Employee Relations

Employee Relations jgastley3 Thu, 05/31/2012 - 09:42

Discipline Appeals Policy

Discipline Appeals Policy jgastley3 Sun, 07/15/2012 - 21:21

Demotion Appeal Policy

Demotion Appeal Policy
Type of Policy
Administrative
jgastley3 Tue, 06/12/2012 - 08:37
Policy No
7.5
Last Revised
Review Date
Policy Owner
Human Resources
Contact Name
Ivy B. Gardner
Contact Title
Director of Employee Relations
Contact Email
ivy.gardner@ohr.gatech.edu
Reason for Policy

The policy is intended to outline the process to follow when filing an appeal due to a demotion

Policy Statement

This process may be used only in cases dealing with demotions.

Policy Terms

Provisional Status
An employee hired to fill a regular position shall serve the first six (6) months of employment in the University System on a provisional basis. An employee may be terminated at any time during the provisional period without a right of appeal.

Temporary Status
Employees who are not employed as "regular" employees are "temporary" employees. Institutions may hire temporary employees directly or may elect to obtain the services of temporary employees through outside organizations that provide temporary services. Temporary employees generally shall be employed for a period no longer than six (6) calendar months.

Demotion
A decrease in the duties and responsibilities assigned to an employee and a downward change in his/her salary grade and range.

Procedures

Overview
According to the University System of Georgia's grievance policy, the following types of grievances are prohibited:

  • Investigations or decisions reached under the Institute's Harassment Policy
  • They have been adversely affected by a reorganization, program modification or financial exigency (such employees may apply to the Board of Regents for review)
  • The issue underlying the grievance is a charge of discrimination on the basis of race, sex, age, disability or religion (see the Equal Opportunity Complaint Policy for more details).
  • The issues being grieved have been previously heard by an administrative panel at the institution.

Request for Hearing
The grievant must first seek an acceptable administrative resolution in writing within five (5) working days of the incident through one administrative level above the level of the supervisor who took the original employment action. If a satisfactory resolution of the grievance is not achieved, the grievant, within five (5) working days of notification by next level management, may request an appeal. Georgia Tech has partnered with EthicsPoint, Inc. to provide an enterprise-wide solution by which members of the Georgia Tech community may make such requests. The request must be made by completing an online form or by calling 1.866.294.5565 and having a neutral third party from EthicsPoint, Inc. transcribe the information. After submitting the information, you can then upload the documented proof of the denial and other attachments. Failure to follow these steps will constitute a waiver of the grievant's right to appeal.

Mediation of the issue may be attempted by the Office of Performance and Talent Management (PTM) in order to resolve the dispute. If a resolution cannot be effected, PTM will move forward with the grievant's appeal.

Should the grievant allege any form of race, age, sex, color, national origin, sexual orientation, or disability discrimination as a basis for the grievance the case will be immediately referred to an investigator within PTM for review. Upon written notification of a "no finding" disposition, PTM will automatically proceed with scheduling a hearing.

PTM will make every effort to schedule a hearing date within thirty (30) to forty-five (45) working days from the time that a grievant officially appeals to their office. Should extenuating circumstances exist for the grievant, s/he may submit a written request for the hearing to be scheduled beyond this period; however, no hearing for any reason will be scheduled later than sixty (60) working days from the time the grievant submits a written appeal to PTM. The grievant's failure to appear for a scheduled hearing within that time constitutes a waiver of the right to appeal. A grievant shall not be harassed, intimidated, or otherwise penalized for utilization of the appeal process.

Hearing Committee Selection
Hearing committee members are selected to hear only a single grievance. The committee will consist only of classified employees with at least six (6) months of service. The following employees may not serve on the committee:

  • Members of the Office of the President (including both direct and indirect reports)
  • Members of the staff of OHR
  • Members of the staff of the Office of Legal Affairs
  • Managers/Human Resources Representatives in the grievant's unit who may have a conflict of interest

The committee is composed of three (3) Georgia Tech employees. Two (2) employees are selected by PTM from a random computer generated pool of employees, similar in classification to the grievant. One (1) Human Resources Representative (HRR) is also selected by PTM. The HRR will serve as the Hearing Officer for the assigned case.

The Chief Human Resources Officer will notify, in writing, the committee members who have been selected to serve and provide the hearing date, time, and place. Committee members may be excused from serving only if their request is sent to the PTM from the employee or the employee's supervisor and it is accompanied by a written statement of necessity of a bona fide illness or personal hardship.

Witnesses and Evidence
Evidence shall be limited to witness testimony and documentation that is directly relevant to the employment action in dispute.

