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Non-Discrimination Policy

Ethos Statement

The Midwives College of Utah (hereto referred to as the “College” or “MCU”) strives for intentional community by investing in life-giving, life-affirming and life-sustaining relationships.  We recognize that a strong community is grown through conscious interaction with others and a commitment to the growth, development and well-being of every other member of our community.  Ongoing critical self-reflection of our attitudes, behaviors, and values facilitates organic growth of a thriving community. Each member of the MCU community will commit to:

  • Accept responsibility for the well-being, equitable treatment, and success of each person;
  • Act ethically and with integrity in all interactions;
  • Continually strive to acquire the knowledge, skills, attitude, and self-awareness needed to be responsible members and leaders of our community;
  • Establish relationships of trust and honesty where the integrity of each person is respected;
  • Honor the worth of everyone, including their rights to self-determination, privacy and confidentiality;
  • Respect the identities each person holds and strive to eliminate the effects of socialized biases;
  • Treat each other with courtesy, openness, understanding and forgiveness;
  • Use our recognition of power, privilege, difference, and discrimination to actively address issues of equity and inclusion;

We commit to making this a living statement and work to create the community to which we aspire.

Discrimination-free Community

The Midwives College of Utah, as an institution of higher education and as a community of scholars and midwives, affirms its commitment to the elimination of discrimination and discriminatory harassment, and to the student-849825_1280provision of equal opportunity for all. A key objective of the Midwives College of Utah is the creation and maintenance of a positive atmosphere of nondiscrimination in every phase and activity of College operations.

Harassment and intimidation can impede an individual’s ability to participate fully in educational processes. Acts of discrimination, harassment and insensitivity hurt and degrade all members of the community whether target, perpetrator, or observer. Every member of the College community is responsible for creating and maintaining a climate free of discrimination and harassment.

POLICY

Statement of Non-Discrimination

MCU is committed to providing equal opportunity and equal access and to complying with all applicable federal and state of Utah laws and regulations and MCU non-discrimination policies and procedures.

Discrimination violates the dignity of the individual and the integrity of the College as an institution of higher learning. MCU will not tolerate discrimination or harassment by or toward faculty, field faculty, staff, students or affiliates on the basis of sex, race, religion, color, creed, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity, expression, national origin, ancestry, age, marital status, pregnancy, political affiliation, arrest or conviction record, veterans’ status, or any other protected class.  In addition to protected classes, MCU will not tolerate discrimination based on any other cultural or social identity.

Discrimination and harassment are inconsistent with MCU’s efforts to foster an environment of respect for all members of our community and are in direct violation of our commitment to maternal-child health equity and inclusivity in the midwifery profession. Incidents of discriminatory conduct are detrimental to all individuals directly involved and diminish the College community as a whole. It is, therefore, the policy of the Midwives College of Utah that such behavior will not be tolerated and will be dealt with according to the procedures outlined below. Retaliation for filing a complaint of discrimination or harassment is also a form of harassment and is therefore prohibited and will not be tolerated.

The President has responsibility for appointing a committee to conduct investigations of complaints of discrimination on behalf of the College.  A series of definitions, questions, and answers, which detail MCU’s investigative processes, are found below.  These definitions, questions and answers provide information for employees, applicants for employment, students, applicants for admission, and anyone participating in MCU programs or activities to understand how the College defines discrimination; what types of discrimination are prohibited in MCU programs and activities; how and where to file a complaint of discrimination; how complaints of discrimination are investigated; and, the possible outcomes of an investigation.

Discrimination and related complaints filed with MCU are taken seriously and will be given full evaluation.  Each complaint of discrimination, discriminatory harassment, or retaliation is reviewed on a case-by-case basis consistent with the College’s investigative procedures, federal and state of Utah statutes and regulations, and MCU policies and procedures.  Discrimination complaint investigations will be carried out in a manner consistent with the protection of individual First Amendment rights to freedom of speech, expression and academic freedom. A student will be informed of state or federal agencies that may also be notified using the criteria of the complaint.

