Equal Employment Opportunity and Antidiscrimination Policy

Effective Date:

November 1, 2019

Supersedes:

Equal Employment Opportunity and Antidiscrimination Policy effective April 2, 2019

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. The RF does not tolerate unlawful Discrimination, Harassment or Retaliation.

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.

This policy applies to and is intended to protect all employees, applicants for employment, paid or unpaid interns, contractors, students, those with RF responsibilities, those who carry out business in the name of the RF, and third-parties conducting business with the RF.

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 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 sincerely held religious, ethical or moral beliefs, he or she must notify the RF campus human resources office. The RF will work with the individual to develop a reasonable accommodation that allows him/her to observe sincerely held religious, moral or ethical beliefs while performing the essential functions of the position. The RF retains the right to select which accommodations, if any, will be granted.

The RF will also provide reasonable accommodations for attire, clothing or facial hair (e.g., turbans, headscarves, hijabs, burqas, yarmulkes, and beards) worn for religious purposes for applicants and employees, except where doing so would pose an undue hardship on RF’s business or operations.

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

Reasonable Accommodations for Domestic Violence Victims

The Research Foundation will provide reasonable accommodations to employees who are victims of domestic violence who must be absent from work to:

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 - disparate treatment of an individual based on that individual's Protected Trait. Discrimination includes, but is not limited to disparate treatment in hiring, firing, compensation, training/development, or in terms, conditions or privileges of employment because of an individual’s Protected Trait. Differences in treatment are not discrimination under this policy where differences in treatment are permissible under federal and state law.

Race discrimination includes discrimination based on traits historically associated with race, including but not limited to, hair texture and protective hairstyles, including braids, locks and twists.

Religious discrimination includes discrimination based on religious attire, clothing, or facial hair, or treating applicants for employment differently because of their religious beliefs.

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;
  2. subjecting an employee to inferior terms, conditions or privileges of employment; or
  3. 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's business or operations.

    Retaliation - any adverse treatment, action or credible threat of an adverse treatment or 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, such as participating in an external investigation or proceeding.

    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

January 7, 2020

Updated to reflect 2019 amendments to New York State Human Rights Law and for consistency with the Sexual Harassment Prevention Policy. Updated reasonable accommodation for domestic violence and antidiscrimination against reproductive health decision making.

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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