The committee is not bound by the strict legal rules of evidence and may receive any evidence of probative value in order to determine the issues involved; however, every effort is made to obtain the most reliable evidence available. All substantive matters related to the admissibility of evidence or procedural matters are decided by the presiding Hearing Officer.

Witnesses for the hearing must be current employees of Georgia Tech, regular or temporary in good standing. Former employees, students, and others may submit a relevant affidavit subject to the approval of the Hearing Officer. The following groups of individuals may not serve as witnesses:

  • Students
  • Members of the staff of the Office of the President (direct and indirect reports)
  • Members of the staff of OHR
  • Members of the staff of the Office of Legal Affairs

The Hearing Officer may approve an exception to this rule if such witnesses are directly relevant to the issues raised by the grievance.

Witnesses shall not be harassed, intimidated, or otherwise penalized for appearing at a hearing. The grievant and management representatives must obtain their own witnesses. Witnesses may elect not to participate.

A list of witnesses and a copy of any documentation must be submitted to PTM at least one (1) week in advance of the hearing date or at the Hearing Officer's briefing of the parties, whichever is later. Copies of the documentation are required at the hearing. Both parties are expected to provide copies of any approved documentation they intend to use at the hearing.

Advisors
The grievant may have an advisor present at the hearing who can communicate only with the grievant during the hearing. The advisor must be a current Georgia Tech employee, regular or temporary in good standing. This advisor cannot be an attorney, a student, a member of the Office of the President, a member of the staff of OHR, or a member of the staff of the Office of Legal Affairs. Management ordinarily may not have an advisor during the hearing.

Attorneys
The grievant cannot have an attorney present during the hearing unless the grievant is being charged with a crime. If the grievant receives approval to have an attorney present because of pending criminal charges, then Georgia Tech will also have a legal representative at the hearing.

Confidentiality
Public statements and publicity about the complaint shall be avoided and the confidentiality of the hearing shall be preserved to the greatest extent permitted by law.

Hearing Process
The parties involved will be required to attend a briefing no later than one (1) week prior to the hearing. The purpose of the briefing is to review the hearing protocol and answer any questions about the process. Failure to attend the briefing or any other scheduled meeting in support of the grievance process may result in immediate loss of appeal rights.

The grievant may present any relevant evidence upon approval by the Hearing Officer, including up to three (3) witnesses. The committee may request any other evidence, as well as interview any other employee, at its discretion.

Report of the Committee
The committee, after considering all relevant evidence, will make a recommendation in the form of a written report to the Chief Human Resources Officer for a final decision.

The committee's report shall be based on evidence brought forth at the hearing and all information in the grievant's official personnel file to the date of the incident or event which brought about the grievance. The grievant's entire personnel file will be available to the committee if requested.

The Chief Human Resources Officer will inform the grievant of the Institute decision in writing and advise the grievant of any further right to appeal.

Responsibilities

The responsibilities each party has in connection with Demotion Appeals are:

Party Responsibility
Office of Performance and Talent Management Ensure compliance with policy and offer assistance with policy interpretation.

Impartial Board of Review Appeal Policy

Impartial Board of Review Appeal Policy
Type of Policy
Administrative
jgastley3 Tue, 06/12/2012 - 08:03
Policy No
7.3
Last Revised
Review Date
Policy Owner
Human Resources
Contact Name
Ivy B. Gardner
Contact Title
Director of Employee Relations
Contact Email
ivy.gardner@ohr.gatech.edu
Reason for Policy

The Georgia Institute of Technology is committed to the fair treatment of our employees. Accordingly, the Institute will appoint an Impartial Board of Review ("IBR") to hear termination appeals from regular employees, excluding those employed in provisional or temporary status, to ensure the proper processes and procedures have been followed in the event an employee has been terminated for cause.

Policy Statement

The Impartial Board of Review process described herein may be used only in cases dealing with terminations for discipline or cause.

Scope

Entities Affected By This Policy

All classified employees of the Georgia Institute of Technology are covered by this policy.

Who Should Read This Policy

All classified employees within the Georgia Institute of Technology should be aware of this policy.

Policy Terms

Provisional Status
An employee hired to fill a regular position shall serve the first six (6) months of employment in the University System on a provisional basis. An employee may be terminated at any time during the provisional period without a right of appeal.

Temporary Status
Employees who are not employed as "regular" employees are "temporary" employees. Institutions may hire temporary employees directly or may elect to obtain the services of temporary employees through outside organizations that provide temporary services. Temporary employees generally shall be employed for a period no longer than six (6) calendar months.

