Harassment is defined by the Ontario Human Rights Code and the Occupational Health & Safety Act as engaging in a course of vexatious comment or conduct that is known or ought reasonably to be known to be unwelcome. The College interprets this to include any behaviour that is known or ought reasonably to be known to the perpetrator to be offensive, embarrassing or humiliating to other individuals. Such conduct may include visual representations, electronic messages, written messages, verbal and/or physical conduct, and may relate to any of the grounds of discrimination prohibited by the Ontario Human Rights Code or other malicious grounds. Harassment complaints are dealt with under Humber’s Human Rights and Harassment Policy. 

Some examples of harassment are:

  • unwelcome remarks, jokes, slurs, innuendoes or taunting;
  • hazing, stalking or shunning;  
  • the repeated mistreatment of one employee, targeted by one or more employees with a malicious mix of humiliation, intimidation and sabotage of performance (bullying);
  • displaying derogatory or offensive pictures, graffiti or materials either through printed copy or personal computer;
  • verbal abuse;
  • insulting gestures or practical jokes which cause embarrassment or awkwardness;
  • unauthorized and/or unnecessary physical contact;
  • an impassioned, collective campaign by co-workers to exclude, punish and humiliate a targeted worker.  

For the purposes of this Humber policy, “harassment” as outlined in the Occupational Health & Safety Act also includes personal/psychological harassment.  

Note: Harassment does not occur where a supervisor gives legitimate directions or instructions to an employee in the course of employment or conducts performance reviews in accordance with the college's normal procedures.