About the Unit
OBJECTIVES OF THE UNIT
The aim of the Unit is to create and enhance awareness of gender equality, to promote gender equality in representation and participation, evaluate complaints of sexual harassment and assault and to support complainants to create a university environment that fosters gender equality.
In accordance with the principle of gender equality adopted by Middle East Technical University, METU Northern Cyprus Campus considers gender inequality to be a social issue. The Campus aims to raise awareness of this issue in all components of METU and to introduce measures to change practices that fail to result in positive outcomes.
In order to raise awareness in the field of gender equality, the Unit focuses on the following areas:
- The main principle is to use language and expressions that do not discriminate on the basis of gender, sexual orientation and gender identity in all educational resources, such as course materials, audiovisual materials, e-mails, assignments-articles-reports, brochures, posters, announcements, and social media sources, in communication environments and when delivering information through any communication channels, whether written, verbal, visual, informal or formal, between subordinate and superior or among co-workers across the Campus or beyond campus. In this context, the Unit ensures that gender stereotypes are absolutely avoided in communication chains and that gender bias is eliminated from gender concepts, as a necessity to oppose all kinds of discrimination based on gender, sexual orientation and gender identity.
- In addition to the courses currently being offered on the subject, the Unit ensures that entry level University-wide courses are provided.
- The Unit ensures that administrative staff members are provided with in-service training opportunities on gender equality.
- The Unit provides informative meetings and workshops on gender equality for executives.
- A minimum of one scientific activity (such as a seminar, workshop, conference or congress) is held each semester.
- The Unit ensures that research activities are conducted, publications are made and projects are developed on the subject.
- The Unit ensures that awareness clips, designed to draw attention to gender issues both within the University and in the society, are created.
- The Unit also ensures that announcements on gender equality are provided on the University’s website and webpages.
B. Ensuring Gender Equality in Representation and Participation
It is essential that all official and non-official structuring processes and appointments, including the appointments offered in the academic and administrative units of the University and those that are associated with student and staff activities, should be processed based on merit and that gender equality in representation and participation is achieved. The Unit focuses its work on three priority areas that are of importance. These areas include: carrying out assessments regularly to highlight practices that cause gender inequalities, reporting of these studies and setting equality targets. In particular, the Unit ensures that;
- Assessments based on male-female ratio are carried out and a ‘gender equality database‘ is created,
- Reports based on analyses from the perspective of gender equality are prepared at regular intervals on decisions regarding appointments and promotions within the University,
- All data and analysis collected on the subject are shared with the relevant units, and afterwards goals on gender equality are set, and assessments associated with these goals are carried out on a regular basis,
- A sensitive approach based on equality and merit, but also taking into account the birth experiences of women and parenting experiences of both sexes, is taken in the evaluation of appointment extensions of academic staff,
- An approach that considers gender equality is adopted by the decision-making mechanisms within the University and when making appointments to important positions.
C. Preventing Sexual Harassment
Prevention of Sexual Harassment and Assault
It is essential to prevent and eliminate all aspects of sexual harassment and assault. Both individuals and the institution are expected to maintain a zero tolerance stance on this issue. Arrangements in this area include preventing sexual harassment and assault, raising awareness on the issue, creating a safe working and living environment through physical arrangements, receiving complaints about the matter, conducting the necessary investigation promptly and diligently, and initiating support mechanisms. In this context, the Unit ensures that;
- Activities are carried out to regulate the physical conditions on the Campus in order to prevent sexual harassment and assault; measures are taken to provide adequate lighting in public spaces and educational areas and to ensure that students stay safe while attending evening classes,
- The Middle East Technical University Unit for Gender Equality Promotion and Sexual Harassment Prevention, which will initiate support mechanisms where complaints of gender and sexual orientation based violence, particularly in relation to sexual harassment and assault, can be submitted,
- An effective and rapid investigation is conducted and relevant disciplinary regulations are implemented in such cases.
ORGANIZATIONAL STRUCTURE OF THE UNIT
The Chairperson, Executive Board, Executive Secretary, and investigation commissions that are formed according to the needs of this structure will function within the Unit.
- The President of the Campus is the Chair of the Executive Board of the Unit. The Executive Board consists of permanent and temporary members.
- The permanent members of the Executive Board are four people appointed by the President of the Campus and a minimum of three of the Board members are made up of faculty members who work in the related fields.
- Two students who are proposed by the Board and approved by the Campus President also attend the related meetings of the Board as temporary members, in cases where the person bringing the allegation (Complainant) or the person against whom the complaint is brought (Respondent) is a student. If one of the parties to the dispute is a member of the administrative staff, two administrative staff members approved by the President of the Campus shall attend the relevant meetings of the Board as temporary members.
Prof. Dr. Mehmet T. Zeyrek
Assoc. Prof. Dr. Tayfun Nesimoğlu
Assist Prof. Dr. Hande Sözer (Executive Secretary)
Semra Durmaz Güran
Linda Bahar Can
Where deemed necessary,
- The Chair of the Executive Board may appoint two students or two administrative staff members as temporary members to the Executive Board.
- The Executive Board of the Unit is supported by the METU NCC Student Development and Counseling Center.