Expanded: Sexual Harassment and Assault in the Tree Planting Industry

The Northern Society for Domestic Peace (NSDP) is a non-profit organization based in Smithers, Hazelton and Houston B.C. The Society has been providing violence prevention, housing, awareness and counselling services to our communities for 30 years. Over the last two years NSDP has been travelling to planting camps in northern and central B.C. to deliver presentations on workplace sexual harassment and assault. After talking with industry leaders, management and planters, NSDP launched a short online survey to hear from as many workers in the field as possible.

The response we got from that survey provided a lot of insights into the issue of sexual violence in planting camps and allowed us to initiate further conversations with industry, government and violence prevention organizations. We appreciate all the feedback and personal stories we received from planters and would like to ask you to once again take a few minutes to answer some more in-depth questions on the issue. Your answers will provide NSDP with a clear picture of the experience of planters and management and will give us the tools we need to continue collaborating with the industry to improve safety and well-being in ways that work for this unique environment. Thank you again for taking the time to share your thoughts and experiences with us. We will continue to provide updates on how this project is evolving and how your input is being heard. 

Please note: This is an expanded version of NSDP's original survey. This survey should take apx. 10 minutes to complete (longer if you choose to utilize the open boxes for expanding your responses). If you have participated in our previous planting survey we definitely want you to take this one now. If you haven't participated in our previous survey please respond to either or both. 

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* 1. What is your age?

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* 2. What gender do you identify as?

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* 3. How many seasons have you been in the industry for?

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* 4. What years did you work in the industry?

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* 5. What was your role in the industry? (select more than one if you have had multiple roles).

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* 6. What provinces have you planted in?

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* 7. How many times have you witnessed/heard of sexual harassment in the industry?

Sexual Harassment: Any conduct, comment, gesture or contact of a sexual nature that is likely to cause offence or humiliation to any employee; or that might, on reasonable grounds, be perceived by that employee as placing a condition of a sexual nature on employment or on any opportunity for training or promotion. Sexual harassment makes a person feel uncomfortable and/or ashamed. It is usually motivated by power, it is one sided and humiliating

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* 8. How many times have you experienced sexual harassment in the industry?

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* 9. How many times have you witnessed/heard of sexual assault in the industry?

Sexual Assault: Someone touches you in a sexual way on purpose, directly or indirectly, without your consent. It can consist of:
Penetration crimes (of a body part by another body part or a body part by an object)
Contact crimes
Exposure crimes

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* 10. How many times have you experienced sexual assault in the industry?

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* 11. Of instances of sexual harassment/assault that you know were reported, how well do you think the company responded? (1 being completely dissatisfied with the response and 10 being completely satisfied with the response).
You may skip this question if it is not applicable.

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i We adjusted the number you entered based on the slider’s scale.

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* 12. If you reported sexual assault/harassment to the company, how satisfied were you with the way that they handled it? (1 being completely dissatisfied and 10 being completely satisfied).
You may skip this question if it is not applicable.

1 10
i We adjusted the number you entered based on the slider’s scale.

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* 13. Do you have any details or comments you wish to provide regarding reporting an incident?

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* 14. Would you prefer that reports/investigations/disciplinary recommendations be conducted internally (by the company) or externally (by an outside agency)?

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* 15. Were you/are you aware of your company's sexual assault/harassment policies and procedures?

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* 16. In your most recent planting season did your company provide sexual harassment/assault training/resources (presentations, facilitated discussion, pamphlets, posters, videos, etc.)?

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* 17. Do you have any comments about reforestation sexual assault/harassment policies and procedures?

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* 18. Do you think that camps should have sexual violence training at the beginning of each season?

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* 19. Would you prefer education/training be provided in camp internally (by the company) or externally (an outside agency that comes to camp)?

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* 20. If training is provided in camp, why would you prefer internal or external training?

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* 21. How would you feel if all staff were required to take sexual harassment/assault training online prior to being hired?

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* 22. In terms of sexual violence/harassment, how safe do you feel in camp? (1 being very unsafe and 10 being very safe).

1 10
i We adjusted the number you entered based on the slider’s scale.

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* 23. Would you be more likely to apply for a job with a company that has a sexual violence safety certification?

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* 24. What changes, if any, do you feel would create a safer environment in terms of sexual violence in camp?

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* 25. Some of the factors that can contribute to sexual violence in camp are:

- Time off/social time spent almost exclusively at work and/or with co-workers
- Close sleeping/rooming quarters between co-workers
- No security in tents; close proximity to strangers
- Moving far away from family, friends, support networks and making new friends and new communities quickly
- Socializing and potential alcohol abuse/substance use during off hours taking place on work property and between co-workers
- Less supervision during work/off hours
- Geographic isolation - less access to services
- Still a male-dominated industry with management consisting of mostly men - studies show that historically that leads to higher rates of sexualized violence
- Difficulty remaining anonymous due to close family dynamics

With these contributing factors in mind, what are your suggestions for improvements to camp safety without ruining the vibe?

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* 26. Do you feel that your company having sexual harassment/assault policies and procedures is sufficient to prevent sexual violence or do you feel that the company should be taking additional measures?

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* 27. What are your suggestions for additional measures?

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* 28. In camps that are using hotels/cabins, how comfortable do you feel with your company assigning the sleeping arrangements? (1 being completely uncomfortable and 10 being very comfortable).

1 10
i We adjusted the number you entered based on the slider’s scale.

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* 29. How would you like to see us use the information that we are gathering from these surveys?

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* 30. Have you witnessed or experienced anything that you would like to share?  Add your story below or email info@domesticpeace.ca with the subject line PLANTING STORIES.  Please don't identify victims or alleged perpetrators.

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