Anyone who believes they have been discriminated against on the basis of sex, disability, age, race, color, national origin, religion, sexual orientation or veteran status in violation of the University’s Notice of Non-Discrimination or who has been sexually or racially harassed in violation of the University’s Harassment Policy may bring a grievance under the University’s published procedures.
COMPLAINTS Anyone who wishes to pursue a grievance related to actions in violation of the University’s Notice of Non-Discrimination Policy or have been sexually or racially harassed may initiate a complaint procedure by contacting Sally Herleth, Human Resources Director, McClain Hall 101, 100 East Normal Street, Truman State University, Kirksville, MO 63501, telephone (660) 785-4031. All grievances pursued under this procedure will be promptly and thoroughly investigated and decided within the designated time frames at each stage of the grievance process as set out below.
Complaints should be filed within 180 days of when the discrimination or harassment occurs.
Truman students may opt to either: (1) bring a grievance under this procedure through the Director of Human Resources or (2) they may pursue a complaint under the Student Conduct Code, if the Student Conduct Code is applicable in their particular circumstance by contacting the Dean of Student Affairs, Dr. Lou Ann Gilchrist, 1110 Student Union Building, 100 East Normal Street, Kirksville, MO 63501, telephone (660) 785-5404.
Upon receipt of a complaint, the Human Resources Director or the Director’s designee (hereinafter collectively identified as “Director”) shall proceed to gather information pertinent to the allegations of the complaint. This information gathering phase should be complete within 20 days of receipt of the complaint.
The parties will be notified of the disposition of the complaint at each stage of the process.
HEARINGS Within 10 days of the completion of the information gathering process, the Director will convene a meeting with the complaining party and the person who is alleged to have engaged in discriminatory behavior to attempt a resolution to the grievance. At this meeting, if the complaining party so desires, the Director will proceed to schedule a hearing on the matter at a date and time that is suitable to the parties. The hearing date will begin within 20 days of the completion of the meeting with the parties.
The Director will assemble a hearing board to consider the complaint. The hearing board will consist of two University employees designated by the Director after consultation with the parties. The employees selected to serve on the hearing board will have supervisory experience in managing and disciplining employees. Parties to the hearing will be afforded the opportunity to object to inclusion of persons on the board based on concerns about conflict of interest or bias.
Upon the agreed date, the hearing board will conduct a hearing at which the parties will be given full opportunity to present evidence. The parties may compel the attendance of witnesses to this hearing to the extent that it is within the authority of the University to do so. These proceedings will be recorded for later review, if needed, and all exhibits will be preserved as well. Parties may offer both written and oral submittals to the board. Within 10 days after conclusion of the hearing, the hearing board shall issue a finding of facts and a determination on the merits of the complaint along with a recommended action and shall provide the findings, determination and recommendation to the parties involved. If none of the parties objects to the recommendation within 10 days of its issuance, the recommendation shall be final and binding on all concerned.
APPEALS If either the complaining party or the party who is alleged to be in violation of the University policies objects to the recommendation of the hearing board, that person may appeal the decision of the hearing board by so notifying the Director in writing. The appeal hearing will be conducted by the President of the University or the President’s designee (hereinafter collectively referred to as “President”). As referenced above, the parties must request an appeal within 10 days of the hearing board’s issuance of findings.
The appeal will be based on a review of the record and any objection raised by the parties regarding adherence to the process. The Director will forward the complete hearing record to the President within 15 days of the appeal request. The President will not accept evidence or hear witnesses but will review the record of the matter to determine whether the earlier hearing decision is fairly and reasonably supported by the evidence and to determine if any prejudicial error occurred in the hearing of the matter by the hearing board. The President may refer the matter back to the hearing board for additional action or fact finding if the record is deemed inadequate for any reason. The President will issue a written determination within 30 days after the complete record is forwarded to the President. The President’s determination is final.
If at the conclusion of this process, a violation of the University’s discrimination policy is established, appropriate corrective and remedial actions will be taken.
TIME FRAME The time frame set out in the procedure above is intended to insure that complaints are resolved in a reasonable time, taking into the account the needs for a rapid determination for the complaining party and a fair and just hearing for the accused party. Minor deviations from the time frame are permitted when needed in order to achieve these goals.
CONFIDENTIALITY Throughout the grievance procedure, all parties and participants shall maintain confidentiality to the extent practicable, in a manner consistent with the principles of due process and the grievance process.
RETALIATION PROHIBITED Retaliation against a person who files a complaint of discrimination, including sexual or racial harassment, or persons who participate in related proceedings is strictly prohibited. Such retaliation shall be considered a separate offense subject to additional disciplinary process.
Approved and Adopted March 5, 2013 by Troy D. Paino, President, Truman State University