Sexual Harassment Policy

  1. The District strives to create and maintain a work environment in which people are treated with dignity, decency and respect. The environment of the District should be characterized by mutual trust and the absence of intimidation, oppression and exploitation. Members should be able to work and learn in a safe, yet stimulating atmosphere. The accomplishment of this goal is essential to the mission of the District. For that reason, the District will not tolerate unlawful discrimination or harassment of any kind. Through enforcement of this policy and by education of our members, the District will seek to prevent, correct and discipline behavior that violates this policy.
  2. All members, regardless of their positions, are covered by and are expected to comply with this policy and to take appropriate measures to ensure that prohibited conduct does not occur. Appropriate disciplinary action will be taken against any member who violates this policy.
  3. The District, in compliance with all applicable federal, state and local anti-discrimination and harassment laws and regulations, enforces this policy in accordance with the following definitions and guidelines
    1. Discrimination
      1. It is a violation of the District’s policy to discriminate in the provision of employment opportunities, benefits or privileges; to create discriminatory work conditions; or to use discriminatory evaluative standards in employment if the basis of that discriminatory treatment is, in whole or in part, the person’s race, color, national origin, age, religion, disability status, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, genetic information or marital status.
      2. Discrimination of this kind may also be strictly prohibited by a variety of federal, state and local laws, including Title VII of the Civil Rights Act 1964, the Age Discrimination Act of 1975, and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990. This policy is intended to comply with the prohibitions stated in these anti-discrimination laws.
      3. Discrimination in violation of this policy will be subject to disciplinary measures up to and including termination.
    2. Harassment
      1. The District prohibits harassment, including sexual harassment, of any kind, and will take appropriate and immediate action in response to complaints or knowledge of violations of this policy. For purposes of this policy, harassment is any verbal or physical conduct designed to threaten, intimidate or coerce a member or any person working for or on behalf of the District. Verbal taunting (including racial and ethnic slurs) that, in the member’s opinion, impairs his/her ability to perform his/her job is included in the definition of harassment.
      2. The following examples of harassment are intended to be guidelines and are not exclusive when determining whether there has been a violation of this policy
        1. Verbal harassment includes comments that are offensive or unwelcome regarding a person’s nationality, origin, race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, age, body, disability or appearance, including epithets, slurs and negative stereotyping.
        2. Nonverbal harassment includes distribution, display or discussion of any written or graphic material that ridicules, denigrates, insults, belittles or shows hostility, aversion or disrespect toward an member or group because of national origin, race, color, religion, age, gender, sexual orientation, pregnancy, appearance, disability, sexual identity, marital or other protected status.
    3. Sexual Harassment
      1. Sexual harassment is a form of unlawful employment discrimination under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and is prohibited under the District’s anti-harassment policy. According to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), sexual harassment is defined as “unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature . . . when . . . submission to or rejection of such conduct is used as the basis for employment decisions . . . or such conduct has the purpose or effect of . . . creating an intimidating, hostile or offensive working environment.
        1. There are two types of sexual harassment
          1. “Quid pro quo” harassment, where submission to harassment is used as the basis for employment decisions. Member benefits such as raises, promotions and better working hours are directly linked to compliance with sexual advances. Therefore, only someone in a supervisory capacity (with the authority to grant such benefits) can engage in quid pro quo harassment.
          2. “Hostile work environment,” where the harassment creates an offensive and unpleasant working environment. A hostile work environment can be created by anyone in the work environment, whether it be supervisors, other members or the citizens that we serve. Hostile environment harassment consists of verbiage of a sexual nature, unwelcome sexual materials or even unwelcome physical contact as a regular part of the work environment. Texts, e-mails, cartoons or posters of a sexual nature; vulgar or lewd comments or jokes; or unwanted touching or fondling all fall into this category.
    4. Sexual harassment occurs when unsolicited and unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, or other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature
      1. Is made explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of employment.
      2. Is used as a basis for an employment decision.
      3. Unreasonably interferes with a member’s work performance or creates an intimidating, hostile or otherwise offensive environment.
    5. Retaliation
      1. No hardship, loss, benefit or penalty may be imposed on an member in response to:
        1. Filing or responding to a bona fide complaint of discrimination or harassment.
        2. Appearing as a witness in the investigation of a complaint.
        3. Serving as an investigator of a complaint.
        4. Retaliation or attempted retaliation in response to lodging a complaint or invoking the complaint process is a violation of this policy. Any member who is found to have violated this aspect of the policy will be subject disciplinary action up to and including termination.