Termination for Cause
The termination of employment for misconduct or other serious offense.

Procedures

Overview
The policy is intended to explain the Impartial Board of Review and the appeal process when disputes cannot be resolved through normal administrative channels of the Institute.

According to the University System of Georgia's grievance policy, the following types of grievances are prohibited:

  • Terminations or layoffs because of lack of work or elimination of position
  • Investigations or decisions reached under the Institute's Harassment Policy
  • Terminations that occurred during the six (6)-month provisional period
  • Terminations due to a reorganization, program modification, or financial exigency (such employees may apply to the Board of Regents for review)
  • The issue underlying the grievance is a charge of discrimination on the basis of race, sex, age, disability or religion (see the Equal Opportunity Complaint Policy for more details).
  • The issues being grieved have been previously heard by an administrative panel at the institution.

Request for Hearing
The grievant must follow the steps listed in their letter of termination if they wish to file an appeal. Failure to do so will constitute a waiver of the grievant's right to appeal.

The first level of appeal will be to the manager of the person who signed the termination letter. The grievant shall submit their appeal in writing indicating specifically why they believe the decision to terminate was improper and should be reversed. The manager may also meet with the employee if they believe it would be beneficial in their review of the matter.

If the manager decides to uphold the termination, they will provide written notification of that decision to the grievant to include information on who to contact in the event they wish to appeal to the Impartial Board of Review.

Should the grievant allege any form of race, age, sex, color, national origin, sexual orientation, or disability discrimination as a basis for the grievance, the case will be immediately referred to an investigator within OWS for review. Upon written notification of a "no finding" disposition, OWS will automatically proceed with scheduling a hearing.

OWS will make every effort to schedule a hearing date within thirty (30) to forty-five (45) working days from the time that a grievant officially appeals to the IBR. Should extenuating circumstances exist for the grievant, s/he may submit a written request for the hearing to be scheduled beyond this period; however, no hearing for any reason will be scheduled later than sixty (60) working days from the time the grievant submits a written appeal. The grievant's failure to appear for a scheduled hearing will constitute a waiver of the right to appeal. A grievant shall not be harassed, intimidated, or otherwise penalized for filing an appeal.

Hearing Officer
OWS will provide the Hearing Officer with a copy of the grievant's hearing request and will notify both parties of the date, time, and place of the Hearing Officer's briefing and of the hearing.

IBR Board Member Selection
The Board will consist of three panel members selected from a standing committee of employees who will receive training on the hearing process. Members of the standing committee will serve a three year term. OHR will select the committee members to serve on the panel and will ensure that members of the committee who are in the same department as the grievant or may have a conflict of interest are not chosen as panel members for that case. Additionally, the grievant and management representative may object to any panel member who they believe, with reasonable cause, may be incapable of remaining impartial throughout the process. These concerns must be shared with the hearing officer prior to the hearing so that he/she can make a decision on the matter.

Witnesses and Evidence
Evidence shall be limited to witness testimony and documentation that is directly relevant to the employment action in dispute.

The Board is not bound by the strict legal rules of evidence and may receive any evidence of probative value in order to determine the issues involved; however, every effort is made to obtain the most reliable evidence available. All substantive matters related to the admissibility of evidence or procedural matters are decided by the presiding Hearing Officer.

Witnesses for the IBR hearing must be current employees of Georgia Tech, regular or temporary, in good standing. Former employees, students, and others may submit a relevant affidavit subject to the approval of the Hearing Officer. The following groups of individuals may not serve as witnesses:

  • Students
  • Members of the staff of the Office of the President (direct and indirect reports)
  • Members of the staff of OHR
  • Members of the staff of the Office of Legal Affairs

The Hearing Officer may approve an exception to this rule if such witnesses are directly relevant to the issues raised by the grievance.

Witnesses shall not be harassed, intimidated, or otherwise penalized for appearing at a hearing. The grievant and management representatives must obtain their own witnesses. Witnesses may elect not to participate.

A list of witnesses and a copy of any documentation must be submitted to OWS at least one (1) week in advance of the hearing date or at the Hearing Officer's briefing of the parties, whichever is later. Copies of the documentation are required at the hearing. Both parties are expected to provide copies of any approved documentation they intend to use at the hearing.

Each party shall have the opportunity to present approved documentation or other evidence which they deem appropriate and relevant to the grievance.

Advisors
The grievant may have an advisor present at the hearing who can communicate only with the grievant during the hearing. The advisor must be a current Georgia Tech employee, regular or temporary in good standing. This advisor cannot be an attorney, a student, a member of the Office of the President, a member of the staff of OHR, or a member of the staff of the Office of Legal Affairs. Management ordinarily may not have an advisor during the hearing.

