The purpose of this policy is to help provide a positive atmosphere for staff, volunteers, teachers and guests/students which reflects the spiritual values of the International Sivananda Vedanta Yoga Centre. All are expected to help create and maintain an environment that is safe and sacred and free of any type of harassment. This policy aims to prevent harassment by providing education on the matter, to provide procedures for the prompt and thorough investigation of harassment claims, and to ensure that violations are remedied immediately and fully.
In committing to create and maintain an environment that fosters healing, personal and spiritual growth, it is the policy of the International Sivananda Vedanta Yoga Centre that no employee, volunteer, student, or guest should be harassed on the basis of race, religious creed, gender, sexual orientation, national origin, ancestry, age, disability, or caste. Such conduct is unacceptable, as is retaliation against anyone because they have made a complaint regarding such conduct or because they have cooperated with an investigation into allegations of harassment. We take complaints of harassment seriously. Our zero tolerance policy for violators means that every instance of harassment reported will be investigated promptly and thoroughly. Violation of this policy will involve appropriate action.
Sexual harassment is a form of sexual discrimination and is defined as any unwelcome sexual advances or requests for sexual favors or any conduct of a sexual nature when:
Submission to requests or conduct is made either explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of employment, whether or not the person is a paid employee or a volunteer, or the terms and conditions of any part of a guest’s use of the ashram; or when rejection of such advances or conduct is used negatively as a basis for any decision; or Sexually oriented conduct, whether so intended or not, that is unwelcome and has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with an individual’s work performance or enjoyment of the ashram or participation in ashram programs by creating an intimidating, hostile, humiliating, or offensive work environment.
While sexual harassment encompasses a wide range of conduct, some examples of specifically prohibited conduct during online classes include:
- Sexual epithets, jokes, written or oral references to sexual conduct, gossip regarding one’s sex life, comments on an individual’s body, or comments about an individual’s sexual activity, deficiencies, or prowess;
- Sexual or discriminatory displays or publications such as sexually suggestive objects, pictures, or cartoons;
- Unwelcome leering, whistling, brushing against the body, sexual gestures, and suggestive or insulting comments;
- Unwelcome inquiries into one’s sexual experiences; and
- Unwelcome discussion of one’s sexual activities.
Violation of this policy will result in at least as a written reprimand but may also lead to termination of employment, or in the case of volunteers or guests, being asked to leave.
Any employee, volunteer, student, or guest who believes he or she has been subjected to sexual harassment, may file a complaint with the director or a senior staff / teacher. Complaints should be filed as soon as possible after the incident of alleged sexual harassment. Any question regarding this policy or about a specific situation should be brought to [email protected].
I have read this policy statement and understand it.