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Harrassment and Bullying Policy
<Insert Entity Name> (“the Company”) will not tolerate any form of sexual or other
harassment and bullying. The Company seeks to ensure that the working
environment is sympathetic to all employees. The following policy describes the type
of behaviour that is unacceptable and provides employees who are the victims of
sexual or other harassment, or bullying with a means of redress. Implementation of
the policy is the duty of all managers and supervisors. All employees are required to
Bullying is the repeated behaviour which may be considered by a reasonable
person, in the context of the situation as being unreasonable, inappropriate and
creates a risk to health and safety. It includes behaviour that the victim considers to
be intimidating, offensive, degrading or humiliating. Reasonable management action
carried out in a reasonable manner is not considered as bullying.
Examples of behaviour that may be considered as bullying if they are repeated,
unreasonable or create health and safety include:
 verbal abuse,
 intimidation and threats,
 interfering with someone’s personal property or work equipment, or
 setting unreasonable deadline or workload.
Examples of reasonable management action include but not limited to:
 providing constructive feedback on work behaviour and performance,
 changing work hours based on operational requirement following discussions
with workers, or
 taking disciplinary actions.
Harassment is where a person is subjected to behaviour, other than sexual
harassment, that:
is repeated, unwelcome and unsolicited,
the person considers to be offensive, intimidating, humiliating or threatening,
a reasonable person would consider to be offensive, humiliating, intimidating
or threatening.
Workplace harassment can be committed by an employer, worker, co-worker, group
of co-workers, client or customer or a member of the public. Workplace harrassment
is not a single incident of harassing type behaviour or reasonable management
action taken in a reasonable way.
Sexual harassment is unwanted behaviour of a sexual nature by one employee
towards another. Examples of harassment include:
insensitive jokes and pranks,
lewd comments about appearance,
unnecessary body contact,
displays of sexually offensive material, for example, pin-ups,
requests for sexual favours,
speculation about a person's private life and sexual activities,
threatened or actual sexual violence, and/or,
threat of dismissal, loss of promotion and so on, for refusal of sexual favours.
Sexual harassment takes many forms, from relatively mild sexual banter to actual
physical violence. Employees may not always realise that their behaviour constitutes
sexual harassment, but they must recognise that what is acceptable to one person
may not be acceptable to another. Sexual harrsment can include one single incident.
The examples above are not exhaustive. Some forms of harassment, such as the
threat of dismissal for refusal of sexual favours, are obvious examples of gross
misconduct, punishable by summary dismissal, but other items may not constitute
gross misconduct depending on the circumstances of the case in question.
The company prohibits the display of sexually offensive material, such as pin-ups
and posters, and will if necessary, ensure that workplaces are inspected and
offending material removed.
All new employees will be informed of the company's policy towards bullying, sexual
and other harassment at induction training, when it will be stressed that all
complaints of bullying, sexual and racial harassment will be treated very seriously.
The company requires all managers and supervisors to ensure that this policy
and procedure is complied with at all times.
The company recognises the sensitive nature of complaints of harassment and
bullying. All complaints or report of bullying or harrassment will be treated with
utmost confidence.
Employees who feel like you are being bullied or harrassed or see others being
bullied or harrassed at work is encouraged to intially report it to your supervisor, or if
this is not possible, talk to <insert appropriate person>.
Employees are encouraged to intially address the issue with the perpetrator and
make it clear to the perpetrator that the behaviour is unacceptable and must stop.
If an employee is unable to do this, or if the behaviour persist the employee is
advised to bring a formal complaint and should seek assistance, as above, in doing
so. The complaint should be made in writing, and where possible, state:
the name of the harasser/perpetrator
the nature of the harassment/bullying
dates and times when harassment/bullying occurred
names of witnesses to any incidents of harassment/bullying
any action already taken by the complainant to stop the harassment/bullying.
The complaint should be sent, in confidence, to <insert appropriate person>.
Investigation procedure:
Once a formal complaint is made, the person handling the complaint will carry out a
thorough investigation as quickly as possible, maintaining confidentiality at all times.
All employees involved in the investigation are expected to respect the need for
confidentiality. Failure to do so will be considered a disciplinary offence.
During any meetings investigating these types of compliants, the complainant may, if
he or she wishes, be supported throughout the procedure and hearing by a supoprt
person. Alternatively, where a recognised union supports an employee, a full-time
official of that union may represent him or her.
The employee accused of harassment or bullying will also have the right to be
accompanied by a support person at the hearing. Where the manager concludes that
harassment or bullying has taken place, he or she will ensure that the perpetrator is
afforded the opportunity opportunity to defend or explain his or her actions.
Management reserve the right to commence investigaton even before it receives a
formal complaint if it has grounds to believe that there is serious threat to health and
Disciplinary action
The severity of the penalty imposed upon an employee guilty of harassment or
bullying could range from summary dismissal, verbal or formal warnings, or
commencing an performance management process with relevant employees. The
company also reserves the right to contact police in instances of a criminal offence.
An employee who brings a complaint of bullying, sexual or other harassment will not
suffer victimisation for having brought the complaint. However if the complaint is
found to be untrue and was made in bad faith (for example, out of spite), disciplinary
action may be taken.