Equality (Sex Discrimination) Regulations 2005 SI 2005/2467
piece of legislation, places an additional burden on Employers under
their Duty of Care -to manage inappropriate conduct in the workplace.
HR & Diversity
Management can support Employers through this difficult time.
legislation, any form of workplace harassment is unlawful. A female
employee can make a claim IF, on the grounds of her sex, a male
colleague engages in unwanted conduct that has the purpose or effect
of violating her dignity, creating an intimidating, hostile, degrading,
humiliating or offensive environment.
Also. if a
female employee is subjected to unwanted, verbal, non-verbal or
physical conduct, of a sexual nature, that violates her dignity
at work - she can bring a claim against her employer.
What Can the Employer Do?
Draw up an
Anti-Bullying and Anti-Harassment Policy
Managers - help them to spot the signs, to following policies and
encourage employees to invoke formal processes if they are distressed.
clauses in your Handbook and Staff Contracts of Employment. State
that harassment, of any sort, is unlawful and will be regarded as
Set up an Employee
Assistance Programme. We can help you. Advertise the National Bullying
Helpline on your staff Notice Boards.
IT and Email Policies - don't overlook these please !
and Trade Union Reps with regular, appropriate, information on Equality
issues within your organisation. Again, we can help you.
us for help on 01793 338888. Don't struggle alone.
Addressing and Containing Matters.
The most important aspect of conflict
at work (such as Bullying and Harassment) is that the victim feels
that the Company is taking a responsible attitude towards the complaint.
It is imperative that the line manager makes himself fully aware
of the employee's position and also the attitude being taken by
the alleged bully. Both need to be interviewed on a one-on-one
basis. It may be that the Complaint is one of a minor nature that
a good manager can resolve by listening and taking sensible, appropriate,
However, after the line manager has interviewed the parties concerned, he must insure that the HR department within your company is made fully aware of :
- the detail of the victim's complaint,
- the response of the alleged bully and
- can verbalise his own position on the matter.
It is important that between the time when the manager interviews both the victim and the bully and the time when the HR department can be seen to be taking action, that the line manager prevents further friction taking place. If necessary, the line manager should take the responsible action of sending the victim home so that stress, in the case, does not escalate.
HR & Diversity Management Ltd
can train your managers to understand the importance of taking immediate
action. At the end of the training session, managers will
have an overview of the legal position, how the Company stands (and
the risks) and they will have an appreciation of basic employment
law –v- Company policies, particularly in respect of Grievance &
Disciplinary and the implications of The Employment Act 2002, which
becomes statute on 1st October 2004.
These sessions can be carried out in short half-day seminars which are tailored to your needs and which are delivered on or off site in accordance with your wishes.
Our Government, the DTI and the CIPD
are all encouraging employers to call on an Independent Investigator
where there are allegations of workplace bullying. As more
and more employees latch on to the Dispute Resolution Reforms, more
employers will find that they are required to undertake an `independent'
and wholly impartial, investigation. HR & Diversity Management
Ltd is able to provide this service and has considerable expertise
in this area. The report following a thorough and truly
independent investigation will act as a defence for any employer,
at the end of the day. Our Government encourages this approach.
Employers will like it. Employees welcome it and Trade Unions
have been urging Employers to use independent investigators for
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