Gender inclusion services for university employees: faculty and staff

Gender inclusive hiring statement

Every person involved in recruitment and hiring processes has a responsibility to conduct unbiased searches, not to discriminate, and to treat all applicants with respect.  UVic’s equity statement, which is included in all our job postings, “actively encourage[s] applications from … persons of marginalized sexual orientations, gender identities, and gender expressions.”

Staff and faculty name change

Your preferred name is used together with your last name in a number of university systems. For faculty and staff this includes but is not limited to:

  • Exchange Email and Calendar—This is the name on all of your outgoing emails and in the Global Address List
  • UVic Online Directory—This is the name used for your directory entry

You can change your chosen name at UVic in two ways. One is through your Personal Profile tab after you login at www.uvic.ca; instructions to do this are at the University Systems help centre.

You can change your legal or your preferred name by using the form entitled Personal Information Change Form for Faculty and Staff. Legal name changes requires copies of documents to support the change. Please return the form to Accounting Services in person or by mail.

You will need to notify the Benefits Office of your legal name change as well. You can do this Monday to Friday 8:30 a.m.—4:30 p.m. in person at Human Resources, Sedgewick Building, room B128; or by phone (250) 472-4581.

You will need to notify the Pension Services of your legal name change as well because their records are held separately from those of the University. There’s no specific form to complete; you can send a written request to update your name, accompanied by legal name change documents. You can contact them with questions by phone (250) 721-7030 or in person Monday to Friday 8:30 a.m.—4:30 p.m. in the Michael Williams Building, room B278. You can also email at any time. 

Your experience at work and transitioning on the job

Here are some resources to support you as a trans, Two-Spirit or non-binary person at work. We recognize that not everyone will want or need to access these resources, and that every person may be at a different place in terms of their identity and experience. We hope that these resources can be supportive, whether you are an “out” trans, Two-Spirit or non-binary person, haven’t shared about your gender identity at work, or are thinking about transitioning on the job.
  • Creating Authentic Spaces: A Gender Identity and Gender Expression Toolkit. A resource for building an inclusive work environment that supports transgender employees. Includes some information on transitioning on the job.
  • Staff in Equity and Human Rights have been trained to support people of all genders and are happy to consult with you about any aspects of your experience at work that relate to your gender identity or expression. If you have had any troubling situations arise, or would like to plan for some learning opportunities or for a transition, we can consult with you about how you might approach your manager or academic unit head, what support you can expect, and where to find it.
  • Ambit Gender Diversity Consulting offers a brief guide on creating trans-affirming workplaces. Suggestions include practicing bias-reduced hiring and engaging in training.
  • UVic Human Resources has a blog post on gender diversity which says that, “UVic has a commitment to fair treatment for all employees, and does not permit discrimination on the basis of gender identity or expression. We provide support for managing a transition in the workplace, and for any discrimination or harassment you might encounter….” 

Health services support available to all staff and faculty

If you are trans, Two-Spirit or non-binary, you are entitled, like all employees, to seek the support of these health services.

The Employee and Family Assistance Program (EFAP) provides immediate and confidential support to help resolve work, health, and life challenges to improve your life. They offer counselling through a variety of formats: online; over the phone; and in person. The fastest options to schedule are phone and video-counselling; in-person session may be slower than other options due to potentially limited availability. If you want to ensure you get a counsellor experienced in working with trans, Two-Spirit or non-binary people, you can explain your needs and preferences during intake. Intake can be done by phone or online; they are working towards a trans-inclusive intake process.

Types of counsellors:

  • Generalist phone counsellors. Most of their phone counsellors are generalists without specialized knowledge about the trans, or Two-Spirit or non-binary experience. They can assist with potential periphery issues related to sexuality, sexual issues and relationships.
  • More specialized phone counsellors. There are some phone counsellors with experience in the community and some with training on trans, Two-Spirit and non-binary inclusion.
  • In-person counsellors. There are currently two local in-person counsellors in the affiliate network with experience working with trans, Two-Spirit and non-binary and training—one in Sooke and one in Victoria.

UVic’s Work Life Consultants in Human Resources have participated in gender diversity training. They are available to discuss medical leaves and the return to work program.

Union support for transgender employees

If you are a member of a union, you can contact one of your union executives, stewards, officers or staff to discuss any questions or concerns you may have about your experience as a transgender, Two-Spirit or non-binary employee, including transitioning.

For details on local representatives by department, please see the following union webpages:
  • CUPE 917: https://917.cupe.ca/contact-us/
  • CUPE 951: www.cupe951.ca/contact-us/
  • CUPE 4163, University of Victoria Educational Employees Union: https://4163.cupe.ca/about-us/
    Staff are usually the first point of contact in CUPE 4163.
  • PEA: https://pea.org/uvic PEA recently revised their membership application and database to include non-binary options for gender identification.
  • Faculty Association: http://www.uvicfa.ca/
    Trans, Two-Spirit and non-binary persons can expect a positive reception from the Faculty Association (FA). They have expertise in supporting trans, Two-Spirit and non-binary persons, including among membership services staff. They are currently looking to build gender diversity training into regular operations so that all directors and staff receive annual ongoing training.

Practices for effective inclusion of transgender, Two-Spirit and non-binary employees

Here are some best practices for including trans, Two-Spirit and non-binary people at work.
  • Understand our legal and ethical responsibilities to respect, include and accommodate trans, Two-Spirit and non-binary employees.
  • Create an inclusive culture: integrate sharing and asking about pronouns; create social discussions and activities that allow for diverse ways of participating; bring in education about gender diversity; and communicate clearly about the values and commitments to equity, diversity and inclusion.
  • Respond clearly and firmly to any discriminatory or harassing incidents or comments in your unit, whether they are described as a joke, an accident, or something else. Even small incidents can create a stressful or hostile working environment.
  • If approached by a trans, Two-Spirit or non-binary employee, consult with them to understand what their experience has been and what they are looking for. This information will help you come up with a plan together.
  • Develop a plan together to address whatever concerns or upcoming changes may be coming. Make sure that the employee has the primary role in designing the plan, and that you address their hopes and fears.
  • Follow up over time with any employees who you have connected with to see how things are going and if more support or work are needed.
  • Reach out to learn more: study these resources yourself, and connect with Equity and Human Rights for support.

Union and employee guides on transgender, Two-Spirit and non-binary employees

Learning resources

Learn more about gender pronouns, media guidelines, being an ally and other topics on the "Be an ally- resources" tab.