Human Rights Policy
The College of Saint Benedict and Saint John's University
I. PURPOSE, SCOPE AND DEFINITIONS
A. Purpose. The College of Saint Benedict ("CSB") and Saint John's University ("SJU") are committed to creating and maintaining an environment in which all members of the community are aware of and respect the rights and human dignity of every other member. Discrimination and harassment based on race, religion, color, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, age, marital status, disability or other legally protected category or characteristic are reprehensible and are antithetical to the mission of these institutions. CSB and SJU have zero tolerance for unlawful discrimination and harassment.
Discrimination or harassment relating to race, religion, color, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, age, marital status, disability, or other legally protected category or characteristic is not only a violation of this policy and our values but it is also prohibited by both state and federal law, under such laws as:
· Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, sex, religion, and national origin in employment;
· Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, which prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex, including sexual harassment, sexual violence, and other forms of sexual misconduct;
· The Americans with Disabilities Act of 1992, which prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability;
· The Minnesota Human Rights Act, which prohibits discrimination on various grounds; and
· Other state and federal laws.
B. Scope. This policy applies to all students, faculty, and staff of CSB and SJU. Other individuals or organizations engaging in or conducting activities associated with CSB and/or SJU or doing business at or with CSB and/or SJU, including but not limited to, vendors, prospective students, prospective employees, and visitors to campus, are also required to comply with the provisions of this policy. All community members must abide by this policy at all times, whether on campus or away from campus, when engaged in activities sponsored by the institution or which otherwise relate to the institution or its business. Such activities include, but are not limited to, professional meetings, classes, practica, seminars, study abroad programs, and all other activities involving or relating to the institution.
1. Discrimination. In the context of human rights, discrimination refers to unfair and/or unequal treatment of an individual or group when based upon legally protected characteristics, including race, religion, color, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, age, marital status, and disability. Some civil rights laws applicable to employees and students may also include affirmative obligations requiring CSB and SJU to provide reasonable accommodations to members of certain protected classes. For example employees who have disabilities may request a reasonable modification of their job duties or some other accommodation to assist them in performing the functions of their jobs. With regard to students with disabilities, CSB and SJU are obligated to provide reasonable modifications to their practices, policies and procedures and auxiliary aids and services to ensure that such students have an equal opportunity to participate in, and enjoy the benefits of the educational programs offered by CSB and SJU.
2. Harassment. Harassment is defined in part as follows:
Verbal, non-verbal, or physical conduct that denigrates or shows hostility or aversion toward an individual or a group of individuals because of race, religion, color, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, age, marital status, disability, or other legally protected category or characteristic when:
• submission to such conduct is made either explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of an individual's employment or educational experience; or submission or rejection of such conduct by an individual is used as the basis of employment decisions or academic/educational decisions affecting such individual (Quid Pro Quo Harassment);
• such conduct has the purpose or effect of substantially and unreasonably interfering with an individual's work or educational experience or creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive working, residential, or educational environment (Hostile Environment Harassment).
Examples of Harassment. The determination of what constitutes harassment depends upon the specific facts of each situation in the context in which the conduct occurs. Harassment may take many forms. It may be subtle and indirect, or blatant and overt. It may occur between peers or between individuals in a hierarchical relationship. If it meets the conditions set forth in the above definition, conduct such as the following may be considered discriminatory harassment:
• epithets, slurs, negative stereotyping, obscene gestures, leering, insults, or threatening, intimidating, or hostile acts that relate to race, religion, color, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, age, marital status, disability or other legally protected category or characteristic;
• written or graphic material that is used for the purpose of denigrating or showing hostility or aversion toward an individual or a group of individuals because of race, religion, color, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, age, marital status, disability, or other legally protected category or characteristic;
• unwelcome and inappropriate physical contact related to race, religion, color, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, age, marital status, disability, or other legally protected category or characteristic, including without limitation, unwanted touching and assaultive conduct.
3. Sexual Harassment. One type of harassment is sexual harassment. Sexual harassment and other forms of sexual misconduct are prohibited by both this policy and by the Joint Sexual Misconduct Policy. See the Joint Sexual Misconduct Policy for more information on conduct that constitutes sexual harassment and sexual misconduct.
