Policies and Procedures

TCD Dignity & Respect Policy

Sexual Misconduct

Sexual Misconduct covers a broad range of inappropriate and unwanted behaviours of a sexual nature including sexual harassment and sexual violence. Sexual misconduct can be committed by a person of any gender and it can occur between people of the same or different genders. It is often gender targeted and perpetrated to demean, diminish and intimidate. Sexual misconduct may occur between strangers or acquaintances, including people involved, or formerly involved, in an intimate or sexual relationship.

The following are examples of behaviours associated with sexual misconduct (non-exhaustive list)

  • Predicating inclusion or access to work or study opportunities or other advantages on participation in interactions of a sexual nature.
  • Grooming, psychological abuse and coercive contact.
  • Controlling, coercive and threatening behaviour including all or some forms of domestic abuse (emotional, physical, financial, sexual including threats) by a partner or ex-partner.
  • Making unwanted remarks of a sexual nature, either directly, or via text or social media apps.
  • Sharing private sexual materials of another person without consent.
  • Any behaviour of a sexual nature that is committed without consent.
  • Kissing without consent.
  • Touching inappropriately through clothes without consent.
  • Non-consensual taking or sharing of intimate images.
  • Sexual harassment/sexual misconduct on social media.
  • Verbal or physical harassment in a sexual context.
  • Inappropriately showing sexual organs to another person.
  • Creating, accessing, viewing or distributing child pornography material online or offline.
  • Stalking behaviours whether online or offline.
  • A promise of resources, access to education, opportunities and career progression in exchange for sexual access.
  • All forms of sexual violence including attempting to engage in sexual intercourse or engaging in a sexual act without consent.
  • Misuse of power, by academic or professional staff towards students or more junior levels of employee or misuse of power in a relationship between students or employees who have unequal institutional power.

This definition of Sexual Misconduct also embraces Sexual Harassment (as defined below).

Sexual Harassment

Sexual Harassment is defined under the Employment Equality Acts 1998 – 2015. It includes any act of physical intimacy, request for sexual favours, other act or conduct including spoken words, gestures or the production, display or circulation of written words, picture or other material that is unwelcome and could reasonably be regarded as sexually offensive, humiliating, or intimidating.

The following are examples of behaviours associated with sexual harassment: (non-exhaustive list)

  • Physical contact such as unnecessary touching, patting, or pinching or brushing against another body, assault, coercive sexual intercourse, or rape.
  • Sexual advances, propositions or pressure for sexual activity, continued suggestions for social activity after it has been made clear that such suggestions are unwelcome, unwanted, or offensive flirtations, suggestive remarks, innuendos, or lewd comments.
  • The display of pornographic or sexually suggestive pictures, objects, written materials including posters, emails, text-messages, social media messaging.
  • Leering, whistling, or making sexually suggestive gestures.
  • Conduct that denigrates or ridicules or is intimidatory or physically abusive of a person because of their sex.

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