Secret whispers, innuendos, a suggestive “joke” or any form of unwanted behaviour that intimidates, threatens or offends all fall under the umbrella of harassment. High-profile allegations of occupational harassment have started a conversation about what is considered acceptable behaviour and what is not. They have also raised concerns about compliance and prevention among employers.
Workplaces with cultures that inspire fear of speaking up are conducive to harassment and intimidation. Given the various forms in which improper behaviour in an occupational setting can take shape, harassment continues to disrupt organizations in which allegations of misconduct — sexual or otherwise — have surfaced.
Compliance with workplace-safety legislation and the Human Rights Code are not the only compelling reasons for creating harassment-free workplaces; there is also a wide body of evidence showing that psychologically healthy companies have better bottom lines and exert a positive influence on employees’ physical and mental health, motivation and productivity.
Companies, big and small alike, are vulnerable to the disruptions presented by workplace harassment. Attendees of this symposium will learn about the importance of fostering awareness of proper workplace behaviour and creating a system to report and investigate complaints that demonstrates due diligence, enforcement and compliance on the employer’s part.