Ant-Harassment Policy
ORDINANCE NO. 2018-1-2

WHEREAS, the Gail Borden Library District (“Library District”) is committed to ensuring that its activities, programs, services, information, facilities, and work environment is safe and healthy and to complies with multiple laws that prohibit discrimination and harassment; and

WHEREAS, in furtherance of its commitment to a safe and healthy environment while ensuring compliance with federal and state laws, the Library District enacted an Anti-Harassment Policy to not only comply with state and federal laws prohibiting harassment and discrimination, but provide valuable guidance for staff an members of the community; and

WHEREAS, after review of the Anti-Harassment Policy, the Library District determined that it is in the best interest of the Library District to update the policy to better explain policies, procedures and options available to staff and members of the community (Attachment A); and

WHEREAS, the Library District recommends that the Board of Trustees adopt the Anti-Harassment Policy (Attachment A) in furtherance of its commitment to ensure that its activities, programs, services, information, facilities, and work environment are free from discrimination and harassment in accordance with state and federal laws.

THEREFORE BE IT ORDAINED by the Board of Trustees of the Gail Borden Library District that:

  1. The Anti-Harassment Policy, is outdated and it is necessary to modify and update; and
  2. It shall adopt the modified and updated Anti-Harassment Policy (Attachment A) to ensure that activities, programs, services, information, facilities, and work environment are free from discrimination and harassment in accordance with state and federal laws.

PASSED by roll call vote this - 9th day of January, 2018.


ATTACHMENT A
GAIL BORDEN PUBLIC LIBRARY DISTRICT
ANTI-HARASSMENT POLICY

A. Policy

The Library’s policy requires that all employees enjoy a work environment free from all forms of discrimination and harassment. Discrimination and harassment based on a person’s race, color, religion, sex, pregnancy, national origin, age, disability, genetic information, ancestry, sexual orientations, gender identity, veteran status, military status, marital status, or any other protected category, in accordance with law, will not be tolerated. The Library has determined that a safe and civil environment is necessary for employees to be successful and productive, the Library expects all employees to conduct themselves in a manner that displays proper regards and respect for the rights and welfare of others. The Library will not tolerate discrimination or harassment of library employees or volunteers by anyone, including any supervisor, manager, co-worker, vendor, contractor, customer, or other visitor of the library. Violation of this policy shall be considered grounds for disciplinary action up to and including discharge.

To that end, this policy is designed to promote a safe and healthy work environment and to comply with multiple laws that prohibit discrimination and harassment, including: Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act, the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967, the Age Discrimination Act, the Pregnancy Discrimination Act of 1978, the Uniformed Services Employment and Re-employment Act, the Veterans' Readjustment Act of 1974, the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 2008, and the Illinois Human Rights Act.

B. Definitions and Examples

  1. Definition of Discrimination and Harassment: For the purposes of determining whether a particular course of conduct constitutes discrimination or harassment, and consistent with both Title VII of the U.S. Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended in 1991, and by the Illinois Human Rights Act, discrimination and harassment are defined as follows:

    Any unwelcome conduct that is based on: race, color, religion, sex, pregnancy, disability, national origin, citizenship status, ancestry, age, order of protection status, genetic information, marital status, sexual orientation including gender identity, arrest record status, military status, and unfavorable discharge from military service when:

    1. The conduct is severe or pervasive enough to create a work environment that a reasonable person would consider intimidating, hostile, or abusive;
    2. The offensive conduct becomes a condition of continued employment.
    3. The conduct is used as the basis for or a factor in decisions affecting that individual’s employment, participation in a Library activity.
  2. Examples of Discrimination or Harassment: Some examples of conduct that may constitute discrimination or harassment include, but are not limited to:

    1. Denying a person access to a Library program based on that person's race, color, national origin, age, marital status, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, disability, religion, height, weight or veteran’s status;
    2. Denying raises, benefits, or promotions on the basis of a person's race, color, national origin, age, marital status, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, disability, religion, height, weight or veteran’s status;
    3. Preventing any person from using Library facilities or services because of that person's race, color, national origin, age, marital status, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, disability, religion, height, weight or veteran’s status;
    4. Instigating or allowing an environment that is unwelcoming or hostile based on a person's race, color, national origin, age, marital status, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, disability, religion, height, weight or veteran’s status.
    5. Making negative comments about an employee’s personal religious beliefs
    6. Sending emails with offensive jokes or graphics about race or religion
    7. Making derogatory comments about someone’s disability or age
    8. Using racist slang, phrases, or nicknames

C. Reporting of Discrimination or Harassment

An employee or individual who either observes harassment or believes herself/himself to be the object of discrimination or harassment may complain to the Library.

