Equity Seeking Policies
Policies and protocols to uplift and protect the rights of all UHN community members.
Q. What is the Fostering Respect in the Workplace policy?
A. UHN’s Fostering Respect in the Workplace policy has been in place since 1990. The policy reflects UHN’s commitment to promoting an inclusive and supportive environment. The policy also outlines the process and procedure for addressing instances where a member of the UHN community reports that they have experienced * discrimination and/or harassment under the Human Rights Code.
Q. Why has the policy changed?
A UHN’s Fostering Respect in the Workplace policy has existed since 1990 and has been revised as workplace attitudes have changed and new ways of understanding different perspectives have emerged. This most recent revision reflects the growing interest among members of the UHN community to participate in collaborative, accessible, practical approaches to resolve concerns.
Q. What is new in the policy?
A The new features of the policy emphasize early resolution and the use of internal resources to resolve issues quickly and locally. The policy is separated into two sections. Part 1 of the policy, harnesses our ability to communicate with a focus on early resolution. UHN members are encouraged, with the support of available *internal resources. Part II of the policy, or the prescribed process, prohibits any Human Rights Code related discrimination and/or harassment.
Q. How can the policy help me?
A We recognize that experiences of discrimination and/or harassment are stressful, uncomfortable and often difficult to handle without support. In response, the policy offers a safe, supportive alternative to a complaint–driven process, by guiding, coaching and generating options for any member of the UHN community seeking a successful outcome resulting from an experience of Code related discrimination and/or harassment.
Q How can an employee make sure that his/her behaviour is appropriate at all times?
A Avoid behaviour that demeans, degrades, abuses or shows disrespect to any person.
Recognize that the same remarks or gestures that seem acceptable to some people may be embarrassing or offensive to, or unwanted by, others.
Consider how you would react if the same behavior were directed toward a loved one.
Ask yourself whether you would act the same way in front of your loved ones.
Ask yourself how you would feel if your behaviour were captured on video, reported in a newspaper, or featured on the nightly news.
Q Does the policy apply to everyone who works at UHN?
A The policy applies to everyone who is a current member of the workforce who believes that they have experienced Human Rights Code related discrimination or harassment. We encourage anyone that is considering using the policy to first read, explore and understand their rights and responsibilities and then answer the questions on p. 3 of the policy to help prepare for the process of early resolution.
Q Where can I find the policy?
A The policy can be found here. As well you can find the policy on the Inclusion Diversity Equity Accessiblity & Antiracism site on the corporate intranet. You can also download a copy of the policy here: FRWP
Q Who can I speak to if I need more information about the policy?
A You may speak to your manager, or your People Consultants representative; if you are unionized you may speak to a union representative. You may also contact Inclusion Diversity Equity Accessibility: for LMP, PMH or TWH call 13-5526 or for TGH or Corporate Services, call 14-2082.
Discussions about discrimination can be awkward, uncomfortable and often the conversation is avoided and put on the back burner until it is too late. We suggest that a helpful step before speaking to the manager, People Consultants or Inclusion Diversity Equity Accessibility department, may be to contact EAP for discreet and confidential support for preparation before the conversation.
Q What should I do if I witness inappropriate behaviour such as religious comments, racial slurs, sexist jokes, rude remarks about age and comments not directed to me but I find offensive?
A As with everything it is a matter of personal comfort! However, if you find the behaviour offensive, remember that it is your workplace too. Although, the behaviour may not directed be at you, no-one should have to put up with inappropriate comments, jokes or remarks. Often, the most effective method to put an end to the behaviour is to tell the person to stop. It is a good idea to let the person know the behaviour is unwelcome, that you find it offensive and ask that the behaviour stop. Be direct and say something like “I’d like to keep our relationship strictly professional” or “I think ethnic jokes are offensive, so please do not tell them in my presence.” If the behaviour persists, speak to the manager and/or People Consultants for next step. The manager and People Consultants will consider various resources such as speaking directly to the employee or providing Code of Conduct and/or Inclusion Diversity Equity Accessibility – Inclusion awareness sessions.
You can download the AR/ABR policy here: (AR ABR Policy)
The Accessibility for People with Disabilities Policy offers important information about terms, definitions and processes for supporting visitors and staff with disabilities, as well as the responsibilities outlined in the AODA.
You can download the full policy here: Accessibility Policy.
Formerly known as Human Resources, you can find the full list of People & Culture Policies below:
This material has been prepared solely for use at University Health Network (UHN). UHN accepts no responsibility for use of this material by any person or organization not associated with UHN. No part of this document may be reproduced in any form for publication without permission of UHN. A printed copy of this document may not reflect the current, electronic version on the UHN Intranet.
Revised: 14 February 2023
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