Harassment Prevention and Countermeasures
Basic Policy on Harassment Prevention
Musashino University (hereinafter, “MU”) shall, in accordance with the spirit of its foundation, strive to prevent all violations of the human rights of all students, faculty and staff members, and others as well as to take sufficient care and necessary measures to ensure educational, research, learning, and working environments that are free of discrimination and harassment.
To this end, MU shall establish regulations on harassment prevention and a basic policy that explains the details of such regulations.
If harassment is reported, MU shall, in accordance with the regulations, ascertain the facts and resolve the incident while striving to prevent harassment and to promote awareness through training and education to prevent recurrence.
Definition of harassment
MU defines “harassment” as any conduct related to education, research, learning, or employment that disadvantages or damages someone or that violates someone’s dignity or character, regardless of the offender’s intent.
1. Sexual harassment
Engaging in inappropriate sexual behavior or speech against someone’s will that, regardless of the offender’s intent, disadvantages or distresses the recipient, thereby negatively affecting the educational, research, learning, or working environment.
<Examples of sexual harassment>
・Making uninvited physical contact with another person or looking the person over, causing them unpleasant feelings or anxiety
・Pressing someone for a romantic relationship even though the other person is unwilling, or sending insistent emails about personal feelings
・Asking someone their body measurements or making negative remarks about someone’s body
・Forcing fixed gender roles on others by saying things like, “You’re supposed to be a woman” or “That’s effeminate”
・Forcing someone to pour drinks for others or to perform duets or party tricks
・Displaying posters of models in swimsuits or other materials that may make some people uncomfortable
2. Academic harassment
Abusing one’s authority or power in education and research settings to engage in inappropriate conduct or providing improper guidance or treating someone improperly, thereby causing the person to lose motivation to learn or study, or negatively affecting the learning or research environment.
<Examples of academic harassment>
・Refusing to instruct someone without a legitimate reason
・Giving guidance excessively beyond what is required for teaching—for example, saying, “You’re stupid,” or adopting a harsh tone while speaking
・All forms of bullying
・Threatening to prevent someone from graduating or threatening to give a low grade
・When a faculty member repeatedly orders students to run private errands that have no educational or research purpose
・Unreasonably restricting opportunities for research presentations, etc.
3. Abuse of authority
Remarks, conduct, or treatment that causes someone to lose motivation to work or negatively affects the employment environment beyond the extent necessary and reasonable for the execution of one’s duties based on one’s superior authority, power, or interpersonal relationships in professional settings.
<Examples of abuse of authority>
・Giving excessively long, harsh reprimands concerning work performance
・Sending an email that dismisses the ability of or ridicules someone in a way that multiple people, including the targeted individual, can view it
・Making inappropriate remarks about ability or character at work or elsewhere
・Ignoring an employee that is in a group so as to isolate that individual in the workplace
4. Maternity harassment
Engaging in conduct that negatively affects the working environment by making inappropriate, unfair remarks or actions concerning someone’s pregnancy, childbirth, childcare leave, nursing care leave, and so forth.
<Examples of maternity harassment>
・Discriminating against pregnant individuals
・Giving an unfair evaluation or making unfair remarks suggesting reassignment due to maternity leave or exemption from overtime work
・Repeatedly making negative remarks in response to an employe’s request for childcare leave, making it uncomfortable for them to remain in the workplace
・Rejecting a male faculty or staff member's request to take family support leave immediately after the birth of his child
5. Other types of harassment
Making remarks or engaging in conduct other than sexual, academic, and maternity harassment or abuse of authority that disadvantages or distresses someone, thereby negatively affecting the education, research, or employment environment.
<Examples of other types of harassment>
・Forcing people to chug drinks or to otherwise drink alcohol (alcohol harassment)
・Discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity or against sexual minorities, etc. (SOGI harassment)
・Discriminatory remarks or actions concerning nationality, race, or ethnicity (racial harassment)
・Posting defamatory statements that contain personally identifiable information on social media or on other online platforms
・Forcing others to share a view of their entire room or making demands that excessively intrude into people’s personal lives during online meetings or on other occasions
Scope of the Basic Policy
The "Basic Policy on Harassment" applies to graduate students, postgraduate students, undergraduates, program students, junior and senior high school students, preschoolers, research students, non-degree students, and others enrolled in the schools and education programs of MU as well as executives, councilors, faculty and staff members (including part-time personnel), contractors, temporary staff, and others involved in the fulfillment of MU’s operations.
However, for those who are not directly affiliated with MU, MU shall explain the purpose, objective, and concept of the Basic Policy on Harassment and request that the organizations, etc. to which such individuals belong take disciplinary action against offenders, implement prevention and recurrence prevention measures, and so forth.
If one of our students is harassed during practical training, an internship, while job hunting, or during the course of other activities, MU shall request that the organization, etc. to which the alleged harasser belongs ascertain the facts and take strict disciplinary action if necessary.
Harassment counseling desks and counselors
MU has harassment counseling desks and harassment counselors to provide counseling regarding harassment. These counseling desks respect the counselee’s feelings and intentions and will work together with them to find a solution. When a harassment counselor decides, based on the details provided by the counselee, that a concrete investigation is needed, the counselor will help the counselee perform the petitioning procedure to have an investigation conducted.
If you think you may have experienced harassment, feel free to consult with the counseling desk.
<External harassment counseling desk>
In addition to the on-campus harassment counseling service, MU provides collaborative off-campus counseling services with an external party.
Musashino University Harassment Counseling Service (on the premises of Izumi Partners Law Office)
Phone：03-6457-7720 (only available in Japanese)
Hours：12：00 pm–5：00 pm, Monday through Friday (excluding the year-end and New Year holidays, bon holiday period, and national holidays)
※Inquiries by email are accepted 24 hours a day.
Remarks on harassment counseling
1. We will ensure confidentiality.
All individuals involved in the case (the counselee, complainant, alleged harasser, witnesses, subjects of the investigation, counselor, Investigation Committee members, Response Committee members, and other involved parties) shall be obliged to keep private the confidential matters that they have learned and the content of the counseling to avoid violating the privacy, honor, human rights, and so on of the parties involved in the harassment and other individuals concerned.
2. We prohibit unfavorable treatment and strive to prevent secondary damage.
We shall take sufficient care to prevent any disadvantage (retaliation, cover-up, etc.) or secondary damage to the counselee or complainant of harassment and other parties that cooperate in confirming the facts.
3. We prohibit making false allegations, testimony, etc.
In the course of counseling, investigating, holding hearings, and so forth regarding harassment, no one may make false allegations or give false testimony.
4. Allegations may be rejected or dismissed.
If the Harassment Response Committee determines that an allegation is not appropriate in light of the objectives of the regulations, it may be rejected.
In addition, as a result of an investigation by the Harassment Investigation Committee, it may be determined that an allegation does not constitute harassment.
<Musashino University Junior and Senior High Schools>
<Chiyoda International Junior High School, Musashino University Chiyoda High School>