Individuals making a complaint of discrimination, taking part in an investigation relating to discrimination, or opposing discrimination are protected against retaliation by MCU employees and students.  As a matter of College policy, it is prohibited to use MCU technology (computers, e-mail systems, voice mail systems, web pages, bulletin boards, and MCU Facebook groups) in any manner that would result in discrimination on any of the bases listed below:

Employment: Federal and Utah state statutes and regulation and the MCU policies prohibit discrimination, including discriminatory harassment & retaliation, against College employees, and those seeking employment at the College, including but not limited to the following areas: recruitment; interviewing; testing; screening; selection; placement; evaluation; transfer; promotion; training; compensation; fringe benefits; layoffs and/or dismissal on the following bases:

  • Age
  • Arrest record
  • Race or Ethnicity
  • Conviction record
  • Cultural background
  • Declining to attend a meeting or participate in any communication about religious matters or political matters
  • Disability
  • Ethnicity
  • Gender expression
  • Gender identity
  • Genetic testing
  • Honesty testing
  • Marital status
  • Military obligations (including membership in the national guard; state defense force or any other reserve component of the military forces of the United States or the state of Utah)
  • National origin
  • Pregnancy (including childbirth or related conditions)
  • Religion
  • Retaliation for making a complaint of discrimination, or taking part in an investigation relating to discrimination, or opposing discrimination
  • Sexual identity
  • Sexual/affectional orientation
  • Use or nonuse of lawful products off the employer’s premises during nonworking hours.
  • Also covered is any other non-discrimination category that may be subsequently added, even if not included in the above list, as a result of federal or State of Utah court, legislative, or regulatory action, or action taken by the Midwives College of Utah.

Educational Programs & Activities: Federal and Utah state statutes and regulations and MCU policies prohibit discrimination, including discriminatory harassment and retaliation, against students, applicants for admission, and others taking part in MCU educational programs and activities including, but not limited tstudentso, issues involving admissions and enrollment, educational environment, coursework, approved clinical work, student services, programs, activities, and facilities on the following bases:

  • Age
  • Ancestry
  • Race or ethnicity
  • Color
  • Conviction Record
  • Cultural Background
  • Declining to attend a meeting or participate in any communication about religious matters or political matters
  • Disability
  • Ethnicity
  • Gender expression
  • Gender identity
  • Genetic testing
  • Honesty testing
  • Marital status
  • Military obligations (including membership in the national guard; state defense force or any other reserve component of the military forces of the United States or the state of Utah)
  • National origin
  • Pregnancy (including childbirth or related conditions)
  • Race
  • Religion
  • Retaliation for making a complaint of discrimination, or taking part in an investigation relating to discrimination, or opposing discrimination
  • Sexual identity
  • Sexual/affectional orientation
  • Use or nonuse of lawful products off the employer’s premises during nonworking hours.
  • Also covered is any other non-discrimination category that may be subsequently added, even if not included in the above list, as a result of federal or State of Utah court, legislative, or regulatory action, or action taken by the Midwives College of Utah.
  • Also covered is any other non-discrimination category that may be subsequently added, even if not included in the above list, as a result of federal or State of Utah court, legislative, or regulatory action, or action taken by the Midwives College of Utah.

Definitions

Complaint: A complaint is a problem or concern by one who considers they have been discriminated against or wronged because of an action, decision or omission within the control or responsibility of MCU.  Resolution of a complaint is usually through discussion, but may include mediation in some instances.

Discrimination: Discrimination is conduct that adversely affects any aspect of an individual’s employment, education, or participation in an institution’s activities or programs, or has the effect of denying equal opportunities or treatment to an individual on the basis of one more characteristics of that individual’s protected status or category as defined herein.

Discriminatory Harassment: A form of discrimination consisting of unwelcome verbal, written, graphic or physical conduct, that:

  1. Is directed at an individual or group of individuals on the basis of the individual or group of individuals’ actual or perceived protected status, or affiliation or association with person(s) within a protected status (as defined herein); and
  2. Is sufficiently severe or pervasive so as to interfere with an individual’s employment, education or academic environment or participation in institution programs or activities and creates a working, learning, program or activity environment that a reasonable person would find intimidating, offensive or hostile.

