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Office Of Legal Affairs, Ethics, and Compliance

Non-Discrimination and Harassment Prevention

Discrimination and Sexual Harassment Prevention

It is the policy of Columbus State University to maintain an academic and work environment for all students, faculty, and staff that is free of discrimination and harassment. Discrimination and harassment are contrary to the standards of the university community. They diminish individual dignity and impede educational opportunities, equal access to freedom of academic inquiry, and equal employment. Discrimination and harassment on the basis of race, color, national origin, age, sex (including gender and pregnancy discrimination), sexual orientation, gender identity, disability, religion, or veteran‘s status will not be tolerated at Columbus State University.

Discrimination and harassment are very serious matters that can have far-reaching, current and future impact on the lives, educational experience, and careers of individuals. Intentionally false accusations can have a similar impact. Both a person who impermissibly discriminates against another, and a person who knowingly and intentionally files a false complaint under this policy, are subject to university discipline.

Definition of Discrimination and Harassment

For the purposes of determining whether a particular course of conduct constitutes discrimination or harassment under this policy, the university subscribes to the following definition:

Conduct that is based upon an individual's race, color, national origin, age, sex (including gender and pregnancy discrimination), sexual orientation, gender identity, disability, religion, or veteran's status that:

  • adversely affects a term or condition of an individual's employment, education, living environment or participation in a University activity;
  • is used as the basis for or a factor in decisions affecting that individual's employment, education, living environment or participation in a university activity; or
  • has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with an individual's employment or educational performance or creating an intimidating, hostile, offensive, or abusive environment for that individual's employment, education, living environment, or participation in a university activity.

Some examples of conduct that may constitute prohibited discrimination may include, but are not limited to:

  • denying a person access to an educational program based on that person's race, color, national origin, age, sex (including gender and pregnancy discrimination), sexual orientation, gender identity, disability, religion, or veteran's status;
  • denying raises, benefits, or promotions on the basis of a person's race, color, national origin, age, sex (including gender and pregnancy discrimination), sexual orientation, gender identity, disability, religion, or veteran's status;
  • preventing any person from using university facilities or services because of that person's race, color, national origin, age, sex (including gender and pregnancy discrimination), sexual orientation, gender identity, disability, religion, or veteran's status;
  • instigating or allowing an environment that is unwelcoming or hostile based on a person's race, color, national origin, age, sex (including gender and pregnancy discrimination), sexual orientation, gender identity, disability, religion, or veteran's status.

Lodging a Complaint

An individual who wishes to complain to the university about alleged discriminatory or harassing behavior or retaliation should contact:

Craig Burgess, J.D.
General Counsel and Equal Opportunity Officer
706-507-8234
burgess_craig@columbusstate.edu

Tamara Wade
Interim Director, Human Resources
706-507-8919
wade_tamara@columbusstate.edu

Retaliation

The university will take appropriate steps to assure that a person who in good faith reports or participates in an informal resolution or formal investigation of a discrimination or harassment allegation will not be subjected to retaliation. The university also will take appropriate steps to assure that a person against whom such an allegation is made is treated fairly.