ADA Grievance Procedure

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Policy on Non-Discrimination and Non-Harassment

It is the policy of Southern Illinois University that all students, faculty, staff, and guests should be able to enjoy and work in an educational environment free from discrimination, and harassment. Discrimination against any person or group of persons based on race, color, national origin, ancestry, religion, sex, sexual orientation including gender identity, marital status, age, physical or mental disability, military status, unfavorable discharge from military service, or veteran's status is specifically prohibited in the Southern Illinois University community. This policy on non-discrimination and non-harassment reaffirms Southern Illinois University's commitment to maintain an environment in which ideas are pursued free of intimidation or fear, and the Policy applies to admissions, employment, access to and treatment in all University programs and activities.

Discriminatory harassment includes, but is not limited to, conduct (oral, written, graphics or physical) directed against any person or group of persons because of race, color, national origin, ancestry, religion, sex, sexual orientation including gender identity, marital status, age, physical or mental disability, military status, unfavorable discharge from military service, or veteran's status that has the purpose of or reasonably foreseeable effect of creating an offensive, demeaning, intimidating or hostile environment for that person or group of persons. Such conduct includes but is not limited to objectionable epithets demeaning depictions or treatment and threatened or actual abuse or harm.

Harassment of any kind is strictly prohibited and may also be a violation of federal and or state laws. Each Chancellor is authorized to develop or use existing procedures for his or her respective campuses to address discrimination and harassment.

(3/13/03, 5/7/09, 04/14/11)

DELEGATION AND ROLES 

The President has delegated to the Chancellors of SIUC and SIUE the authority and responsibilities to establish campus procedures for the implementation of the Non-Discrimination and Non-Harassment Policy (SIU Board of Trustees 7 Policies E) and Sexual Harassment Policy (SIU Board of Trustees 7 Policies D)(hereinafter “Policies”).

The following procedures shall be used at Southern Illinois University Carbondale to implement and enforce the University’s Policies prohibiting discrimination, including sexual harassment, and related retaliation, and to ensure that the University’s employees, students, and agents comply with the Policies prohibiting all types of discrimination, including sexual harassment. 

Role of the Associate Chancellor 

The Chancellor delegates the responsibility for the administration of these Policies and Procedures to the Associate Chancellor for Institutional Diversity (hereinafter “Associate Chancellor”) or appropriate designee. In instances where one of the involved parties reports directly to the Chancellor, the Chancellor shall appoint an outside individual to act in place of the Associate Chancellor. The Associate Chancellor shall be responsible for the investigation of all complaints alleging a violation of one of the Policies, dissemination of the Policies and these Procedures to the University community, coordination of associated education and training programs, maintenance of centralized records of complaints, and coordination of the resolution of such complaints. 

Role of Investigators

The Associate Chancellor shall designate individuals to serve as investigators for complaints alleging a violation of one of the Policies. The individuals appointed as investigators shall be trained on the Policies and these Procedures. The investigators shall be appropriately qualified and knowledgeable with respect to discrimination, including sexual harassment, and retaliation laws and guidelines, and the conduct of thorough and appropriate investigations related to these types of claims.

The investigator(s) shall conduct investigations pursuant to Section III(C) of this Procedure, and under the direction of the Associate Chancellor, shall be solely responsible for the investigation of complaints.

 DEFINITIONS

 For purposes of these Procedures, the following terms shall have the ascribed meanings:

Appellant – the individual appealing the disposition of a complaint (either the complainant or respondent).

Complainant – the individual who is the subject of alleged discriminatory, harassing, or related retaliatory action.

Discrimination - Discrimination shall have the meaning ascribed to it in the Non-Discrimination and Non-Harassment Policy, SIU Board of Trustees 7 Policies E.

Harassment – means sexual or discriminatory harassment as defined in the Policies.

Respondent – the individual whose conduct is alleged to be a discriminatory, harassing, or related retaliatory action.

Retaliation – Retaliation is defined as any act of reprisal, including negative or otherwise unwarranted treatment, related to the reporting of, or participation in a complaint of a violation of one of the Policies. Retaliation may include, but is not limited to:

  1. Taking negative tangible employment actions against a person;
  2. Taking actions that substantially interfere with or have a chilling effect on the employee's or student's ability to participate fully in and benefit from the work or educational environment;
  3. Failing to provide assistance or instruction that would otherwise be provided;
  4. Failing to fairly and/or objectively evaluate an employee's or student's performance;
  5. Failing to record an appropriately earned grade for a student; or
  6. Otherwise sabotaging an employee's or student's performance or evaluation.

