Valdosta State University is committed to providing a working and academic environment free from prohibited discrimination and harassment and to fostering a nurturing and vibrant community founded upon the fundamental dignity and worth of all its members.
In accordance with applicable federal and state law the University System of Georgia (USG) prohibits its faculty, staff and students from engaging in any form of prohibited discrimination or protected status harassment (including sexual harassment), and expects these individuals to refrain from committing acts of bias within the System’s jurisdiction. The University System of Georgia complies with applicable State and Federal law which provides that it shall be an unlawful discriminatory practice for any employer, because of the sex (including gender and pregnancy discrimination), age, disability, national origin, race, religion, genetic information, or veteran status of any person, to discharge without cause, to refuse to hire, or otherwise discriminate against any person with respect to any matter directly or indirectly related to employment or academic standing.
Harassment in academic settings and in the employment arena where employees are involved is defined as:
Conduct (physical, verbal, graphic, written, or electronic) that is (1) unwelcome; (2) discriminatory on the basis of race, color, sex, religion, national origin, age, sexual orientation, veteran status, genetic information, or disability; (3) directed at an individual or group in one of the protected classes outlined in this policy; and (4) that is sufficiently serious to interfere with or limit an employee’s ability to participate in or benefit from the services, activities, or opportunities offered by the University.
4. PROHIBITION AGAINST RETALIATION
It is a violation of this policy to take an adverse employment action against any employee, because he/she opposed a practice they reasonably believed to be discriminatory; or filed an internal or external complaint, grievance, or charge; or participated in any investigation or proceeding, in accordance with this policy.
If an employee feels that he or she is being harassed by any other employee (including supervisor, coworker, etc.) because of his/her protected class, the employee should immediately make this known to his or her immediate supervisor. The supervisor will promptly notify the Office of Human Resources whose responsibility it is to see that the matter is investigated, and that, where appropriate, disciplinary action is taken. If the employee does not feel the matter can be discussed with the supervisor, the employee should arrange for a conference with the Office of Human Resources to discuss the complaint.
Prohibited harassment of University employees in connection with their work by non-employees may also be a violation of this policy. Any employee who becomes aware of prohibited harassment of an employee by a non-employee should report such harassment to his or her supervisor or to the Office of Human Resources, whose responsibility it is to investigate such matters. Appropriate action will be taken against non-employee violators of this policy.