Neutrality and confidentiality

The Investigations Manager reports to the General Counsel and Associate Vice-President, Legal, Compliance, and Privacy. Steps have been taken to ensure a separation of duties is in place to provide for fair and neutral investigations. If legitimate and substantiated issues of bias or conflict of interest arise, the Investigations Manager will be recused from the investigative process and an alternative investigator will be appointed.

The Investigations Manager may consult with legal counsel to confirm the University is ensuring procedural fairness in its investigations and meeting its obligations under the Ontario Human Rights Code, the Occupational Health & Safety Act, and relevant collective agreements. Legal counsel will not review draft reports and will not have any influence on the outcomes of investigations.

The Investigations Manager has various mechanisms to protect the confidentiality of the process, including ensuring that all participants in the process are advised of the confidentiality restrictions, limiting access to information about the investigation, and storing materials in secure online systems.

Participants in an investigation should be aware that there are some limits to confidentiality. Confidentiality is not the same as anonymity. Some individuals who come forward with complaints may wish to remain anonymous, however, as part of the University’s procedural fairness obligations, the University must provide a respondent with sufficient information about a complaint in order for them to respond to the allegations, which will generally include the identity of a complaining party and the specifics of their complaint. In addition, an investigation report may be disclosed to Human Resources for disciplinary purposes or for the purposes of a grievance related to an investigation. In addition, information may need to be disclosed when there is a risk to the safety of a Brock community member or the Brock community more broadly. It is also possible that information will be disclosed during an arbitration or as part of a matter before the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario. In all cases, the University will limit the disclosure of information to the extent necessary for the particular purpose.