Soka University Campus Harassment Prevention Guidelines

Since 2008, Soka University began enforcing the “Soka University Campus Harassment Prevention Guidelines.” In 2000, the university enforced what was called the “Soka University Sexual Harassment Prevention Guidelines,” which was revised in 2005 to the “Soka University Sexual and Other Harassment Prevention Guidelines,” to include academic harassment.

“If you feel you have experienced harassment on campus”

First, have courage and firmly tell the person “NO.” If your friend is the perpetrator of harassment, please warn the person then and there.
If you feel that you have been harassed, please record the date, time, place, and as many details about the incident as possible.
Please do not blame yourself and be assured that you can get help. Consult with a counseling staff member or contact the university.
If your friend is the victim of harassment, please listen carefully and be there for moral support. Suggest to consult a counseling staff member or contact the university, and if necessary, go with them.
1. Soka University Policy Concerning Campus Harassment
 In the words of our founder, Daisaku Ikeda, Soka University was established based on the founding spirit of becoming “The Highest Seat of Learning for Humanistic Education,” and with a strong emphasis on the “Dignity of Life,” “Respecting Human Rights,” and “Aspiration for Peace.” For the university to foster education and research based on these principles, it is essential to maintain an education and research environment based on humanism, and for the general atmosphere to be one in which the students, instructors, and staff of the university community respect one another as human beings.
It is clear that harassment on campus is an act of violating human rights, as well as an act of disrespect to another person, and the university considers any such behavior as absolutely unacceptable.

 To prevent cases of campus harassment and to establish a genuinely humanistic campus, we have presented the whole university with guidelines for campus harassment.
 Therefore, Soka University has established the “Regulations Regarding Prevention of and Measures for Campus Harassment at Soka University, Inc.” to present measures to prevent and eliminate campus harassment, and to establish a consultation system and procedures, etc. should campus harassment occur.
2. Definition of Campus Harassment
 Campus harassment is defined as making a person feel uncomfortable or putting a person at a disadvantage by making an inappropriate remark or conducting an inappropriate act, etc. against their will, or infringing their human rights by unfavorable or discriminative treatment, thus leading to the deterioration of education, research, learning and the work environment. How the victim perceives the actions is the most important factor when investigating and verifying campus harassment.

 Campus harassment includes sexual harassment in the form of any sexual language or behavior, academic harassment caused by any language or behavior related to education/research, power harassment caused by any language or behavior of an individual holding a preferred position or a position in business, gender harassment, maternity harassment, and paternity harassment, etc.

(1) Sexual Harassment

 Sexual harassment is defined as, “using inappropriate sexual language or behavior in the course of school, work, educational, or research relationships, and thereby making a person feel uncomfortable, threatened, humiliated, taken advantage of, or to be given disadvantageous treatment, leading to the deterioration of the school, work, educational and research environment.”

