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Lake Superior State University

Equal Opportunity

Notice of Lake Superior State University’s policy of compliance with federal and state law


The University is an equal opportunity employer and educator and prohibits discrimination, including harassment, on the basis of race, color, national origin or ancestry, gender, age, disability, religion, height, weight, sexual preference, marital status, or veteran status.

In carrying out this policy, the University complies with all federal and state laws and regulations prohibiting discrimination including:

Executive Order 11246, the Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act of 1976, Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, The Equal Pay Act of 1963, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended by the Equal Employment Opportunity Act of 1972, and the Pregnancy Discrimination Act of 1978, Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, Titles VII and VIII of the Public Health Service Act, Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967, Sections 503 and 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, Veteran’s Assistance Act of 1972, and Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990.

Sexual Harassment

The University is committed to a policy of nondiscrimination on the basis of gender. Discrimination because of gender includes sexual harassment, which means unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct or communication of a sexual nature when:

  1. Submission to such conduct or communication is made a term or condition either explicitly or implicitly to obtain employment, public accommodations or public services, education, or housing;
  2. Submission to or rejection of such conduct or communication by an individual is used as a factor in decisions affecting such individual’s employment, public accommodations or public services, education, or housing; or
  3. Such conduct or communication has the purpose or effect of substantially interfering with an individual’s employment, public accommodations or public services, education, or housing environment.

The University is committed to the protection of the rights of all individuals and to the elimination of barriers that would prevent individuals from realizing their highest potential of human excellence. Sexual harassment is a particularly noxious form of discrimination that interferes with these goals and commitments, and is difficult to combat due to the intimidation and destruction of self esteem of its victims.

Grievance Officer

The Equal Employment Opportunity Officer/Affirmative Action Officer (EEO Officer) is the designated grievance officer for discrimination complaints. If any person believes that he or she has been subjected to discrimination, including harassment by unlawful and unacceptable expressions, acts, attitudes and/or behaviors based on race, color, national origin or ancestry, gender, age, disability, religion, height, weight, sexual preference, marital status, or veteran status, he or she should contact the Associate Vice President for Human Resources/EEO Officer, Lake Superior State University Administration Building, Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan 49783 (906-635-2697) within sixty (60) working days of the action of which the person complains.


  1. The University encourages all individuals to promptly report instances of discrimination and discriminatory harassment. Once the University has been informed of such behavior, it will take timely and appropriate steps to investigate the problem. At any step of the grievance process, time schedules as outlined in the process may be extended by mutual agreement in writing.
  2. With the Grievance Officer, individuals may discuss concerns they may have regarding possible discrimination or harassment to learn what options are available.
  3. Nonretaliation: The University not only prohibits discrimination, including harassment, but also strictly prohibits any retaliation against any individual, who, in good faith, has registered a complaint under this procedure. Any supervisor, agent, or employee of the University who, after investigation, has been determined to have retaliated against any individual for using the complaint procedure in this policy, will be subject to appropriate discipline up to and including immediate discharge. If an individual believes he or she has been retaliated against for exercising his or her rights under this policy, the individual should use this complaint procedure.
  4. All matters discussed in this process will be kept as confidential as possible.
  5. If an individual is dissatisfied with the University’s investigation process or resolution, he or she may file complaints of illegal discrimination on the basis of gender (Title IX and Title VI) or disability (Section 504 and Title II of the ADA) with the Office for Civil Rights, U.S. Department of Education, Chicago, IL 60605. A Title IX, Title VI, Section 504, or Title II ADA complaint must be filed in writing with the Office for Civil Rights no later than 180 days after the occurrence of the possible discrimination.
  6. Individuals have the right under the law to seek remedies from the Michigan Department of Civil Rights, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the Office for Civil Rights, U.S. Department of Education or by court action at the same time a grievance is filed under the University’s procedure, during or after the use of the grievance process, or without using the grievance process at all.

STEP 1: Informal Complaint

Any individual (complainant) with a discrimination or harassment complaint, may contact the Grievance Officer in person.

The Grievance Officer will speak with the complainant and try to resolve the matter on an informal basis. At Step 1, all information will be kept confidential to the extent possible.

STEP 2: Formal Complaint

If the problem cannot be resolved at Step 1 within five (5) working days from the date of first contact with the Grievance Officer, the complainant may submit a written complaint on a form provided by the Grievance Officer. The Grievance Officer will help the complainant complete the form if the complainant requests.

Within five (5) working days of the receipt of the written complaint, the Grievance Officer will send a Notice of Complaint, a copy of the complaint form, a response form and a copy of this procedure to the respondent. The respondent will submit the completed response form within five (5) working days from the date the complaint is received by the respondent.

The Grievance Officer will conduct an investigation. The investigation should be completed within twenty (20) working days after receipt of the response. If the complaint is against the University as the Employer, the Grievance Officer will have thirty (30) days from the receipt of the written complaint to investigate the matter.

Within ten (10) working days of completion of the investigation, the Grievance Officer will issue to the complainant and to the respondent a written Determination stating whether the allegations of the complaint are true and any remedial action recommended.

At Step 2, information will be kept confidential to the extent possible.

STEP 3: Hearing

If either the complainant or the respondent is dissatisfied with the Grievance Officer’s determination, he or she may request that the matter be referred to a Hearing Panel for a hearing by submitting the form obtained from the Grievance Officer. The request for hearing must be submitted in writing to the Grievance Officer within five (5) working days after receipt of the Determination.

The President will appoint a permanent Hearing Panel composed of three members including, if possible, at least one female and one minority member. The vice president for business and financial operations will be the chairperson and will conduct the hearing.

The Grievance Officer will send a Notice of Hearing and a copy of the Request for Hearing to the complainant, respondent (if any), and Hearing Panel, scheduling the hearing within fifteen (15) working days, unless the Panel Chairperson provides otherwise and so notifies those involved.

At the hearing, the complainant and respondent will be allowed to give their own testimony, present the testimony of witnesses, documentary evidence or other evidence relevant to the proceedings and cross-examine the other party’s witnesses. The complainant and respondent may have an attorney or other advisor present. The Grievance Officer will present the findings of the investigation conducted at Step 2 and may present witnesses, if appropriate. To ensure the privacy of those involved, witnesses (other than the complainant and respondent) will be allowed in the hearing room only during their testimony. At the Chairperson’s discretion, the hearing may be recorded.

Within fifteen (15) working days after completion of the hearing, the Chairperson will issue the Decision and recommended order of the Hearing Panel. The Decision will be mailed to the complainant and respondent with a copy to the Grievance Officer. The Chairperson will implement any action recommended by the Panel.

STEP 4: Appeal

The decision of the Hearing Panel will be final and binding. If grievants wish to pursue the matter further, they may file with the outside agencies listed in Policy section, No. 5. and 6.

Section 5.02 of the by-laws of the Board of Trustees, approved July 24, 1989, will not be invoked for grievances submitted for settlement under this procedure.

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