16. Harassment is a serious offence. Members of the University community who feel that they have been subject to harassment can make a complaint via the appropriate Procedure: see Annexe A for the Procedure in relation to complaints about staff; and Annexe B for the Procedure in relation to complaints about students.
17. When a criminal offence may have been committed, the relevant harassment Procedure may not be appropriate. These cases will include, but not be limited to, serious assault or threat of serious assault. Student members can seek advice from the Director of Student Welfare and Support Services’ office and /or approach the Police directly; and staff members can seek advice from the Director of Human Resources and/or approach the Police directly. Further guidance on dealing with cases of sexual assault or sexual violence is available here.
18. Incidents of harassment that occur within the college environment will normally be dealt with under appropriate college procedures, while reflecting the principles of this Policy.
19. Members of the University community who feel that they have been subject to harassment can contact the Harassment Advisory Service, or their local harassment advisor, for support. The Service is also available to those against whom an allegation of harassment has been made. Other sources of help and advice can be found here.
20. If a complainant is deemed to have known or to have reasonably been expected to know that a complaint was unfounded, the allegation of harassment may be judged to be vexatious or malicious, and disciplinary action may be taken against them. No action will be taken if a complaint which proves to be unfounded is judged to have been made in good faith.
21. All parties involved in a complaint (including any witnesses who may be interviewed as part of any investigation, or trade union representatives supporting any of the parties) should maintain the confidentiality of the process. Those involved in advising complainants should, where possible, seek the consent of the individual for the onward disclosure of relevant information to those with a clear need to know. Where such consent is not forthcoming, the person entrusted with the information should make it clear that, in exceptional circumstances, it may be necessary to disclose the information, taking account of the duty of care which may be owed to the individual and/or others.
22. This Policy and Procedure may be found at www.admin.ox.ac.uk/eop/harassmentadvice or are available in hard copy from the Equality and Diversity Unit: tel. 01865 (2)89825 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Copies in alternative formats are available on request.
23. This Policy and Procedure will be subject to regular review by the General Purposes Committee of Council in consultation with the Education and Personnel Committees, the Proctors, and any other appropriate committees.