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Anti-Harassment and Discrimination Policy: Guernica’s Commitment

Guernica Editions is committed to providing an environment free of discrimination and harassment, where all individuals are treated with respect and dignity, can contribute fully, and have equal opportunities.

Under the Ontario Human Rights Code, every person has the right to be free from harassment and discrimination. Harassment and discrimination will not be tolerated, condoned or ignored at Guernica. If a claim of harassment or discrimination is proven, disciplinary measures will be applied, up to and including termination of employment. Guernica is committed to a comprehensive strategy to address harassment and discrimination, including:

• providing training and education to make sure everyone knows their rights and responsibilities.

• regularly monitoring organizational systems for barriers relating to Code grounds.

• providing an effective and fair complaints procedure

• promoting appropriate standards of conduct at all times.

Policy Objectives

Under the Ontario Human Rights Code, every person has the right to be free from harassment and discrimination. Harassment and discrimination will not be tolerated, condoned or ignored at Guernica Editions. If a claim of harassment or discrimination is proven, disciplinary measures will be applied, up to and including termination of employment.

Guernica Editions is committed to a comprehensive strategy to address harassment and discrimination, including:

• make sure that management, staff, editors, freelancers and all who are engaged by Guernica Editions to work, whether for pay or on a voluntary basis in any capacity, are aware that harassment and discrimination are unacceptable practices and are incompatible with the standards of this organization, as well as being a violation of the law.

• set out the types of behaviour that may be considered offensive and are prohibited by this policy.

Applying the policy

The right to freedom from discrimination and harassment extends to all employees, including full-time, part-time, temporary, probationary, casual and contract staff, as well as volunteers and interns.

It is also unacceptable for members of Guernica Editions to engage in harassment or discrimination when dealing with authors, or with others they have professional dealings with, such as suppliers or service providers.

This policy applies at every level of the organization and to every aspect of the workplace environment and employment relationship, including recruitment, selection, promotion, training, salaries, and termination. It also covers rates of pay, overtime, hours of work, holidays, shift work, discipline and performance evaluations.

This policy also applies to events that occur outside of the physical workplace such as during business trips, meetings with authors, book launches and events, and company parties.

This policy prohibits discrimination or harassment based on the following grounds, and any combination of these grounds:

• Age

• Religion

• Gender

• Sexual orientation

• Gender identity

• Gender expression

• Family status

• Marital status

• Disability

• Race

• Ancestry

• Place of origin

• Ethnic origin

• Citizenship

• Colour

• Association or relationship with a person identified by one of the above grounds

• Perception that one of the above grounds applies

Definitions of concepts

Discrimination: means any form of unequal treatment based on a Code ground, whether imposing extra burdens or denying benefits. It may be intentional or unintentional. It may involve direct actions that are discriminatory on their face, or it may involve rules, practices or procedures that appear neutral, but disadvantage certain groups of people. Discrimination may take obvious forms, or it may happen in very subtle ways. Even if there are many factors affecting a decision or action, if discrimination is one factor, that is a violation of this policy.

Harassment: means a course of comments or actions that are known, or ought reasonably to be known, to be unwelcome. It can involve words or actions that are known or should be known to be offensive, embarrassing, humiliating, demeaning or unwelcome, based on a ground of discrimination identified by this policy. Harassment can occur based on any of the grounds of discrimination.

Examples of harassment include:

• Epithets, remarks, jokes or innuendos related to a person’s race, gender identity, gender expression, sex, disability, sexual orientation, creed, age, or any other ground Posting or circulating offensive pictures, graffiti or materials, whether in print form or via e-mail or other electronic means

• Singling out a person for humiliating or demeaning “teasing” or jokes because they are a member of a Code-protected group

• Comments ridiculing a person because of characteristics that are related to a ground of discrimination. For example, this could include comments about a person’s dress, speech or other practices that may be related to their sex, race, gender identity or creed.

If a person does not explicitly object to harassing behaviour, or appears to be going along with it, this does not mean that the behaviour is okay. The behaviour could still be considered harassment under the Code.

Sexual and gender-based harassment: sexual harassment is a form of harassment that can include:

• Gender-related comments about a person’s physical characteristics or mannerisms

• Paternalism based on gender which a person feels undermines his or her self respect or position of responsibility

• Unwelcome physical contact

• Suggestive or offensive remarks or innuendoes about members of a specific gender

• Propositions of physical intimacy

• Gender-related verbal abuse, threats or taunting

• Leering or inappropriate staring

• Bragging about sexual prowess or questions or discussions about sexual activities

• Offensive jokes or comments of a sexual nature about an employee or client

• Rough and vulgar humour or language related to gender

• Display of sexually offensive pictures, graffiti or other materials including through electronic means

• Demands for dates or sexual favours

Sexual Solicitation: this policy prohibits sexual solicitations or advances by any person who is in a position to grant or deny a benefit to the recipient of the solicitation or advance. This includes managers and supervisors, as well as co-workers where one person is in a position to grant or deny a benefit to the other. Reprisals for rejecting such advances or solicitations are also not allowed.

Poisoned environment: a poisoned environment is created by comments or conduct (including comments or conduct that are condoned or allowed to continue when brought to the attention of management) that create a discriminatory work environment. The comments or conduct need not be directed at a specific person, and may be from any person, regardless of position or status. A single comment or action, if sufficiently serious, may create a poisoned environment.

Roles and Responsibilities

All Guernica Personnel are expected to uphold and abide by this policy, by refraining from any form of harassment or discrimination, by cooperating fully in any investigation of a harassment or discrimination complaint, and by bringing any form of harassment or discriminatory behaviour of which they become aware to the immediate attention of management. Personnel are not to be penalized or disciplined for reporting an incident or for participating in an investigation involving workplace harassment.

The Editor-in-Chief is responsible for creating and maintaining a harassment and discrimination-free environment, and should wherever possible address potential problems before they become serious. The Editor-in-Chief will investigate and deal with all complaints or incidents of workplace harassment in a fair, respectful and timely manner. Information provided about an incident or about a complaint will not be disclosed except as necessary to protect staff, to investigate the complaint or incident, to take corrective action or as otherwise required by law.

We encourage anyone who has a complaint against a Guernica staff member, executive, contactor, consultant or editor at any time to please contact our Editor-in-Chief, Michael Mirolla, at michaelmirolla@guernicaeditions.com or 905-599-5304.