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Respect for dignity (205, 206,-666)

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Keywords: Respect for dignity
Total judgments found: 126

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  • Judgment 2706


    104th Session, 2008
    World Intellectual Property Organization
    Extracts: EN, FR
    Full Judgment Text: EN, FR

    Consideration 8

    Extract:

    The complainant, who was sexually harassed by her supervisor, wants the Tribunal to order that she be promoted. "[T]he Organization is of course right in saying that the compensation for her injuries should not take the form of being granted a higher grade. The advancement of an official naturally obeys its own logic related to the classification of the job done and the professional merit of the person in question, which has nothing to do with the logic behind compensation for injuries which may have been caused to this person by the international organisation employing him or her."

    Keywords:

    allowance; compensation; definition; difference; harassment; injury; organisation; organisation's duties; post classification; promotion; qualifications; request by a party; respect for dignity; sex discrimination; supervisor;

    Consideration 3

    Extract:

    The complainant having reported that she had been sexually harassed by her supervisor, the latter was verbally reprimanded. The Organization asserts that the complainant has failed to discharge the burden of proof with respect to her allegations of harassment. "[I]n imposing a disciplinary sanction on the complainant's supervisor on account of these acts of sexual harassment, the Organization necessarily acknowledged that they had occurred. Consequently, it cannot now dispute the merits of the complainant's accusations in this respect without completely contradicting itself and casting major doubts on whether its own decisions regarding its staff are taken in a responsible manner in such a sensitive area as that of discipline."

    Keywords:

    burden of proof; decision; disciplinary measure; harassment; lack of evidence; organisation's duties; reprimand; respect for dignity; sex discrimination; supervisor;



  • Judgment 2656


    103rd Session, 2007
    International Atomic Energy Agency
    Extracts: EN, FR
    Full Judgment Text: EN, FR

    Consideration 7

    Extract:

    The complainant was accused of having deliberately made false allegations of misconduct against other staff members. At the end of the disciplinary procedure he was dismissed for serious misconduct. "[A]lthough it is not correct to equate deliberate falsehood with reckless indifference to the truth in all circumstances, the nature of the allegations may be such that there is little, if any, room for difference in the consequent sanction. The more serious the allegation, the greater is the need for care. In the present case the allegations were indeed serious, and were of a kind which, in the absence of cogent evidence, should never have been made. That being so, there was no error in this case in equating the appropriate sanction for reckless indifference with that for deliberate falsehood. The complainant showed a callous disregard for the feelings of the persons concerned and a lack of judgement that was wholly incompatible with the standards of conduct required of an international civil servant. In the circumstances, these matters do not warrant a finding that the disciplinary action was disproportionate to the conduct in question."

    Keywords:

    breach; conduct; disciplinary measure; disciplinary procedure; freedom of speech; lack of evidence; liability; misconduct; official; proportionality; respect for dignity; serious misconduct; staff member's duties; termination of employment; working relations; written rule;



  • Judgment 2654


    103rd Session, 2007
    United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization
    Extracts: EN, FR
    Full Judgment Text: EN, FR

    Consideration 7

    Extract:

    The complainant requests that UNESCO recognise that she has been subjected to moral harassment and acknowledge all the repercussions this has had on her "human dignity and professional life". The Organization asks the Tribunal to find that there is no factual or legal basis to the complainant's claim that she notified the Administration of a case of moral harassment. The Tribunal considers "that the complainant did accuse her supervisor of harassment, and that the Organization, which was then under an obligation to initiate an objective inquiry into the validity of her accusations, failed to do so and has merely regretted the fact that it held no investigations.
    By failing to conduct an inquiry to determine the validity of such serious accusations, the defendant breached both its duty of care towards one of its staff members and its duty of good governance, thereby depriving the complainant of her right to be given an opportunity to prove her allegations."