 Sexual harassment frequently occurs toward a weaker-positioned person in a so-called vertical-structured relationship or power relationship.
There have also been cases where sexism has been overlooked, however, any situation where a person or third party is treated in a way that makes them feel uncomfortable or leads to the deterioration of the school, work, educational, or research environment can also be considered sexual harassment.
Below is a list of specific examples of sexual harassment that references examples provided by the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science, and Technology (MEXT).
(a) On-campus verbal and physical conduct
(Sexual statements)
・Asking for body measurements or making a person’s body the topic of conversation.
・Telling of sexually explicit jokes.
・Asking a woman, “Are you having your period today?”
・Asking about a person’s sexual experiences or sex life.
・Spreading sexual rumors or sexual bullying.
・Making remarks such as: “Even though he is a man, he has no guts,” “We can’t trust women to do that sort of work,” “Women are just pretty decorations for the workplace,” “Women don’t need to be academic.”
・To mock or speak disrespectfully to adults, and use such stereotypical names as, “boy,” “girl,” “Sonny,” “missy,” “old man,” “old-lady” without acknowledging the person as an individual.
(Physical sexual conduct)
・To put up nude posters in the workplace.
・To purposely show sexually explicit magazine pictures or read such articles.
・To show indecent images on a work computer.
・Insistently stare at a person’s body or body part.
・Persistently ask someone to go on a date or go out to eat.
・To lock a classroom, office or room door in order to be alone with a person against their will.
・To make a call, write letters or emails, etc. involving sexually explicit content.
・To make unnecessary physical contact with a person.
・To look into a shower room or changing room, etc. with no good reason.
・Force a person to make tea, clean, or carry out private business solely because they are a woman.
・To unreasonably give low grades to a person’s work or research results solely because they are a woman.
(b) Off-campus verbal and physical conduct
・To force a person to have sexual relations.
・To force people to change into a yukata (Japanese bathrobe), etc. at a work or school seminar trip’s banquet.
・To force a person to accompany you on an official trip or unnecessarily call them to your room during the trip.
・To force a person to provide transportation to and from your home.
・To follow a person to their place of residence.
・To force a person to perform a duet at karaoke.
・To assign a seat next to a superior or instructor during a gathering where alcohol is served, and to force a person to pour drinks for them and dance cheek-to-cheek, etc.

*As a general exception, when “gender distinction” is the topic of a class or research, it is not considered sexual harassment.

(2) Academic Harassment

 Academic harassment is defined as any situation whereby a person in a position of leadership in education research misuses their authority as demonstrated by their attitude/words/treatment in the obstruction/harassment/bullying of instructors/graduate students/students, etc. in the course of their education and research, and thus affect their education research life in an unrefusable or unreasonable way.

 A common example of this is usually a person in a leadership role, directly harasses the people below their rank, however, depending on the instructions given by that leader, there are cases where others may also become perpetrators of academic obstruction, abuse, bullying, etc.

 Most cases of academic harassment are within the campus in classrooms, research offices, laboratories, etc. Even though some cases may occur outside the university campus, no distinction will be made and they will be treated as if on campus. Academic harassment is differentiated from the above listed sexual harassment. However, in some cases, sexual harassment can be found within academic harassment. This kind of academic harassment destroys the educational and research relationship of trust and is a behavior that will not be tolerated.

From an educational perspective, a person in a leadership position can strongly reprimand or instruct someone. However, in these cases, it is natural that physical punishment is not tolerated and making statements that would denigrate a person’s character and compromise a person’s integrity also falls under academic harassment, and is not tolerated.
Listed below are a few case examples of what is considered to be academic harassment. Generally, academic harassment is separated into 4 categories, sexual harassment, power abuse, research obstruction, and research exploitation.
(a) Sexual harassment
・Uncomfortable remarks about sex or age.
・Being given work based solely on the fact that a person is a male or female (making tea, etc.)
・Requests to enter a relationship or a sexual relationship.
・Relentless invasion of privacy.
・Forcing a person to go somewhere private late at night outside of research or educational purposes.
(b) Power abuse
・Being unreasonably obligated to spend time that does not concern education or research (cannot go home before the instructor, etc.)
・Being called upon frequently to do private errands and forced to do random tasks that do not concern education or research.
・Having job hunting interfered with or threatened with statements like “I will not help with your job hunting.”
・Under the pretense of instruction, making statements that cast doubt upon a person’s integrity or denigrate their good name or self-respect. (“Quit school,” “I will not let you graduate,” “You are worthless,” etc.)
・During a lecture, a person’s character or self-respect is damaged in front of other classmates.
(“You are stupid,” “You don’t even know this? ” “What high school are you from?” etc.)
・During class instruction, a person is strictly disciplined beyond what is reasonable, which can also include the application of violence and physical punishment.
・Using or taking away, with or without permission, a person’s belongings/materials.
・Being unreasonably discriminated against because of personal feelings of ill will against a person.
・Being given unfavorable results on a test or promotion, etc. because a person filed a complaint or requested to change instructors.
・In front of other students, malign a student’s good name in their absence.
(c) Research obstruction
・Interference with a person’s opportunity to present their research because of personal feelings.
・For any unjustifiable reason prevent a person from using a laboratory, etc.
・Non-payment of research and official trip expenses because of the instructor’s etc. unreasonable attitude.
・Being prevented from graduation or admission to a higher school (failure to accept a person’s graduation thesis because of personal feelings, etc.)
Being given a quota or an over-large assignment that is too much to handle based not on an educational perspective but a personal perspective.
Dramatically reducing the enthusiasm of a graduate student or undergraduate student of research because of the instructor’s negligence in research, seminar or lectures, etc.
(d) Research exploitation
・Demanding inclusion as a coauthor of a research paper that the instructor or a third party did not participate in writing.
・Taking a research paper written by a researcher, graduate student, or undergraduate student of the same research laboratory and titling it as if the instructor had written it him/herself, or only publishing the instructor’s name on the research paper.
・Falsely presenting a paper and claiming to be the main author.
・Stealing ideas or results from the research of others.

