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Discrimination & Harassment Policy

Purpose

Engedi Inc has a legal and moral responsibility to ensure that staff, service users and their families/carers are not subjected to behaviours, practices or processes that may constitute discrimination or harassment. Relevant legislation includes the Queensland Anti-Discrimination Act 1991, the Queensland Workplace Health and Safety Act 2011, Commonwealth Age Discrimination Act 2004, Commonwealth Disability Discrimination Act 1992, and Commonwealth Racial Discrimination Act 1975.

Policy Statement

Engedi Inc is committed to fostering the right of individuals to be free from discrimination and harassment while engaged in activities, receiving services or engaged in employment with Engedi.
All staff, Management Committee, service users and their families/carers are to be treated with dignity, courtesy and respect.

Discrimination and harassment will not be tolerated under any circumstances. Disciplinary action will be taken against any person who breaches the policy.

Scope 
This policy applies to all staff, service users, their families/carers and Management Committee.

Objectives
Engedi aims to:

  • Create an environment which is free from discrimination and harassment and where service users their carers/families and staff are treated with dignity, courtesy and respect
  • Implement training and awareness raising strategies to ensure that all staff know their rights and responsibilities
  • Provide an effective complaints procedure based on the principles of natural justice
  • Treat all complaints in a sensitive, fair, timely and confidential manner
  • Guarantee protection from any victimization or reprisals
  • Encourage the reporting of behaviour which breaches the discrimination and harassment policy
  • Promote appropriate standards of conduct at all times

Everyone involved with Engedi has a responsibility to prevent discrimination and harassment.

Breaches of the discrimination and harassment policy will result in disciplinary action. Outcomes from any disciplinary action may result in an apology, a caution or dismissal.

Engedi will implement the following strategies to ensure an environment that is free from discrimination and harassment:

  • Implement policies that provide fair and equitable access to all services
  • Implement a clear and equitable complaints process
  • Ensure recruitment of staff is conducted in a fair and anti-discriminatory manner giving equal opportunity to all applicants
  • Arrange training to ensure all staff are aware of discrimination and harassment and their rights and responsibilities
Definitions
Discrimination is to treat an individual less favourably because of an attribute or to impose unreasonable terms or conditions for which individuals with a particular attribute are unable to comply.
Attributes include:
  • Parental status
  • Pregnancy
  • Religious belief or activity
  • Political belief or activity
  • Relationship status
  • Sex
  • Gender
  • Sexuality
  • Age
Attributes include:
Race, nationality or ethnic origin
Disability or impairment
Family responsibilities
Physical appearance
Vilification on the grounds of race, religion, sexuality or gender identity is also unlawful. 
Harassment including workplace harassment or bullying, is repeated behaviours, other than behaviour that is sexual harassment, that is directed at an individual or group and is offensive, intimidating, humiliating or threatening, and is unwelcome and unsolicited, and unreasonable.
Examples of behaviours that may be regarded as harassment, if the behavior is repeated or occurs as part of a pattern of behavior. Include:
Abusing a person loudly, usually when others are present
Repeated threats for no reason
Constant ridicule and being put down
Leaving offensive messages on email or the telephone
Sabotaging a person’s work, for example, by deliberately withholding or supplying incorrect information, hiding documents or equipment, not passing on messages and getting a person into trouble in other ways
Maliciously excluding and isolating a person from activities
Persistent and unjustified criticisms, often about petty, irrelevant or insignificant matters
Humiliating a person through gestures, sarcasm, criticism and insults, often in front of others
Spreading gossip or false, malicious rumours about a person with an intent to cause the person harm
Sexual harassment is any unsolicited, unwelcome and unreciprocated behavior act or conduct of a sexual nature that embarrasses, humiliates or offends other persons. It can be a single incident or a persistent pattern and can range from subtle behavior to explicit demands for sexual activity or even criminal assault and including but not limited to the following examples:
Inappropriate jokes or comments with sexual connotations
The display of offensive material
Stares and leers or offensive hand or body gestures
Comments and questions about another person’s sexual conduct and/or private relationships
Persistent unwelcome invitations
Requests for sexual favours
Offensive written, telephone or electronic mail or other computer system communications
Unnecessary close physical proximity including persistently following a person
Unwelcome physical contact such as brushing against or touching a person
Denigrating comments regarding a person’s gender or sexual preference
Negative behaviours, e.g. intimidation or exclusions related to sex of the recipient Legislation
Age Discrimination Act 2004
Disability Discrimination Act 1992
Racial Discrimination Act 1975
Sex Discrimination Act 1984
Australian Human Rights Commission Act 1986
Workplace Health & Safety Act 2011
Anti Discrimination Act 1991 (Qld)
Human Services Quality Framework
Standard 3: Responding to Individual Need
Indicator 3.2: The organisation formulates service delivery that respects and values the individual (e.g. identity, gender, sexuality, culture, age and religious beliefs)
Standard 4: Safety, well-being and rights
Indicator 4.1: The organisation provides services in a manner that upholds people’s human and legal rights.
Standard 5: Feedback, complaints and appeals
Indicator 5.1: The organisation has fair, accessible and accountable feedback, complaints and appeals processes.

Legislation or other requirements

National Disability Service standards
Qld Disability Services Act (2006)
Racial Discrimination Act (1975)
Disability Discrimination Act (1992)
Qld Anti-Discrimination Act (1991)
National Disability Insurance Scheme Act (2013)
United Nations’ Convention on the Rights of Persons with disabilities (2006)