Workplace Violence & Harassment Policy

The Board of Directors and Management of Gravitas Financial Inc. and its affiliated companies, including UBIKA Corp.,, among others, (Gravitas) are committed to providing a work environment in which all individuals are treated with respect and dignity.

Workplace violence and harassment will not be tolerated from any person in the workplace. Everyone in the workplace must be dedicated to preventing workplace violence and harassment. Managers, supervisors, and workers are expected to uphold this policy, and will be held accountable by the employer.

The Occupational Health and Safety Act defines workplace violence as the exercise of physical force by a person against a worker, in a workplace, that causes or could cause physical injury to the worker. It also includes an:

  • attempt to exercise physical force against a worker in a workplace, that could cause physical injury to the worker; and a
  • statement or behaviour that a worker could reasonably interpret as a threat to exercise physical force against the worker, in a workplace, that could cause physical injury to the worker.

This definition of workplace violence is broad enough to include acts that would constitute offences under Canada’s Criminal Code.

Examples of workplace violence include:

  • verbally threatening to attack a worker;
  • leaving threatening notes at or sending threatening e-mails to a workplace;
  • shaking a fist in a worker’s face;
  • wielding a weapon at work;
  • hitting or trying to hit a worker;
  • throwing an object at a worker; and
  • sexual violence against a worker.

Workplace harassment means engaging in a course of vexatious comment or conduct against a worker in a workplace -- a comment or conduct that is known or ought reasonably to be known to be unwelcome. Examples of workplace harassment include:

  • making remarks, jokes or innuendos that demean, ridicule, intimidate, or offend;
  • displaying or circulating offensive pictures or materials in print or electronic form;
  • bullying;
  • repeated offensive or intimidating phone calls or e-mails; or
  • inappropriate sexual touching, advances, suggestions or requests.

This definition of workplace harassment is broad enough to include harassment prohibited under Ontario’s Human Rights Code, as well as what is often called “psychological harassment” or “personal harassment.”

Harassment may also relate to a form of discrimination as set out in the Ontario Human Rights Code, but it does not have to. At Gravitas, we will not tolerate any form of discrimination including (but not limited to) those based upon:

  • Citizenship
  • Race
  • Place of origin
  • Ethnic origin
  • Colour
  • Ancestry
  • Disability
  • Age
  • Sex / pregnancy
  • Creed
  • Gender identity
  • Gender expression
  • Family status
  • Marital status
  • Sexual orientation
  • Receipt of public assistance
  • Record of offence

This policy is not intended to limit or constrain the reasonable exercise of management functions in the workplace. Reasonable action or conduct by an employer, manager or supervisor that is part of his or her normal work function would not normally be considered workplace harassment. This is the case even if there are sometimes unpleasant consequences for a worker. Examples could include changes in work assignments, scheduling, job assessment and evaluation, workplace inspections, implementation of dress codes and disciplinary action.

Differences of opinion or minor disagreements between co-workers would also not generally be considered workplace harassment.
Workers are encouraged to report any incidents of workplace violence and/or harassment to a Director or Officer of the company. There will be no negative consequences for reports made in good faith.

Management will investigate and deal with all concerns, complaints, or incidents of workplace violence and harassment in a fair and timely manner while respecting workers’ privacy as much as possible.

Nothing in this policy prevents or discourages a worker from filing an application with the Human Rights Tribunal on a matter related to Ontario’s Human Rights Code. A worker also retains the right to exercise any other legal avenues that may be available.

The workplace violence and harassment policy should be consulted whenever there are concerns about violence and/or harassment in the workplace.