The Radio Amateur Society of Australia is committed to an environment free of bullying and harassment.  We believe our officers, volunteers, members, and those who interact with us should conduct themselves in a manner that respects others and promotes a friendly and tolerant community.

To support this, we have implemented this Bullying and Harassment Policy, effective 1 March 2022.

RASA opposes all forms of harassment, discrimination, and bullying. This includes treating or proposing to treat someone less favourably because of a particular characteristic; imposing or intending to impose an unreasonable requirement, condition or practice which has an unequal or disproportionate effect on people with a particular characteristic; or any behaviour that is offensive, abusive, belittling, intimidating, or threatening – whether this is face-to-face, indirectly or via communication technologies such as mobile phones and computers.

Some forms of harassment, discrimination and bullying are against the law and are based on particular characteristics, such as age, disability, gender, sexual orientation, pregnancy, political or religious beliefs, race, and marital status.

RASA takes all claims of harassment, discrimination, bullying and cyber bullying seriously. We encourage anyone who believes they have been harassed, discriminated against, or bullied to raise the issue with us.

Adult cyber abuse is online communication to or about someone which is menacing, harassing or offensive and also intended to cause serious harm to their reputation, physical or mental health.

What does cyberbullying look like?

Cyberbullying behaviour might include:

  • abusive texts and emails
  • hurtful messages, images, or videos
  • imitating others online
  • excluding others online
  • humiliating others online
  • spreading nasty online gossip and chat
  • creating fake accounts to trick someone or humiliate them
  • threatening emails, social media posts or texts
  • statements that are defamatory

Bullying is when someone, or a group of people (this may include organisations), who have more power at the time, to deliberately upset or hurt another person, their property, reputation, or social acceptance on more than one occasion. It may involve discrimination, exclusion, or denial of access to resources or services.

Where an organisation has a culture of bullying, or bullies individuals, this is called institutional bullying.  Institutional bullying can be very damaging to an individual as the power imbalance is significant.  Institutional bullying is also more damaging, as the “power” and “reputation” of the organisation carries more weight, reaches more people, and provides a sense of agency for others to follow this path of behaviour.

What Bullying is Not

Many distressing behaviours are not examples of bullying even though they are unpleasant and may require intervention. There are three socially unpleasant situations that are often confused with bullying:

Mutual Conflict: In mutual conflict situations, there is an argument or disagreement between people but not an imbalance of power. Both parties are upset and usually both want a resolution to the problem. However, unresolved mutual conflict sometimes develops into a bullying situation with one person becoming targeted repeatedly for ‘retaliation’ in a one-sided way.

Social Rejection or Dislike: Unless the social rejection is directed towards someone specific and involves deliberate and repeated attempts to cause distress, exclude or create dislike by others, it is not bullying.

Single-episode acts of nastiness or meanness, or random acts of aggression or intimidation: Single episodes of nastiness or physical aggression are not the same as bullying. If a person is verbally abused or pushed on one occasion they are not being bullied. Nastiness or physical aggression that is directed towards many different people is not the same as bullying.

What do you do if you are being bullied or harassed?

  • Keep a record of the bullying or harassment.  This may include a written journal, copies of emails or screen shots of social media posts.
  • Tell the person to stop.  Provide them with examples of the bullying if you feel comfortable doing so.
  • If the bullying continues, bring the matter to the attention of the RASA committee
  • Of you believe the bullying or harassment is serious enough that you are concerned for your personal welfare or property, you should contact the police.

Discrimination, bullying and sexual harassment are unacceptableat RASA and are unlawful under the following legislation:

  • Sex Discrimination Act 1984 (Cth)
  • Racial Discrimination Act 1975 (Cth)
  • Disability Discrimination Act 1992 (Cth)
  • Age Discrimination Act 2004 (Cth)
  • Australian Human Rights Commission Act 1986 (Cth).

If your club would like to use this policy, please send us an email.

Radio Amateur Society of Australia.  18 March 2022