Some Frequently Asked Questions About Sexual Harassment




Defining sexual harassment [seksh-(e)w(e)ll ha-ras-ment] \n.

 

  1. Unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature.
  2. Form of sex discrimination.
  3. Form of employee misconduct.
  4. Behavior which interferes with work or education of its victims, co-workers, or fellow students. 
  5. Violation of state and federal laws.
  6. Violation of rules and regulations of Augusta University.
  7. Subjects students or employees to disciplinary action up to and including dismissal or expulsion.
  8. Behavior which must be reported by those in supervisory capacity.

 

Q1. How are sexual harassment complaints handled?

A1. To report incidents of sexual harassment or retaliation, faculty members should contact the Sr. Vice President of Academic Affairs; classified employees may contact the EEO/AA officer or the Division of Human Resources; and students may contact the Vice President for Student Affairs or Director of Student Affairs. They receive complaints of sexual harassment from members of the Augusta University community, explain the Augusta University procedures, and may refer individuals to appropriate resources. If your situation permits, you may bring your complaint directly to your supervisor, manager or department chair. They may assist you in bringing the matter to the attention of the appropriate Augusta University official. However, a complainant need not report directly to his/her immediate supervisor but may report the situation directly to the appropriate individual named above. Faculty complaints will be handled using the Faculty Grievance Procedure found in the Faculty Handbook. Student complaints will be handled by using the procedures found in Appendix E of the Student Handbook.

Q2. Who may make a complaint of sexual harassment?

A2. Any member of the Augusta University community may report complaints of sexual harassment. Sexual harassment can occur in all types of circumstances and relationships including those; between or among individuals of different sexes or of the same sex; in relationships of unequal power (for example, between supervisor and employee, faculty member and student, employee and job applicant); and in relationships of equal power (for example, between fellow employees or fellow students).

Q3. Must sexual harassment complaints be made in writing?

A3. No. Sexual harassment complaints may be made by speaking to any of the individuals named in Q1 . They may, however, request that you prepare a written statement setting forth the particulars of the complaint.

Q4. Are sexual harassment complaints kept confidential?

A4. It is not possible to guarantee absolute confidentiality or anonymity. The privacy of persons who make complaints of sexual harassment will be respected. To the extent permitted by law, the confidentiality of each party involved in a sexual harassment investigation, complaint or charge will be observed, provided it does not interfere with Augusta University's ability to investigate the allegations or take corrective action.

Q5. Are there time limits for reporting sexual harassment to an Augusta University official?

A5. There are no time limits for reporting sexual harassment to an Augusta University official. However, allegations of sexual harassment should be reported as promptly as possible. Delay in making a complaint may make it more difficult for Augusta University to investigate allegations.

Q6. What should be done upon learning of an incident of sexual harassment involving another person?

A6. Each dean, director, department/section chair, department manager, or other person with supervisory responsibility is required to report any complaint of sexual harassment to the appropriate individual named above. Other members of the Augusta University community who become aware of allegations of sexual harassment should encourage the aggrieved individual to report the alleged sexual harassment to an Augusta University manager or the appropriate Augusta University official indicated in Q1. All members of the Augusta University community are required to cooperate in any investigation of a sexual harassment complaint.