Harassment Prevention CommitteeWaseda University

How Waseda Deals with Harassment

FAQ

The Waseda University Guidelines for Harassment Prevention define harassment as all remarks and/or behavior relating to a person’s sex, social status, race, nationality, principles, age, occupation, physical features or personality that may result in disadvantage and/or discomfort to that person, or damage his/her dignity. Therefore, the university policy covers general harassment cases which degrade the academic, educational or working environment by making use of professional or academic relationships against a person’s will. At the university, harassment can be categorized as below:

  1. Sexual harassment: any offensive sexual behavior or remark
  2. Academic harassment: any offensive behavior or remark relating to education and research activities
  3. Power harassment: any offensive behavior or remark by a person who is in a position of academic or professional authority

Harassment is defined as a behavior “against the will or agreement of other individuals” in the guidelines, and so subjective feelings are an important element. Of course, human feelings vary from individual to individual and it is natural that someone may consider certain behaviors or remarks as harassment, while other people do not care about them at all.
Therefore, when you feel uncomfortable or harassed, please do not worry. Instead, consult the consultation desk, which is a third party to the case. However, the Waseda University Harassment Prevention Committee cannot make judgments based only on subjective feelings as to whether behavior needs to be dealt with as harassment or not.

When your friend consults you, please listen carefully to him/her. Please be careful not to be too eager to give advice or ask questions one-sidedly. It is important to confirm what he/she would like you to do.

Please encourage him/her to consult the consultation desk because it may be dangerous for you to deal with the situation on your own. In the event that he/she hesitates to consult the consultation desk, you can consult the desk instead. But please note that it is necessary to listen to the person in question when he/she would like to take procedures to lodge a complaint.

When you would like to seek a consultation, you are requested to come to the consultation desk and talk about the issue yourself. In the event that you wish to request a specific action, you need to apply to receive an official resolution to your complaint.
The Waseda University Harassment Prevention Committee will then examine the case to determine whether or not to file a complaint. There may be some cases in which it is not considered appropriate for the committee to take up the complaint. In the event that your complaint is accepted, the next step is mediation procedures. During the procedure, mediators in charge will go through the actual mediation process while meeting with you.

Consultation and remedy process

It will take two months or more until the committee provide you the conclusion of the investigation as the committee needs several steps for investigation.

Confidentiality is strictly imposed on all the staff concerned with the Waseda University Harassment Prevention Committee, the mediators in charge of complaint processing procedures, counselors, and in-takers in charge of consulting. Your visit to the consultation desk and the contents of the consultation are never discussed with others without your consent or approval.

The in-taker is a professional counselor stationed full-time with the internal consultation desk (The Office of Compliance) . The status is different from that of the general university staff.

Of course. In principle, consultation will proceed in accordance with your wishes. Consultation at this stage may put you at ease and you may come to terms with the situation. In such cases, the consultation process will end there. However, in the consultation step, concrete responses cannot be made, so in the event that you wish to request a specific response, you need to take procedures to apply to receive an official resolution to your complaint. (Please note that there may be some cases in which it is not considered appropriate to take up a complaint as described in the answer to Q4.)

As a general principle, consultations are in Japanese. In the event that you have communication problems in Japanese, please bring an interpreter. If you cannot find an interpreter, the internal consultation desk (The Office of Compliance)  will look for a person who can serve as your interpreter.

Furthermore, the external consultation desk will accept English and Chinese.

 

Basically, consultation with a visit to the internal consultation desk is limited to office hours. However, the desk accepts inquiries and counseling via e-mail, fax, regular mail and telephone.Furthermore, the external consultation desk is available from 8:30 – 19:00.

⇒ Consultation Desk

Please refer to the following organizational chart of the Harassment Prevention Committee.

 

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