Harassment, Discrimination and Bully Policy
Harassment is defined as any repeated or continuing uninvited contact that serves no useful purpose beyond creating alarm, annoyance, or emotional distress.
Discrimination is defined as the unfair or prejudicial treatment of different categories of people and groups based on characteristics such as race, gender, age, or sexual orientation.
The Assistance League® Sierra Foothills (“Sierra Foothills”) is committed to creating an environment in which all individuals are treated with respect and dignity. Sierra Foothills is committed to creating a professional atmosphere that promotes equal opportunities to any employee, member, community volunteer, community vendor or recipient of this chapter’s philanthropic services and prohibits unlawful discriminatory practices, including sexual harassment or harassment in general. Therefore, Sierra Foothills expects that all individuals will conduct themselves at all times in a business-like professional manner, free of explicit bias, prejudice, and harassment. Sierra Foothills has developed this policy to ensure that its operations are conducted in an environment free from unlawful harassment, discrimination, and retaliation. Sierra Foothills will make every reasonable effort to ensure that all concerned are familiar with these policies and are aware that any complaint alleging a violation of such policy will be appropriately investigated and resolved as set forth below.
Assistance League Sierra Foothills does not and shall not discriminate or harass any individual on the basis of race, color, religion, gender, gender identity, gender expression, age, size, weight, national origin, disability, marital status, sex, sexual orientation, genetic information, military status or any other characteristic protected by law, in any of its activities or operations. These activities include, but are not limited to, hiring, or firing of staff (if applicable), selection of members, volunteers and vendors, and provision of services. We are committed to providing an inclusive and welcoming environment for all members of our staff, clients, volunteers, subcontractors, vendors, and clients.
This policy statement is meant to be construed in accordance with the provisions of Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, Age Discrimination Act of 1975, Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA), and all regulations issued by the of the U.S. Department of Health Services pursuant to those acts, in Title 45 Code of the Federal Regulations generally appearing in Part 80, 84, 91. This policy statement is also meant to be construed in accordance with the provisions of all other applicable Federal, State and local Laws and Regulations.
Sierra Foothills encourages reporting of all perceived incidents of discrimination or harassment. It is the policy of Sierra Foothills to investigate such reports promptly and thoroughly. Sierra Foothills prohibits retaliation against any individual who reports discrimination or harassment or participates in an investigation of such reports.
SEXUAL HARASSMENT PROHIBITED
Sexual harassment constitutes discrimination and is illegal under federal, state and local laws. For the purposes of this policy, “sexual harassment” is defined, as in the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission Guidelines, as unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature when, for example: a) submission to such conduct is made either explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of an individual’s employment or receipt of a benefit, b) submission to or rejection of such conduct by an individual is used as the basis for employment or benefit decisions affecting such individual, or c) such conduct has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with an individual’s work performance or creating an intimidating, hostile or offensive environment.
Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 recognizes two types of sexual harassment: a) quid pro quo and b) hostile work environment. Sexual harassment may include a range of subtle and not-so-subtle behaviors and may involve individuals of the same or different gender. Depending on the circumstances, these behaviors may include unwanted sexual advances or requests for sexual favors; sexual jokes and innuendo; verbal abuse of a sexual nature; commentary about an individual’s body, sexual prowess or sexual deficiencies; leering, whistling or touching; insulting or obscene comments or gestures; display in the workplace of sexually suggestive objects or pictures; and other physical, verbal or visual conduct of a sexual nature.
Harassment on the basis of any other protected characteristic is also strictly prohibited. Under this policy, harassment is verbal, written or physical conduct that denigrates or shows hostility or aversion toward an individual because of his or her race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, national origin, age, disability, marital status, citizenship, genetic information, or any other characteristic protected by law, or that of his or her relatives, friends or associates, and that: a) has the purpose or effect of creating an intimidating, hostile or offensive work environment for employee, member, community volunteer, community vendor or recipient of this chapter’s philanthropic services, b) has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with an individual’s work performance or that of a member, community volunteer, community vendor or recipient of this chapter’s philanthropic services, or c) otherwise adversely affects an individual’s employment opportunities or other opportunities for members, community volunteers, community vendors or recipient of this chapter’s philanthropic services.
Harassing conduct includes epithets, slurs or negative stereotyping; threatening, intimidating or hostile acts; denigrating jokes; and written or graphic material that denigrates or shows hostility or aversion toward an individual or group displayed in person, in text messages, social networking sites or other means.
INDIVIDUALS AND CONDUCT COVERED
These policies apply to all applicants and employees, members, community volunteers, community vendors or recipients of this chapter’s philanthropic services.
REPORTING AN INCIDENT OF HARASSMENT, DISCRIMINATION OR RETALIATION
Sierra Foothills encourages reporting of all perceived incidents of discrimination, harassment, or retaliation, regardless of the offender’s identity or position. Individuals who believe that they have been the victim of such conduct should discuss their concerns with Assistance League Sierra Foothills’ President. See the complaint procedure described below.
Individuals who believe they have been the victims of conduct prohibited by this policy or believe they have witnessed such conduct should discuss their concerns with Assistance League Sierra Foothills’ President. and provide a detailed written statement of the facts in support of the allegations of the Complaint.
Sierra Foothills encourages the prompt reporting of complaints or concerns so that rapid and constructive action can be taken before relationships become irreparably strained. Therefore, while no fixed reporting period has been established, early reporting and intervention have proven to be the most effective method of resolving actual or perceived incidents of harassment.
Any reported allegations of harassment, discrimination or retaliation will be investigated promptly. The investigation may include individual interviews with the parties involved and, where necessary, with individuals who may have observed the alleged conduct or may have other relevant knowledge. The President shall be responsible for conducting a thorough and timely investigation of the Complaint. The President shall also ensure that:
- Sierra Foothills’ Board takes immediate steps when potential abuse has been reported.
- Sierra Foothills’ Board would commence the investigation and notify the National Assistance League Board.
- Maintain confidentiality of the victim and any accused to the extent practicable while also permitting for a thorough investigation.
- Consult with Legal Counsel and determine what legal requirements exist and make required reports to law enforcement and/or child protective services.
- Cooperate fully with law enforcement.
- Suspend any accused from the performance of duties involving Protected Persons until investigation is complete.
- Inform the victim/victim’s family of the suspected abuse and keep them advised of the status of the investigation, working in conjunction with law enforcement and legal counsel as applicable.
The League will maintain confidentiality throughout the investigatory process to the extent consistent with adequate investigation and appropriate corrective action.
Retaliation against an individual for reporting harassment or discrimination or for participating in an investigation of a claim of harassment or discrimination is a serious violation of this policy and, like harassment or discrimination itself, will be subject to disciplinary action. Acts of retaliation should be reported immediately and will be promptly investigated and addressed.
Misconduct constituting harassment, discrimination or retaliation will be dealt with appropriately and a Complainant will be notified as to the findings of the investigation, as appropriate and consistent with controlling law. Responsive action may include, for example, training, referral to counseling or disciplinary action such as a warning, reprimand, termination, removal of volunteer privileges, barred from any further service with the Sierra Foothills chapter and National Assistance League or whatever action the League believes appropriate under the circumstances.
Prepared: September 2020 Approved: October 2020 Allegation of Abuse Checklist