Attorneys
The grievant cannot have an attorney present during the hearing unless the grievant is being charged with a crime. If the grievant receives approval to have an attorney present because of pending criminal charges, then Georgia Tech will also have a legal representative at the hearing.

Confidentiality
Public statements and publicity about the complaint shall be avoided and the confidentiality of the hearing shall be preserved to the greatest extent permitted by law.

Hearing Process
The parties involved will be required to attend a briefing no later than one (1) week prior to the hearing. The purpose of the briefing is to review the hearing protocol and answer any questions about the process. Failure to attend the briefing or any other scheduled meeting in support of the grievance process may result in immediate loss of appeal rights. The grievant may present any relevant evidence upon approval by the Hearing Officer, including up to three (3) witnesses. The committee may request any other evidence as well as interview any other employee at its discretion.

Report of the Board
The Board's report shall be based on evidence brought forth at the hearing and all information in the grievant's official personnel file to the date of the incident or event which brought about the grievance. The grievant's entire personnel file will be available to the Board if requested. The Board, after considering all relevant evidence, will make a recommendation in the form of a written report. This report will be submitted to the President for the final Institute decision. The grievant will be informed of the final Institute decision in writing and advised of any further right to appeal.

Suspension without Pay Appeal Policy

Suspension without Pay Appeal Policy
Type of Policy
Administrative
jgastley3 Tue, 06/12/2012 - 08:16
Policy No
7.4
Last Revised
Review Date
Policy Owner
Human Resources
Contact Name
Ivy B. Gardner
Contact Title
Director of Employee Relations
Contact Email
ivy.gardner@ohr.gatech.edu
Reason for Policy

The policy is intended to outline the process to follow when filing an appeal due to a suspension without pay.

Policy Statement

This process may be used only in cases dealing with suspensions without pay.

Scope

Entities Affected By This Policy
All classified employees of the Georgia Institute of Technology are covered by this policy.

Who Should Read This Policy
All classified employees within the Georgia Institute of Technology should be aware of this policy.

Policy Terms

Provisional Status
An employee hired to fill a regular position shall serve the first six (6) months of employment in the University System on a provisional basis. An employee may be terminated at any time during the provisional period without a right of appeal.

Temporary Status
Employees who are not employed as "regular" employees are "temporary" employees. Institutions may hire temporary employees directly or may elect to obtain the services of temporary employees through outside organizations that provide temporary services. Temporary employees generally shall be employed for a period no longer than six (6) calendar months.

Procedures

Overview
The policy is intended to explain the appeal process for suspensions without pay.

According to the University System of Georgia's grievance policy, the following types of grievances are prohibited:

  • Investigations or decisions reached under the Institute's Harassment Policy
  • The issue underlying the grievance is a charge of discrimination on the basis of race, sex, age, disability or religion (see the Equal Opportunity Complaint Policy for more details).
  • The issues being grieved have been previously heard by an administrative panel at the institution.

Request for Hearing
The grievant must first seek an acceptable administrative resolution in writing within five (5) working days of the incident through one administrative level above the level of the supervisor who took the original employment action. If a satisfactory resolution of the grievance is not achieved, the grievant, within five (5) working days of notification by next level management, may request an appeal. Georgia Tech has partnered with EthicsPoint, Inc. to provide an enterprise-wide solution by which members of the Georgia Tech community may make such requests. The request must be made by completing an online form or by calling 1.866.294.5565 and having a neutral third party from EthicsPoint, Inc. transcribe the information. After submitting the information, you can then upload the documented proof of the denial and other attachments. Failure to follow these steps will constitute a waiver of the grievant's right to appeal.

Mediation of the issue may be attempted by the Office of Performance and Talent Management (PTM) in order to resolve the dispute. If a resolution cannot be effected, PTM will move forward with the grievant's appeal.

Should the grievant allege any form of race, age, sex, color, national origin, sexual orientation, or disability discrimination as a basis for the grievance the case will be immediately referred to an investigator within PTM for review. Upon written notification of a "no finding" disposition, PTM will automatically proceed with scheduling a hearing.

PTM will make every effort to schedule a hearing date within thirty (30) to forty-five (45) working days from the time that a grievant officially appeals to their office. Should extenuating circumstances exist for the grievant, s/he may submit a written request for the hearing to be scheduled beyond this period; however, no hearing for any reason will be scheduled later than sixty (60) working days from the time the grievant submits a written appeal to PTM. The grievant's failure to appear for a scheduled hearing within that time constitutes a waiver of the right to appeal. A grievant shall not be harassed, intimidated, or otherwise penalized for utilization of the appeal process.

