Harassment exists when a person acts to irritate, distress, humiliate, or torment another. It may occur only once or on many occasions, and it takes both verbal and non-verbal forms.
Harassment of a sexual nature is unsolicited, one-sided and/or coercive behaviour which is comprised of sexual comments, gestures or physical contact that the individual knows, or ought reasonably to know, to be unwelcome, objectionable or offensive. The behaviour may be on a one-time basis or a series of incidents, however minor. Both males and females may be victims. [Jan/8- 9/99] [1999 BGM]
Harassment of a personal nature is any behaviour that endangers an employee’s job, undermines performance, or threatens the economic livelihood of the employee, which is based on race, religion, religious creed, sex, marital status, sexual orientation, physical or mental disability, political opinion, colour, or ethnic, national or social origin or Association status. [Jan/8-9/99] [1999 BGM]
Whether or not harassment has occurred is best determined by the impact certain behaviours have on another’s dignity, or on their freedom of choice. NLTA believes:
- Every person has the right to dignity and the right to be free of all forms of harassment within and outside the workplace;
- Every teacher is responsible for being sensitive to the impact as well as the intent of their action;
- Pupils, teachers, and others who work in schools have the right to protection from all forms of harassment;
- Victims of harassment must have avenues of recourse available to them, without fear of reprisal. [May/5-6/89] [1990 AGM]