Nondiscrimination & No Harassment

at Saint Francis University

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  • Nondiscrimination Statement and No Harassment Policy

    (Effective:  August 1, 2013)

    Saint Francis University, inspired by its Franciscan and Catholic identity, values equality of opportunity, human dignity, racial, cultural, and ethnic diversity, both as an educational institution and as an employer. Accordingly, the University prohibits and does not engage in discrimination or harassment on the basis of gender, age, race, color, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, marital status, disability, veteran status, or any protected classification. The University is committed to this policy based upon its values and in compliance with federal and state laws. This policy applies to all programs and activities of the University, including, but not limited to, admission and employment practices, educational policies, scholarship and loan programs and athletic or other University sponsored programs.

    Questions regarding this policy may be addressed to the Institutional Compliance Officer/Affirmative Action/Title IX/Section 504 Coordinator, Saint Francis University, Raymond Hall, Loretto, PA 15940 (814) 472-3213.

    Discrimination Complaint Procedure

    The following procedure is to be followed by any student, employee, or applicant who desires to file an official complaint about the compliance of Saint Francis University and the provisions of Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, and the regulations of the United States Department of Health, Education and Welfare, or the provisions of Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 related to gender, age, race, color, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, marital status, disability, veteran status, or any protected classification:

    Step 1:

    The complaint shall be documented on an incident allegation form and submitted to the administrative official responsible for the program area related to the complaint.

    • Complaints about admission practices, policies, scholarship, and/or loan programs shall be directed to the Vice-President for Enrollment Management, 232A Padua Hall, (814) 472-3001.
    • Complaints about employment practices or policies shall be directed to the Human Resources Manager, 101 Raymond Hall, (814) 472-3931.
    • Complaints about accommodation or any alleged violations of Section 504 of Rehabilitation Act of 1973 or the Americans with Disabilities Act should be directed to the Section 504/ADA Coordinator, Raymond Hall, (814) 472-3213.
    • Complaints about student activities, clubs or organizations should be directed to the Vice-President for Student Development, 231 Padua Hall, (814) 472-3002.
    • Complaints about athletic policies or programs should be directed to the Senior Woman Administrator (SWA), 153 Stokes Athletics Center, (814) 472-3294.
    • Complaints about educational policies or programs should be directed to the Associate Provost, 313 Scotus Hall, (814) 472-3004

    The official receiving the report shall consult with the institutional compliance officer (and any other administrative official with responsibility for the program or policy as appropriate), and within 10 working days thereafter, make a written response to the complainant with a copy to the institutional compliance officer.

    Step 2:

    If the complainant is not satisfied with the decision rendered at Step 1, the complainant shall have the right, within 10 working days of the date of transmittal of the decision at Step 1, to appeal to the institutional compliance officer. This appeal shall be in writing setting forth the details of the complaint as stated on the report and corrective action sought.

    Upon receipt of the complaint, the institutional compliance officer will supervise a fact-finding investigation, which will include, at a minimum, a review of written evidence (including the complaint and response), and interviews with appropriate employees and students. The institutional compliance officer shall receive written findings and the results of the investigation, including summaries of all interviews and all documents received as part of the investigation.

    In no case shall this occur later than ninety (90) calendar days following receipt of the complaint. Within ten (10) working days following receipt of the results of the investigation, the institutional compliance officer will communicate with the respective vice-president of the program area in which the complaint was made and the respondent to the complaint regarding the written findings of the investigation and the institutional compliance officer’s recommendations as to the disposition of the complaint. The institutional compliance officer and the division vice president will then agree on remedial action. The institutional compliance officer will then provide a written notification of his or her action to the complainant within (15) days of receiving the written findings from the investigation.

    No Harassment Policy

    As an expression of its Catholic and Franciscan values, Saint Francis University is committed to maintaining a learning, living, and working environment free from harassment based on gender, age, race, color, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, marital status, disability, veteran status, or any protected classification. Such harassment in any manner or form by anyone in the University community is expressly prohibited. This includes harassment of or by individuals not directly affiliated with the University, e.g., contractors, vendors, visitors. This policy also applies to harassment off-site or after normal business hours in University related settings. These include, but are not limited to, business trips, athletic events, conferences, and University related social events.

    The University is responsible for creating an atmosphere of dignity and respect, free from discrimination and harassment, sexual or otherwise. Furthermore, all faculty, staff, and students have a responsibility to maintain an environment free from such harassment and to promptly report incidents.

