Discrimination Policy and Review Procedure

Discrimination on the basis of race, color, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, religion, creed, national origin, age, ancestry, veteran status, disability unrelated to job requirements, genetic information, military service, or any other legally protected basis is unlawful and intolerable to the University. Any employee who feels that he/she is a victim of discrimination is encouraged to seek assistance through the internal problem solving or the formal complaint processes. It should be noted that the processes described below may not be appropriate in every circumstance. Therefore, the processes should be considered flexible and modified as appropriate to the situation.

  1. Scope of Policy
    This policy applies to all terms and conditions of employment.
  2. Informal Problem-Solving
    Any employee who feels that he or she is a victim of discrimination is encouraged to discuss the matter with his/her supervisor or local human resources officer. Through such discussions a satisfactory resolution to the problem may be developed.
  3. Formal Complaint Process
    In cases when an informal review does not yield a satisfactory resolution or in cases where the employee does not wish to make use of an informal review process, the employee should first make use of any discrimination complaint process in place at his or her school or department. In the absence of such a mechanism, the employee may request a formal review of a complaint of discrimination by submitting a written request to the local human resource officer. In certain circumstances, the local human resource officer may name a designee to review the matter, such as the department head or appropriate Associate or Assistant Dean.

    The human resource officer or designee will consult with the employee bringing the complaint, the person against whom the complaint has been made and others, if appropriate, to determine the facts and views of both parties. The University Office of the General Counsel may also be consulted. The human resource officer or designee will then prepare a set of findings generally within 90 days of the original complaint. These findings will be sent to the appropriate dean or vice president, or his/her designee, the complainant and the person against whom the complaint was made. (In administrative units that do not report to a Dean or Vice President, the local human resource officer, in conjunction with the unit director, may select a designee from within the University community.) The dean, vice president or designee, will determine the resolution of the matter.

    If this review is not satisfactory to the complainant, he or she may submit a written request for a formal review of the decision at the University level. This request must detail the reason(s) the employee disputes the decision and must be delivered to the Vice President for Human Resources (the Vice President) within 14 calendar days of receiving the decision of the Dean, Vice President or designee. The Vice President will send copies of this request to the local human resource officer, to the Dean or Vice President (or designee) and to the respondent. The Vice President or his/her designee will review the request for timeliness and compliance with the procedures set forth in this policy.

    The Vice President will review the matter or may designate another individual to review the disposition of the matter to date including the decision at the local level. The Vice President or his/her designee may conduct any inquiries he or she deems necessary, such as interviewing witnesses and reviewing documents. The Vice President or designee may work with the parties to mediate a mutually agreeable resolution.

    At the conclusion of this review, the Vice President or designee will prepare a written report that contains the findings of fact and proposed final disposition of the matter and will provide a draft of the report to the parties and give each of them an opportunity to add written comments or response within 14 calendar days. The Vice President or designee may modify the findings or proposed final disposition in consideration of the comments and responses of the parties. The Vice President or designee will render a final decision and issue a final report. The final report will be sent to the parties and will include their written responses and comments.

  4. Non-Retaliation
    University policy and the law prohibit retaliation against individuals who raise issues of potential discrimination or who participate in an investigation of any claim of discrimination. See full non-retaliation policy- subsection 12 of this section.

Last updated: 11/15/2007