Holmesglen's Equal Opportunity Policy
The Institute's policy aims to:
- ensure the principles and practices of equal opportunity are promoted and practised within the institute community.
- establish and maintain a working and learning environment which is consistent with the principles of justice, equity and the pursuit of excellence.
- provides guidelines and procedures for the resolution of complaints regarding discriminatory behaviour or behaviour which is inconsistent with its equal opportunity policy.
- prohibits sexual harassment and discrimination against people on the grounds of age, breastfeeding, carer status, disability/impairment, gender identity, industrial activity, lawful sexual activity, marital status, parental status, physical features, political belief or activity, pregnancy, race, religious belief or activity, sex, sexual orientation, personal association with someone who has, or is assumed to have, one of these personal characteristics.
- ensures the workplace is free from bullying, harassment and occupational violence.
Holmesglen has procedures in place to ensure that it treats people fairly, makes relevant policies, procedures and rules accessible and implements these in a transparent manner. It makes decisions about students applying for and undertaking its courses based on merit. Its committees observe the principles of procedural fairness. It ensures that individuals raising concerns, complaints or grievances are treated with respect and are not victimised or discriminated against.
The Institute's procedures aim to ensure fairness and opportunity by ensuring:
- staff treat all students fairly by considering the relevant circumstances of the individuals. This does not necessarily mean that all students will be treated the same, fairness must be considered in the context of the relevant circumstances.
- decisions regarding students' entry to, progression through and completion of courses are made on a case-by-case basis. Holmesglen does not apply policies or procedures that exclude eligible applicants or appellants from having their application or appeal considered.
- Holmesglen does not apply an income test when making decisions about which students are eligible for VET Student Loans.
- If educational disadvantage is taken into account in making a selection decision, the specific circumstances of each student's case is considered before determining if a student has suffered educational disadvantage.
- If Holmesglen enters into an agreement with an employer or industry body to provide a particular course, student enrolments may be restricted or limited in accordance with the arrangement agreement.
How to make a complaint of discrimination or unfair treatment
In the first instance, talk to the local area manager or the next most senior officer of the Institute who you believe has discriminated against you or treated you unfairly. If you do not feel comfortable with this you may discuss your issue with a counsellor of Holmesglen Student Services.
All information and records relating to your complaint will be kept strictly confidential. You may withdraw your complaint at any stage. You may also take your concern to agencies outside Holmesglen such as the Victorian Equal Opportunity and Human Rights Commission.
- Upon receiving your complaint, the manager will convene a separate meeting with you and with the person you are making the complaint against (the respondent) within five working days.
- If all parties are prepared to discuss the matter together, the manager will convene a meeting with all parties within five working days.
- If a resolution is reached, the matter will rest.
- If you do not reach a satisfactory resolution, you will be asked to submit a written complaint to the Chief Executive.
- If all parties are not prepared to discuss the matter together and you wish the matter to continue to be considered, you will be asked to submit a written complaint to the Chief Executive.
- Within seven working days you will receive a letter from the Chief Executive acknowledging that your letter of complaint has been received and notifying you that your complaint has been referred to the Equal Opportunity Review Committee.
- A copy of your letter of complaint will be issued to the respondent.
- The Equal Opportunity Review Committee will formally advise you of the procedures it will follow to resolve your complaint and when you can expect the committee to complete its investigations. This may involve the committee conducting confidential interviews with other people who have knowledge of the alleged discrimination.
- The Equal Opportunity Review Committee will attempt to conciliate the matter between yourself and the respondent. This may involve bringing the parties together so that apologies and undertakings about future behaviour may be stated. During this process you may be accompanied by a representative other than legal counsel for support.
- The Chief Executive will write to you notifying you of the Equal Opportunity Review Committee's judgement of the alleged discrimination. If your complaint is found to have substance, appropriate disciplinary action will be taken against the respondent and the matter may be referred to other bodies for further investigation. If your complaint is found not have substance the matter will lapse. If the committee judges your complaint to be malicious or frivolous you will be dealt with in an appropriate disciplinary manner under the Institute Rule for Student Discipline.
- You will receive a copy of all material relating to the complaint that is placed on your student file held by the Registrar.