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Workforce Diversity Plan: II. Discrimination and Harassment Policies

It is the policy of Eugene School District 4J to provide equal employment opportunity to all qualified persons and to prohibit discrimination or harassment in employment on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex (gender), marital status, sexual orientation, age, pregnancy, disability, religion, or veteran status. (Board Policy 2420)

This equal employment opportunity/nondiscrimination policy applies to all employment-related actions including but not limited to recruitment, selection, promotion, assignment and transfer, demotion, termination, compensation, benefits, layoff and recall, and training opportunities. Furthermore, this policy applies to harassment or intimidation of an employee by another employee, or by a non-employee, because of race, color, national origin, sex (gender), marital status, sexual orientation, age, pregnancy, disability, religion, or veteran status.

This policy conforms to federal and state laws and to the WorkForce Diversity Policy of the Board of Directors of Eugene School District 4J. These laws and orders include federal Executive Order 11246, as amended, Title VI and Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Title IX of the Educational Amendments of 1972, the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, the Vietnam Era Readjustment Assistance Act of 1974, the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, and the Civil Rights Act of 1991.

It is also the intent of the district to take affirmative action to recruit and to employ members of protected groups in job classes in which they are underrepresented. Under federal Executive Order 11246, as amended, protected minority groups are defined as African Americans, Asian Americans, Hispanic/Latino Americans and Native Americans. Women are also designated a protected group. These protected groups are those groups of persons who have historically been most disadvantaged by discriminatory practices, including practices formerly sanctioned by law. Affirmative action employment efforts are also required in some situations for disabled veterans of the Vietnam era and for people with disabilities.

2.2.1 To achieve equal employment opportunity for qualified but underrepresented segments of the population, the Eugene Public Schools will continue its commitment to a program of affirmative action in recruitment, employment, assignment, and promotion. The workforce diversity program will be designed to increase the numbers of people of color and women at all levels of the classified and licensed work force where they continue to be underrepresented.

2.2.2 As a part of this ongoing commitment to diversity and affirmative action, it is also the policy of the district to seek a balanced representation of gender and racial/ethnic groups within major organizational units (departments and schools), major occupational groups (management, teacher, classified), and major salary classification levels. To address the “glass ceiling”, the district will pursue a policy of identification, encouragement, counseling, and leadership development of women, racial/ethnic minorities, and people with disabilities within the district for the purpose of increasing their representation in supervisory and management positions.

It is the policy of Eugene School District 4J that sexual harassment of employees in the work environment is unacceptable and will not be tolerated. (Board Policy 2435)

2.3.1 Sexual harassment is defined as “unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature.” Sexual harassment may include such actions as: sex-oriented verbal “kidding,” “teasing” or jokes; subtle pressure for sexual activity; physical contact such as patting, pinching or brushing against another’s body; or demands for sexual favors.

Conduct of this type is improper if: (a) submission to the conduct is either an explicit or implicit term or condition of employment; (b) submission to or rejection of the conduct is used as a basis for employment decisions affecting the person involved; or (c) the conduct has the purpose or effect of substantially interfering with an individual’s work performance or creating an intimidating, hostile or offensive working environment.

2.3.2 All employees of Eugene School District 4J are expected to avoid any behavior or conduct toward any other employee which could be interpreted as sexual harassment.

Appropriate management and supervisory personnel shall take prompt, corrective action when they become aware of sexual harassment. Such action may include discipline up to and including termination of the offending employee or employees.

2.3.4 Any employee of Eugene School District 4J who feels that he or she has been the victim of sexual harassment should follow the district’s complaint process relating to discrimination or notify the Director of Human Resources. The complaint will be investigated immediately. If the complaint is found to have merit, corrective action, as described above, will be implemented. If the complaint is found to be invalid, all involved parties will be so notified.

2.3.5 No reprisal or adverse action will occur as a consequence of initiating a sexual harassment complaint. Federal and state laws strictly forbid any form of reprisal or retaliation against a complainant or parties-in-interest in connection with the filing of a complaint of employment discrimination or harassment. Any form of retaliation for the filing of a complaint will be subject to immediate disciplinary action, up to and including dismissal.

It is the policy of the Eugene School District not to discriminate against any otherwise qualified employee or applicant for employment because of disability. Persons with disabilities will be encouraged to apply for positions in the Eugene Public Schools for which they are qualified. Such applicants will be given fair consideration for positions, and the district will make reasonable accommodation to such disabilities wherever feasible. (Board Policy 2430)

2.4.1 The district’s ADA survey of buildings has revealed that, while most work locations are accessible to individuals with disabilities, there are many locations that would require additional and significant modifications. The cost to fully modify all such spaces is beyond the financial resources of the district. However, the district is committed to making reasonable accommodation to the known physical and mental limitations of otherwise qualified individuals with disabilities, unless such accommodation would impose an undue hardship on the district. The district will not deny any employment opportunity or benefit to, or refuse to consider for employment, a qualified person with a disability based solely on the need to make reasonable accommodation.

2.4.2 Reasonable accommodation is defined as any change in the work environment or in the way things are customarily done that enables an individual with a disability to enjoy equal employment opportunities. The district recognizes three categories of reasonable accommodation in the employment process:

(a) accommodations that are made to ensure equal opportunity in the selection process;
(b) accommodations that allow employees with disabilities to perform the essential functions of a job; and,
(c) accommodations that enable employees with disabilities to enjoy employment benefits and privileges equal to those of non-disabled employees.

2.4.3 Reasonable accommodation may also include:

(a) making existing facilities used by employees with disabilities accessible; and,
(b) job restructuring, part-time or modified work schedules, reassignment to a vacant position, acquisition or modification of equipment or devices, appropriate adjustment or modifications of examinations, training materials or policies, the provision of qualified readers or interpreters, and other similar accommodations for individuals with disabilities.

2.4.4 Decisions regarding reasonable accommodation will be determined by the Director of Human Resources, after a conference with the affected individual with a disability, on a case-by-case basis depending on the requirements of the job, the particular disability of the employee or applicant, and the extent to which modifications or auxiliary aids are available without imposing an undue hardship on the district.