    Definitions

    A. Harassment (General)

    Harassment consists of verbal, physical or visual conduct relating to sex, age, race, color, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, disability, veteran status, or any protected classification which has the purpose or effect of interfering with academic or job performance, or otherwise creating an intimidating, hostile or offensive living, learning, or working environment. Examples include but are not limited to: (i) epithets and slurs, as well as threatening, intimidating, or hostile acts that relate to sex, age, race, color, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, disability, veteran status, or any protected classification (ii) written or graphic material that reflects hostility or aversion toward an individual or group because of sex, age, race, color, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, disability, veteran status, or any protected classification.

    B. Sexual Harassment

    Sexual harassment is defined as unwelcome touching, sexual advances, requests for sexual favors and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature when:

    1. submission to the conduct is either explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of an individual's employment or academic advancement;
    2. submission to or rejection of such conduct is used as the basis for employment decisions or performance review; academic decisions, academic assessment; and/or
    3. such conduct has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with an individual's work or academic performance or otherwise creating an intimidating, hostile or offensive living, learning or working environment.

    Examples of sexual harassment include, but are not limited to: vulgar language; direct propositions of a sexual nature; sexual favors in return for rewards, or threats if these favors are not provided; leering or staring; subtle innuendo or pressure for sexual activity; sexually explicit jokes, anecdotes, statements or questions; pet names; gossip regarding one’s sex life, body, sexual activities, or prowess; remarks about a person’s anatomy or physical characteristics; inquiries or questions regarding one’s sexuality or sexual activities; open displays of sexually explicit or suggestive pictures, posters, calendars, or cartoons; offensive e-mail, voice mail, or other electronic communications; unwanted letters or poems; unnecessary or unwelcome physical touching, petting, and hugging (“touching” may include rubbing or massaging someone’s neck or shoulders, stroking someone’s hair, or brushing against someone else’s body); repeated requests for dates after being refused by the person; jokes or comments regarding another’s perceived sexual orientation.

    C.  Unacceptable Relationships

    Romantic or sexual relationships between faculty and students, coaches and students, staff and students, and between supervisors and subordinates where one party supervises, advises, or evaluates the other are problematic even when both parties have apparently given voluntary consent. For purposes of this policy, unacceptable relationships include, but are not limited to: romantic or sexual relationship between a student and any faculty member; between a coach and any student; between staff and students, especially when one supervises, advises or evaluates the other; and between staff members when one supervises, evaluates, or advises another. Such relationships have the potential for adverse consequences and will not be tolerated. This policy is understood not to apply to married couples.

    Harassment Complaint Procedure

    Any member of the Saint Francis University community who believes that he or she has been subject to harassment in violation of this policy or suspects the occurrence of harassment should report the matter at once so that the University may promptly deal with it.

    Complaints by or about employees or visitors are to be made to Human Resources or University Police. (Complaints made to any other university employee which involve employees are to be immediately reported to Human Resources or University Police.) These complaints will be investigated in accordance with established procedures.

    Complaints of harassment involving students only, are to be made to the Vice President for Student Development. Complaints made to any university employee involving students only are to be immediately reported to the Vice President for Student Development. These complaints will be investigated in accordance with procedures established by Student Development.

    Confidentiality

    Due to the sensitivity of harassment issues, each case will be investigated in a manner which is as confidential as possible. Every effort will be made to ensure confidentiality to the extent that this does not interfere with the University’s ability to properly investigate complaints of harassment.

    Corrective Action

    Any person found to have violated the University's No Harassment Policy will be subject to appropriate corrective and/or disciplinary action, including, but not limited to: suspension, probation, termination, dismissal or expulsion, according to the nature and severity of the offense. By enforcing this policy, the University will preserve the rights of every student, employee, and applicant for employment to enjoy an environment free of harassment.

    False Complaints/False Information

    The creation of a harassment-free environment requires the honesty and cooperation of every member of the University community. Therefore, any person, whether a complainant, an individual accused of harassment, or other member of the University community who is found to have made false accusations, provided false information, or hindered an investigation, will be subject to appropriate disciplinary measures.

    Retaliation Prohibited

    The University will not tolerate retaliation or discrimination against persons who lodge complaints or reports of alleged violations of this policy or who cooperate with or assist in any investigation or other proceeding regarding this policy.

    Communication and Education

    Saint Francis University recognizes the importance of informing and educating all students, faculty, and staff regarding their rights and responsibilities regarding this policy. Educational programming relating to this policy will be provided regularly. This policy will be distributed annually and will be included in the faculty, staff, and student handbooks. All faculty, staff, and students will be notified as to any changes to this policy.

    Approved 2006, Revised 2011, 2013

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