Rye complaints procedure gets failing grade

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By Steve Petrick

When it comes to harassment offices in Ontario universities, Ryerson seems to be the worst-ranked.

The university’s harassment office is understaffed, say staff members at similar offices at other universities.

Paddy Stamp, director of the sexual harassment office at the University of Toronto, said Ryerson had a small office even before the combining of the position of manager and harassment investigator.

“The difference is U of T has a number of different offices for different issues,” she said. “There’s one for sexual harassment and one for race relations. Ryerson has one office that handles all issues and one office that does all the investigating.”

Harassment offices at the University of Western Ontario, York University and Queen’s University separate victims of sexual harassment, racism and sexual discrimination/employment inequity.

Unlike these schools, Ryerson also has its manager act as in investigator.

Dale Hall, sexual harassment advisor at York, said her job is to educate victims on their rights and help them write a formal complaint for the vice-president to investigate.

“We feel in order for us to be seen as a place to get advice, we can’t be seen as investigators” she said.

Irene Bujara, Queen’s director of human rights, said if advisors have contact with their clients and then have to investigate them, the results may be biased.

“There’s a conflict of interest,” she said.

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