Workplace bullying & harassment prevention

The university is committed to maintaining a healthy, safe and respectful environment for work and study. It is the responsibility of all members of the campus community not to engage in bullying and harassment, to report any bullying and harassment they observe or experience, and to comply with UVic and WorkSafeBC policies and procedures on bullying and harassment.

Guidance for all employees can be found in the university's Discrimination and Harassment Policy (GV0205).  

This policy has been revised to incorporate the new WorkSafeBC requirements as part of our overall committment to the prevention of bullying, harassment and discrimination on campus.

Education and training

Mandatory online training for all UVic employees (staff, faculty and leaders) with registration via Learning Central. 

Individuals in supervisory positions, or who exercise supervisory responsibilities as part of their job, must also complete the online supervisor course, after first completing the employee module.  This course is also available via Learning Central. 

Additional education and training on related topics including respectful workplaces, conflict management and human rights is available through HR Learning and Development and EQHR.  Please check their websites for the latest course offerings.

Policy statement

Bullying, harassment and discrimination is not acceptable or tolerated at the University of Victoria.

Policy GV0205:  

“Discrimination and Harassment are prohibited at the University of Victoria. Members of the University Community have the right to work, study and participate in activities at the university in an environment free of Discrimination and Harassment. Eligible WorkSafeBC claimants also have a right to an environment free of workplace bullying or harassment as it is defined by regulations pursuant to the British Columbia Workers’ Compensation Act.”

Reporting procedures

If you think bullying, harassment or discrimination is going on in the workplace, you are expected to report it to your supervisor. The university has a duty to act on concerns that involve inappropriate conduct which may constitute bullying, harassment or discrimination.  

Staff and faculty should report any incident(s) to their direct supervisor, or alternatively the Equity and Human Rights Office (EQHR).  If you believe the employer or direct supervisor is the alleged bully then report the situation to the next level manager in your department/faculty, or to EQHR.  

  • Provide as much information as possible including the names of people involved, witnesses, where the events occurred, when they occurred, and what behaviour and/or words led to the complaint.  This allows the incident to be addressed promptly.
  • In the event that a report is made to another department or group on campus, the university will coordinate its response between the responsible unit, EQHR, Office of the Vice-President Academic and Provost (VPAC) and Human Resources (HR), as appropriate.
  • Employees may also contact their union/association representative or EQHR for additional support or advice.

When an employee observes or experiences an incident, there are two options to report it. Primary: Report to direct supervisor (line management). Follow-up from this option: Supervisor addresses complaint. Alternate: Report to Equity and Human Rights Office. Follow-up from this option: EQHR addresses complaint using GV0205 procedures. Resources to assist Supervisor: Human Resources Consultant, VPAC Faculty Relations, EQHR. Resources to assist Employee: Union Representative, EQHR.

Follow-up and investigations

Most investigations at UVic will be conducted internally by UVic management or EQHR. It is expected that supervisors will address any reported complaints within their unit and are encouraged to seek advice and assistance from a Human Resources Consultant or VPAC Faculty Relations, as appropriate.  Supervisors may also seek advice and assistance from EQHR at any point in the follow-up process.

Investigations that are conducted by EQHR, initiated by either an informal or formal complaint, will follow the Complaint Procedures under Policy GV0205 and take into consideration the appropriate Collective Agreement Provisions.

Annual review

The procedures related to workplace bullying and harassment will be reviewed annually by the University Safety Committee, and the Discrimination and Harassment Policy will be reviewed by the Director, EQHR.

WorkSafeBC resources