Sexual Harassment - Sexual Harassment shall have the meaning ascribed to it in the Sexual Harassment Policy, SIU Board of Trustees 7 Policies D. Sexual violence such as criminal sexual assault[1], criminal sexual abuse[2], and/or sexual coercion are forms of sexual harassment.

Third Party Reporter – An individual who reports alleged discrimination, harassment, or related retaliation, but is not the subject of such discriminatory, harassing, or related retaliatory action.

Witness – An individual who provides information to the University regarding alleged discriminatory, harassing, or related retaliatory action.

INVESTIGATION PROCEDURES: 

Reporting Violations of the Policies 

Anyone who believes that he or she has been the victim of or witness to discrimination, including sexual harassment or been retaliated against for reporting or acting as a witness to a discrimination complaint or of any other violation of the Policies should promptly report this belief and the basis thereof. These reports may be made to the Associate Chancellor or any employee of the University including but not limited to his or her supervisor, the supervisor of the individual alleged to have violated the Policies. In order to facilitate the efficient and effective investigation of complaints, the Complainant or Third Party Reporter should include as much relevant information as possible, such as the name of the Complainant, the name of the Respondent, and a factual description of the incident(s) (including dates, times, places, and the names of any witnesses). Complaints should be made as soon as possible, but shall be made no later than one hundred twenty (120) calendar days following the last alleged incident. The Office of the Associate Chancellor may waive the deadline in his or her sole discretion if facts and circumstances warrant such waiver for up to one year. 

All complaints not initially filed with the Associate Chancellor shall be forwarded by the recipient of the complaint to the Office of the Associate Chancellor immediately upon receipt. If the complaint is initially made verbally, the recipient of the complaint shall provide a written report containing as much information and detail as possible to the Associate Chancellor. 

Written complaints are not required to make a complaint. However, individuals are encouraged to make formal complaints utilizing documents and resources provided by the Associate Chancellor. All complaints, no matter the format received, will be accepted and processed consistent with the University’s obligation to investigate complaints, and to the extent permitted by law, these records will be kept confidential.

Consistent with the University’s Policies, and its applicability to outside contractors, vendors, program participants, and other visitors to University property and buildings, complaints made against such individuals should be reported in the same manner as described above, and will be investigated pursuant to the process detailed below, to the extent possible, depending on the particular circumstance.

If complaints appear to include allegations of criminal misconduct, including but not limited to an alleged hate crime or physical sexual assault, the Associate Chancellor shall also forward such information to the SIUC Police Department for its investigation.

 Initial Review of Complaint

Within ten (10) business days of receiving a complaint, the Associate Chancellor, or his/her designee, shall review the complaint to determine whether or not it provides sufficient information to warrant a formal investigation, and shall provide notification of this determination to the Respondent and the Complainant. The Associate Chancellor may, as part of her review, gather additional information and/or talk to witnesses if necessary to make the determination. The Associate Chancellor may extend this time limit for a reasonable period to pursue an informal resolution as described in subsection C of this Section.

Informal Resolution

Upon receipt of a complaint, the Associate Chancellor shall consider whether the matter may be resolved by utilizing an informal resolution process in lieu of a formal investigation. The informal resolution process may be used only if both parties consent to this process and the Associate Chancellor determines that it is appropriate. This process shall permit the Complainant and the Respondent to reach a mutually agreeable resolution prior to a formal investigatory finding. 

In determining whether an informal resolution process is appropriate for a particular complaint, the Associate Chancellor shall consider the following factors:

i)     the severity of the allegation(s);

ii)    whether any prior complaints have been filed against the Respondent;

iii)   the number of alleged Complainants;

iv)   whether the alleged harm is easily reparable; and

v)    any other relevant factors consistent with the SIU Policies. 

Matters under criminal investigation and cases involving sexual violence are not eligible for the informal resolution process. 