4. Hostile Environment. Hostile Environment harassment is established when harassment (as defined above) is so severe or pervasive that it has the purpose or effect of substantially and unreasonably interfering with an individual's work or educational experience or creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive working, residential, or educational environment. CSB and SJU will consider the following questions, in addition to other factors, in determining if there is a hostile environment:
• Is the conduct based on an individual's race, religion, color, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, age, marital status, disability, or other legally protected category or characteristic?
• Was it a single incident or a pattern of incidents? If it was a single incident, how severe was the conduct?
• Was the conduct physical, verbal or both?
• How frequent was the conduct?
• Would other people subjected to such conduct feel that the conduct creates an intimidating, hostile, or offensive working, residential, or educational environment?
CSB and SJU may take action, including disciplinary action, to stop and remedy conduct that could lead to the creation of a hostile environment.
5. Other Important Terms.
a. Community and institutions refer to the College of Saint Benedict and Saint John's University, and in the case of community, all of their students, faculty and staff, and associates.
b. Campus refers to the grounds of the College of Saint Benedict and Saint John's University.
c. Campus authorities refer to the Department of Security at the College of Saint Benedict, Life Safety Services at Saint John's University, and/or the Human RIghts Officer(s) ("HRO"), Dean(s) of Students, or Title IX Coordinators.
d. Student refers to any person enrolled in the College of Saint Benedict, or Saint John's University, whether undergraduate or graduate.
e. Supervisor refers to administrators, department chairs, faculty, residence directors, faculty residents, staff persons, and others who have the responsibility for faculty, staff, or students' terms and/or conditions of employment or education.
f. Associate refers to any individual or organization engaging in or conducting activities associated with CSB and/or SJU or doing business at or with CSB and/or SJU, including members of Saint John's Abbey or Saint Benedict's Monastery.
g. Third Party refers to an individual or entity who is not a member of the campus community but whose activities bring them into contact with members of the campus community, including, but not limited to, visitors to campus, alums, and prospective students and prospective employees.
h. Title IX Coordinators are officials from CSB and SJU who have been appointed by their respective institutions to address issues of gender-based discrimination and sexual misconduct. The Title IX Coordinators for each institution are listed in the contact information at the end of this policy.
A. Policy Statement. CSB and SJU prohibit harassment and discrimination on the basis of race, religion, color, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, age, marital status, disability, or other legally protected category or characteristic. CSB and SJU will investigate and promptly seek the equitable resolution of allegations of conduct that violates this policy.
B. Academic Setting. It is not the purpose or the intent of this policy to discourage the open discussion of controversial issues or the free exchange of opinions and ideas occurring within the academic setting. CSB and SJU are committed to the principles of free inquiry and free expression within the context of the Catholic and Benedictine traditions and in accordance with the principles of human rights and dignity. Respect for these principles requires that members of the community are open to the expression of opinions of others though they may not share the same views.
Whatever the boundaries of free inquiry and expression, every member of the community should be attentive to the feelings and sensibilities of others, and should demonstrate the high standards of civility and good taste that reflect mutual respect, understanding and sensitivity among all members of our diverse community. In particular, members of the faculty represent the institutions and have a special role and position of authority with respect to students. They should treat students with respect and dignity and should be particularly sensitive to the impact of their words and opinions.
All members of the academic community have the right to participate in the academic enterprise without discrimination on the basis of race, religion, color, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, age, marital status, disability, or other legally protected category or characteristic. Discriminatory harassment on the basis of these categories is not protected expression.
III. REPORTING RESPONSIBILITIES
All Community Members. All community members (faculty, staff, students, and associates) who have experienced or observed others experiencing what they believe to be incidents of discrimination or harassment are expected to report such conduct to a Human Rights Officer promptly (see contact information noted at the end of this policy document). All community members are responsible for being fully familiar with the Joint Human Rights Policy and the Joint Sexual Misconduct Policy. In addition, all third parties are encouraged to report alleged incidents of discrimination or harassment to a Human Rights Officer.
Supervisors. Supervisors have the further responsibility to use their best efforts to assure that discrimination and harassment do not occur and to report to the Human Rights Officer all conduct of which they have knowledge that may violate this policy.
IV. COMPLAINT PROCEDURE
Complaints involving human rights issues will generally be processed and considered pursuant to the Joint Complaint Procedure for Human Rights Violations. Because of the unique issues involved in sexual misconduct cases, when a complaint involves allegations of sexual misconduct, the complaint will be processed according to the Joint Sexual Misconduct Complaint Procedure. CSB and SJU strive to treat all who are involved or implicated in human rights complaint procedures in a fair and equitable manner.