(3) Power Harassment

Power harassment is defined as any acts undertaken by a person in a preferred or leadership position held in the course of business or extra-curricular activities by the use of the status or position, which inflict mental suffering upon subordinates or persons who receive guidance from the superior; such acts include the use of words and deeds that assassinate the subordinate’s character, or result in their continuous obstruction/harassment/bullying, etc.
Such an act will be one-sided “bullying” that infringes the individual dignity and character of those who are in a subordinate position, and which suppresses and denies the free will or initiative of “those who are in a weak and subordinate position” by the use of the authority or status held by a person who is in a preferred position, irrespective of any such explicit intentions.

Another form of power harassment involves when a person who is in a leadership position in extra-curricular activities, such as student clubs, imposing an excessive burden on those who receive coaching or makes statements or carries out acts that infringe an individual’s dignity or character.
Listed below are a few case examples of what is considered to be power harassment.
・To hurl abuse or yell at subordinate persons, thus abusing the hierarchical work relationship.
・To make any significantly unfair/unequal evaluation/treatment in relation to business and extra-curricular activities, etc.
・To allocate tasks that are difficult to accomplish within normal business hours on a daily basis.
・To administer any unwarranted behavior/treatment based on personal information learned in connection with the business or their position.
・To abuse any power regarding promotion, evaluation and employment, etc.
・To intentionally fail to convey information necessary for business.
・To make a statement beyond the normal scope of instruction and warning that significantly hurts a person.
・To enforce unwarranted and selfish rules.
・In a club, circle or group activities, seniors force juniors to act out of line (to force shouting or soliciting female students on a street corner, or forced chug-a-lug, etc.)
・To unreasonably eliminate specified persons from extra-curricular activities, etc.
・Under the pretext of encouraging activities, to have a person engage excessively to such an extent that he/she suffers emotional pain.
・To force a person to commit a wrongful/illegal act.
・To solicit/force a multilevel distributorship, using the position of instructors or superiors, such as OB/OG.
・To force a person to participate in or cooperate with private life or private activities.
・To force a person to go to a drinking party.
・To persistently send e-mails beyond the scope of the business or extra-curricular activities, etc.
・To harm others by posting messages on blogs or bulletin boards on the Internet.

Campus harassment at the university may occur singly in the forms outlined above, and one incident may involve several of the above.
Though the examples listed above are a part of campus harassment, depending on the situation, relationship with the person etc., the nuances may change and such examples will not limit the contents of each act of harassment.

(4) Gender Harassment

 Gender harassment is defined as making a person feel uncomfortable or putting a person at a disadvantage by sexually discriminatory remarks or conduct, thus leading to the deterioration of education, research, learning and the work environment.

(5) Maternity Harassment

 Maternity harassment is defined as disadvantageous treatment, such as a layoff, termination of employment, or demotion, against female staff who are pregnant, on child-care leave or have returned to work after giving birth.