    Keywords:

    breach; burden of proof; career; claim; condition; consequence; duty of care; harassment; inquiry; investigation; organisation's duties; respect for dignity; right; supervisor; working conditions; working relations;



  • Judgment 2642


    103rd Session, 2007
    World Health Organization
    Extracts: EN, FR
    Full Judgment Text: EN, FR

    Consideration 8

    Extract:

    "In Judgment 2552 the Tribunal pointed out that an accusation of harassment 'requires that an international organisation both investigate the matter thoroughly and accord full due process and protection to the person accused'. Its duty to a person who makes a claim of harassment requires that the claim be investigated both promptly and thoroughly, that the facts be determined objectively and in their overall context (see Judgment 2524), that the law be applied correctly, that due process be observed and that the person claiming, in good faith, to have been harassed not be stigmatised or victimised on that account (see Judgment 1376)."

    Reference(s)

    ILOAT Judgment(s): 1376, 2524, 2552

    Keywords:

    due process; good faith; harassment; inquiry; investigation; organisation's duties; respect for dignity; safeguard;



  • Judgment 2635


    103rd Session, 2007
    International Telecommunication Union
    Extracts: EN, FR
    Full Judgment Text: EN, FR

    Consideration 7

    Extract:

    "It is [...] well established in the case law that the preservation of harmony and good relations in a working environment are legitimate interests. A decision to transfer a staff member will not be invalid if taken for that purpose. Accordingly, in the present case, even if the decision to transfer the complainant was motivated by a desire to resolve relational difficulties, provided the new position accorded reasonably with her qualifications and respected her dignity, there would be no basis on which to interfere with the decision."

    Keywords:

    decision; discretion; grounds; organisation's duties; organisation's interest; purpose; qualifications; respect for dignity; staff member's interest; transfer; working conditions; working relations;



  • Judgment 2626


    103rd Session, 2007
    European Patent Organisation
    Extracts: EN, FR
    Full Judgment Text: EN, FR

    Consideration 5(a)

    Extract:

    "A decision to refuse to publish in an international organisation's in-house magazine the corrigendum of an article which, in the opinion of the staff member concerned, injures his personal interests may constitute a breach of that staff member's personal rights and an infringement of his freedom of expression. Insofar as such a decision in itself produces legal effects and infringes the rights of the staff member concerned, it constitutes an administrative act causing injury."

    Keywords:

    amendment to the rules; breach; cause of action; effect; freedom of speech; individual decision; injury; moral injury; organisation; publication; refusal; respect for dignity; right; staff member's interest;



  • Judgment 2594


    102nd Session, 2007
    World Intellectual Property Organization
    Extracts: EN, FR
    Full Judgment Text: EN, FR

    Consideration 11

    Extract:

    "It is beyond the competence of the Tribunal to make recommendations to an organisation regarding the implementation of specific procedures on workplace harassment and to order an organisation to make an apology."

    Keywords:

    claim; competence of tribunal; harassment; organisation's duties; procedure before the tribunal; respect for dignity; tribunal;



  • Judgment 2553


    101st Session, 2006
    International Atomic Energy Agency
    Extracts: EN, FR
    Full Judgment Text: EN, FR

    Considerations 5-6

    Extract:

    Harassment is described in IAEA staff notice SEC/NOT/1922 as follows:
    "Harassment is any conduct or comment made by a staff member or group of staff members on either a one-time or continuous basis that demeans, belittles or causes personal humiliation. It can take many different forms, including, for example: threatening comments, whether oral or written, or threatening physical behaviour; intimidation, blackmail or coercion; making deliberate insults related to a person's personal or professional competence; humiliating, degrading or making offensive or abusive personal remarks to someone; undermining or isolating people; or making it impossible for staff to do their job by, for example, withholding information."
    "This is a very broad definition, no doubt designedly so. It requires reasonable interpretation and application to the circumstances of each particular case. It contains both subjective and objective elements: did the alleged victim actually feel humiliated, offended or intimidated by the impugned conduct, and was such conduct, viewed objectively, of a nature reasonably to humiliate, offend or intimidate? Where the impugned conduct consists of words, although truth will not always constitute a complete defence, an inquiry as to whether such words may or may not reasonably be true is obviously relevant. Likewise, an inquiry as to whether the speaker's words can reasonably be seen as a reference to the performance of duties and are not merely gratuitous comments will be germane. Personal characteristics such as gender, race and ethnicity as well as the reasonableness of the sensitivities of the alleged victim, must also be weighed in considering both questions. Similarly, any previous history of relations between the alleged victim and the alleged offender may be relevant and, while a single injurious action may by itself be enough to constitute harassment, an otherwise apparently inoffensive comment may, with repetition, become a legitimate source of grievance.
    In the final analysis, the question as to whether any particular act or series of acts amounts to harassment is one of fact to be answered only after careful consideration of the above factors and an examination of all the surrounding circumstances."