Because of the sensitive nature of human rights complaints, the need to protect the privacy of the parties, the need to ward against retaliation, and the interest in resolving complaints as quickly and effectively as possible, the institutions will strive to keep human rights complaints as confidential as possible. Generally, CSB and SJU will only inform those officials and individuals who have a need to know that a complaint was made. **
Notwithstanding the preceding paragraph, CSB and SJU have an obligation to investigate complaints under this policy and to take reasonable steps to prevent ongoing harassment, discrimination, sexual misconduct, and related retaliation, so strict confidentiality may not be guaranteed when a person makes a report to a Human Rights Officer, the Title IX Coordinator, or to a person considered a "supervisor" under this policy. If a complainant asks the Human Rights Officer(s), the Title IX Coordinator, or another supervisor that his or her name or other identifiable information not be revealed, CSB/SJU will evaluate the request in the context of their responsibility to provide a safe and nondiscriminatory environment for all students, staff, and faculty. Individuals wishing to discuss an incident confidentially have resources available to them. In general, the law recognizes and protects the confidentiality of communications between persons seeking care from a medical or mental health professional. The medical and mental health professionals at CSB/SJU respect and protect confidential communications from students, faculty, and staff to the extent they are legally able to do so. Any of these professionals may have to breach a confidence, however, when he or she perceives an immediate and serious threat to any person or property. In addition, medical and mental health professionals are required by law to report any allegation of sexual assault or other abuse of a person under 18. Please refer to the Joint Policy for Reporting Suspected Child Abuse at https://www.csbsju.edu/Human-Rights/Child-Protection/Reporting-Suspected-Child-Abuse.htm.
CSB and SJU want to support all individuals who report or are victims of harassment or discrimination prohibited by this policy. If you have concerns about confidentiality, please speak with the Human Rights Officer about confidentiality issues.
**Because of the significant interaction between students and employees of CSB and SJU, reports of a human rights violation at one institution shall be shared with appropriate leadership of the other institution so that each institution can take appropriate responsive measures.
CSB and SJU strictly prohibit retaliation against any person who complains in good faith of a human rights policy violation. In addition CSB and SJU strictly prohibit retaliation against any person because of their good faith involvement in an investigation or hearing as part of the complaint process. Encouraging others to retaliate also violates this policy. If you feel you have been retaliated against, you should report the retaliation to the Human Rights Officer immediately. CSB and SJU cannot stop retaliation unless they know about it.
Conduct that violates this policy may lead to disciplinary action, up to and including termination of employment and suspension or expulsion from the academic community. A malicious false report will lead to disciplinary action, up to and including termination of employment and suspension or expulsion from the academic community. Sanctions will be issued in accordance with the appropriate handbook policy or procedure (if any).
VIII. CONTACT INFORMATION
COLLEGE OF SAINT BENEDICT
|Faculty/Staff Human Rights Officer and Deputy Title IX Coordinator||Judy Bednar, firstname.lastname@example.org, 320.363.5071|
|Student Human Rights Officer||Brandy Woodard, email@example.com, 320.363.5455|
|VP for Student Development and Lead Title IX Coordinator||Jody Terhaar, firstname.lastname@example.org, 320.363.5270|
|Security Director||Darren Swanson, email@example.com, 320.363.5000|
SAINT JOHN'S UNIVERSITY (Including School of Theology)
|Faculty/Staff Human Rights Officer and Deputy Title IX Coordinator||Judy Bednar, firstname.lastname@example.org, 320.363.5071|
|Student Human Rights Officer||Brandyn Woodard, email@example.com, 320.363.3799|
|VP for Student Development and Lead Title IX Coordinator||Doug Mullin, firstname.lastname@example.org, 320.363.2737|
|Dean of Students and Deputy Title IX Coordinator||Michael Connolly, email@example.com, 320.363.3171|
|Life Safety Services Director||Shawn Vierzba, firstname.lastname@example.org, 320.363.2144|
|Dean of the SJU School of Theology||Bill Cahoy, email@example.com, 320.363.3182|
|Rector of the SJU School of Theology||Michael Patella, firstname.lastname@example.org, 320.363.2108|
If any changes are made in the persons holding these positions, current information will be available on the CSB/SJU web site.
Endorsed by CSB Board of Trustees and Approved by President MaryAnn Baenninger, November 8, 2013
Approved by SJU Board of Trustees, November 8, 2013