If both parties agree to attempt to utilize the informal resolution process, and if the Associate Chancellor determines that this process is appropriate for the complaint, either the Associate Chancellor or other appropriate individual shall meet with the parties and determine whether an appropriate resolution can be reached. Any such resolution can include, if applicable, an appropriate remedy, a plan for ensuring compliance with its terms, and a requirement of confidentiality by the parties involved.

If a resolution is reached that both parties agree is appropriate, the resolution shall be reduced to writing and signed by both parties. A record of the resolution shall be kept by the Office of the Associate Chancellor. If the parties are unable to reach a resolution of the complaint, then the formal investigation process shall be used to determine the appropriate resolution of the complaint. 

Formal Investigation Process 

If the Associate Chancellor, or his/her designee, determines that the complaint warrants an investigation, he or she shall notify the Complainant and the Respondent of the name of the investigator(s) he/she has assigned to the complaint. Further, the Associate Chancellor may recommend to the Chancellor that the Respondent be placed on temporary administrative leave, and/or otherwise temporarily restrict access to campus pending the investigation if, in the Associate Chancellor’s judgment, it is necessary to ensure compliance with applicable laws and/or these Policies. The Chancellor may place the Respondent on administrative leave for no more than thirty (30) business days, with the ability to extend such time for good cause, if necessary, unless otherwise prohibited by a collective bargaining agreement.

The investigator(s) shall begin the investigation as soon as practicable, and shall complete the investigation within thirty (30) business days of receiving the complaint from the Associate Chancellor. The Associate Chancellor may extend this period for good cause based upon the particular circumstances of the investigation.

Upon completion of the investigation, the investigator(s) shall prepare a confidential report of the findings to the Associate Chancellor. The report shall include a statement as to whether the investigator(s) believe that a violation of the University’s Non-Discrimination and Non-Harassment Policy or Sexual Harassment Policyoccurred, a summary record of the information gathered, and any mitigating or aggravating factors to be considered. This report shall be completed as soon as practicable following the completion of the investigation but in no event later that five (5) business days after the conclusion of the investigation. The Associate Chancellor may extend this period for an additional five (5) business days upon request of the investigator(s) and for good cause.

Findings 

Upon receipt of the report by the assigned investigator(s), the Associate Chancellor shall review the report and make a determination as to whether there is sufficient or insufficient evidence to support a finding of a violation based on a preponderance of the evidence standard. The Associate Chancellor, or his/her designee, shall notify the Respondent and Complainant of his/her finding(s). The notice shall specify that retaliation against the Complainant, the Third Party Reporter (if applicable), or any witnesses are strictly prohibited, and that any such retaliation may result in disciplinary action.

If the Associate Chancellor, or his/her designee, determines that the evidence is sufficient to support a finding that the Non-Discrimination and Non-Harassment Policy or Sexual Harassment Policy was violated, the Associate Chancellor shall submit to the Chancellor a written summary of the investigative process and the finding(s) and a recommendation for disciplinary proceedings, if applicable.

PROCESS FOR APPEALS OF INVESTIGATORY FINDINGS

The Complainant or the Respondent may initiate an appeal of the decision of the Associate Chancellor to the Chancellor, within five (5) working days of receipt of the Associate Chancellor’s notification of findings by providing a written notice of appeal to the Chancellor. The appellant shall receive a summary of the findings of the Associate Chancellor. The summary shall be sufficiently detailed so that the appellant can ascertain the reasons and underlying facts that formed the basis of the decision. The appellant shall file any rebuttal of the finding(s) within fifteen (15) days of receipt of this information. Within fifteen (15) working days of receipt of the appeal, the Chancellor shall review the record and either uphold, modify, or reverse the decision being appealed. The decision of the Chancellor is final, and there will be no additional University appeals of his or her decision. Nothing herein prevents the complainant or respondent from pursuing an appeal of an investigatory finding to an external agency or through the grievance procedure of an applicable collective bargaining agreement.

DISCIPLINE FOR VIOLATIONS OF POLICIES 

Upon issuance of a recommendation by the Associate Chancellor, and upon expiration of the appeal period, disciplinary proceedings shall be conducted for violations of the University’s Policies. Disciplinary procedures shall be implemented according to the applicable collective bargaining agreement, and/or the applicable University policies and procedures. The appropriate Vice Chancellor, or his/her designee, shall be responsible for the disciplinary process and determination for all administrative/professional employees and faculty. The disciplinary process for Civil Service Employees shall be in accordance with the State University Civil Service Act, 110 ILCS 70/et seq., and any applicable collective bargaining agreement. The Student Conduct Code shall govern the disciplinary process for students.

