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Is it Harassment? A Tool to Guide Employees

Government of Canada
This toolis directed to employees as a starting point to analyze what constitutes harassment and determine if a situation might be workplace harassment. The tool provides a definition of harassment under the Policy on Harassment Prevention and Resolution, identifies where workplace harassment can occur, what criteria constitutes harassment, examples of what does or doesn’t constitute workplace harassment, context questions to frame different situations, and what to do in case of harassment.

Where can workplace harassment occur?

  • On business trips
  • At a conference where the attendance is sponsored by the employer
  • At employer-sponsored training activities
  • At employer-sponsored events, including social events

Some examples of what constitutes harassment:

  • Making rude, degrading or offensive remarks
  • Unwanted sexual advances which may or may not be accompanied by threats
  • Destabilizing the person by making fun of his or her beliefs, values, political and/or religious choices, and mocking his or her weak points

Some examples of what does not constitute harassment:

  • Normal exercise of management’s right to manage such as the day-to-day management operations, performance at work or absenteeism, etc.
  • Workplace conflict in itself does not constitute harassment but could turn into it
  • Difficult conditions of employment, professional constraints, and organizational changes

To access this tool, click here.