The Regents of the University of Michigan
Graduate Employees Organization
American Federation of Teachers, AFL-CIO Local 3550
May 7, 2002 February 1, 2005
Nondiscrimination and Equal Opportunity Employment
It is agreed there shall be no discrimination in the application of the provisions of this Agreement based on impermissible factors as defined below and as consistent with the state of Michigan Elliot-Larsen Civil Rights Act of 1976. Refer to appendix 1 for the text of the act. The University agrees to abide by the protections afforded employees with disabilities as outlined in the rules and regulations which implement Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act. Refer to Appendix 2 for a description of the Act.
A. "Impermissible factors" means an employee's race, creed, color, religion, national origin, ancestry, marital status, familial status, sex, age, citizenship status, veteran status, HIV antibody status, sexual orientation, parental or pregnancy status, political belief, membership in any social or political organization, participation in a grievance or complaint whether formal or informal, or any other factor irrelevant to his/her employment status or function.
B. "Discrimination" is:
(1) to discharge, or otherwise to act against an individual when the act arises from or is related to the employee's status or function as a GSI/GSSA, because of an impermissible factor.
(2) to limit, segregate, or classify an employee in a way that adversely affects the status of an employee because of an impermissible factor.
(3) sexual harassment. Sexual harassment means unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct or communication of a sexual nature under the following conditions:
- submission to or rejection of the conduct or communication by an employee is used as a factor in decisions affecting his/her employment; or
- the conduct or communication has the purpose or effect of substantially interfering with an employee's employment, or creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive employment environment.
C. "Harassment" means conduct by a University of Michigan employee directed toward a member of the bargaining unit that arises from or is related to the employee's status or function as a GSI/GSSA and that includes, but is not limited to, repeated or continuing unconsented contact that would cause a reasonable individual to suffer emotional distress and that actually causes the victim to suffer emotional distress.
Harassment does not include constitutionally protected activity or conduct that serves a legitimate purpose related to the individual's employment, unless the timing or manner in which the activity or conduct is done would cause a reasonable individual to suffer emotional distress and that actually causes the harassment grievant to suffer emotional distress.
In the event an employee has a grievance alleging a violation of this Section, the grievance shall begin at Step Two of the Grievance and Arbitration Procedure, provided it is submitted in writing within twenty (20) days following reasonable knowledge of the facts giving rise to the complaint. Such a grievance shall set forth a summary of facts which resulted in the grievant's conclusion.
In the event the Union gives notification of intent to arbitrate as provided in Section D. of Article XV, the University and the Union will select an arbitrator as provided in Section D. of Article XV, provided, however, that a list of arbitrators familiar with discrimination allegations will be requested if the University and the Union are unable to select a mutually agreeable Arbitrator.
In discrimination cases, the fees and expenses of the Arbitrator shall be paid by the Union if the grievant's claim of discrimination is denied and by the University if the grievant's claim of discrimination is upheld.
Nothing in this section shall be construed to prevent an employee who alleges discrimination from exercising constitutional or statutory rights which might be available in addition to arbitration, provided however: (1) that if the Union gives notification of intent to arbitrate, the aggrieved employee shall not attempt to avail him or herself of such additional rights until after receipt of the arbitration award, except for a case where the employee might be foreclosed from exercising those rights because of the time involved in the arbitration proceedings, and (2) that if the employee files for such rights prior to receipt of the arbitration award, the employee will request any investigative agency to delay its investigation pending receipt of the arbitration award. In the event the employee acts in a way inconsistent with (1) and/or (2), the grievance and arbitration process shall cease.
Neither the University nor the Union, shall discriminate against, intimidate, restrain, coerce, or interfere with any employee because of, or with respect to, his or her lawful union activities or membership or the right to refrain from such activities or membership. In addition, there shall be no discrimination against any employee in the application of the terms of this Agreement because of membership or nonmembership in the Union.
To implement the findings of the 1999 JARC report, the University of Michigan agrees to appoint a new Joint Appointment Review Committee for the period of the new GEO contract, 2002 through 2005. This committee will be composed of three university administrators and three members of GEO. This committee will be co-chaired by an administrator and a graduate student and will report to the UM Chief Human Resource Officer. This group will be charged with:
(1) Finding ways to implement the "best practices" recommended in the 1999 JARC report;
(2) Monitoring GSI and GSSA hiring processes and procedures to discern any problems with equal opportunity for employment and affirmative action matters;
(3) Data analysis to measure the extent of and reasons for any race/ethnic or gender hiring discrepancies;
(4) Dissemination of that analysis;
(5) Making policy recommendations for bias-free hiring;
(6) Assisting in complaint handing and conflict resolution related to discrimination.
The university shall create and maintain a .25 GSSA position in the Human Resource and Affirmative Action Office to assist the committee in its work, and to monitor the effects of hiring practices at the university on groups of graduate students identified by their race, color, national origin, and sex.
As an alternate to step one of the grievance process (XV section C), complaints or grievances by GSIs or GSSAs related to discriminatory harassment can be brought directly to the Office of Equity and Diversity Services. Time spent in active pursuit of such informal dispute resolution will not count towards the grievance clock for step one. This office will be responsible for informing JARC of any complaints, excluding those where confidentiality is sought by the claimant, and will invite the participation of JARC members in the investigation and resolution process.