Dealing with workplace harassment, bullying and discrimination to create a respectful workplace

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Here's a FREE selection of articles that address many different problems and situations in your workplace.

ARTICLES

 

With freedom of speech and of the media, there are wonderful articles and even cartoons that get right to the point and may be very biting. We should be thankful that people are allowed to speak their minds so freely. However, even within the media, there are limits to what can be said or even drawn – very few limits, but limits nonetheless.

 

Sometimes an article or political cartoon will be posted at work, which has every right to be written or drawn. However, when it gets posted, it is meant to bring attention to a certain issue or to make fun of someone. Many times the article or cartoon is good-natured and there’s rarely a problem. Other times it isn’t good-natured and is meant to take a swipe at a fellow employee. An obvious example would be an article about reducing immigration when an employee has recently immigrated to Canada. It may be legitimate in a newspaper, but not on the wall at work.

 

If the posted item is in a person’s cubicle, you’ll have to talk to that person directly. If the item is posted anonymously on a wall, then you need to talk to a wider audience.

 

TRY THIS:

 

Take down the article or cartoon immediately. See if you can identify who may have posted it. If you can work it out, or you know who put it up, speak to that person in private as soon as possible. If you suspect, but are not sure, ask them in a non-judgemental way if they posted it. If they say yes, discuss why it’s not appropriate. If you don’t know who did it, speak to the groups of people who have access to that area. You don’t need to witch hunt to find the person – convey your message and reinforce your workplace standards in how you want to treat people.

 

HOW ABOUT:

 

“I wanted to let you all know I took down the article on the bulletin board that was making derogatory fun of (group). The reason I did this is twofold. One, we should never hold up any person or group as being a target for malicious humour. We show lack of respect when we do so, and we encourage people to laugh at those different from ourselves. Second, any guest or visitor who comes through this area may see this article and be deeply offended. Some of you may be offended by it and not feel comfortable in speaking out. So I’ll do the speaking out. Please don’t post cartoons, articles, jokes or any other printouts that show a disregard, contempt, prejudice or derogatory comments against any other group, belief, race, ethnic origin, and so on."

 

“I appreciate that some people find this political cartoon funny. It pokes fun at a stereotype about (group). While there can be good-natured fun in differences between people, I took this cartoon down because its humour relies on negative stereotypes. That’s not how we show respect to and acceptance of others, and it’s not how I want our department to be seen by any guests or visitors. Please keep all this type of material out of the workplace.”

 

 

Stephen Hammond, B.A., LL.B., CSP

 

If you have any questions, please contact Stephen.

#9

POSTED CARTOONS OR ARTICLES MAKING FUN OF CERTAIN PEOPLE

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© STEPHEN HAMMOND - HARASSMENT SOLUTIONS INC.    
 
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Here's a FREE selection of articles that address many different problems and situations in your workplace.

Here's a FREE selection of articles that address many different problems and situations in your workplace.

© STEPHEN HAMMOND HARASSMENT SOLUTIONS INC.
 
  
 
CONTACT