    Reference(s)

    Organization rules reference: IAEA staff notice SEC/NOT/1922

    Keywords:

    breach; conduct; continuing breach; criteria; definition; difference; harassment; information note; interpretation; judicial review; moral injury; official; organisation's duties; purpose; qualifications; respect for dignity; sex discrimination; working relations; written rule;



  • Judgment 2552


    101st Session, 2006
    International Atomic Energy Agency
    Extracts: EN, FR
    Full Judgment Text: EN, FR

    Consideration 3

    Extract:

    An accusation of harassment "requires that an international organisation both investigate the matter thoroughly and accord full due process and protection to the person accused."

    Keywords:

    due process; harassment; inquiry; investigation; organisation's duties; respect for dignity; safeguard;



  • Judgment 2540


    101st Session, 2006
    International Telecommunication Union
    Extracts: EN, FR
    Full Judgment Text: EN, FR

    Consideration 30

    Extract:

    "It was said in Judgment 442 that:
    As a rule an official's comments on his subordinates do not give them any right to compensation; otherwise supervisors would express only guarded opinions about their subordinates, and that would be harmful to the organisation's efficiency. The most that can be said is that when a supervisor expresses an opinion which he knows to be untrue for a purely malicious purpose he, or the organisation, will be liable.
    To that should be added the rider that the duty to act in good faith and, also, the duty to respect the dignity of a subordinate require that the subordinate be given an opportunity to answer any criticism made and that his or her answers or explanations be fairly considered."

    Reference(s)

    ILOAT Judgment(s): 442

    Keywords:

    allowance; consequence; difference; equity; general principle; good faith; injury; liability; mistake of fact; organisation; organisation's duties; purpose; respect for dignity; right; right to reply; supervisor; work appraisal;



  • Judgment 2524


    100th Session, 2006
    Preparatory Commission for the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization
    Extracts: EN, FR
    Full Judgment Text: EN, FR

    Consideration 26

    Extract:

    "The Joint Appeals Panel [examining a case of alleged harassment] fell into [...] error by analysing certain of the incidents upon which the complainant relied as separate or independent events without considering them in their overall context."

    Keywords:

    effect; evidence; harassment; internal appeal; internal appeals body; moral injury; organisation's duties; respect for dignity;

    Consideration 31

    Extract:

    To advance serious allegations that have not been properly investigated against an official before a body that must issue a decision or recommendation concerning that official amounts to "serious failure of due process and want of fairness and good faith".

    Keywords:

    advisory body; advisory opinion; breach; decision; due process; equity; good faith; internal appeals body; organisation's duties; respect for dignity; right to reply;

    Consideration 32

    Extract:

    "Although the complainant provided the report of [her doctor] to the Joint Appeals Panel, that did not amount to implied authorisation for it to be given to [her two successive supervisors] for their comments (see Judgment 2271, under 7). There were other means available to the Administration to obtain answers from [the supervisors] to the claims made by the complainant. The disclosure to them of the medical report was a serious breach of confidence and one that, in the circumstances, was particularly insensitive."

    Reference(s)

    ILOAT Judgment(s): 2271

    Keywords:

    confidential evidence; internal appeals body; medical opinion; organisation's duties; respect for dignity; staff member's interest; supervisor;

    Consideration 25

    Extract:

    "There were [...] fundamental errors of law in the approach of the [Joint Appeals] Panel. It proceeded on the basis that it was necessary to establish an intention to 'intimidate, insult, harass, abuse, discriminate or humiliate a colleague' and concluded that there must be 'bad faith or prejudice or other malicious intent' before that intention could be inferred. That is not correct. Harassment and mobbing do not require any such intent. However, behaviour will not be characterised as harassment or mobbing if there is a reasonable explanation for the conduct in question. (See Judgment 2370, under 17.) On the other hand, an explanation which is prima facie reasonable may be rejected if there is evidence of ill will or prejudice or if the behaviour in question is disproportionate to the matter which is said to have prompted the course taken."

