifts or jobs, lack of promotion or training opportunities);
- Exclusion, constantly isolating an individual or group of individuals by not including them in typical workplace activities;
- Display, publication or dissemination of materials or pictures that degrade, humiliate or bring ridicule to people because of their race, ancestry, place of origin, colour, ethnic origin, citizenship, creed, sex, sexual orientation, age, record of offences, marital status, same-sex partnership status, family status or disability.
Multiculturalism / Anti–Racism / Discrimination
ACG recognizes that the ethno-cultural and racial diversity among residents of Wellington County has brought cultural, social, and economic enrichment to the community. It also recognizes that the members of diverse ethno-cultural and racial groups often encounter barriers to their full participation in society.
ACG is committed to racial equality and the elimination of racism in the community. It strives to reflect the entire community in its structure (for staff and volunteers) and to promote equal access to its programs and services (for clients and residents). To this end, ACG will strive to ensure that:
- Recruitment of volunteers, Board, and staff is reflective of the community served;
- Services are sensitive to the needs of culturally and racially diverse groups;
- Programs seek to eliminate systemic barriers to full participation and promote positive race relations and attitudinal change;
- Discriminatory or racist incidents or behaviour are not tolerated; and
Communications present a positive and balanced portrayal of racial and cultural minorities.
ACG is committed to providing a work environment that is free from harassment and discrimination based on race, ancestry, place of origin, colour, ethnic origin, citizenship, creed, sex, sexual orientation, age, record of offences, marital status, same-sex partnership status, family status, or disability.
ACG is committed to:
- Achieving and maintaining a working environment that is free from racial harassment and discrimination and to notify all employees, clients, and volunteers that prejudice and discrimination will not be accepted in the workplace or programs.
- Informing all employees, clients and volunteers that racial harassment and discrimination are against the law.
- Making employees aware that racial harassment complaints will be taken seriously, including informing employees about the complaint and dispute resolution procedures.
- Ensuring that hiring and promotion practices are reviewed, and if necessary revised, in order to eliminate overt or systemic barriers to employment and full participation in the workplace.
- Affirming the agency’s commitment to provide training to staff and volunteers to enable them to become aware of and sensitive to racism and multicultural issues.
- Enhancing service provisions so that it is clearly inclusive of all ethno-cultural and racial groups.
- Actively promoting the policy both internally and externally.
Sexual harassment is illegal under the Ontario Human Rights Code. Sexual harassment does not have to be sexual in nature. It can mean that someone is bothering you simply because of your sex (male or female) or your gender identity (for example, you are transgendered or transsexual). Sexual harassment describes a number of types of behaviour, including:
- Unwelcome touching, or touching a person without his or her consent;
- Suggestive or other sexually aggressive remarks;
- Making stereotypes about a person based on their sex or gender identity;
- Leering (staring at a person’s body);
- Compromising invitations;
- Physical assault;
- Reprisal or threat of reprisal by a supervisor for the rejection of such behaviour.
Sexual harassment happens most often to women, but it can also happen to men, between members of the same sex, or be targeted at someone based on gender identity. Usually sexual harassment is a pattern of behaviour that happens frequently over a period of time. However, a single incident can be serious enough to be considered harassment.
Duty to Report Harassment or Discrimination
All employees have a duty to report in writing all behaviour of an allegedly discriminatory or harassing nature. Reports must be made immediately, or as soon as possible, after the alleged incident or behaviour.
Harassment or Discrimination by a Client
If the employee did not directly observe the allegedly discriminatory or harassing behaviour, before reporting the incident in writing he or she shall briefly determine the circumstances, nature and seriousness of the behaviour.
The employee against whom the allegedly discriminatory or harassing behaviour was directed, the person who observed the behaviour, or who is aware of the behaviour, has an obligation to report the behaviour as follows:
- Orally to his or her supervisor as soon as possible after the incident;
- All incidents shall be recorded in writing in the client’s Charting Notes before the end of the employee’s shift;
- Serious incidents shall also be written up as Incident Reports before the end of the employee’s shift. The existing Policy, Standards and Guidelines regarding Incident Reports should be followed.
A client who harasses or discriminates against an employee, volunteer, client may be refused services.
Harassment or Discrimination by an Employee
All clients, volunteers, and employees have a right to file a complaint against an employee who allegedly engages in harassing or discriminatory behaviour without fear of retaliation. Retaliation against an employee who reports alleged harassment or discrimination is illegal and will not be tolerated.
All employees have a duty to report in writing all behaviour of a discriminatory and harassing nature. Reports must be made immediately, or as soon as possible, after the incident.
If the employee did not directly observe the alleged discriminatory or harassing behaviour before reporting the incident in writing, he or she shall briefly determine the circumstances, nature and seriousness of the alleged behaviour.
The employee against whom the behaviour was directed, who observed the behaviour, or who is aware of the behaviour, has an obligation to report the behaviour, before the end of his or her shift or as soon thereafter as possible, as follows:
- To the direct supervisor of the employee who is alleged to have engaged in the harassing or discriminatory behaviour or,
- Where the person who is alleged to have engaged in the behaviour is the Executive Director, to the Chair of the Human Resources Committee of the Board of Directors.
All complaints of harassment or discrimination against an employee will be investigated and dealt with according to ACG Dispute Resolution Policy and Procedure.
An employee who harasses or discriminates against a client, resident, employee or volunteer may face disciplinary action up to and including termination of employment.