Hearing Committee Selection
Hearing committee members are selected to hear only a single grievance. The committee will consist only of classified employees with at least six (6) months of service. The following employees may not serve on the committee:

  • Members of the Office of the President (including both direct and indirect reports)
  • Members of the staff of OHR
  • Members of the staff of the Office of Legal Affairs
  • Managers/Human Resources Representatives in the grievant's unit who may have a conflict of interest

The committee is composed of three (3) Georgia Tech employees. Two (2) employees are selected by PTM from a random computer generated pool of employees, similar in classification to the grievant. One (1) Human Resources Representative (HRR) is also selected by PTM. The HRR will serve as the Hearing Officer for the assigned case.

The Associate Vice President of Human Resources (AVP-OHR) will notify, in writing, the committee members who have been selected to serve and provide the hearing date, time, and place. Committee members may be excused from serving only if their request is sent to the PTM from the employee or the employee's supervisor and it is accompanied by a written statement of necessity of a bona fide illness or personal hardship.

Witnesses and Evidence
Evidence shall be limited to witness testimony and documentation that is directly relevant to the employment action in dispute.

The committee is not bound by the strict legal rules of evidence and may receive any evidence of probative value in order to determine the issues involved; however, every effort is made to obtain the most reliable evidence available. All substantive matters related to the admissibility of evidence or procedural matters are decided by the presiding Hearing Officer.

Witnesses for the hearing must be current employees of Georgia Tech, regular or temporary in good standing. Former employees, students, and others may submit a relevant affidavit subject to the approval of the Hearing Officer. The following groups of individuals may not serve as witnesses:

  • Students
  • Members of the staff of the Office of the President (direct and indirect reports)
  • Members of the staff of OHR
  • Members of the staff of the Office of Legal Affairs

The Hearing Officer may approve an exception to this rule if such witnesses are directly relevant to the issues raised by the grievance. Witnesses shall not be harassed, intimidated, or otherwise penalized for appearing at a hearing. The grievant and management representatives must obtain their own witnesses. Witnesses may elect not to participate.

A list of witnesses and a copy of any documentation must be submitted to PTM at least one (1) week in advance of the hearing date or at the Hearing Officer's briefing of the parties, whichever is later. Copies of the documentation are required at the hearing. Both parties are expected to provide copies of any approved documentation they intend to use at the hearing.

Advisors
The grievant may have an advisor present at the hearing who can communicate only with the grievant during the hearing. The advisor must be a current Georgia Tech employee, regular or temporary in good standing. This advisor cannot be an attorney, a student, a member of the Office of the President, a member of the staff of OHR, or a member of the staff of the Office of Legal Affairs. Management ordinarily may not have an advisor during the hearing.

Attorneys
The grievant cannot have an attorney present during the hearing unless the grievant is being charged with a crime. If the grievant receives approval to have an attorney present because of pending criminal charges, then Georgia Tech will also have a legal representative at the hearing.

Confidentiality
Public statements and publicity about the complaint shall be avoided and the confidentiality of the hearing shall be preserved to the greatest extent permitted by law.

Hearing Process
The parties involved will be required to attend a briefing no later than one (1) week prior to the hearing. The purpose of the briefing is to review the hearing protocol and answer any questions about the process. Failure to attend the briefing or any other scheduled meeting in support of the grievance process may result in immediate loss of appeal rights.

The grievant may present any relevant evidence upon approval by the Hearing Officer, including up to three (3) witnesses. The committee may request any other evidence, as well as interview any other employee, at its discretion.

Report of the Committee
The committee, after considering all relevant evidence, will make a recommendation in the form of a written report to the Chief Human Resources Officer for a final decision.

The committee's report shall be based on evidence brought forth at the hearing and all information in the grievant's official personnel file to the date of the incident or event which brought about the grievance. The grievant's entire personnel file will be available to the committee if requested.

The Chief Human Resources Officer will inform the grievant of the Institute decision in writing and advise the grievant of any further right to appeal.

Responsibilities

The responsibilities each party has in connection with Suspensions without Pay are:

Party Responsibility
Office of Performance and Talent Management Ensure compliance with policy and offer assistance with policy interpretation.

