Ottawa River Runners Harassment Policy & Complaints Process

ORR is committed to providing a sport environment in which all individuals are treated with respect and dignity. Harassment is a form of discrimination and is prohibited by the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms and by Human Rights legislation. It is offensive and degrading and in its extreme forms can be a criminal offense. Members found to have engaged in conduct constituting harassment / discrimination may be disciplined / sanctioned by this policy and if applicable, the law. This policy applies to all club members, staff and volunteers. All members shall avoid and discourage others‘ expressions, communications or displays of bigotry, prejudice, sexual comments and racial slurs. Harassment on the basis of race, ancestry, place of ancestry, colour, ethnic origin, citizenship, sex, sexual orientation, age, marital status, family status, ability or religious affiliation will not be tolerated. Not withstanding this policy, every person who experiences harassment has the right to seek assistance from government and the legal system.

Harassment is improper behaviour by any person towards another person which a person knows or ought to know would be unwelcome. This behaviour may include conduct, comments or gestures which are insulting, intimidating, hurtful, degrading, or otherwise offensive or embarrassing. Examples include but are not limited to:

  • written or verbal abuse or threats
  • physical assault
  • unwelcome remarks, jokes, innuendos, or taunting about a person’s body, sexual orientation, attire, age, status, ethnic or racial origin, religion, etc...
  • displaying of sexually explicit, racist or other offensive or derogatory material / graffiti
  • practical jokes which cause awkwardness or embarrassment
  • hazing or initiation rights
  • leering or obscene gestures
  • intimidation or threats of retaliation for reporting harassment
  • condescension or patronizing behaviour which undermines self-respect or adversely affects performance
  • false accusations of harassment motivated by malice or mischief

Sexual abuse is when a young person is used by an older child, adolescent or adult for his or her own sexual stimulation or gratification. Ontario has mandatory reporting laws regarding abuse and neglect of children and youth. Thus any member or the ORR who has reasonable grounds to suspect may be suffering from sexual abuse, physical abuse, emotional abuse or neglect has an obligation to report the suspicion and information to the Children’s Aid Society and / or local police service. Failure to report an offense may result in charges under the law.

ORR takes the view that intimate sexual relationships between coaches or other persons in positions of power and adult athletes, except married or common-law relationships, can have harmful effects on the athlete involved and on other athletes and coaches. Should a sexual relationship develop between a coach, trainer, manager or person of similar power and an athlete, ORR will investigate and take action which could include re-assignment or if this is not possible, a request for resignation.



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