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Workplace violence and harassment can have devastating consequences for both workers and the work environment. It can affect workplace communication, production, morale, and the general sense of personal well-being.
The Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHSA) requires employers to develop, implement and maintain policies and programs regarding workplace violence and harassment (WVH). This course was developed to give participants more than just knowledge about the law; it will also give attendees a better understanding of the different aspects involved with how to effectively manage a Workplace Violence and Harassment Policy and Program. Additionally, it will give participants detailed instruction on how to review and update their program to meet the new legal requirements of Bill 132.
By the end of this course, participants will be able to;
- Identify new requirements based on Bill 132
- Discuss applicable definitions
- Identify factors that contribute to violence and harassment
- Identify sources of violence and harassment
- Break down the definition of sexual harassment
- Discuss factors that define sexual harassment
- Identify workplace violence and harassment legislative requirements
Participant’s Manual, wall certificate and, record of attendance
All employers, supervisors and workers in Ontario.
OHSA s.32.0.2(1) & s.32.0.6(1)
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Workplace Violence & Harassment FAQ
How can I know what another person considers to be offensive?
Not everyone thinks the same way about many topics.It is entirely possible that you can say or do something offensive unintentionally. The point is that the offended party must inform you of their objection. The problem only escalates into the territory of “harassment” if the offending party knowingly continues with their offensive behaviour.
Who should perform the assessment?
Bill 168 nor the guidelines from the Ministry of Labour provide any specific direction on who is to conduct the risk assessment. Each enterprise is free to have the risk assessment conducted by internal staff or by an external party as appropriate.
Does a Workplace Violence and Harassment policy just apply to a company’s workers?
A well planned policy will cover all aspects of the workplace. This would include any work related situation that a worker could find himself in. This would include: worker to worker; client/customer to worker; management to worker; stranger to worker and even stranger to stranger violence.
What is a “risk assessment” and why is it important?
A risk assessment must be conducted to try and discover if any violence related issues can be predicted. It is important because, if done properly, it will allow management to be proactive and prevent undesirable behaviour rather than just reacting to it.
What must be considered as part of the assessment?
The Act, as amended by Bill 168, requires the employer to assess the risks of workplace violence possibly arising from the nature of the business and the type and conditions of the workplace. It does not specify any factors to be considered when an employer evaluates the workplace violence.
What must be included in the Workplace Violence Policy?
- A process for workers to report incidents or threats of violence in the workplace
- Another process for investigating incidents, complaints or threats
- A procedure for calling assistance when violence has occurred or is likely to occur
- Train workers
I am a worker. What should I do if I think someone is exhibiting strange behaviour?
There are many signs that are indicative of deeper problems. Substance abuse, changes in personality and personal hygiene are some but not all of these symptoms. It is important the early warning signs be noted and brought to the attention of the supervisor responsible for addressing the situation.
What am I supposed to do if it is my supervisor who is the one exhibiting inappropriate behaviour?
Any policy must provide for an alternate route of reporting incidences of inappropriate behavior. Workers must have recourse to someone higher up the organizational chain of command. This could be someone in Human Resources or possibly the employer.