Bullying and Harassment Policy - Bullying Policy

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 stoke on tr
November 2006e n t
                     because everyone’s different...
College Policy

Policy and procedure to prevent Bullying and Harassment

This policy is applicable to all students, staff and visitors of Stoke on
Trent College.

Stoke on Trent College is committed to ensuring that everyone is equally
valued and treats one another with respect. The safeguarding of our students,
staff and visitors is very important to us. The College will inform all students
and staff that all types of bullying and harassment are unacceptable.
Designated Managers are responsible for dealing with cases of bullying and
harassment – both to address the behaviour of the alleged perpetrator and to
provide support for the victim. All staff and students are responsible for
supporting victims and for referring them to support services within the
College. We encourage people who experience bullying and harassment to
take appropriate action to prevent further occurrences and will support them
in this action. All complaints about harassment and bullying are taken
seriously and will be dealt with quickly and with respect for all people
involved. We recognise that staff and students may need training in order to
address behaviour that arises from ignorance and will provide anti-
bullying/harassment training when necessary.

What is Bullying and Harassment?
In its policy to promote equality and diversity the College defines harassment
and bullying:

A situation in which, on any grounds of race, colour, nationality, or ethnic or
national origin, gender, age, size, health status, disability, sexual orientation,
politics, religion or beliefs, a person engages in unwanted conduct which has
the purpose or effect of violating the other person’s dignity or creating an
intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating or offensive environment for that
other. The reasonable perception of the other person of behaviour
constituting harassment shall be taken into account. Harassment can be ‘one
off ’ incidents or continuous behaviour.

     stoke on trent college • bullying and harassment policy
Examples could include:
• Verbal behaviour - jokes, suggestive or racist comments, unwanted
  demands for sex, name-calling or malicious gossip
• Non-verbal behaviour - non-co-operation, suggestive or aggressive looks,
  gestures or invasion of personal space
• Visual behaviour - display or transmission of pictures, graffiti or literature
• Physical contact - unwanted touching or assault

The misuse of power or position through on-going and persistent attacks –
either verbal, mental or physical – on an individual. The purpose of these
attacks is to humiliate and undermine an individual’s ability until he or she
loses confidence and self-esteem.

Examples could include:
•   Isolation or exclusion from activities
•   Refusal to give credit for work undertaken
•   Unfairly blocking promotion
•   Public humiliation (including through e-mail)
•   Issuing implied or overt threats

Statutory Duties
The amendment to the Race Relations Act in July 2003 introduced a new
definition of harassment on the grounds of race, ethnic or national origins.
This is incorporated into the College’s definitions within the Equal
Opportunities Policy.

Staff who can help you
It is very important that you have access to help and support if/when needed.
You can get support from your personal tutor, mentor, or the Student
Entitlement Manager if you are a student or the Human Resources Manager or
Trade Union representative if you are a member of the college staff and the
Customer Care Manager if you are a visitor.

     stoke on trent college • bullying and harassment policy
Procedure for dealing with Bullying and Harassment
This procedure has been designed to deal with complaints of bullying and
harassment, which need to be handled in a sensitive manner. The procedure,
therefore, seeks to ensure minimal stress for the complainant, timely resolution
of complaints and a degree of flexibility appropriate to individual

This procedure is separate from the disciplinary and grievance procedures,
which may be used following the results of an investigation in accordance with
this procedure.
Alternatively, an incident may be so serious, or there may be sufficient
evidence to proceed straight away with the disciplinary procedure.

Staff and students are covered by all the stages of the procedure.

1.   If you feel that you are being subjected to any behaviour, which
     contravenes our Bullying and Harassment Policy, do not feel that it is your
     fault or that you have to tolerate it. Many people are tempted to ignore
     this behaviour for fear of being labelled a troublemaker but it is unlikely
     that the behaviour will stop if you ignore it. Do not ignore it. The
     bully/harasser is often doing this to try and exert control, so silence will be
     interpreted as weakness and acquiescence.

2.   Get support. Talk about the problem with a friend, Colleague or a ‘named
     person’, the Student Entitlement Manager (603615) if you are a student or
     the Human Resources Manager (603630) if you are a member of staff. Do
     not hesitate to contact someone even when an incident occurs only once.
     They may be able to suggest ways of resolving the problem.

3.   Collect evidence of the behaviour. It is important to keep a note of all
     relevant incidents including dates, times, places. This will be invaluable in
     proving your case if you decide to make a formal complaint. Wherever
     possible get witnesses to provide factual evidence. If there are no
     witnesses to an incident, tell a colleague, a tutor (if you are a student) or a
     member of the Human Resources team or line manager and make a note of

4.   Ask the bully/harasser to stop, preferably in the presence of a
     representative or friend. This will prevent the bully/harasser claiming that
     you did not complain personally leading them to believe that you did not
     object to their behaviour.

      stoke on trent college • bullying and harassment policy
     Or you can do this in writing – outline as clearly as possible what
     behaviour you find offensive and the effect it has on you.

5.   Make a formal complaint. If you, or your friend, or your union
     representative cannot resolve the problem by asking the bully/harasser to
     stop, you, your friend or your representative should make a formal
     complaint, which should then be investigated by management.

     If formal disciplinary proceedings are to be taken against the alleged bully/
     harasser, you will be required to give evidence in writing and normally by
     attendance. It may be difficult for you to undertake this but it would not
     be in your best interests for the case to be considered in your absence.
     Advice and support will be given to you.

      stoke on trent college • bullying and harassment policy
Pathways for dealing with complaints of Bullying and


                                          Get Support
                                         • Personal Tutor
   Record details of evidence                • Mentor
                                         • Friends/Family
                                        • Named Persons
                                     • Students/Trade Union
                                         • Line Manager
    Confront Bully/Harasser

   Bullying/Harassment Stops      Bullying/Harassment Continues

                                     Make a formal complaint

                                     Action by Management

                                 Informal     Formal    No action
                                Resolution Disciplinary against
                                            Procedure    alleged
      Counselling Support                                harasser

stoke on trent college • bullying and harassment policy
Monitoring and Evaluation
This policy will be reviewed at least every 2 years.

Incidents reported under this policy will be monitored by the ‘Named Persons’
for students and staff and reported annually to the Equal Opportunities
Committee, Student Success and Quality Assurance Committee and the
Employment Committee. The Equal Opportunities Committee will be
responsible for developing action plans to address issues.

Publicising our Comment
To staff through:
•     The Induction process
•     Publication of this policy and procedure on College intranet

To students through:
•     The Induction process
•     The Student Handbook
•     Personal tutors
•     Staff working in advice and guidance for students

To visitors/contractors through:
•     Publication of the policy through the internet
•     Approved supplier literature

When reviewing the policy and procedure the following groups will be
•     Equal Opportunities Committee
•     Senior Management Team
•     Recognised Trade Union

    Policy drafted                          January 2006

    Draft policy approved by SMT            June 2006

    Policy formally adopted                 August 2006

    First review date                       August 2008

       stoke on trent college • bullying and harassment policy

    stoke on trent college • bullying and harassment policy

                                  November 2006
because everyone’s different...