 

Employee Dispute Resolution

Employee Dispute Resolution
Type of Policy
Administrative
abruneau3 Tue, 04/08/2014 - 12:58
Policy No
7.7
Last Revised
Review Date
Policy Owner
Human Resources
Contact Name
Corey Givens
Contact Title
Employee Relations Consultant
Contact Email
corey.givens@ohr.gatech.edu
Reason for Policy

The purpose of the Employee Dispute Resolution policy is to increase employee options in addressing Institute-related disputes and to encourage voluntary resolution of problems at the earliest opportunity. Georgia Tech supports the goals of the Board of Regent's Policy on Dispute Resolution. Faculty, classified staff, and student employees are encouraged to seek equitable and satisfactory resolution of any conflict within the Institute through discussion with the persons and departments involved, preferably at the first indication of a problem. Employees are also encouraged to seek guidance from their department’s Human Resources Business Partner or Human Resources Representative concerning any workplace dispute. Faculty members may contact the Faculty Ombuds Office, and classified staff may contact the Classified Staff Ombuds, for confidential assistance with resolving conflict. Employees may also seek to resolve the dispute through the informal process described in this policy.

Policy Statement

The Institute recognizes the benefits of resolving disputes through informal means that are designed to decrease the reliance on adversarial processes. All employees and departments are encouraged to resolve disputes effectively and fairly at the lowest possible level.

It is the policy of Georgia Tech that work-related disputes be addressed in a manner that encourages constructive resolution of conflict and provides the opportunity for productive learning and work relationships. The Institute encourages administrators, faculty, and staff to consider resolving their disputes through alternative, non-adversarial processes with the assistance of a neutral third party prior to filing formal grievances. Dispute resolution processes are not intended to and may not be used as an appeal mechanism after decisions have been resolved through more formal proceedings.

Scope

Entities Affected By This Policy
All faculty and staff at Georgia Tech are covered by this policy.

Who Should Read This Policy
All faculty and staff at Georgia Tech should be aware of this policy.

Policy Terms

Neutral
An individual who is trained or experienced in providing dispute resolution services. This individual has no stake in the dispute or controversy other than to assist the parties in reaching an agreement or resolution.

Dispute Resolution Processes
Any structured process in which a neutral assists parties to a dispute in reaching a voluntary settlement or resolution, such as mediation, facilitation, or negotiation.

Procedures

To resolve conflicts at the earliest possible stage and to address problems with the least damage to future learning and working relationships, assistance through dispute resolution processes is available to all employees.

Examples of disputes that may be appropriate for these processes include:

  • Disputes between colleagues stemming from differing personality types or work styles;
  • Disputes related to perceived lack of clarity or consistency regarding work assignments, goals, or expectations;
  • A belief that Institute policies, practices, rules, regulations, or procedures have been applied inconsistently;
  • Conflicts related to conditions of employment such as scheduling, vacation, fringe benefits, holidays, performance reviews, salary, or seniority; and
  • General communication breakdowns/barriers.

Participation in a dispute resolution process is voluntary. All parties to a dispute must agree to participate in such a process before arrangements will be made for a session. No presumption of fault is drawn from a party's decision to proceed with or to forego the opportunity to engage in a dispute resolution process.

Participants in dispute resolution processes do not forfeit the right or opportunity to participate in other appropriate procedures. Likewise, participants in other available procedures do not forfeit the right to participate in dispute resolution processes; however, participants may not use dispute resolution processes to revisit issues already resolved in a final decision or ruling on a grievance or complaint.

Time spent engaged in dispute resolution processes is considered part of an employee’s normal working time, and supervisors must make reasonable efforts to allow employees to participate in such processes. Employees are not required to take annual or other leave to participate in dispute resolution processes. Supervisors may authorize the use of overtime for such purposes only under extraordinary circumstances.

Both the neutral and the parties are to keep the statements made during the dispute resolution process confidential. However, all participants, including the neutral, are required to report statements that reveal conduct that is criminal or that poses a clear threat to the safety of others or the proper operation of the Institute.

The parties are encouraged to memorialize the resolution of their workplace dispute in writing whenever possible. The purpose of such a written document is to ensure that everyone involved in the dispute has a common understanding concerning the resolution of the dispute.

Dispute Resolution Limitations

The Dispute Resolution program is not available for:

  • Disputes that have been the subject of a final ruling or decision according to other policies and procedures. For example, if someone’s employment has already been terminated, that person may not utilize dispute resolution processes to appeal or negotiate the termination decision;
  • Disputes involving criminal charges or serious threats to persons or property;
  • Disputes involving claims of sexual harassment or alleged discrimination because of race, color, sex, age, religion, national origin, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability, or veteran status; and
  • Disputes that do not concern the official business of the Institute.

