Diversity & Equal Employment Opportunity Policy Statement

Equal Employment Opportunity Office Administration Building Room 318

Table of Contents

Diversity and Equal Employment Opportunity Policy Statement
Chicago State University's Mission Statement
Compliance with Laws
Responsibility for Implementation
Complaint Procedures

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Diversity and Equal Employment Opportunity Policy Statement

Chicago State University supports the principles of equal opportunity and diversity in employment and education. The University seeks to insure that no person will encounter discrimination in employment or education on the basis of age, color, disability, sex, national origin, race, religion, sexual orientation, or veteran' s status. This policy is applicable to both the employment practices and administration of programs and activities within the University. It is the policy of the University that no person shall be excluded from the participation in, be denied the benefits of, or in any way be subject to discrimination in any program or activity at the University.

Chicago State University applies this commitment to all employment and educational practices, including but not limited to, recruitment of staff and students, admissions, hiring and training procedures, advancement and retention policies, and curriculum/course materials. More specifically, Chicago State University is committed to diversification of all its internal divisions by race and gender. This commitment stems not only from legal and moral considerations, but also from a conviction that an institution of higher learning is enriched by the presence of diversity and that narrow cultural biases serve to limit rather than enhance the teaching, research, and service functions which are the hallmarks of Chicago State Universities mission.

Compliance with this Diversity and Equal Employment Opportunity Policy is the responsibility of all administrators and others whose duties are related to any personnel decisions regarding employees and students. Further, it is Chicago State Universities obligation to fully participate in the implementation of all applicable federal, state, and local laws dealing with nondiscrimination.

Chicago State University, in its dedication to equal opportunity and non-discrimination, has assigned overall responsibility for related monitoring and reporting procedures to the Equal Employment Opportunity Office. It is the mission of the Equal Employment Opportunity Office to eliminate discrimination in the workplace through:
1) the promotion of equal opportunity in employment through compliance with the federal, state, and local civil rights employment laws,
2) education and outreach, and
3) the fair and voluntary resolution of disputes. Established procedures are in place which allows complaints of alleged discrimination to be investigated and resolved. Any questions or concerns may be addressed to the Equal Employment Opportunity Office at (773)995-2462, Cook Administration Building , Room 318.

Chicago State University's Mission Statement

Chicago State University, a public, comprehensive, urban institution of higher learning located on the south side of Chicago, strives for excellence in teaching, research, creative expression, and community service. The mission of the University is to: 1) provide access to higher education for residents of the region, the state and beyond, with an emphasis on meeting the educational needs of promising graduates from outstanding secondary schools, as well as educating students whose academic and personal growth potential and promise may have been inhibited by a lack of economic, social, or educational opportunity, and 2) produce graduates whoare responsible, discerning and informed global citizens with a commitment to lifelong learning and service. To accomplish its mission, Chicago State University is committed to:

  • recruiting, retaining and graduating a culturally and economically diverse student body;
  • employing a dedicated, caring and culturally diverse faculty whose teaching is informed by research and embodies engaging learning experiences that enable students to flourish academically and personally;
  • offering a curricula that addresses major dimensions of the arts, humanities, business, science and technology and that encourages the development of communication skills and critical thinking, as well as cultural and social awareness;
  • providing students in liberal arts and professional programs with broad knowledge, university-level competencies and specialized courses that are intellectually challenging and academically rigorous;
  • fostering a collaborative and intellectually stimulating community that promotes academic freedom, mutual respect and integrity for its graduate and undergraduate students, faculty, and staff; and,
  • working in partnership with local organizations and agencies active in the region and assisting in the development of socially and economically viable and sustainable communities.

Compliance with Laws

Through the policy statement the university undertakes to comply fully with all federal, state, and local laws relating to equal educational opportunity, and equal employment opportunity. This plan specifically addresses the obligations of the institution under the following laws and regulations:

  • Civil Rights Act of 1964, Title VII--prohibiting discrimination in employment based on race, color, religion, sex or national origin.
  • Educational Amendments of 1972, Title IX--prohibiting discrimination based on sex against students and employees in any educational program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.
  • Equal Pay Act of 1963--amending the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 and requiring employers to provide equal pay for men and women performing similar work.
  • Executive Order 11246, as amended by Executive Order 11375--prohibiting discrimination in employment on basis of race, color, religion, sex, or national origin by federal contractors and subcontractors having federal contracts in excess of $50,000.
  • Rehabilitation Act of 1973--prohibiting discrimination against handicapped persons (students or employees) by institutions receiving Department of Health and Human Services funding.
  • American with Disabilities Act of 1990--containing broader protection for the handicapped than both the Illinois Human Rights Act and the Federal Rehabilitation Act of 1973. Persons with disabilities are protected not only from discrimination in employment, but discrimination regarding housing, access to public accommodations and services, transportation and telecommunications.
  • Illinois Human Rights Act of 1980--establishing the Department of Human Rights and the Illinois Human Rights Commission, and prohibiting discrimination in all forms in connection with employment, real estate transactions, access to financial credit and availability of public accommodations.
  • The Vietnam-era Veterans Readjustment Assistance Act of 1974--prohibiting discrimination in employment against Vietnam-era and disabled veterans.

