The University Record, October 26, 1992

Assembly members to review, discuss discrimination policy

By Jane R. Elgass

Senate Assembly members will, over the course of the next several months, review and discuss a new Interim Policy on Discriminatory Harassment by Faculty and Staff in the University Environment as it applies to faculty members. The policy was effective Oct. 1.

Charged by Provost Gilbert R. Whitaker Jr. through the Senate Advisory Committee on University Affairs, Assembly members are to view the interim policy as a working draft, with an eye to recommending final policy language as it applies to faculty.

Whitaker has urged the group to “consult with individuals and constituencies other than faculty in this process. It is important to consult widely because discriminatory harassment by faculty may be directed at staff and students as well as faculty colleagues,” Whitaker notes.

“The perspectives of the faculty are critical. However, the perspectives of the other components of our University community need to be taken into account if the final version of the policy is to have the credibility that we all desire,” he adds.

This interim policy supersedes the 1988 interim policy on discriminatory harassment, and has been revised by General Counsel Elsa Cole in response to a recent Supreme Court ruling in a Minnesota case that involved hate speech.

Whitaker says the policy also has been revised to clarify its application to discriminatory harassment rather than discrimination in general.

Procedures for implementation of the policy already exist in final form. They are identical to those accompanying the University’s sexual harassment policy, which was effective Nov. 1, 1991.