Equal Opportunities policy

Aspect is accredited to ISO 9001 and ISO 2021 and supports an inclusive culture. Jo Randle, Aspect’s CEO is responsible for our commitment to this Equal Opportunities policy and all policies and procedures in accordance with the afore-mentioned accreditations.

Aspect Ltd is an equal opportunities employer and all employees are responsible for implementing the policy. This means that all job applicants and employees, as well as clients and suppliers, will be treated in the same way, regardless of their gender, sexual orientation, religion or beliefs, marital status, age, race, ethnic origin or disability.

Aspect Ltd is committed to an active equal opportunities policy and will not tolerate discrimination of any kind in the workplace. The policy relates to all areas of employment including but not limited to the advertisement of jobs, recruitment and appointment, training, conditions of work and pay and retirement. All decisions relating to employment will be made objectively and without bias and will be based solely on individual merit.

Discrimination occurs when an individual is:

  • Rejected for a job at any stage of the recruitment process on grounds other than individual merit.
  • Paid less than other comparable employees.
  • Engaged on less favourable terms and conditions than other comparable employees.
  • Denied access to opportunities for promotion, transfer or training.
  • Denied access to any benefits, facilities or services generally available within the workplace.
  • Harassed, bullied or victimised.

Aspect Ltd is committed to preventing any form of harassment, bullying, victimisation and discrimination within the workplace. No member of the workforce should be subjected to such treatment and it is Aspect’s intention that no member of staff subjects other members of staff to this type of treatment.

If an employee is disabled or becomes disabled during his or her employment they should inform the Company. It may be necessary to make ‘reasonable adjustments’ to the employee’s employment or working conditions to assist the employee in their duties and all such proposals will be carefully considered. If it is practicable to do so these adjustments will be made, but it may not be possible to implement such adjustments in all cases.

Any member of staff may use the grievance procedure to complain about any discrimination, this starts with an informal discussion with your Line Manager. Everyone should feel able to raise such grievances and no one will be penalised for raising a grievance unless it is untrue and made in bad faith.

If an employee is falsely accused of discrimination they can also implement the Aspect Ltd.’s grievance procedure. In this case the wrongful accuser may find themselves being disciplined in line with the Company’s disciplinary procedure.

Below are types of behaviour that will not be tolerated:-

Harassment

  • Harassment is any unwanted verbal or physical abuse and/or advances to a person, which they may find offensive.
  • There are different forms of harassment including racial and sexual which Aspect Ltd views as unlawful. Immediate action will be taken if any individual is believed to be suffering from harassment.
  • Aspect Ltd takes this policy very seriously. Any persons found to be harassing or discriminating against anybody in the workplace may find themselves being dismissed.
  • All employees are encouraged to bring to the attention of a member of the Leadership Team, any form of harassment or other discrimination which takes place within the work place.
  • It is the policy of Aspect Ltd to discourage employees from participating in any form of harassment.

It is the policy of Aspect Ltd to support any employee who is being harassed or otherwise discriminated against or who is themselves supporting or assisting a fellow employee who is being harassed or discriminated against in any way.

Sexual Harassment

  • Another form of harassment is Sexual Harassment, which is defined as ‘unwanted behaviour of a sexual nature by one person towards another’.

Examples of harassment include:-

  • Insensitive jokes and/or pranks.
  • Lewd comments about appearance.
  • Unnecessary body contact.
  • Displays of sexually offensive material, e.g. pin-ups.
  • Requests for sexual favours.
  • Speculation about an employee’s private life and/or sexual favours.

Although the above list gives examples of sexual harassment, it is not exhaustive and sexual harassment takes many forms, from relatively mild sexual banter to actual physical violence.

Sexual Orientation Harassment

This form of harassment is targeted at homosexual men and women and examples of sexual orientation harassment include:-

  • Homophobic jokes.
  • Bullying on grounds of sexual orientation.
  • Behaviour that has no malicious intent but is upsetting to someone on grounds of their own or another person’s sexual orientation.
  • Teasing, taunting or name-calling linked to sexual orientation.

Racial Harassment

  • Racial harassment can take many forms and may be physical, verbal or non-verbal.