On-Campus Resources

Georgia Tech's Dispute Resolution Program is administered by OHR’s Talent Management Team who shall act as a first point of contact for any member of the Georgia Tech community who wishes to use this program. If the Talent Management Team determines that use of this program is appropriate given the specific nature of the dispute, the Talent Management Team will refer the parties to a designated neutral who will meet with the parties to the dispute and assist with appropriate dispute resolution processes. In addition, members of the Talent Management Team are available to work with employees, supervisors, and departments to facilitate informal discussions to clarify issues, improve communication, and repair working relationships.

The Faculty Ombuds Office is a confidential resource for all faculty members on campus. The Faculty Ombuds is a neutral that advocates not for a specific individual, but for the equitable resolution of work-related problems and concerns. http://www.policylibrary.gatech.edu/faculty-handbook/3.1.8-concerns-complaints-and-ombuds-office

Off-Campus Neutrals

At times, the Talent Management Team may deem it appropriate to obtain a neutral from off-campus. In these instances, the Talent Management Team will contact and retain an experienced neutral from outside of Georgia Tech to assist parties through dispute resolution processes.

The Classified Staff Ombuds is a neutral and confidential third-party resource who can assist staff in determining options to resolve conflicts and problematic concerns. http://www.ohr.gatech.edu/staffombuds.

Responsibilities

The responsibilities each party has in connection with the Dispute Resolution Program are:

Party Responsibility
Talent Management, Office of Human Resources Administer policy, ensure compliance, and offer assistance with policy interpretation

Equal Opportunity, Nondiscrimination, and Anti-Harassment Policy

Equal Opportunity, Nondiscrimination, and Anti-Harassment Policy
Type of Policy
Administrative
Anonymous Wed, 07/31/2019 - 16:27
Effective Date
Last Revised
Review Date
Policy Owner
Human Resources
Contact Name
Ivy B. Gardner
Contact Title
Director of Employee Relations
Contact Email
ivy.gardner@ohr.gatech.edu
Reason for Policy

The Georgia Institute of Technology (Georgia Tech) is committed to equal opportunity, a culture of inclusion, and an environment free from discrimination and harassment in its educational programs and employment. This policy replaces the Nondiscrimination and Affirmative Action Policy, the Anti-Harassment Policy, and the Equal Opportunity Complaint Policy.

Policy Statement

Georgia Tech provides equal opportunity to all faculty, staff, students, and all other members of the Georgia Tech community, including applicants for admission and/or employment, contractors, volunteers, and participants in institutional programs, activities, or services.  Georgia Tech complies with all applicable laws and regulations governing equal opportunity in the workplace and in educational activities.

Georgia Tech prohibits discrimination, including discriminatory harassment, on the basis of race, ethnicity, ancestry, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy), sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, national origin, age, disability, genetics, or veteran status in its programs, activities, employment, and admissions.  This prohibition applies to faculty, staff, students, and all other members of the Georgia Tech community, including affiliates, invitees, and guests. 

As a federal contractor, it is also Georgia Tech’s policy to take affirmative actions to employ and to advance in employment all persons regardless of race, ethnicity, ancestry, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, national origin, age, marital status, disability, genetics, or protected veteran status, and to base all employment decisions only on valid job requirements.  This policy shall apply to all employment actions, including, but not limited to, recruitment, hiring, upgrading, promotion, transfer, demotion, layoff, recall, termination, rates of pay or other forms of compensation, and selection for training, including apprenticeship, at all levels of employment.

Georgia Tech makes reasonable accommodations for the disabilities of qualified employees, students, and applicants.  Please see Georgia Tech’s Disability Services website below for student ADA accommodations; see also Georgia Tech’s Human Resources Disability Services.

This policy outlines the process for reporting, investigating, and resolving claims of discrimination, including discriminatory harassment, and retaliation.

The Sexual Misconduct Policy governs allegations of sexual misconduct, which includes, but is not limited to, sexual discrimination, sexual harassment, domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, sexual exploitation, and stalking.  Pursuant to that policy, allegations of student sexual misconduct are investigated and resolved under USG Policy 6.7 (Sexual Misconduct) and USG Policy 4.6.5 (Standards for Institutional Student Conduct Investigation and Disciplinary Proceedings).  All other complaints of sexual misconduct will be resolved as outlined in this policy.

Scope

All faculty, staff, students, and all other members of the Georgia Tech community, including applicants for admission and/or employment, contractors, volunteers, and participants in institutional programs, activities, or services are covered by this policy.

 

Definitions

Discrimination

Decision-making based on protected categories of race, ethnicity, ancestry, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy), sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, age, disability, genetics, veteran status, or any other category protected by law.
 