Responsibility for Implementation

The ultimate responsibility for equal employment opportunity and its full achievement through this Diversity and Equal Employment Opportunity Policy Statement rests with the President of Chicago State University , both institutionally and under the law.

The Equal Employment Opportunity Office shall have immediate responsibility for overseeing of the Policy Statement.

Complaint Procedures

A. Overview

These complaint procedures are promulgated in the hope that their accessibility, simplicity, speed, and high standards of fairness will encourage employees and students to choose the internal forum over an external one in seeking redress of perceived injustices.

Coverage: These procedures apply to all complaints which may arise in matters of general personnel administration and matters involving the rights provided under Title VII which directly affect the personal interests and well-being of an individual employee or student. Complaints which are covered exclusively under provisions in a valid collective bargaining agreement remain subject to those provisions.

Eligibility: Any employee or student believing that he or she has been discriminated against through the action of another employee, a supervisor, a teacher, or other person acting for the institution, may bring an informal complaint under these procedures.

Interpretation of Coverage: Where a dispute exists as to whether a particular matter is subject to coverage by these complaint procedures, Chicago State University reserves the right to make the final judgment on that question, through the President.

B. Grievance Procedure

Statement of Purpose: Chicago State University has established the following complaint procedures to demonstrate its commitment to nondiscrimination on the basis of sex, race, age, national origin, sexual orientation, religion, disability, or status as a Vietnam veteran.

Responsibilities: Any member of the University community, who believes he/she has been discriminated against, may file a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) Office. The EEO Office is responsible for conducting investigations of alleged discrimination and sexual harassment complaints.

Any employee or student may at any time contact the EEO Office for purposes of advice, discussion of an alleged discrimination complaint and/or assistance in undertaking a formal or informal resolution of a complaint. An investigation leading to a formal determination will normally be undertaken by the EEO Coordinator or his/her designee upon receipt of a written complaint. If there are multiple reports of allegedly illegal harassment or discrimination or of a single allegation of particularly grievous harassment or discrimination, the EEO Coordinator may, after consultation with the President, (or President's designee), initiate an investigation in the absence of receipt of a written complaint.

Complaints should be submitted as soon as possible after the alleged discrimination has occurred in order to permit prompt and equitable resolution. In situations that require immediate action, because of safety or other concerns, the University may take any necessary action (e.g. suspension with pay) in order to facilitate the investigation. The investigation shall be completed as thoroughly and expeditiously as possible.

Any University staff and/or faculty member in a supervisory role has the duty to report to the EEO Office any known alleged sexual harassment and/or discriminating behavior based on sex, race or other basis that creates a hostile environment, whether or not a complain has been made by an alleged victim.

A complaint of alleged discrimination, including sexual harassment, against the University President should be filed with the chair of the University Board of Trustees. Complaints against the EEO Coordinator or office should be filed with the President, who will appoint a neutral party to carry out the role of the EEO Office as outline below.

C. Complaint Procedures

Complainant will be asked to complete an in-take form which will include a description of the alleged discrimination and the nature of the remedy desired. Any investigation may be assigned by the EEO Officer to the EO Coordinator and/or any appropriate designee.

A private interview will be conducted by the Coordinator with the complainant.

The Coordinator will notify and interview the person(s) named in the complaint (respondent) to apprise them of the charges and afford them an opportunity to respond.

The investigation by the Coordinator will include interviewing witnesses, collecting documentation, and seeking any additional information necessary. In conducting the investigation, the coordinator shall have unrestricted access to all pertinent materials, records, reports and documents in possession of any University personnel, and shall be afforded the opportunity to interview all persons possessing relevant information.

The Coordinator may assist in the informal resolution of the complaint. With the consent of both parties involved, the Coordinator will arrange for information to be shared between the parties regarding applicable issues and appropriate remedies. Failure to reach a resolution will result in the continuation of the investigation.

The Coordinator will prepare and forward a written report of the investigation and findings to the EEO Officer. The EEO Officer will then determine whether there exists substantial evidence to support the alleged complaint.

A final written determination, setting forth the EEO Officer's decision will be sent to both the complainant and the respondent.

If disciplinary action is required as a result of a finding against the respondent, procedures under the relevant collective bargaining agreements, Board of Trustees Regulations, State Universities Civil Service Status and Rules, or University Student Conduct Code will be followed.

A review of the final determination of the EEO Officer may be requested of the President.

Complainant has the right to file with the Illinois Department of Human Rights (IDHR) or the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) at any time during an investigation. Be aware that IDHR and EEOC have time limitations for filing a charge of discrimination.

Any retaliatory action taken by a Chicago State University employee against a complaining party as a result of that party's seeking redress under these procedures is prohibited and shall be regarded as a separate and distinct cause for complaint under these procedures. It is a violation of this policy for anyone to knowingly make false accusations of discrimination or harassment. Failure to prove a claim is not equivalent to a false allegation. Sanctions will be imposed for making false accusations of discrimination or harassment.

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