    Reference(s)

    ILOAT Judgment(s): 2370

    Keywords:

    bias; criteria; evidence; good faith; harassment; moral injury; organisation's duties; respect for dignity;



  • Judgment 2521


    100th Session, 2006
    Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
    Extracts: EN, FR
    Full Judgment Text: EN, FR

    Consideration 12

    Extract:

    "The Tribunal has frequently pointed out that it is for the person alleging harassment to prove specific facts supporting that allegation (see Judgments 2067, 2100, 2370 and 2406). [...] As with the facts relied on to establish harassment, it is for the person making the allegation to establish that the acts or decisions in question were accompanied by some purpose or attitude which allows them to be so characterised."

    Reference(s)

    ILOAT Judgment(s): 2067, 2100, 2370, 2406

    Keywords:

    burden of proof; case law; decision; evidence; harassment; moral injury; organisation's duties; respect for dignity;

    Consideration 10

    Extract:

    In a case of moral harassment, the existence of "other complaints [...] might [...] support [...] the claim of harassment, but the absence of complaint could not be used to support the contrary proposition."

    Keywords:

    complaint; evidence; harassment; lack of evidence; moral injury; organisation's duties; respect for dignity; subsidiary;



  • Judgment 2507


    100th Session, 2006
    Pan American Health Organization
    Extracts: EN, FR
    Full Judgment Text: EN, FR

    Consideration 7

    Extract:

    "Criticism of a subordinate's performance and behaviour, even in inappropriately strong language, does not, of itself, evidence harassment or prejudice. Certainly, that is so where [...] the performance and behaviour in question are confirmed by other senior and responsible officials. That being so, and there being no other evidence to support the complainant's claims, the allegations of harassment and prejudice must be rejected."

    Keywords:

    bias; conduct; different appraisals; evidence; harassment; moral injury; organisation's duties; performance report; respect for dignity; supervisor; work appraisal;



  • Judgment 2475


    99th Session, 2005
    World Health Organization
    Extracts: EN, FR
    Full Judgment Text: EN, FR

    Consideration 7

    Extract:

    "[T]he obligations of an employer to act in good faith and to respect the dignity of its employees determine what is permissible. In particular, these considerations require that an investigation be conducted in a manner designed to ascertain all relevant facts without compromising the good name of the employee and that the employee be given an opportunity to test the evidence put against him or her and to answer the charge made."

    Keywords:

    appraisal of evidence; condition; good faith; inquiry; investigation; official; organisation's duties; respect for dignity; right to reply;



  • Judgment 2414


    98th Session, 2005
    International Telecommunication Union
    Extracts: EN, FR
    Full Judgment Text: EN, FR

    Consideration 23

    Extract:

    "In Judgment 2170 the Tribunal described the requirement of Staff Rule 12.1.5 that an annual performance report be established prior to the scheduled date of a salary increment as 'a formal one' which had to be complied with. It is important to explain why that was so. A staff member whose service is not considered satisfactory is entitled to be informed in a timely manner as to the unsatisfactory aspects of his or her service so that steps can be taken to remedy the situation. Moreover, he or she is entitled to have objectives set in advance so that he or she will know the yardstick by which future performance will be assessed. These are fundamental aspects of the duty of an international organisation to act in good faith towards its staff members and to respect their dignity. That is why it was said in Judgment 2170 that an organisation must 'conduct its affairs in a way that allows its employees to rely on the fact that [its rules] will be followed'."

    Reference(s)

    Organization rules reference: Staff Rule 12.1.5 of the ITU
    ILOAT Judgment(s): 2170

    Keywords:

    criteria; due process; duty to inform; good faith; increase; increment; interpretation; organisation's duties; output; patere legem; performance evaluation; performance report; respect for dignity; salary; staff regulations and rules; time limit; unsatisfactory service; work appraisal;



  • Judgment 2396


    98th Session, 2005
    Universal Postal Union
    Extracts: EN, FR
    Full Judgment Text: EN, FR

    Consideration 4

    Extract:

    "Any administrative or disciplinary body of an organisation which consults a third party to obtain information concerning the professional behaviour of one of its staff members must naturally avoid impairing the latter's dignity and reputation. In the first place, it absolutely must ensure that the presumption of his innocence is maintained, and if its action is such as to breach the presumption of innocence or the fundamental rights of the staff member, making that action confidential is of no avail."