  1. Reporting of Incident: All Library employees are responsible to help assure that we avoid discrimination or harassment. Any individual who believes that he or she has been subjected to harassment or discrimination as prohibited by this policy or who has witnessed harassment or discrimination should submit a complaint to the Director of Human Resources, a supervisor, or any member of the Library management, except where the person is the individual accused of discrimination or harassment. In that case the complaint should be reported to the Library’s designated alternate. A supervisor who receives a report under this policy must immediately inform Human Resources. All allegations of harassment will be investigated thoroughly. The facts will determine the response of the Library to each allegation. Substantiated acts of discrimination or harassment will be met with appropriate disciplinary action up to and including termination. All information regarding any specific incident will be kept confidential within the necessary boundaries of the fact-finding process.
  2. Investigation of Complaint: The Library will initiate an investigation of the alleged discrimination or harassment within five (5) working days of the notification. If necessary, the Library representative receiving the complaint may designate another supervisory or management employee to assist with the investigation. The investigation will include an interview with the person(s) who made the initial report, the person(s) towards whom the suspected harassment was directed, and the individual(s) accused of discrimination or harassment may also be interviewed.
  3. Report: The person responsible for investigating the complaint shall prepare a written report that sets forth findings and conclusions respective to the complaint. The report shall include a finding that discrimination or harassment occurred, did not occur, or there is inconclusive evidence as to whether the harassment occurred. A copy of the report will be given to the person(s) who made the initial report, the person(s) to whom the suspected harassment was directed, and the individual(s) accused of discrimination or harassment.
  4. Confidentiality of Records: The rights to confidentiality, both of the complainant and of the accused, will be respected and consistent with the Library’s legal obligations and necessity to investigate allegations of misconduct in order to take corrective action when this conduct has occurred. Persons who report incidents of discrimination or harassment are encouraged to keep notes in order to accurately record offensive conduct. Every effort shall be made to keep all matters related to the investigation and various reports confidential.
  5. Timeframe for Reporting: The Library encourages a prompt reporting of complaints so that rapid response and appropriate action may be taken. However, due to the sensitivity of these problems and because of the emotional toll such misconduct may have on an individual; no limited timeframe will be instituted for reporting discrimination or harassment complaints. Delayed reporting of complaints will not, in and of itself, preclude the Library from taking remedial action
  6. External Complaint Resources: Any employee who believes they have been the subject of discrimination, harassment or retaliation for complaining about discrimination or harassment also has the right to file a charge of civil rights violations with the Illinois Department of Human Rights. If substantial evidence to support the charge is found to exist, the employee will have an opportunity, as provided by law and applicable regulations, to engage in conciliation with the Library and/or to have the charge heard in a public hearing before an Administrative Law Judge of the Illinois Human Rights Commission or in a court of law, as provided by statute. For further information, you may write to the Illinois Department of Human Rights, 100 W. Randolph Street, Room 10-100, Chicago, IL 60631, or call (312) 814-6269.

D. Consequences of a Violation of Harassment

  1. Discipline: Disciplinary action will be taken against any employee found to have engaged in discrimination or harassment of any other person. The Library has the managerial right to impose discipline up to and including termination, to deal with discrimination or harassment, unreasonable conduct, or discrimination. Where a hostile work environment has been found to exist, the Library will take all reasonable steps to eliminate the conduct creating such an environment. If an investigation results in finding that the complainant falsely accused another of harassment knowingly or in a malicious manner, the complainant will be subject to appropriate discipline, up to and including termination.
  2. False Reports: A false report is a report of discrimination or harassment made by an accuser to accomplish some end other than stopping of discrimination or harassment or retaliation. A false report is not a report made in good faith which cannot be proven. Given the seriousness of the consequences for the accused, a false or frivolous report is a severe offense that can itself result in disciplinary action. Any person who intentionally makes a false report alleging a violation of any provision of this policy shall be subject to discipline or discharge pursuant to applicable Library policies.

E. Dissemination

The Library shall take reasonable measures to assure that employees are informed of this policy and procedure by inclusion in the Gail Borden Public Library Personnel Handbook available on the Library’s intranet site. A copy is also available in Human Resources.