The following message is sent on behalf of Lisa Castle, Vice-President, Human Resources, to the HR Networks distribution list. It was distributed to Heads Up last week. This message is for information and distribution within your team.
On May 18, Policy #131 – Sexual Assault and other Sexual Misconduct came into effect. In addition to meeting the requirements of provincial legislation, the policy introduces important new principles and commitments, definitions, resources and procedures. Familiarity with the policy is important for all members of our community so we ask that you read the policy and procedures in full, and pass this message along to faculty and staff within your Faculty, Department or portfolio.
A feature of the new policy is a Sexual Violence Prevention and Response Office on each campus. These offices will function as primary points of contact and liaison for members of the UBC community who have experienced sexual misconduct or know someone who has. Until the Sexual Violence Prevention and Response Office is fully operational at the Vancouver Campus later this year, the duties of this office are being carried out by Peak Resilience. On the Okanagan Campus, these services will be provided by the Health and Wellness Office.
We recognize that members of the UBC community may receive disclosures of sexual misconduct, witness sexual misconduct, or be supporting someone who has experienced sexual misconduct at any time and the services of Peak Resilience or the Okanagan Health and Wellness Office are available for you to contact should you need assistance.
Policy #131 also introduces a Director of Investigations and new procedures that not only streamline and provide consistency across processes but shift the responsibility for conducting an investigation from Administrative Heads of Unit or the Non-Academic Student Misconduct Process to an experienced third party. However, responsibility for ensuring a safe and respectful environment where its members can study, work and live free from sexual misconduct remains with all of us especially those in leadership roles.
If faculty or staff have questions about Policy #131 processes and procedures, please have them contact their HR Advisor or Faculty Relations Manager, or the Vice-President, Students Office.
The University continues to work in collaboration with the AMS Sexual Assault Support Centre, an important partner in supporting our community at the Vancouver Campus. We want to take this opportunity to thank the AMS for their leadership in providing survivor-centred services since 2002 on the Vancouver Campus.
We are pleased with the introduction of the new policy as it has been designed to make it easier for people who have experienced sexual violence to come forward, get the support they need, and build confidence and trust in the investigation process.
Vice-President, Human Resources
Hubert Lai, Q.C.