    Keywords:

    breach; communication to third party; confidential evidence; disciplinary procedure; executive body; moral injury; official; organisation's duties; presumption of innocence; qualifications; respect for dignity; right;



  • Judgment 2394


    98th Session, 2005
    Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
    Extracts: EN, FR
    Full Judgment Text: EN, FR

    Consideration 8

    Extract:

    The complainant's appointment was terminated. "[I]t emerges quite clearly from the file that the irregularities committed [...], the careless way the Organization advertised the complainant's post before he had even had a chance to comment on the termination of his contract, and the way it admitted the unlawfulness of the termination notified on 29 August 2001 [...] only in a decision of 28 June 2003 notified to the complainant on 17 July 2003, severely harmed the complainant's legitimate interests and impaired his dignity." He is therefore entitled to a compensation for the financial and moral damage he incurred.

    Keywords:

    acceptance; allowance; competition; date of notification; delay; flaw; injury; material injury; misconduct; moral injury; organisation; post; respect for dignity; right; right to reply; staff member's interest; termination of employment;



  • Judgment 2373


    97th Session, 2004
    Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons
    Extracts: EN, FR
    Full Judgment Text: EN, FR

    Consideration 11

    Extract:

    After the decision not to renew his contract the complainant was placed on special leave with full pay until the end of the contract and his access to the building was withdrawn. When he went to the OPCW's premises in order to hand in his request for review, he was escorted at all times by a security officer. The complainant considered this treatment to be an affront to his dignity. "Without in any way denying that the OPCW, like many other international organisations, must be vigilant about matters of internal security, the Tribunal notes that neither in the impugned decision nor in its reply does the Organisation give any explanation as to why it was thought necessary to treat the complainant in such a humiliating manner. Except in the most urgent cases, the requirements of security can almost always be fully met while still respecting the rights and dignity of individuals. This is especially so where [...] there is no breach of discipline involved and the person concerned has for many years occupied a position of trust to the Organisation's apparent complete satisfaction. [...] The Tribunal assesses [the moral] damages at 10,000 euros [...]."

    Keywords:

    assignment; breach; contract; grounds; injury; moral injury; non-renewal of contract; organisation; organisation's duties; reply; respect for dignity; right; salary; satisfactory service; special leave;



  • Judgment 2356


    97th Session, 2004
    Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
    Extracts: EN, FR
    Full Judgment Text: EN, FR

    Consideration 16

    Extract:

    The complainant claims damages for the injury resulting from the inclusion in her personnel file of a memorandum bearing negative remarks about her performance. "While there is no evidence whatsoever to support the complainant's claim that she was humiliated and that her future career prospects were adversely affected by this memorandum, the fact remains that the Appeals Committee found, and the Director-General accepted, that the document should be removed from her file. That necessarily implies an acceptance by the Organization that it had acted wrongly in putting it there in the first place. This entitles her to a nominal award of moral damages which the Tribunal evaluates at 500 euros."

    Keywords:

    acceptance; advisory opinion; breach; career; claim; executive head; general service category; grade; injury; internal appeals body; lack of evidence; moral injury; official; personal file; request by a party; respect for dignity; right; supervisor; unsatisfactory service;



  • Judgment 2350


    97th Session, 2004
    European Free Trade Association
    Extracts: EN, FR
    Full Judgment Text: EN, FR

    Consideration 18

    Extract:

    The Administration accessed the complainant's computer while she was on sick leave. The Tribunal considers that "the events which occurred during the complainant's absence on sick leave were most unfortunate. However [...] it is understandable that, given the urgency attending the Sub-Committee meeting preparations on which the complainant was working, her computer was accessed. [The] matter could and should have been handled with greater sensitivity and with proper regard to the complainant's privacy. Even so, those events fall far short of establishing hostility amounting to harassment."

    Keywords:

    confidential evidence; formal requirements; lack of evidence; mitigating circumstances; organisation's duties; respect for dignity; sick leave; working relations;

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