To constitute prohibited harassment, the conduct must be both objectively and subjectively harassing in nature. Harassment may include but is not limited to verbal or physical attacks, threats, slurs or derogatory or offensive comments that meet the definition set forth herein. Harassment does not have to be targeted at a particular individual in order to create a harassing environment, nor must the conduct result in a tangible injury to be considered a violation of this policy. Whether the alleged conduct constitutes prohibited harassment depends on the totality of the particular circumstances, including the nature, frequency and duration of the conduct in question, the location and context in which it occurs and the status of the individuals involved.

To be considered discriminatory harassment, the complainant must allege that the harassment is based on one or more of the identity categories listed in these procedures.

Grievance:  A grievance is a situation that must be investigated according to formal grievance processes.  This may be a complaint that has been unable to find resolution through informal processes or mediation, or situations in which disciplinary action against faculty, staff or student may be an outcome of the investigation

Retaliation: Retaliation is adverse action taken against an individual in response to, motivated by or in connection with an individual’s complaint of discrimination or discriminatory harassment, participation in an investigation of such complaint and/or opposition of discrimination or discriminatory harassment in the educational, workplace, or professional setting.

Questions & Answers

Q. Who should I contact if I have questions about discrimination?

A.  Questions or concerns regarding discrimination may be directed to the student’s House Mother or MCU President.

Q.  Who may file a complaint or grievance with MCU?

A.  The following may file a complain or grievance:

  • Faculty and Field Faculty
  • Staff Members
  • Administration or any employee not directly specified here
  • Applicants for employment
  • Students
  • Applicants for admission
  • Recipients of College services including visitors to events (e.g., conference attendees)
  • The President based on information received, may also open a complaint at their discretion or at the request of the Deans or Directors with permission of the target

Q.  What information must be included in a discrimination complaint?

A.  A complainant must provide MCU with a written, signed, and dated statement that includes contact information (for example, a street address, telephone number, or email address) of the person initiating the complaint. The complaint must also contain:

  1. The grounds on which the reported discrimination occurred. It must be one of the bases listed above, depending on whether the report involves employment, admissions, participation in educational programs, or participation in an MCU activity open to the public. The grounds are the only bases on which MCU can accept a complaint.
  2. The name, title, and address of the person who reportedly discriminated, as available. MCU recognizes that all of this information may not be available to a complainant. Before a complaint can be accepted, MCU/the President must be able to confirm that the reported discrimination involved an MCU sponsored program or activity or was committed by a person acting in his or her capacity as a member of MCU.

Complaints must also include

  1. The dates, time period, and the location of the actions or incidents believed to be discriminatory.
  2. The effect that the treatment or actions have had on the complainant’s work, instructional, or study environment, or the complainant’s ability to take part in College programs or activities.
  3. The name, address or phone number of persons who have information relevant to the reports, and the names of any persons who might have experienced similar treatment.
  4. Any material supporting the reported discrimination.
  5. A statement of an outcome or resolution the complainant believes would be an appropriate remedy for the complaint.

Individuals, who experience unlawful discrimination including harassment, are encouraged to report the matter immediately to aid in timely resolution. The complaint must be filed with MCU President within 300 days of the reported act of discrimination. The 300 days is counted from the date of the most recent reported discrimination to the date the complaint is signed, dated, and submitted. This time frame will only be extended in unusual circumstances by the MCU President, primarily when personal/family illness or extraordinary hardship prevented an individual from filing in a timely manner or when the complainant could not reasonably be expected to know that he or she was being discriminated against within the 300 days. (Note: The time frames for filing under federal law may differ. For example, individuals wishing to file with the Office for Civil Rights, U.S. Department of Education, generally need to file complaints within 180 days from the alleged act of discrimination. To ensure that you do not lose any of your rights, you should contact the applicable federal and state agencies.

Adapted from:
Oregon State University. (n.d.). Equal opportunity and access. Retrieved from http://oregonstate.edu/oei/policies

University of Melborne. (n.d.). Student complaints and grievances. Retrieved from http://msl.unimelb.edu.au/feedback

University of Wisconsin-Madison. (n.d.). Office of equity and diversity. Retrieved from http://www.oed.wisc.edu/filing-complaint.htm

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