The additional guidelines provided in this paragraph may be applied to the extent that they do not conflict with the applicable collective bargaining agreement or University disciplinary policies and procedures. Remedies such as letters of apology, mandatory sexual harassment training, counseling or monitoring, in addition to other types of disciplinary sanctions, up to and including termination or expulsion, may be imposed on those individuals who have been found to have violated one of the Policies. The Associate Chancellor shall be consulted prior to a final determination and implementation of any disciplinary action for a violation of the Policies. If the recommended sanction is discharge, the Respondent may be suspended with or without pay while applicable appeal procedures are conducted.

Disciplinary or punitive action may also be taken against contractors, their sub-contractors doing business on University property or in University facilities, program participants, and visitors to the University. The action taken shall be dependent on the nature and severity of the offense, and the relationship of the Respondent to the University, and may include loss of access to University-related facilities, property, or equipment, or other appropriate sanctions.

RIGHTS OF PARTIES 

        Rights of the Complainant

 A Complainant shall have the following rights: 

  1. To present relevant information to the investigators;
  2. To have an advisor, advocate, or union representative present with him or her at all proceedings;
  3. To be informed of the process of the investigation and the conclusion(s) reached as a result of the complaint;
  4. To be free from retaliation for filing a complaint; and
  5. To appeal any adverse determination pursuant to the relevant policies or collective bargaining agreement. 

Consistent with the University’s obligation to investigate complaints of a violation of one of the Policies, and to the extent permitted by law, the privacy of the Complainant will be maintained to the extent possible.

       Rights of the Respondent

Respondents shall have the following rights: 

  1. To present relevant information to the investigators;
  2. To have an advisor, advocate, or union representative present with him or her at all proceedings;
  3. To be informed of the allegations against him or her in a manner that will provide the Respondent an opportunity to respond;
  4. To be informed of the process of the investigation and the conclusions reached; and
  5. To appeal any adverse determination or discipline pursuant to the relevant policies or collective bargaining agreement.

Consistent with the University’s obligation to investigate complaints of a violation of one of the Policies, and to the extent permitted by law, the privacy of the Respondent will be maintained to the extent possible.

       Rights of Witnesses and Third Party Reporters

Witnesses and Third Party Reporters shall have the following rights: 

  1. To present relevant information to investigators;
  2. To have an advisor, advocate, or union representative present with him or her at all proceedings;
  3. To be free from retaliation for providing information in the processing of a complaint. 

Consistent with the University’s obligation to investigate complaints of a violation of one of the Policies, and to the extent permitted by law, the privacy of Witnesses and Third Party Reporters will be maintained to the extent possible.

Disclosure of Documents 

The Associate Chancellor or designee shall take reasonable steps to inform the Respondent of the nature of the charges against him or her, the basis of the allegations, and provide all of the parties with the opportunity to respond.

To the extent required in litigation or formal disciplinary procedures, the University shall provide any and all documents regarding the investigation, policies and procedures, or other documents germane to the action.

The Associate Chancellor may provide, prior to formal litigation or formal disciplinary procedures, and subject to protecting the identity of the Complainant or potential witnesses, redacted reports, documents, and other materials germane to the investigation. The Associate Chancellor’s decision regarding disclosure shall be final and non-appealable.

Any documents disclosed either to the Respondent, the Complainant, or to those representing either party, shall be used for the sole purpose of investigating or defending against the allegations of the complaint, and shall not be disclosed to any third parties, unless required by law. Information contained in any such documents shall remain confidential for all parties, to the extent allowable under applicable laws, and subject to the University’s duty to investigate claims of discrimination, including sexual harassment. Under no circumstances shall any such documents or information contained therein be used to retaliate against the Complainant, the Respondent, the Third Party Reporter, or any Witnesses.