(6) Paternity Harassment

 Paternity harassment is defined as disadvantageous treatment, such as refusal of child-care leave or demotion due to child-care leave, against male staff who have children.
3. Coverage of Guidelines
These guidelines are applicable to members of Soka University and people involved with the university.

1)The guidelines are applicable to Soka University undergraduate students, Soka Women’s College students, Bekka students, exchange students, graduate students, correspondence course students, researchers, auditing students, non-degree students, and special non-degree students.

2)The guidelines are applicable to all people who engage in education/research, affairs and administrative operation at the university such as the university’s officers, full-time and part-time instructors and staff, and guest lecturers invited by the university.

3)At Soka University, other than the above-mentioned members, there are other people who use Soka University as a place of work such as Sogaku Service personnel, management company personnel, etc. Again, for extracurricular clubs, etc., there are off-campus coaches and trainers, etc. that come to the campus. For these people, if the perpetrator is found to be one of the personnel covered by the campus harassment guidelines, then the guidelines will be applied. However, if these people are suspected of campus harassment of one of the members of Soka University, and are found guilty, then the university, in order to work towards the improvement of the environment of the campus, will lodge a strong complaint with the person’s employer and demand that action is taken.
4. Campus Harassment Consultation Desks
 For the purpose of prevention and the implementation of countermeasures against campus harassment, the university has established “Soka University, Inc. Campus Harassment Consultation Desks.”

 The Desks will consider and implement a variety of preventive measures necessary to create an environment free of campus harassment at the university, as well as discussing measures to be taken in the case of any claim of campus harassment.
5. Consultation for Campus Harassment
 The Campus Harassment Consultation Desks will have campus harassment counseling staff to receive complaints or offer counseling to a person who has suffered from campus harassment.
6. Procedure for filing a case of campus harassment
(1) The consultation staff who have received a claim of campus harassment will report to the head of the Desks.

(2) The head of the Desks will speak to members of the Desks, and after carefully listening to the report of the client, will carefully assess the contents of the claim.

(3) The methods of solving the claimed campus harassment will be as provided in the following items and will be implemented by the head of the Desks through discussions at the Campus Harassment Consultation Desks.

 1) Notification
 In accordance with the wishes of the client, as a first step to resolve the problem, the claim of campus harassment will be notified to the other party without revealing the name of the client. When giving notice, necessary advice or recommendations may be made to help resolve the case.
 2) Reconciliation
 When the client wishes to reconcile differences of opinion with the other party, both parties will be asked to submit their opinions, and to resolve the problem reconciliation will be made on the neutral ground in order to eliminate any disadvantage to the client.
 3) Arbitration
 If the client wishes to undertake arbitration and the other party agrees, the client and the other party will, in the presence of a member of the Desks, give their opinions and work toward a consensus to resolve the problem.
 4) Investigation
 As a result of discussing the contents of the claim based on the wishes of the client, if the Desks decide that a serious investigation is required, the head of the Desks will report to that effect to the Executive Board to request the establishment of the Investigation Committee. The Investigation Committee will be established in accordance with the university’s rules. After hearing the accounts of any victims and other involved parties, and thoroughly investigating and deliberating, the Investigation Committee will report the results of the investigation and a plan of action to the chairman of the board and the president. The Investigation Committee will accordingly report the contents of the investigation and deliberations to the client. With regard to the investigation and deliberations, they may be left to a lawyer, etc. as needed.
 5) Other methods as the Desks may deem appropriate

