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Equal Opportunities, Harassment and Bullying Policy and Procedure



YSP is committed to equal opportunities, and recognises that it is essential to provide equal opportunities to all, regardless of an individual’s sex, marital status, sexual orientation, gender re-assignment, colour, race, ethnic origin, religious or other belief, disability or age. This policy applies at all times and should influence the way we treat others whether they are employees or visitors. The policy covers all areas of the YSP operations, with particular emphasis on recruitment and selection and access to assessment for promotion and training.
 
 
YSP also recognises the right of all employees to work in an atmosphere free from bullying and harassment. Harassment can take many forms and it is not the intention of the perpetrator which determines whether or not harassment has occurred, but the acts themselves and the impact of the act on the receiver. 
 
At YSP we do not tolerate discrimination, harassment or bullying in any form but especially in relation to an individual’s sex, gender, marital status, sexual orientation, gender re-assignment, colour, race, ethnic origin, religious or other belief, disability or age.
 

Equal Opportunities, Harassment and Bullying Policy Statement

 
YSP is committed to equal opportunities in employment. This means that it is YSP policy that there should be no discrimination, harassment or less favourable treatment or victimisation of any employee, job applicant, visitor, customer, provider of services, or member of the public either directly or indirectly. YSP will:
 
 Provide equal opportunities in employment regardless of an individual's sex, marital status, sexual orientation, gender re-assignment, colour, race, ethnic origin, religious or other belief, disability or age.
 
○  Use and review as appropriate, selection criteria and procedures that ensure that people are selected, promoted and treated solely on the basis of their merits and those abilities which are appropriate for the job.
 
Ensure that all employees are aware of equal opportunities issues and this policy statement throughout all areas of employment, and promote understanding through training and good communication.
 
Be firm and fair regarding harassment and bullying in the workplace. Harassment and bullying will not be tolerated; all complaints of such behaviour will be taken very seriously and will be fully investigated and disciplinary action will be taken if appropriate.
 
Monitor equal opportunities to ensure that our policy and practices are working.
 
Treat seriously anyone who believes that they have been discriminated against or treated unfairly. In such cases employees are encouraged to raise the matter through YSP grievance procedure. All cases will be fully investigated and disciplinary action taken if appropriate.
 

Responsibilities

 
1. All management and employees have a responsibility in ensuring the practical application of this policy. All employees at all levels must ensure that their behaviour takes into account fellow employees’ feelings at all times and that all employees treat their fellow employees, customers and suppliers with respect.
 
2. Managers or supervisors must ensure the following:
 
a Recruitment and selection must be carried out in a fair and consistent way.
 
b Discriminatory practices are not practised or tolerated in the workplace (whether intentionally or not) and that any discrimination or harassment is dealt with immediately via the YSP disciplinary procedure.
 
c Immediate action is taken to stop any harassment as soon as it is identified or witnessed within the workplace. A manager or supervisor must point out that such behaviour is unacceptable and will not be tolerated. 
 
d All employees are informed that unacceptable behaviour and acts of discrimination will be treated as a disciplinary matter.
 
e Offensive information/material is not displayed within the workplace.
 
f All complaints of discrimination and/or harassment are taken seriously and investigated promptly.
 
g Unacceptable behaviour includes, but is not limited to: unwanted physical contact; unwanted verbal and non-verbal contact; insulting or abusive behaviour; physical threats or assaults; persistent criticism and personal abuse which humiliates or demeans the individual involved; any other conduct which denigrates, ridicules, intimidates or is physically abusive of an individual or group.
 
3. All employees have a responsibility to ensure the implementation of this policy, and must ensure the following:
 
a Fellow employees and visitors must be treated with respect and fairness.
 
b All employees co-operate with any measures introduced to develop equal opportunities.
 
c Employees must not take discriminatory actions or decision, or harass, abuse or intimidate other employees, job applicants, providers of services or visitors.
 
d Any discrimination and/or harassment act is reported immediately to the Executive Director.

 

Reporting and dealing with discrimination/harassment

 
1. In the case of harassment the person responsible for the unwanted behaviour should be approached and asked to stop, stating that the behaviour is unacceptable. At an early stage a direct approach will usually be sufficient to stop the behaviour. It is still advisable to report this activity. If the employee feels unable to ask the perpetrator to stop they should report the matter to a manager or supervisor, preferably their line manager / supervisor.
 
2. Any act of discrimination or harassment should be brought to the attention of the employee’s immediate manager or supervisor, the Executive Director or other Management Team member as appropriate.
 
3. The individual is then encouraged to follow the YSP grievance procedure.
 
4. The matter will be dealt with seriously and quickly, with an investigation to establish the facts. Any acts of discrimination and/or harassment that are determined will then be handled subject to the disciplinary policy and may lead to dismissal. False or malicious claims of harassment/discrimination will also be dealt with in a similarly serious way.
 
5. If the grievance relates to the immediate manager or supervisor the grievance can be raised at the next level of management or appointed designate as appropriate.

 

Support, advice and action

 
1. Any employee who feels that they have been subjected to harassment may seek advice and support in total confidence without any obligation to make a formal complaint. This support is usually given by the immediate manager or supervisor, but may be any other relevant senior manager.
 
2. YSP will protect an employee from intimidation, victimisation, or discrimination as a result of making a complaint against any other employee or helping in an investigation. 
 
3. The support may take the form of assisting the individual to submit a formal grievance or where formal action is not requested, the support may be to assist in stopping the offensive behaviour.
 
4. Every complaint will be investigated and dealt with without bias and as quickly as possible, and it is recognised that sometimes individual raising a complaint may want to do so in an anonymous way. YSP will try as far as possible to accommodate such requests, but employees are informed that it may be difficult to investigate the complaint fully in such circumstances. 
 
5. Line managers and supervisors dealing with a harassment/bullying/discrimination claim should ensure the YSP Grievance procedure is followed, and also ensure the following:
 
The employee is treated sensitively and if appropriate in confidence.
A nominated manager or supervisor makes thorough investigations into claims.
Investigations are carried out promptly and discreetly.
All employees relevant to the claim must be interviewed and records kept of the discussions.
Where appropriate witness statements should be taken.
All parties involved in the grievance must be interviewed.
The nominated manager or supervisor reviews the evidence and decides on the appropriate action to be taken. This may involve invoking disciplinary action, overturning recruitment decisions, etc.
Any act of discrimination and/or harassment will be taken very seriously and may result in dismissal subject to following the disciplinary procedure. False or malicious claims will also be dealt with in a similarly serious way.
 

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