Examples of racial harassment include:-

  • Racial innuendoes or banter.
  • Racist remarks or jokes.
  • Racially offensive material transmitted by email.
  • Bullying on racial grounds.
  • Calling someone a nickname linked to his or her nationality or skin-colour.
  • Any other race-related conduct that causes offence.

Religious Harassment

Religious harassment could include:-

  • Behaviour linked to religion that is offensive, degrading or demeaning.
  • Bullying on grounds of religion or belief.
  • Behaviour that has no malicious intent but which is upsetting to someone on grounds of their religion or belief.
  • Teasing, taunting or name-calling linked to religion or belief.

Sexual Discrimination Act

This Act contains prohibits discrimination against men, women, married persons and trans-gender people throughout recruitment and employment and after employment has ended.

Gender Discrimination applies equally to men and women.

Marital Status Discrimination prohibits unfavourable treatment of an employee or job applicant on the grounds that he/she is married or has entered into a civil partnership.

Gender Reassignment Discrimination – an employer must not discriminate against a person on the grounds that they may be

  • planning to undergo a sex change.
  • in the process of a sex change.
  • has had a sex change.

Disability Discrimination

Disability discrimination could be in the form of:-

  • Behaviour connected in some way to a person’s disability that is offensive, frightening or in any way distressing.
  • Bullying on grounds related to an employee’s disability.
  • Telling jokes or using nicknames that might be demeaning for a person with a disability.
  • Mimicking a disabled person’s speech, movements or mannerisms.
  • Persistent staring at someone who has a disability.

Age Discrimination

Potential examples of age harassment could be:-

  • Ageist banter.
  • Jokes that make fun of “old” people.
  • Demeaning or dismissive treatment of a young person on grounds of his or her youth.
  • Teasing someone on grounds of their age.
  • Name-calling, for example referring to someone as an “old codger”.

Disabled Individuals

  • A definition of a disability is – being a person with a progressive illness, significant learning difficulties or poor hearing, vision, mobility.
  • All individuals – disabled or otherwise – deserve to be treated with dignity and respect and any discrimination, victimisation or harassing or bullying behaviour of any disabled person by any Aspect Ltd employee will be regarded as a serious matter that may lead to disciplinary action.
  • Aspect Ltd will use its best endeavours to ensure that any employee who is or who becomes disabled is able to work in Aspect Ltd.’s environment and will make any changes accordingly in order to ease that employee’s working life.

Procedures to deal with discrimination, harassment, bullying and victimisation

Aspect Ltd believes that each employee is responsible for his / her own behaviour and for helping to maintain a working environment where any form of discrimination, harassment, victimisation or bullying will be regarded as unacceptable. Each employee of Aspect Ltd has a responsibility not to indirectly support any discriminatory behaviour by ignoring it.

What to do: Informally

  • If you believe that you have suffered any form of discrimination, bullying, harassment or victimisation we encourage you to tell your harasser that they are behaving in a manner contrary to the policy of Aspect Ltd; this can be done either verbally or in writing. If this approach does not work or if you feel that unable to approach your harasser then inform your line manager so that a complaint can be raised.

What to do: Formally

If the informal approach does not work, you feel unable to approach the perpetrator informally or you feel the behaviour is serious Aspect Ltd encourages you to use the formal procedure and will support you in you doing so:-

  • You should, as soon as possible, make your complaint in writing to your line manager. Your complaint should include the name of the alleged harasser; details of the acts complained of and the names of any witnesses. Your line manager will ensure both parties remain separate from each other.
  • Your line manager will carry out a detailed investigation and will conduct a series of interviews with you, the alleged harasser and anyone else who may able to assist with the investigation.
  • Your line manager will arrange a hearing with members of the Leadership Team and you may be accompanied by a colleague throughout the hearing.
  • The Leadership Team may transfer the harasser to a different working area to minimise contact if necessary.
  • The result of the hearing will be given in writing to both parties.
  • If either party is unhappy with the outcome he or she may put forward an appeal to the Leadership Team. This appeal should happen within five working days of the hearing. The decision will then be sent in writing to both parties and shall be final.
  • All employees involved must ensure that the matter remains confidential throughout.

CONTACT

Questions, comments and requests regarding our equal opportunities policy are welcomed and should be addressed to
team@aspect-communications.com