(4) If the information pertaining to the claim is not sufficient or the intent of the client is not clear, the Consultation Desks will conduct preliminary research.
7. Non-disclosure obligation to the client and people involved with the institution
All people involved with the case, such as consultation staff and members of the Consultation Desks will respect any involved party’s privacy, good name, and other human rights, and never divulge any confidential information learned by them to any other party. This non-disclosure obligation will continue even after such consultation staff and members of the Consultation Desks, etc. have retired from the university.
8. Protection of the Client and Involved Parties
 The students, instructors or staff who have consulted or complained about campus harassment, asked for an investigation, or taken rightful action against campus harassment, will not be subject to prejudicial treatment for the above-mentioned actions. Especially in the case of students, no penalty will be inflicted, such as unjustly being denied credits and other prejudicial actions.
 In addition, to further protect the mental well-being of the client and involved parties, psychological consultation by a counselor will be provided if necessary.
9. Punishment of the Perpetrator
If a person has admitted to campus harassment, they will be severely punished in accordance with the university rules.
10. Punishment for False Allegations and Claims
 When a person was found not to be the victim of campus harassment, the person that is a member of the university and who intentionally made false allegations of campus harassment will be severely punished in accordance with the university rules. If the person is affiliated with another institution, the university will demand that the person is disciplined or punished by their affiliated institution.
11. Appeals Procedure
 If the client or the other party has any objection to the results of the above procedures, he/she may appeal to the head of the Desks. The head of the Desks must notify the chairman of the board that an appeal has been made. Only one (1) appeal per case may be made. The chairman of the board will, in accordance with Article 16 of Soka University, Inc. Regulations for Disciplinary Actions Procedure, refer the re-examination to the Review Committee. The chairman of the board will notify the parties of the results of the re-examination.
12. Campus Harassment Consultation Staff


Consultation Staff Name Place of work Direct line
Yuri Aoyama Science and Engineering Building 6th floor research office 691-9441
Nozomi Ootsuka Global Square 12th W floor research office 691-8049
Tae Kameda Soka Women's College 3rd floor research office 691-8509
Mika Suzuki Central Tower 10th floor research office 691-3974
Ryohei Tanaka Global Square 12th W floor research office 691-2176
Mitsuko Chikasada Global Square 8th floor research office 691-2106
Toshiko Nagashima Soka Women's College 2nd floor research office 691-7034
Miyuki Nakamura Global Square 9th floor E research office 691-9466
Seiji Yoshikawa Graduate School of Education Building 4th floor research office 691-4211

University Staff

Consultation Staff Name Place of work Direct line
Yoshihide Akiya Global Square 1st floor 691-2203
Yuriko Azuma Global Square B1th floor Health Center Office 691-9373
Chiho Arai Central Tower 8th floor Faculty of Law Office 691-9476
Masayuki Okutomi Global Square 1st floor Student Affairs Office 691-2205
Yasuko Kojima Global Square 1st floor Student Affairs Office 691-2205
Masako Sakakibara Faculty of Education/ Graduate School of Education office 691-9331
Hisako Sanbonmatsu Science and Engineering BUilding 1st floor office 691-9400
Akiko Shimizu Central Tower 4th floor  691-2214
Tsutomu Shimada Central Tower 4th floor 691-2215
Keiko Suzuki Central Tower 4th floor Correspondence Education Department Office 691-3451
Hitomi Setone Central Tower 4th floor Communication Education Department Office 691-3451
Michiko Tabuchi Women’s College 1st floor research office 691-2201
Masayuki Nimura Global Square 1st floor Student Affairs Office 691-2205
Takahisa Hojo Central Tower 4th floor Human Resources Department Office 691-2202
Katsunori Mitsunaga Central Tower 4th floor Human Resources Department Office 691-2202
13. Process of consultation and action

Step 1

First, contact a consultation staff or a consultation desk (visit directly or by phone, email, etc)

Step 2

The consultation staff will carefully listen to the case

Step 3

Depending on the desires of the client, the consultation staff will work toward solving the problem. If it is deemed necessary to file an official case, a “Campus Harassment Investigation Committee” will be set up.

Step 4

Depending on the results of the investigation, a fair and apt plan of action will be enacted.
Soka University
Campus Harassment Prevention Committee
1-236 Tangi-cho, Hachioji, Tokyo 192-8577 Japan
042-691-2202 (Human Resources)