Discrimination, Bullying and Harassment Prevention

Discrimination, Bullying and Harassment Prevention

SUMMARY

The Discrimination, Bullying and Harassment Prevention Policy outlines the rights and responsibilities of the Macquarie University community for the achievement of a diverse, equitable, inclusive and safe campus environment, free from unlawful discrimination, bullying and harassment.

POLICY

1 PURPOSE

To outline the rights and responsibilities of the Macquarie University community for the achievement of a diverse, equitable, inclusive and safe campus environment, free from unlawful discrimination, bullying and harassment.

2 BACKGROUND

Macquarie University is committed to providing a work and study environment underpinned by values of dignity, respect and inclusion free from all forms of unlawful discrimination, bullying and harassment.

Unlawful discrimination, bullying or harassment has a harmful impact on the university’s overall performance, achievements, reputation, and quality of staff, student and visitor experience.

Unlawful discrimination, bullying and harassment will not be tolerated at Macquarie University. We will take all reasonable steps to prevent and actively respond to concerns raised about adverse behaviours.

3 SCOPE

The Macquarie University community, including:

  • students (coursework and research)
  • academic and professional staff (including continuing, contract or casual, honorary, visiting and clinical appointments, guest lecturers)
  • sub-contractors working on a campus of Macquarie University 
  • visitors and associates of the University 
  • people external to the University with whom students or staff interact as part of their study or work (eg employers supervising student placements)

This policy applies to conduct on any Macquarie University campus, including the North Ryde campus (all Sydney Institute of Business and Technology facilities), Sydney City campus and all Macquarie University controlled buildings, facilities, places, and equipment. It extends to any activities, regardless of location, where Macquarie University staff or students are representing the University and includes behaviour via any information and communication technologies.

4 DEFINITIONS

Commonly defined terms are located in the University Glossary. The following definitions apply for the purpose of this Policy:

Adverse behaviour: behaviour which a reasonable person would not consider appropriate. This includes, but is not limited to, unlawful discrimination, harassment, sex based harassment, bullying, victimization and vilification.

Bullying: repeated and unreasonable behaviour by an individual or group directed towards an individual or group where that behaviour creates a risk to health and safety. Bullying does not include reasonable action in the course of management of the university (including management of its research and academic programmes) carried out in a reasonable manner.

Bullying includes, but is not limited to, conduct via the internet, email or other electronic means.

Harassment: any type of behaviour, explicit or implicit, verbal or non-verbal that is unwelcome, offensive, abusive, belittling or threatening.

Offensive: any conduct or language which a reasonable person would regard as insulting or humiliating in the circumstances.

Sexual Harassment: a form of unlawful discrimination and includes any unwelcome behaviour of a sexual nature that makes a person feel offended, humiliated or intimidated, and which a reasonable person having regard to all the circumstances would have anticipated as likely to cause offence, humiliate or intimidate.

Unlawful Discrimination: less favourable treatment of a person or group on the basis of their:

  • sex
  • pregnancy or potential pregnancy
  • responsibilities as a carer
  • marital or domestic status
  • race, colour, nationality, descent or ancestry, and ethnic, ethno-religious or national origin
  • age
  • disability or presumed disability
  • sexual orientation
  • gender identity and intersex status
  • religious or political belief or activity

Unlawful Discrimination can be direct or indirect:

  • Direct discrimination is treating, or proposing to treat someone unfairly because of a characteristic (such as race, sex, age, etc), in the same or similar circumstances
  • Indirect discrimination is imposing or intending to impose a requirement, condition or practice that is the same for everyone but which has an unequal or disproportionate effect on particular individuals or groups

Unreasonable behaviour: behaviour that a reasonable person, having considered the circumstances, would see as unreasonable, including behaviour that is victimising, humiliating or threatening. 

Victimisation: any unfavourable treatment of an individual or group who are directly or indirectly associated with a discrimination, bullying or harassment complaint.

Vilification: a form of unlawful discrimination which is a public act or expression that incites hatred against, contempt for, revulsion or severe ridicule of an individual or group on the basis of their personal attributes including race, colour, nationality, descent or ancestry, ethnic-religious origin, national origin, sexuality, transgender status and/or HIV/AIDS status.

5 POLICY STATEMENT

Macquarie University:

  • is committed to providing an environment where staff and students are able to work and study free from unlawful discrimination, bullying and/or harassment
  • expects members of the University Community to act to create a fair, inclusive and safe University environment, where diversity is valued and unlawful discrimination, bullying, and/or harassment in any form are considered unacceptable
  • expects members of the University Community to behave in a reasonable and respectful way, and to refrain from and actively prevent (as much as is safe and reasonable) any unlawful discrimination, bullying and/or harassment
  • will not tolerate any form of unlawful discrimination, bullying and/or harassment
  • encourages all members of the University Community who feel they have experienced unlawful discrimination, bullying and/or harassment at Macquarie to raise their concerns to an appropriate authority within the University
  • will assist those affected by unlawful discrimination, bullying and/or harassment and take all reasonable steps to protect them from any further incidents
  • will support and keep informed all parties affected by matters raised about unlawful discrimination, bullying and/or harassment
  • will take seriously and deal promptly and effectively with matters raised of unlawful discrimination, bullying and/or harassment from staff and students
  • will not tolerate the victimisation of a person for raising or being associated with a matter of unlawful discrimination, bullying and/or harassment
  • will treat vexatious or malicious claims seriously and may refer these for disciplinary action
  • will provide professional development and educative strategies across the University Community to ensure that members are aware of their rights and responsibilities in relation to the prevention of and effective response to unlawful discrimination, bullying and/or harassment.

6 RELEVANT LEGISLATION

Age Discrimination Act 2004 (Cwth)
Anti-Discrimination Act, 1977 (NSW)
Australian Human Rights Commission Act 1986 (Cwth)
Community Relations Commission and Principles of Multiculturalism Act 2000 (NSW)
Defamation Act 2005 (NSW)
Disability Discrimination Act 1992 (Cwth)
Fair Work Act 2009 (Cwth)
Privacy Act 1998 (Cwth)
Racial Discrimination Act 1975 (Cwth)
Sex Discrimination Act 1984 (Cwth)

7 KEY RELATED DOCUMENTS

Staff Code of Conduct
Student Code of Conduct
Acceptable Use of IT Resources Policy
Complaint Management Procedure for Staff
Complaint Management Procedure for Students and Members of the Public
Performance Development and Review Policy / Procedure
Macquarie University Enterprise Agreements

Cultural Diversity & Inclusive Language Resource
Workplace Bullying Toolkit for Managers
Equity and Diversity Strategic Plan
Managing Complaints at Macquarie – Training Video and Supporting Resources

8 NOTES

8.1Implementation OfficerDirector, Equity and Diversity Unit
8.2Approval Authority / AuthoritiesChief Operating Officer
Deputy Vice-Chancellor Students and Registrar
8.3Date Approved4 March 2015
8.4Date of commencement4 March 2015
8.5Date for ReviewMarch 2018
8.6Documents Superseded by this PolicyDiscrimination and Harassment Prevention Policy approved 3 June 2010
8.7Amendment History

19 October 2016 – replaced Grievance Management (Staff) Policy with Complaint Management Procedure for Staff in Key Related documents March 2016 – added training Video and supporting resources
August 2015 – updated titles of grievance and complaint documents

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