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Code of Conduct

Labour's Bullying and Harassment Policy

Bullying and Harassment Policy and Procedure

All codes of conduct and NEC statements form part of the agreed relationship between individual Labour Party members, and set the minimum code of conduct expected by the Labour Party of all its members.

Policy statement

Definition of Harassment

Examples of Harassment

Examples of Bulling and Intimidation

Examples of other forms of harassment

Victimisation


Policy statement and procedural guidelines for all Labour Party Members, Volunteers and Staff

1. The Labour Party believes that everyone in the organisation should be treated with dignity and respect. This Policy Statement and Procedures aims to ensure that no member or volunteer is subjected to any form of harassment whether on the grounds of sex, sexual orientation, race, religion, disability, age, or for no apparent reason.

2. Specific policies for staff are contained within the staff handbook.

3. The Labour Party seeks to ensure that the environment within which our activities take place is comfortable for all. No form of harassment will be permitted or condoned under any circumstances.

4. Where a valid complaint of harassment is brought to the attention of the Party, prompt investigation and corrective action will be instituted, which may include disciplinary action against anyone found to be harassing another.

5. This policy will be available to all staff, members and volunteers within the Labour Party. Everyone has an individual responsibility to comply with both the spirit and the wording of the policy.

6. Staff and members have an additional responsibility for safeguarding children (anyone who has not yet reached their 18th birthday) participating in Labour Party activities and must ensure that any suspected harassment or bullying of children is reported to the safeguarding unit.

7. These procedural guidelines should be read in conjunction with existing disciplinary procedures set out in rule and elsewhere.

Definition of Harassment

8. There is not, and probably cannot be, a single simple definition. This is because harassment takes many forms, occurs on a variety of grounds and may be directed at an individual or group of individuals. It is not the intention of the harasser but rather their conduct and its impact on the recipient, which determine what constitutes harassment. The impact of harassment can result in the following: discomfort humiliation, or may adversely affect the recipient’s performance, or create a threatening or intimidating environment. It can also provoke aggressive, retaliatory attitudes and actions. Certain behaviour will be, by its nature or severity, unwelcome even on a single occasion.

9. Social interaction involving mutually acceptable behaviour should be distinguished from harassment. However, it should be borne in mind that what is initially acceptable to some may be offensive to others.

10. The defining feature of harassment is that behaviour is offensive or intimidating to the recipient and would be regarded as harassment by any reasonable person.

11. Certain types of harassment may constitute a criminal offence.

12. Examples of unacceptable behaviour under this policy (this list is for reference and is not exhaustive):

Examples of Harassment

13. Physical conduct ranging from the invasion of personal space and/or inappropriate touching to serious assault.

14. Verbal, written and e-mail harassment through derogatory remarks, jokes, insults, offensive language, gossip and slander.

15. Sexually suggestive and unwelcome comments or derogatory remarks including any regarding the sexual orientation or preference of an individual.

16. Unwanted requests or pressure for sexual favours.

17. Displays of racially suggestive or degrading pictures, graffiti or object in the workplace.

18. Unjustifiable exclusion, e.g. withholding information, not talking to, not including in discussions or meetings, or exclusion from social occasions.

19. Sexual graffiti or displays of pornographic or degrading pictures or objects including pornographic displays on computer screens.

20. Intrusion by pestering, spying, following, stalking, etc.

21. Unfair allocation of responsibilities.

22. Incitement to commit any of the above.

Bullying and Intimidation

23. Physical conduct ranging from the invasion of personal space and/or inappropriate touching to serious assault.

24. Verbal, written and e-mail harassment through derogatory remarks, jokes, insults, offensive language, gossip, spreading malicious rumours and slander.

25. Open aggression, threats, shouting, and unpredictable outbursts.

26. Deliberately setting objectives with unreasonable deadlines, or changing objectives unfairly.

27. Belittling, marginalizing or ridiculing; taking credit for someone else’s work but never taking the blame if something goes wrong.

28. Frequent unjustifiable criticism about minor things.

29. Frequent unjustifiable monitoring of someone’s activities as volunteer or lay officer or other misuse of power.

30. Twisting something someone says or does.

31. Threatening disciplinary or other action deliberately to intimidate e.g. making threats or comments about selection/deselection without foundation.

32. Unjustifiable exclusion, e.g. withholding information, not talking to, not including in discussions or meetings, or exclusion from social occasions.

33. Intrusion by pestering, spying, following, stalking, etc.

34. Unfair allocation of work and responsibilities.

35. Inappropriate or derogatory remarks in connection with performance, particularly in front of other members.

36. Incitement to commit any of the above.

Other Forms of Harassment

37. Behaviour which makes direct or indirect reference to disability or impairment and this causes discomfort, patronises, insults or offends people with a physical, sensory or mental disability.

38. Treating someone adversely because they have or it is suspected/believed that they have HIV/AIDS.

39. Repeated gibes in reference to personal traits or appearances, invasion of privacy, or practical jokes causing physical or psychological distress.

40. Persistent pressure to become involved in anti-social or unlawful behaviour.

41. Repeated statements to an individual or third parties, which demean his/her status e.g. copying emails that are critical about someone to others who do not need to know.

Victimisation

42. Victimisation may occur when the person who has made a complaint of harassment is treated less favourably than would otherwise be the case.

43. The Labour Party will not tolerate any incidents of victimisation arising from either:

a. making an allegation of personal harassment; or

b. having been accused of harassment.

44. Such victimisation will be dealt with as a disciplinary matter. Individuals who believe themselves to be victimised should bring their concern to the attention of the EDG.


Rule Book

You can download the full Labour Party rule book – which contains all of Labour’s codes of conduct – below.

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