Equinet is committed to make all its gatherings, events, conferences and seminars, be they in-person or online, as safe and inclusive as possible for everyone. That means providing a safe environment for its employees, members, and external partners/guests, free from harassment on any ground.Behaviours such as intimidation, stalking, bullying, violation of consent, offensive language and offensive comments based on the personal characteristics of a person, or incitement to such behaviours, are considered a breach of this policy.
Equinet operates a zero-tolerance policy for any form of harassment taking place during its events, treats all incidents respectfully, confidentially and seriously, and promptly react to all allegations of harassment.
The gendered nature of sexual harassment, as a form of harassment affecting women predominantly, is recognised and taken into account by Equinet.
The legal definition of sexual harassment under EU law is: ‘where any form of unwanted verbal, non-verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature occurs, with the purpose or effect of violating the dignity of a person, in particular when creating an intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating or offensive environment’.
Discriminatory harassment refers to a situation where unwanted conduct related to any personal characteristic of a person protected by law occurs with the purpose or effect of violating the dignity of a person, and of creating an intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating or offensive environment.
If an incident occurs during an Equinet event, the Equinet employee(s) present and informed about this have a duty to attempt to stop the harassment and to inform the victim of harassment about the further steps they can take.
If an incident occurs during an Equinet event, the person concerned may request a confidential conversation with Equinet’s management team: either the Executive Director or the Deputy Director. In case of conflict of interest, if the management team is involved as complainant or alleged harasser, the confidential conversation can be requested with the person of trust from the Executive Board. If the management team and the person of trust from the Executive Board are not present during the event, the confidential conversation can be requested with the Equinet employee(s) present.
The complaint can be recorded in written and filed in a confidential folder by the Executive Director or the Deputy Director.
The person concerned can request support of the management to deal with all aspects of the situation, including being supported to get outside help if necessary
The accusation is investigated by the Executive Director or the Deputy Director in the form of a discussion and email exchange as needed, with the alleged perpetrator.
In the case that harassment is confirmed and the perpetrator is an Equinet employee:
In the case that harassment is confirmed and the perpetrator is a staff member of an equality body or an external speaker:
In case of a criminal offence, the police will be informed by the management of Equinet’s Secretariat in accordance with the victim’s will and in observance of national laws - this policy should never replace our obligation to report a crime