Charter for Dignity and Respect Includes: • Prevention of Bullying in the Workplace Policy • Code of Conduct • Complaints Handling Guidelines
Dignity and Respect in the Workplace • Signatory to Charter • Requires Department to have a positive behavioural culture • Department’s commitment to dignity and respect.
Bullying and Harassment Watch the video on Bullying and Harassment. At the completion of the video break into small groups and answer the questions provided.
What is Bullying? • repeated, unreasonable behaviour that is considered offensive, intimidating, humiliating, or threatening • it is associated with unequal power relationships
What is Harassment? • behavior that offends, humiliates or intimidates another person based on … • sex, age, disability, sexual preference, transgender, marital status, pregnancy, carer’s responsibility, race (including colour, nationality, descent, ethnic and religious background), or association with these people
What are the types of Bullying? • Abuse - verbal , physical, emotional • Excessive criticism • Unfair use of workplace systems • Constant ridicule and put downs • Loud, threatening or derogatory language • Deliberate exclusion from workplace activities • Victimisation • Spreading rumours or offensive messages through SMS or email
Workplace bullying is NOT: • Differences of opinion etc in working relationships • Reporting professional difficulties with staff • Reasonable managerial action or processes taken in a reasonable way in accordance with departmental policies and procedures
Why might Bullying not be reported? • Fearing “payback” or being labelled weak or whinging • Thinking that no one will believe or act on the problem • Believing it will affect their career, employment or training prospects • Accepting bullying as a normal part of work/learning culture
Who can be a Bully?Who can be a target? • Managers and supervisors • Teachers and colleagues • Students • External organisations/clients
What are the effects of Bullying? Workplace bullying has serious consequences for: • The individual • Other workers and the workplace • The Department as a whole.
Impact of bullying on individuals • Stress, insomnia • Ill health such as headaches and depression • Loss of self esteem and confidence • Feelings of social isolation at work • Reduced work performance • Deteriorating relationships with family and friends • Hostility, aggression • Apathy, lethargy
Impact of bullying on individuals • Hostile work environment • Breakdown of team and work relationships • Low staff morale • Absenteeism • Reduced productivity
Impact of bullying on the Department • High levels of absenteeism and staff turnover • Poor public image – reduced enrolments • Reduced efficiency and productivity • Increased financial cost • Potential litigation
What can I do if I am being Bullied? • Ask them to stop • Talk to your manager • Keep a diary • Talk to a Harassment Contact Officer • Complete a Complaint Form • Talk to the HR Unit • Talk to an EAP Counsellor
What can I do if I see a colleague being Bullied? Tell your colleague what you observed Tell them …. • you believe what you have seen is not acceptable • about the bullying policy, contact officers, and their options if they want the behaviour to stop • they can go to management to get this behaviour stopped • you are prepared to document what you have seen
What can I do if I see a student being Bullied? • Respond immediately. The bully and other students need to see that it is not ignored, is not tolerated and that there will be consequences • If you are not sure, check it out • Follow the Student Discipline Policy • Raise understanding about bullying
Where do I get help from? • Harassment Contact Officer • Your Manager • Your union representative • Human Resources • Employee Assistance Program Counsellor • TAFE Counsellor • OH&S Committee representatives • Aboriginal Education Coordinator • Multicultural Education Coordinator • Teacher &/or Teacher/Consultant for Students with Disabilities • Women’s Strategy Officers
DET framework for the prevention of bullying in the workplace Legislation: OHS, Anti-discrimination Workers Compensation Dignity & Respect in the Workplace Charter DET Prevention of bullying in the workplace policy DET Code of conduct policy DET Complaints handling policy DET Code of Conduct DET Complaint handling guidelines
Code of Conduct • The Code of Conduct clarifies the standards of behaviour expected of staff in carrying out their duties • Areas covered by the Code include: • Ethical decision making • Conflict of interest • Relationships between staff and students • Professional and appropriate behaviour
Code of Conduct All staff are to: • Treat colleagues with respect, fairness and consistency • Promote cooperation and harmonious relations • Not harass or discriminate • Protect their own and others’ health and safety • Follow risk management, health and safety procedures and requirements • Report hazards
Code of Conduct • Supervisors are to take steps to ensure the workplace is free from harassment and unlawful discrimination • Breaches can be dealt with under the Complaints Handling Guidelines • Breaches may be investigated • Proven breaches may result in disciplinary or remedial action.
Complaints handling • Complaints handling procedures used for bullying • Complaints resolved promptly, impartially and in a just manner • Report matter to supervisor/workplace manager - use Complaint Form if desired • Non victimisation of person who reports
Complaints handling • Alleged bully treated as innocent unless the allegations proved • Staff counselled on inappropriate behaviour • Informal resolution is encouraged for less serious complaints • For a formal complaint the seriousness is assessed to determine negotiation or investigation • Complaints Handling Guidelines available on intranet
Complaints handling – informal resolution Informal resolution provides an opportunity to • state concerns • clarify events, facts or beliefs • listen to and consider the other point of view • change behaviour that may be unsuitable, or is hurtful • apologise. If not successful proceed to negotiation.
