Equal Employment Opportunity and Antidiscrimination Policy

Effective Date:

April 2, 2019

Supersedes:

Equal Employment Opportunity and Antidiscrimination Policy effective February 21, 2017

Policy Review Date:

1 year from effective date

Issuing Authority:

Research Foundation President

Responsible Party:

Vice President of Human Resources

Contact Information:

518.434.7080

HRA@rfsuny.org

Reason for Policy

The Research Foundation for The State University of New York ("Research Foundation" or "RF") established this policy to provide equal employment opportunities for all qualified persons, to prohibit discrimination in employment, and to promote the full realization of employment opportunities through outreach programs as reflected in affirmative action plans.

Consistent with the goals and standards outlined in the Code of Conduct, the RF promotes and supports a work environment where conduct is based on mutual respect, fairness, and integrity. Employees are expected to be polite, fair, and respectful of one another and those within the communities we serve.

Statement of Policy

The Research Foundation is committed to equal opportunity and non-discrimination in employment for all qualified persons without regard to race, color, religion, sex, gender identity or expression, transgender status, national origin, citizenship, age, creed, disability, veteran status, marital status, familial status, military status, domestic violence victim status, sexual orientation, genetic characteristics/genetic information, or any other trait protected by federal, state, or local law. This policy applies to all employment practices including hiring, advertising, recruitment, promotion, demotion or transfer, layoff or termination, rates of pay or other forms of compensation, and selection for training and development.

Affirmative Action Employer

As an affirmative action employer, the Research Foundation has established outreach programs to provide employment opportunities to women, racial minorities, and individuals with disabilities, special disabled veterans, Vietnam Era veterans, recently separated veterans, Armed Forces service medal veterans, and other protected veterans, consistent with federal law.

If an individual believes he or she is eligible for any of the Research Foundation’s affirmative action programs, he or she is invited to self-identify. This information is strictly voluntary and will be kept confidential. Refusal to provide such information will not subject the applicant or employee to any adverse treatment and will only be used in accordance with government regulations.

Reasonable Accommodations for Qualified Persons with Disabilities

The Research Foundation is committed to providing equal employment opportunities to qualified persons with disabilities. To that end, the Research Foundation will provide reasonable accommodations to such individuals during the application/hiring process or to perform the essential functions of their positions, except where doing so would pose an undue hardship. If an individual believes that he or she needs a reasonable accommodation during the application/hiring process or to perform the essential functions of their position, he or she must notify his or her local operating location’s Human Resources office. The Research Foundation will work with the individual to develop a reasonable accommodation in connection with the application/hiring process or performance of the essential functions of their position. The Research Foundation retains the right to select which accommodations, if any, will be granted.

Reasonable Accommodations for Individual's Sincerely Held Religious Beliefs

The RF will also provide reasonable accommodations to applicants and employees with a sincerely held religious, ethical or moral beliefs, except where doing so would pose an undue hardship on the RF’s business or operations. If an individual believes that he or she needs a reasonable accommodation for their sincerely held religious, ethical or moral beliefs, he or she must notify their RF campus human resources office. The RF will work with the individual to develop a reasonable accommodation that allows them to observe their sincerely held religious, moral or ethical beliefs while performing the essential functions of their position. The RF retains the right to select which accommodations, if any, will be granted.

Special rules may apply for employees in New York City. For more information, see the Leave Administration Handbook.

Prohibition Against Discrimination, Harassment, and Retaliation

The Research Foundation prohibits employees, representatives, vendors, contractors, or other persons doing business with or for the RF from engaging in Discrimination, Harassment, or Retaliation. Discrimination, Harassment, or Retaliation may not occur in the performance of Research Foundation business, at a Research Foundation sponsored event, or on Research Foundation or SUNY property. Discrimination, Harassment, and Retaliation is also prohibited in off-duty conduct between individuals who work together on RF business.

All employees are expected to comply with this policy and the Resolving Discrimination, Harassment, and Retaliation Complaints Procedure, to take appropriate measures to ensure that prohibited conduct does not occur, and to report any suspected policy violations to their supervisor, manager, RF campus human resources office ("RF Campus HR"), campus diversity office, their RF Operations Manager or Deputy Operations Manager, the RF Central Human Resources Office ("RF Central HR"), the Office of General Counsel, the Office of Internal Audit, the Office of Compliance Services, or anonymously through the RF’s Ethics Hotline. An employee’s obligations under this Policy include reporting any violations witnessed by the employee, regardless of whether the employee was the victim or target of the offending conduct. The Research Foundation will take appropriate disciplinary action against any employee who violates this policy. Based upon the seriousness of the offense, disciplinary action may include verbal or written counseling, suspension, or termination of employment. An employee’s obligations under this Policy include reporting any violations witnessed by the employee, regardless of whether the employee was the victim or target of the offending conduct. The Research Foundation will take appropriate disciplinary action against any employee who violates this policy. Based upon the seriousness of the offense, disciplinary action may include verbal or written counseling, suspension, or termination of employment.

If an individual feels that he or she has been or is being subject to Discrimination, Harassment, or Retaliation in violation of this policy or if he or she is aware of any violation of this policy, please refer to the Research Foundation’s Procedure for Resolving Discrimination, Harassment, or Retaliation Complaints immediately.

