Handling Complaints of Harassment, Discrimination and Retaliation
Filing a Timely Complaint
Since failure to report harassment and discrimination impedes the College's ability to stop the behavior, the College strongly encourages anyone who believes they are being harassed or discriminated against, to file a complaint. The College also strongly encourages the filing of such complaints within 30 days of the alleged incident. While all complaints are taken seriously and will be investigated promptly, delay in filing impedes the College's ability to investigate and remediate.
All supervisors and managers have a mandatory duty of report incidents of harassment and discrimination; the existence of a hostile, offensive or intimidating work environment, and acts of retaliation.
The College will investigate complaints involving acts that occur off campus if they are related to an academic or work activity.
Communicating that the Conduct is Unwelcome
The College further encourages students and staff to let the offending person know immediately and firmly that the conduct or behavior is unwelcome, offensive, in poor taste and/or inappropriate.
Oversight of Complaint Procedure
The Director, Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) Programs is the "responsible College officer" charged with receiving complaints of discrimination, harassment or retaliation, and coordinating their investigation.
The actual investigation of complaints may be assigned to the Director, EEO Programs, to other staff or to outside persons or organizations under contract with the College. This shall occur whenever the Director, EEO Programs is named in the complaint or implicated by the allegations in the complaint.
Who May File a Complaint
Any student, employee, or third party who believes he/she has been discriminated against or harassed by a student, employee, or third party in violation of this procedure and the related policy. A faculty member or administrator who learns of unlawful discrimination in his/her official capacity may file a complaint. An individual does not have to allege he/she personally suffered unlawful discrimination to file a complaint. An individual is not required to participate in an informal resolution process prior to filing a discrimination complaint.
Where to File a Complaint
A student or employee who believes he/she has been discriminated against or harassed in violation of the College's policy and procedures may make a complaint orally or in writing, within one year of the date of the alleged harassment or the date on which the complainant knew or should have known of the facts underlying the complaint.
If a complainant decides to file a formal written unlawful discrimination or harassment complaint against the College, he or she may use the attached complaint form
Mt. SAC Unlawful Discrimination Complaint form. The form can also be picked up in person from any of the following:
- Director, EEO Programs (Lorraine Y. Jones) located in Human Resources, Building 4, Room 1460
- Vice President, Human Resources (James P. Czaja) located in Human Resources, Building 4, Room 1460
- Vice President, Administrative Services (Michael Gregoryk) located in Administrative Services, Building 4, Room 2555
- Vice President, Instruction (Irene Malmgren) located in Building 4, Room 2465
- Vice President, Student Services (Audrey Yamagata-Noji) located in Building 9B, Room 102
- Dean, Student Services (Carolyn Keys) located in Building 9C, Room 1
- the Chancellor's Office of the California Community Colleges
Although the College encourages use of the prescribed complaint form, the College will treat a complaint of discrimination provided in another form, such as email or letter, as a formal complaint if the complainant requests the College to do so. The College will address its merits if the content of the complaint warrants, even if not file on the official form.
Employee complainants shall be notified that they may file employment discrimination complaints with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) or the Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH).
Complaints file with the EEOC and/or the DFEH should be forwarded to the Chancellor's Office of the California Community Colleges.
Any College employee who receives a harassment complaint shall notify the Director, EEO Programs immediately.
Upon receiving notification of a harassment discrimination, or retaliation complaint, Director, EEO Programs shall:
Step 1: Informal Resolution of Complaint
- Undertake efforts to informally resolve the charges, including but not limited to mediation, rearrangement of work/academic schedules; obtaining apologies; providing informal counseling and/or training, etc.
- Advise the complainant that he/she need not participate in an informal resolution of the complaint and has the right to end the informal resolution process at any time. Mediation is not appropriate for resolving incidents involving sexual violence.
- Advise a student complainant that he/she may file a non-employment based complaint with the Office of Civil Rights of the U.S. Department of Education and advise employee complainant that he/she may file a complaint with the Department of Fair Employment and Housing ("DFEH").
- Advise complainant of the procedures for filing a complaint.
- An investigation is not necessary for an informal resolution unless one is warranted.
- Where complainants opt for informal resolution, the designated office will determine whether investigation is necessary and may limit the scope of the investigation to ensure resolution of the matter and utilize the investigation process outlined below as appropriate.
- Efforts to informally resolve may continue after complainant files a formal written complaint, but an investigation is required after a complaint is filed.
Step 2: Formal Investigation Upon Filing Written Complaint
- The College shall promptly investigate every complaint of harassment or discrimination.
No claim of workplace or academic harassment or discrimination shall remain unexamined.
- This includes complaints involving activities that occur off campus and in connection with all the academic, educational, extracurricular, athletic, and other programs of the College, whether those programs take place in the College's facilities, on a College bus, or at a class or training program sponsored by the College at another location.
- Authorize the formal investigation of the complaint, and supervise and/or conduct a thorough, prompt and impartial investigation of the complaint, as set forth below.
- All complainants should be advised that they have a right to file a complaint with local law enforcement
- The College shall promptly investigate every complaint of harassment or discrimination. No claim of workplace or academic harassment or discrimination shall remain unexamined.