Policy No. 11.02: Discriminatory Harassment

Relevant excerpt

The university also recognizes a right of equal access to and participation in its programs and activities. This right may be diminished or even nullified by expressions of racist, sexist, and other offensive expressions that create a hostile environment for any member of the university community. Although the university is deeply concerned by the effects of such speech, it cannot legally censor speech or punish those who exercise First Amendment rights. Because the university is committed to free speech and academic freedom, it believes the best remedy for racist, sexist, and other forms of destructive speech is its justifiable condemnation by the entire university community.

Although the university cannot, and does not intend to, censor speech or infringe upon the First Amendment rights of its members, it can and will sanction acts of discriminatory harassment that do not qualify for First Amendment protection. This policy statement defines discriminatory harassment and explains the university’s enforcement policies as they relate to faculty and staff.

Discriminatory Harassment is conduct that has the purpose or foreseeable effect of unreasonably interfering with an identifiable individual’s work or academic performance or of creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive work or learning environment for that individual. It is not necessary that the consequences actually occur, but the test of whether they are foreseeable is to be determined objectively by reference to all the circumstances of the particular case.

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