Complaints handling - negotiation • Used when not a serious breach • Complaint to be put in writing • Solution developed through communication with both parties • If no resolution delegate makes decision • Possible outcomes - apology, resolution of differences, mediator, action to address behaviour, dismissal of complaint • Matters generally resolved within 7 weeks • Review of decision can be sought
In summary • Create awareness and maintain an environment of dignity and respect • Communicate and consult • Follow the Department’s policies and procedures • Take a preventative approach • Encourage reporting • Follow up on complaints promptly • Monitor and review the workplace.
DET’s Child Protection Responsibilities DET has approx. 110,000 employees in o 2,232 Schools o 130 campuses in 10 Institutes - Over 730,000 students - Over 540,000 students with - Educates students from 10% between 14 -18 yrs in Kindergarten – Yr 10 mainstream or TVET courses in child protection - 1,200 in Child Care Centres o Screens staff & trains them in child protection procedures o Reports to and works with DoCS, JIRT and Police o Receives notifications of allegations against employees and takes appropriate action as required o Reports to the Ombudsman and Commissioner for Children and Young People (CCYP)
Child Protection and You • Gain an understanding and awareness of: o the indicators of abuse o when to report and o the processes for reporting 2. Understand the legislation, and its relevance to SWSI staff • To be aware of DoCS’ current concerns for Children and Young People • To raise awareness of the Guidelines for Responding to Allegations (against staff) in the Area of Child Protection
Definitions Child - Is taken to be a person under the age of 16 yrs Note: The policy applies to ALL DET schoolstudents - regardless of age Young person - Is anyone aged 16 or 17 yrs old Employee - Anyone employed by DET or TAFE (or CAME) who receives a payment summary for taxation purposes, OR - Anyone engaged in DET or TAFE, either directly or indirectly - including a Student, Trainee or Apprentice in a child-related workplace
When do you make a ‘risk of harm’ Report to DoCS? A report must be made when there are current concerns and reasonablegrounds to suspect risk of harm because of these circumstances - • basicphysicalor psychological needs are not being met • necessary medical care is not arranged • sexual or physical abuse or ill treatment
And.... A report must be made when there are current concerns and reasonablegrounds to suspect risk of harm because of these circumstances (cont’d) - • domestic violence • serious psychological harm • a prenatal report was made andrisks remain after birth NB: It could be that more than one of the 6 risk of harm circumstances exist
What is EPAC - Employee Performance and Conduct Unit, and its role in DET? Previously – Child Protection Investigation Unit (CPIU) Responding to Allegations Against Employees in the Area of Child Protection sets out the procedures to be followed and explains EPAC’s role • EPAC receives all notifications of allegations of a child protection nature against DET and TAFE employees • EPAC determines the appropriate response required on behalf of DET and TAFE (Enquiry, Local Management, or Investigation) • EPAC reports on behalf of DET and TAFE to the Ombudsman and the CCYP
The role of the Ombudsman re: CP • To oversee that government organisations act in a legal way and respond to complaints from the public • In Child Protection matters they • scrutinise the departments’ systems for protecting children in the workplace • ensure that employers respond appropriately to allegations against employees, and the process is effective, accountable and fair • A report must be made to the Ombudsman within 30 days after an allegation is made against a staff member • They have made a determination with DET and other agencies to exclude less serious matters
The role of the Commissioner for Children and Young People (CCYP) • The CCYP is responsible for employment screening for child-related employment • Names of employees are reported when relevant employment proceedings have been completed • There are 2 categories for reporting • The employee is advised • The CCYP made a determination that matters involving teachers or teacher’s aides that have been found to be inappropriate professional conduct, rather than child abuse, are not reportable
What allegations must be Notified to EPAC? All allegations of a child protection nature • that involve an Employee and • involve a Child or Young Person, • OR any DET school student - even if more than 18 yrs of age
The DET Code of Conduct Staff should - • develop professional relationships with students • these relationships need to be consistent with all students, so the teacher’s intentions can not be misinterpreted as them a having a personal interest in any particular student(s) Staff are required to - • conduct any existing personal relationships with students in a manner that does not compromise the student, the teacher or the Department
Who is responsible for Notifying EPAC? • Institute Directors • Campus Managers in charge of any TAFE establishment • Early Childhood Directors responsible for TAFE-managed Child Care Centres on campus • The HR Manager is also to be advised of the notification
Roles of Staff • Plan for a safe environment in all activities • Assess levels of risk of harm of specific activities and report any concerns • Develop and implement strategies to minimise risk • Support children and young people, while - being responsive to their needs and - appropriate to staff roles • Be aware of indicators of abuse and neglect in children and young people
Roles of Staff (Cont’d) • Share information only when it is absolutely necessary forprofessionalreasons, bearing in mind the child’s or young person’s right to privacy • Follow Departmental Guidelinesin the provision and exchange of relevant information to progress investigations, assessments and case management as permitted by law • Participate in relevant training & development
Work PracticesWork Practices • Define what the ‘acceptable practice’ is in your workplace • All staff should understand and agree with it • Inform all staff and students of your practice so they know what to expect, eg. • If emails are sent about work due • or absences • or reminders about excursions, etc.
Key questions to consider in scenarios • Does the allegation involve an Employee? • Does it involve conduct towards a child, young person, or a DET school student? • Is it a possible breach of discipline? • Are there concerns about risk of harm as a result of the alleged conduct? • Must I report to DoCS through the Campus Manager? • Must the Campus Manager notify EPAC?
Child Protection • Complete online training by next week. • To locate site, use the child protection link on the intranet page or, • PoD search ‘child protection’ • Follow the link for child protection awareness training