Harassment.Unwelcome verbal or physical conduct related to one’s protected class that unreasonably interferes with an individual’s work or academic performance or creates an intimidating or hostile work or educational environment (See Hostile Environment as defined below).
Hostile Environment.Whether a hostile environment exists is determined from both a subjective and an objective perspective. The subjective perspective evaluates whether or not the complainant experienced harassment based on protected class. The objective perspective evaluates whether or not the unwelcome conduct by an individual(s) against another individual based upon their protected class is sufficiently severe or pervasive that it alters the conditions of education or employment and creates an environment that a reasonable person would find intimidating, hostile or offensive. The determination of whether an environment is “hostile” must be based on all of the circumstances. These circumstances could include the frequency of the conduct, its severity, and whether it is threatening or humiliating. Simple teasing, offhand comments and isolated incidents (unless extremely serious) will not amount to hostile environment harassment.