Sexual Harassment Policy
Lycoming College affirms the principle that its students, faculty, and staff have a right to work and study without being subjected to sexual harassment. This is also Federal and state law.
The EEOC defines sexual harassment as unwelcome sexual advances, request for sexual favors, or other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature. Sexual harassment occurs when (1) submission to such conduct is made, either implicitly or explicitly, a term or condition of an individual's employment or academic status, (2) submission to or rejection of such conduct by an individual is used as the basis for employment or academic decision affecting the individual, or (3) such conduct has the purpose or effect of interfering with an individual's work or academic performance or creating an intimidating, hostile or offensive working or educational environment. If someone believes he or she has been sexually harassed, they are strongly encouraged to report the incident to the College immediately and, hopefully, within six months of the incident.
The review procedure and adjudication for any sexual harassment complaint will depend on the person who is accused.
- A student with a complaint about another student should contact the Dean of Student Affairs.
- A student with a complaint about a faculty or staff member should contact the Director of Human Resources or the Dean of Student Affairs
- Any College employee with a complaint about another employee should contact the Director of Human Resources.
- Any faculty or staff member with a complaint about a student should contact the Dean of Student Affairs.
- Student complaints about other students will be reviewed by the Office of the Dean of Student Affairs. The judicial procedure for sexual harassment grievances are outlined in the student handbook.
- Employee complaints about faculty or staff will be reviewed by the Director of Human Resources.
- Student complaints about faculty or staff will be reviewed by the Director of Human Resources.
- Faculty or staff complaints about a student will be reviewed by the Dean of Student Affairs. The judicial procedures for sexual harassment grievances are outlined in the student handbook.
- The College has the authority to take immediate remedial action with parties involved in sexual harassment allegations and/or complaints including but not limited to suspension pending the outcome of a formal hearing.
Adjudication for Complaints About Employees
If upon review the Director of Human Resources or the Dean of Student Affairs believes it is possible that sexual harassment occurred, he/she will offer the complainant the choice of the following:
- The complainant may try to resolve the issue through informal mediation in the office of the Director of Human Resources.
- The complainant may try informal resolution with the Director of Human Resources and the appropriate department head, faculty chair, or Administrative Cabinet member.
- The complainant may elect a formal hearing with the Sexual Harassment Committee. (See Formal Hearing).
Any situation of possible or alleged retaliation against a person who is a party to an inquiry or complaint of sexual harassment will be referred to the Dean of Student Affairs or Director of Human Resources for informal investigation, mediation and resolution. Such retaliation, when it does occur, is a violation of Federal law as well as College policy.
Should attempts at informal resolution be unacceptable to either or both parties, a formal hearing with the Sexual Harassment Committee may be requested. Individuals are entitled to file a formal complaint without attempts at mediation. The complainant and the accused, at the point the formal hearing process begins, will need to submit a written statement addressing the time, place, and manner of the alleged harassment, and a list of witnesses. Committee members shall be appointed for at least two years but may serve longer if asked and are willing. The Committee will be composed of one faculty member, one administrative executive, and one administrative assistant or support person recommended by Administrative Cabinet members and appointed by the President. An alternate list of potential committee members will also be recommended by Administrative Cabinet members and appointed by the President to serve on an as needed basis. If any member or members of the Committee are unacceptable to either party to the complaint, the President of the College may be petitioned to replace temporarily that member or members of the Committee for the purpose of hearing the formal complaint. Requests for a formal hearing shall be made to the Chair of the Sexual Harassment Committee within thirty (30) days of the conclusion of informal mediation, if such occurred.
Documentation and testimony may be requested by the Committee. The Committee will arrange to meet with the complainant and the accused with ample prior notification including a written list of charges given to each. Persons called to these hearings may be accompanied by an advisor of choice from within the college community (who cannot be an attorney) and are entitled to the presence of witnesses to corroborate their testimony. The Committee may call additional witnesses. The hearing is closed and will be recorded on audio tape or a written summary of the proceeding will be maintained.
After the hearing, the Committee will consider all the evidence in the case and prepare a summary and the sense of the evidence, including the written statements of the complainant and the accused. The material will be submitted to the accused Administrative Cabinet member with the Committee's conclusions as to whether the charges were substantiated or unsubstantiated. The Committee will also submit recommendations concerning actions or sanctions to be imposed. The Administrative Cabinet member will in turn notify the accused and complainant of the Committee's decision as well as the Human Resources Office. Sanctions may include but are not limited to, a cease and desist order, verbal admonition, written warning, probation, suspension without pay, or termination. Any action taken by the Sexual Harassment Committee will be reported in writing by the Administrative Cabinet member to the accused, the complainant, and members of the Committee.
The Human Resources Office will retain a file of the written record and/or audio tape of the grievance process. This file will include the Committee's summary of facts, any documentary information, the written statements of the complainant and the accused, and the final disposition of the case. A list of all cases, both those that were resolved through informal mediation and those that required formal hearings will be kept in the Human Resources Office. These files will be made available to the Sexual Harassment Committee upon the written request of the Committee.
In the event that the accused does not agree with the result of the formal hearing and/or the action taken by the Administrative Cabinet member of the College, an appeal may be made to the President within ten (10) days of written notification of the action taken. The basis for an appeal must be related to new evidence, procedural error, or the belief that the evidence does not support the verdict.
**Approved by the Board of Trustees October 24, 1998.