EXCLUSIVE REMEDY

The procedures as provided herein shall be the exclusive remedy at the University level available to any person complaining of a violation of the Policies. The right of a person to prompt resolution of a complaint filed under this procedure shall not be impaired by the person's pursuit of remedies outside the University. Use of this procedure is not a prerequisite to the pursuit of other remedies. Individuals should be aware that the deadlines for filing a charge with the Illinois Department of Human Rights and with the federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission are no later than 180 and 300 days, respectively, following the alleged act of discrimination, including sexual harassment.

SUBSTANTIAL COMPLIANCE

Substantial compliance with all of the procedures set forth in these procedures shall be deemed full compliance if the party challenging the procedures has suffered no substantial harm caused by the actual procedure used.

REPORTING REQUIREMENTS OF THE ASSOCIATE CHANCELLOR

The Associate Chancellor shall report monthly to the Chancellor and to the offices of the Illinois Department of Human Rights and the Illinois Board of Higher Education the number of cases in which a finding of racial, ethnic, or religious intimidation or sexual harassment has been made, pursuant to State statute. 

  1. The Associate Chancellor shall provide an annual report to the Chancellor and Affirmative Action Advisory Committee that includes the number of complaints filed by category of claimed discrimination, the number of founded and unfounded complaints, and a report of the campus training provided during the prior year. The Committee may submit such recommendations to the Associate Chancellor that promote the purposes of the Policies and these Procedures.

EDUCATION OF CAMPUS COMMUNITY

Goals

Educational efforts are essential to establishing a campus environment free from discrimination and sexual harassment. The Associate Chancellor, in conjunction with the Office of General Counsel, shall develop educational and training programs to ensure compliance with University Policy and campus Procedures. The Associate Chancellor shall work to achieve the following goals through education:

 Educating University personnel and students about prohibited conduct and acts that constitute discrimination and sexual harassment;

 Educating administrators about the proper way to address complaints of violations of the Policies or instances of discrimination, including sexual harassment, that come to their attention through other channels;

 Educating the campus community on their rights and obligations under the Policies;

 Educating students, faculty, and staff about the potential legal, financial, and overall adverse impact on the University, for failure to abide by the Policies.

 Training the Affirmative Action Committee annually regarding the Policies, including but not limited to the rights and obligations under the Policies, these Procedures, and the potential legal, financial, and overall adverse impact on the University for failure to abide by the Policies.

Professional Development and Training

 1.   The Associate Chancellor shall coordinate, in conjunction with the appropriate departments and offices, a series of training sessions for persons who are likely to receive complaints that these Policies have been violated. The intended audience for training will include, but will not be limited to, such persons as residence hall advisors, academic advisors, supervisors, faculty, graduate assistants, and other instructional personnel.

 2.   In an effort to help the campus community recognize what constitutes discrimination and sexual harassment and how to prevent it, a campus-wide educational program will be offered to students, faculty, and staff, and feedback shall be encouraged.

Information

The Associate Chancellor is responsible for distributing copies of the Policies and these Procedures to members of the University community. The Policies and Procedures and Complaint Intake Sheet shall be available on the internet and other locations as determined by the Associate Chancellor.

Procurement and External Relations

To the extent practicable, the University shall take reasonable steps to ensure that agreements entered into by the University with State and outside contractors performing work on University property will incorporate the University’s policy prohibiting discrimination and sexual harassment. Academic units that initiate internship or co-operative programs for students with various employers will also be responsible for providing those employers with a copy of the University’s Discrimination and Sexual Harassment Policies.

EVALUATION

The Chancellor is responsible for the ongoing evaluation of the effectiveness of the Discrimination and Sexual Harassment Policies and Procedures, and shall report his or her findings on a regular basis to the President.

EXTERNAL AGENCY COMPLAINT INFORMATION

The Illinois Human Rights Act prohibits discrimination, including sexual harassment, and retaliation, and establishes the Department of Human Rights and the Human Rights Commission to handle charges of discrimination, including sexual harassment. The Federal Government’s Civil Rights Act prohibits discrimination, including sexual harassment, and retaliation by an employer, and assigns the complaint process to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC).

The United States Department of Education Office for Civil Rights enforces several Federal civil rights laws that prohibit discrimination in programs or activities that receive federal financial assistance from the Department of Education, including Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, which prohibits discrimination, including sexual harassment, and retaliation.

