Personal Harassment, Bullying and Uncivil Conduct


Personal harassment includes bullying, ostracizing, shunning, and other forms of uncivil conduct. This is inappropriate and unwelcome behaviour that does not fall under one of the protected grounds enumerated in the BC Human Rights Code but is nevertheless unacceptable in a university community.

Like human rights-based harassment, personal harassment, bullying, and uncivil conduct are behaviours that are unwelcome to the recipient, found to be offensive and demeaning, and would be considered by a reasonable person to create an intimidating, hostile or offensive environment for work, study and other university-related activities.


Power dynamics and harassment

Understanding discrimination and harassment and their impact on individuals and organizations requires a grasp of how power can be misused. The dynamics of power are complex, with individuals and groups holding varying degrees of power according to factors such as social standing, role or position within an organization, length of service, and group affiliation. With that in mind:

Harassment may occur between people of the same and different status within the university community, and both women and men may be the subject of harassment by members of either sex.


Examples of personal harassment, bullying, and uncivil conduct

When directed at an individual or individuals, the following behaviours are considered to be personal harassment:

  • Abuse of authority
  • Acts of intimidation or coercion
  • Bullying
  • Disparaging remarks about an individual
  • Excessively critical or disrespectful comments, actions or gestures
  • Explicit threats or gestures
  • Ganging up on or "mobbing" someone
  • Hostile or aggressive behaviour
  • Inappropriate and unwarranted rudeness
  • Loud, angry outbursts
  • Malicious gossip or slander
  • Ostracizing, shunning, or singling someone out
  • Subjecting someone to personal humiliation or insults
  • Threatened or actual acts of physical violence
  • Use of profanity or obscenities
  • Verbal abuse, taunts, or malicious teasing
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