Related Policies and Additional References:
The University prohibits sexual or romantic relationships under the following situations:
- Relationship with a student – it is prohibited for a member of the faculty, staff, advisory or alumni board members or for members of the Board of Trustees (non-students) to have a relationship with a student.
- Relationship with a supervisor – it is prohibited for a supervisor and subordinate to have a sexual or romantic relationship.
- Relationship with a university employee– it is prohibited for a member of an advisory or alumni board or for members of the Board of Trustees to have a relationship with a university employee.
The University strongly discourages sexual or romantic relationships under the following situations:
- Relationship where there is or may be an institutional power difference
- Relationships between faculty and staff with no power difference or supervisory authority but where employees are working within the same department or division.
Individuals who enter into relationships that are strongly discouraged must presume that if a charge of sexual harassment is lodged, it will be exceedingly difficult to prove mutual consent. Thus, parties involved in these type of relationships assume all associated risks, and the University will hold both parties accountable if such a relationship creates any safety or security concerns or if it warrants an investigation.
It is the responsibility of the individuals involved in discouraged and prohibited types of relationships to disclose in writing the nature of involvement to the Human Resources department. If a remedy is available, then one will be discussed at the time of disclosure. Otherwise, all employees of the university as covered by the Personnel Manual who engage in a relationship that is prohibited or discouraged by this policy may be subject to disciplinary action, up to and including termination of employment.
At the discretion of the University, one or both parties to the relationship may be subject to transfer or termination of employment. If transfer or termination is appropriate, the parties involved will be given the opportunity to determine which party will be subject to the change in employment status, to the extent possible. If the parties are unable to agree, the University will make the determination in its sole discretion.
This policy does not apply where the spouse of an employee is a student at the University provided that the employee has disclosed this information to the Human Resources Department.