While the University encourages use of its internal policy and procedures, the University’s policy does not preclude a person who feels she/he has been the victim of discrimination, including sexual harassment, from seeking redress through these external agencies. Filing with the external agencies can be done in lieu of or simultaneously with the University’s complaint process. Filing a complaint with the University does not result in the waiver or extension of any time limits required by an external agency.

The Illinois Department of Human Rights can be contacted at:

 Website: www.state.il.us/dhr

In Chicago:
James R. Thompson Center
100 West Randolph Street, 10th Floor

Intake Unit

Chicago, IL 60601
Telephone: (312) 814-6200
TTY: (866) 740-3953

Facsimile: (312) 814-6251

 

In Springfield:
222 South College St., Room 101

Intake Unit
Springfield, IL 62704
Telephone:       (217) 785-5100

TTY:                (866) 740-3953

Facsimile:        (217) 785-5106

 

In Marion:
2309 W. Main St., Suite 112

Intake Unit

Marion, IL 62959
Telephone:       (618) 993-7463

TTY:                (866) 740-3953

Facsimile:        (618) 993-7464

 

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) can be contacted at:

Website:          http://www.eeoc.gov/

St. Louis District Office

Robert A. Young Federal Building

1222 Spruce St., Rm 8.100

St. Louis, MO 63103

Telephone:       (800) 669-4000

TTY:                (800) 669-6820 TTY

Facsimile:        (314) 539-7894

 

The United States Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights can be contacted at:

Website:        http://www2.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ocr/index.html

Chicago Office

Office for Civil Rights
U.S. Department of Education
Citigroup Center
500 W. Madison Street, Suite 1475
Chicago, IL 60661
Telephone:       (312)730-1560

TDD:               (877) 521-2172
Facsimile:        (312) 730-1576

Email:  OCR.Chicago@ed.gov 

 

WHERE TO OBTAIN ADDITIONAL INFORMATION REGARDING THE UNIVERSITY’S SEXUAL HARASSMENT POLICY AND COMPLAINT PROCEDURES:

Linda McCabe Smith

Office of the Associate Chancellor for Institutional Diversity

110 Anthony Hall

618/453-1186

In an emergency situation that involves possible criminal sexual misconduct, or in the event of criminal sexual assault or criminal sexual abuse, please notify the Department of Public Safety at 618-453-3771 or dial 911.

 

 APPENDIX A

 Illinois State Statutory Definitions

 Section 5/2-101(E) of the Illinois Human Rights Act (775 ILCS 5/2-101.E) defines sexual harassment as follows:

 “Sexual harassment” means any unwelcome sexual advances or requests for sexual favors or any conduct of a sexual nature when (1) submission to such conduct is made either explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of an individual’s employment, (2) submission to or rejection of such conduct by an individual is used as the basis for employment decisions affecting such individual, or (3) such conduct has the purpose or effect of substantially interfering with an individual’s work performance or creating an intimidating, hostile or offensive working environment.

 Section 5/5A-101(E) of the Illinois Human Rights Act (775 ILCS 5/5A-101.E) defines sexual harassment in higher education as follows:

 “Sexual harassment in higher education” means any unwelcome sexual advances or requests for sexual favors made by a higher education representative to a student, or any conduct of a sexual nature exhibited by a higher education representative toward a student when such conduct has the purpose of substantially interfering with the student’s educational performance or creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive educational environment; or when the higher education representative either explicitly or implicitly makes the student’s submission to such conduct a term or condition of, or uses the student’s submission to or rejection of such conduct as a basis for determining: 

  1. Whether the student will be admitted to an institution of higher education;
  2. The educational performance required or expected of the student;
  3. The attendance or assignment requirements applicable to the student;
  4. To what courses, fields of study or programs, including honors and graduate programs, the student will be admitted;
  5. What placement or course proficiency requirements are applicable to the student;
  6. The quality of instruction the student will receive;
  7. What tuition or fee requirements are applicable to the student;
  8. What scholarship opportunities are available to the student;
  9. What extracurricular teams the student will be a member of or in what extracurricular competitions the student will participate;
  10. Any grade the student will receive in any examination or in any course or program of instruction in which the student is enrolled;
  11. The progress of the student toward successful completion of or graduation from any course or program of instruction in which the student is enrolled; or
  12. What degree, if any, the student will receive.”