If an individual experiences or is aware of an incident involving Sexual Harassment, please refer to the Research Foundation’s Sexual Harassment Prevention Policy immediately.

Responsibilities

The following table outlines the responsibilities for compliance with this Policy:

Responsible Party

Responsibility

Corporate Vice President for Human Resources or delegate

Maintain corporate policy and inform operating locations of updates to policy. Support corporate and local efforts to promote equal employment opportunities;

Support in responding appropriately to Discrimination, Harassment, and Retaliation complaints as they arise.

Train affirmative action officers, as necessary, and inform them of changes in rules and regulations affecting individuals eligible for affirmative action programs;

Prepare the annual Equal Employment Opportunity Information Report and the Federal Contractor Veterans’ Employment Report; and

Receive complaints of Harassment, Discrimination, and Retaliation and conduct or oversee internal investigations where appropriate.

Operations Managers and Deputy Operations Managers or delegate

Promote equal employment opportunities. Ensure the operating location properly complies with this Policy;

Ensure operating location is complying with applicable affirmative action requirements; and

Receive and respond appropriately to Discrimination, Harassment, and Retaliation complaints as they arise.

RF Campus HR of Delegate

Ensure that the operating location properly complies with this Policy;

Work with employees to develop a reasonable accommodation in connection with the application/hiring process or performance of the essential functions of the position; and

Receive complaints of Harassment, Discrimination, and Retaliation and conduct or oversee internal investigations where appropriate.

Affirmative Action Officers

Oversee the operating location's affirmative action efforts.

Supervisors and Employees

Comply with this Policy, Resolving Discrimination, Harassment, and Retaliation Procedure, and all other EEO-related policies and procedures.

Campus Diversity Office

Receive and respond appropriately to Discrimination, Harassment, and Retaliation Complaints as they arise;

Conduct or oversee internal investigations where appropriate;

Work with employees to develop a reasonable accommodation in connection with the application/hiring process or performance of the essential functions of position.

Definitions

Discrimination - treatment of an individual based on that individual's Protected Trait. Differences in treatment are not discrimination under this policy where differences in treatment are permissible under federal and state law.

Familial Status - Employees or applicants for employment are protected from discrimination on the basis that they are a parent, pregnant, in the process of becoming a parent, or are a guardian of one of more dependents domiciled in the guardian’s home.

Gender Identity or Expression - a person’s actual or perceived gender-related identity, appearance, behavior, expression, or other gender-related characteristic regardless of the sex assigned to that person at birth, including, but not limited to, the status of being transgender.

Harassment - abuse, intimidation/threats/coercion, assault, and/or other unwelcomed conduct related to a Protected Trait, where the conduct has the purpose or effect of:

  1. unreasonably interfering with an individual’s work environment; or
  2. creating an intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating or offensive environment for the employee.

    Such conduct includes verbal, visual, or physical conduct directed at an individual because of a Protected Trait, to include slurs, insults, insulting/derogatory pictures, assault, blocking ingress/egress, and other unwelcome behaviors.

    Protected Trait –sex, race, color, religion, national origin, citizenship, age, creed, disability, veteran status, marital status, military status, familial status, domestic violence victim status, sexual orientation or gender identity and expression, predisposing genetic characteristics/genetic information, or any other category protected by applicable federal, state, or local law.

    Qualified Person – an applicant or employee who meets the skill, experience, education, or other requirements of an employment position that s/he holds or seeks and who can perform the essential functions of the position with or without reasonable accommodation.

    Reasonable accommodation – any change in the work environment to help a person apply for a job or to perform the duties of his/her job that does not cause undue hardship to the RF.

    Retaliation - any adverse action or credible threat of an adverse action taken by the Research Foundation or any individual doing work for or on behalf the Research Foundation, in response to a complaint of Discrimination or Harassment, participation in an investigation under the RF Procedure for Resolving Discrimination, Harassment, or Retaliation Complaints, or engaging in lawfully protected activities.

    Sexual Harassment – A form of unlawful sex discrimination which includes harassment on the basis of sex, sexual orientation, gender identity and the status of being transgender. Sexual harassment includes instances where submission to unwelcome conduct that is either of a sexual nature, or which is directed at an individual because of that individual’s sex when:

Related Information

Sexual Harassment Prevention Policy

Procedure for Resolving Discrimination, Harassment, and Retaliation Complaints

Forms

Equal Employment Opportunity Self Identification, Voluntary Self-Identification of Disability, Voluntary Invitation to Disclose Veteran Status Form

Change History

Date

Summary of Change

April 2, 2019

Updated to make consistent with Sexual Harassment Prevention Policy; Updated avenues of complaint for employees alleging violations of this policy; Added Reasonable Accommodations for Individual’s Sincerely Held Religious Beliefs; updated definition of Sexual Harassment

February 21, 2017

Combined Previous EEO policies, including Equal Employment Opportunity Policy, Nondiscrimination on the Basis of Age Policy, Nondiscrimination on the Basis of Sexual Orientation, Discrimination Policy, Employment of Disabled Individuals Policy, and Employment of Special Disabled, Vietnam Era, and Other Protected Veterans, Affirmative Action Policies Summaries; Nonharassment in the Workplace.

 

 

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