Legal development


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    Sexual harassment, bullying and discrimination are ongoing issues for all workplaces. Bothmanagers and employees need to understand their rights and obligations in the workplace. Thisinvolves understanding where to draw the line on inappropriate behaviour, particularly in relation to"grey" areas such as use of social media and work related events.

    We recommend that organisations conduct training in this area at least every 2 years to strengthenthe prospects of success when relying on the "all reasonable steps" defence if a worker makes adiscrimination or harassment claim. This training is particularly timely before key social events,such as end of year celebrations (which are a high risk time for harassment complaints).

    Our Workplace Behaviours programs

    Ashurst's Workplace Learning practice has been delivering training programs for over 15 years thataddress the risks of inappropriate workplace behaviours. Our program options can be tailored toyour policies, codes of conduct and culture, and include:

    • Appropriate workplace behaviours for employees - to help employees identify the 'greyareas', when they may be crossing the line and understand their personal liability
    • Appropriate workplace behaviours for managers - to focus managers on theirresponsibilities, practical steps for what to do when they become aware of issues, and howto work through their role in your grievance procedure
    • Contact officer training - to train contact points, other than managers and HR, to identifyissues, receive complaints and perform their role under organisational policy appropriately
    • Leading diversity in the workplace - run in conjunction with actors, this program helpsachieve cultural change by reflecting back to participants through acted scenes what theirworkplace looks like, why it is inappropriate and how to change it.

    Recommended for : All staff

    Learning outcomes

    At the end of these programs, participants will understand:

    • key definitions: discrimination (direct and indirect), sexual harassment, harassment,bullying, victimisation, vilification, adverse action and personal and vicarious liability
    • the boundaries of "grey areas" - which behaviours fall within the legal terms and policydefinitions and so expose them to risk; and
    • how to raise and manage grievances in this area.

    We can also work with you in advance of any training to conduct a gap analysis and review yourpolicies and procedures.