Discriminatory Harassment

Unwelcome verbal, non-verbal, or physical conduct directed against any person or group, based upon race, ethnicity, ancestry, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy), sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, age, disability, genetics, veteran status, or any other category protected by law,that has the purpose or effect of creating an objectively hostile working or educational environment. A hostile environment is created when harassment is so severe, pervasive, or persistent as to unreasonably interfere with or limit an individual’s employment or educational opportunities.

 

Sexual/Gender Harassment

Unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, gender-based denigration, and other verbal, non-verbal, or physical conduct of a sexual or gender-based nature, when:

  1. Submission to such conduct is made either implicitly or explicitly as a term or condition of an individual’s employment or status in a course, program, or activity;
  2. Submission or rejection of such conduct by an individual is used as a basis for condition of an individual’s employment or status in a course, program, or activity; or

Such conduct has the purpose of creating an objectively hostile working or educational environment.

Retaliation

Any materially adverse action taken or threatened against an individual because the individual has, in good faith, filed a complaint or grievance; sought the aid of Human Resources or any other campus authority; testified or participated in investigations, compliance reviews, proceedings, or hearings; or opposed actual or perceived violations of policy or unlawful acts.  Georgia Tech prohibits retaliation both under this policy and Georgia Tech’s Non-Retaliation Policy.

Procedures

Reporting Discrimination and/or Retaliation
Individuals who believe that they have been subjected to discrimination, including discriminatory harassment, and/or retaliation (the Complainant) should promptly report the matter to one of the following offices:  

Complaints against non-faculty employees should be filed with Georgia Tech Human Resources Employee Relations or (404-894-4847).

Complaints against a faculty member should be filed with the Associate Vice Provost for Advocacy and Conflict Resolution in the Office of the Provost.  

Complaints against a student should be filed with the Office of the Dean of Students or by filing an incident report with the Office of Student Integrity.

All complaints may also be filed with Georgia Tech’s EthicsPoint website. If the Complainant does not know the status of the person who allegedly discriminated and/or retaliated, then the complaint should be filed with Georgia Tech Human Resources Employee Relations.  Complaints against a Georgia Tech community member who is not a student, staff member, or faculty member, may be filed in EthicsPoint or with Georgia Tech Human Resources Employee Relations.  If a complaint is filed with the incorrect office, that shall refer the complaint to the correct office and notify the Complainant of the referral. 

Complaints of discrimination and/or retaliation should be brought as soon as reasonably possible so they may be addressed promptly.

Additional Reporting Options for Reporting Sexual Discrimination
In addition to the reporting options above, alleged sexual discrimination/sexual misconduct may be reported to the Title IX Coordinator or one of the Deputy Title IX Coordinators.   See Georgia Tech’s Title IX website for more information on reporting and resources for victims of sexual misconduct.

Appeals of Employment Actions
If an employee raises a complaint of discrimination through the appeal of a termination, suspension without pay, or demotion, the discrimination complaint will be investigated before proceeding with the grievance process. See Impartial Board of Review Appeal Policy; Demotion Appeal Policy; and Suspension without Pay Appeal Policy.  Only the appeal will be paused, and the adverse action will remain in effect.

Investigation/Resolution of a Complaint
Georgia Tech will diligently investigate and seek timely resolution of a complaint. Georgia Tech will take appropriate steps based on its findings.

Violations of this policy may result in discipline up to and including dismissal for employees, expulsion for students, and exclusion from the participation in programs and opportunities.

Additional Resources:
Age Discrimination Act of 1975 (Age Act), 42 U.S.C. §§ 6101 et seq., and its implementing regulation, 34 C.F.R. Part 110, which prohibit discrimination on the basis of age by recipients of FFA from the Department.

Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (Section 504), as amended, 29 U.S.C. § 794, and its implementing regulation, 34 C.F.R. Part 104.  Section 504 prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability by recipients of Federal financial assistance (FFA) from the Department.

Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (Title II), as amended, 42 U.S.C. §§ 12131 et seq., and its implementing regulation, 28 C.F.R. Part 35.  Title II prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability by public entities.

Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Title VI), 42 U.S.C. § 2000d, and its implementing regulation, 34 C.F.R. Part 100 which prohibit discrimination on the basis of race, color, or national origin by recipients of FFA from the Department.

Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 (Title IX), 20 U.S.C. §§ 1681 et seq., and its implementing regulation, 34 C.F.R. Part 106, which prohibit discrimination on the basis of sex in any education program or activity operated by a recipient of FFA from the Department.