Preventing Workplace Harassment
It is the policy of Essex County College that all employees have the right to work in an environment that is free from harassment. College policy prohibits harassment in any form and states that staff at all levels must avoid harassing behavior and will be held responsible for ensuring that the workplace is free from harassment.
Specifically, the College prohibits the following and warns that such behaviors can result in disciplinary action up to and including dismissal:
- Unwelcome sexual advances or requests for sexual favors, whether or not accompanied by promises or threats respecting employment relationships.
- Verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature which may threaten or insinuate (either explicitly or implicitly) that the employee’s submission to or rejection of sexual advances will, in any way, determine a superior’s decision regarding employment, evaluation, wages, advancement, assigned duties, shifts, or any other condition of employment.
- Any verbal or physical conduct having the purpose or effect of creating an intimidating, hostile or offensive work environment or interfering with an individual’s work performance.
- Other harassing conduct in the workplace, whether physical or verbal is also prohibited. Those behaviors include, but are not limited to, offensive comments about an individual’s body, sexually degrading words, off-color jokes or innuendos, sexually suggestive pictures or other materials.
- Offensive commentary regarding an individual’s race, creed, color, national origin, age, marital status, familial status, affectional or sexual orientation, disability, gender identity or expression, genetic information, liability for military service, or any other protected category protected is strictly prohibited.
If you are experiencing harassment by a College employee, or visitor to the College, you are advised to bring such matters to the attention of your supervisor or Area Head, or to the Human Resources Director, Main Campus, Room 5100, (973) 877-3085. If the complaint involves your supervisor or someone in your direct line of supervision, or if for any other reason you are uncomfortable discussing the situation with your supervisor, you may take it directly to your Area Head or the Human Resources Director.
The College will endeavor to investigate all complaints as expeditiously and professionally as possible. Where investigations confirm the allegations, appropriate corrective action will be taken. Disciplinary actions up to and including dismissal may result. Confirmation may also subject the offender to personal, legal, or financial liability.
The College will make every effort to handle the complaint and investigation processes as discreetly as possible. There will be no retaliation against any employee for filing bona fide a harassment complaint or assisting in the investigation of a complaint. However, if the College finds that the complaint is not bona fide or that it contains false information, disciplinary action up to and including dismissal may result.