University of Minnesota
Office of Human Resources
http://www.umn.edu/ohr
612-625-2016

Article 26 Pledge Against Discrimination and Coercion

Section 1. Discrimination Prohibition.

The provisions of this Agreement shall be applied equally to all employees in the bargaining unit without discrimination as to protected class status. For purposes of this Article "protected class status" means the employee's age, sex, marital status, affectional preference and/or sexual orientation, race, color, creed, or religion, national origin, political affiliation, Veterans' Status, public assistance status or because of a physical or mental disability. Every employee shall have the right to a workplace free from discrimination based on his/her protected class status as defined by law.

The Union shall share equally with the Employer the responsibility for applying this provision of the Agreement.

Section 2. Union Discrimination Prohibition.

The Employer agrees not to interfere with the rights of employees to become members of the Union, and there shall be no discrimination, interference, restraint, or coercion by the Employer or any Employer representative against any employee because of Union membership or because of any employee activity in an official capacity on behalf of the Union. The Union recognizes its responsibility as bargaining representative and agrees to represent all employees in the bargaining unit without discrimination, interference, restraint, or coercion.

Section 3. General Harassment Prohibition.

The parties agree that all employees have a right to a work place free from sexual harassment. Sexual harassment is defined as unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature, and as further defined by law.

The Employer will make available to employees copies of the procedure to follow in cases of sexual harassment. At the request of the department head or the Union, additional training sessions may be held if deemed necessary by the Employer. The Union recognizes its responsibility to assist in maintaining a work place free of sexual harassment.

The parties further agree that all employees have a right to a workplace free from harassment based on the employee's protected class status. Such harassment is defined as unwelcome verbal or physical conduct which has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with an individual's work performance or which creates an intimidating, offensive or hostile work environment based upon the employee's protected class status.

Section 4. Reprisal Prohibition.

The Employer shall not intentionally engage in any reprisal against an employee because the employee:

  1. has reported alleged discrimination or harassment to the Employer or any governmental agency charged with the investigation of such allegations,
  2. has testified, assisted, or participated in an investigation of alleged discrimination or harassment by the Employer or any governmental agency charged with the responsibility for conducting such investigations, or
  3. has testified, assisted, or participated in a proceeding or hearing relating to alleged harassment or discrimination conducted by the Employer or other appropriate entity. Reprisal includes, but is not limited to, any form of intimidation, retaliation, or harassment.

Section 5. Discrimination Complaint Procedure.

Employees who feel they have encountered discrimination, harassment or reprisal as defined above have the right to discuss with or submit a complaint to the appropriate University of Minnesota Office. The Minnesota Human Rights Department, and the U.S. EEOC are also available resources for discrimination, harassment and reprisal complaints.

When a complaint is filed, the person notified of the complaint shall promptly commence an investigation, normally within five (5) working days.

If a complaint is filed, it shall be in writing and shall specifically detail the relevant fact and the nature of the discrimination, and shall identify the employee's protected class.

The person conducting the investigation shall respond in writing to the affected employee with a report which contains the results of the investigation and proposed resolution within thirty (30) calendar days of the initial contact by the employee. This report need not include any facts or information that would violate any employee's confidentiality. The parties recognize that in appropriate circumstances the investigation and the completion of the report may take longer than thirty (30) calendar days. In this event the investigation and report shall be completed promptly. If an employee so requests, he/she may ask a union representative to attend a scheduled meeting related to the investigation. All parties to this procedure agree to handle information provided by employees in accordance with the requirements of State and Federal law regarding privacy and confidentiality.

The following contacts can provide information and complaint forms:

  • Office of Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action: 612-625-5000
  • Minnesota Department of Human Rights: 651-296-5663
  • U.S. EEOC: 612-335-4040