AR 3435 Discrimination and Harassment
Education Code Section 66281.5; Government Code Section 12950.1; Title 5
Sections 59320, 59324,
59326, 59328, and 59300 et. seq.; 34 Code of Federal Regulations Section 106.8(b)
Filing a Timely Complaint: Since failure to
report harassment and discrimination impedes the District’s ability to stop the
behavior, the District strongly encourages anyone who believes they are being
harassed or discriminated against, to file a complaint. The District 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 District’s ability to investigate and remediate.
All supervisors and managers have a mandatory duty
to report incidents of harassment and discrimination; the existence of a
hostile, offensive or intimidating work environment, and acts of retaliation.
The District 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
District 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
Vice Chancellor of Human Resources is
the "responsible District officer" charged with receiving complaints
of discrimination or harassment, and coordinating their investigation.
The actual investigation of complaints may be
assigned by the Vice Chancellor
of Human Resources to other staff or to outside persons or organizations
under contract with the District. This must
occur whenever the Vice Chancellor
of Human Resources 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.
Where to File a Complaint: A
student, employee, or third party who believes he/she has been discriminated
against or harassed in violation of these 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 District, he/she
must file the complaint on a form prescribed by the State Chancellor’s
Office. These approved forms are
available from the Vice Chancellor
of Human Resources and at the State Chancellor’s website.
The completed form must be filed with any of the
- the Vice Chancellor of Human
- the State Chancellor’s
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
Complaints filed with the EEOC and/or the DFEH
should be forwarded to the State Chancellor’s Office.
Any District employee who receives a harassment or
discrimination complaint shall notify the Vice Chancellor of Human Resources immediately.
Intake and Processing of the Complaint: Upon
receiving notification of a harassment or discrimination complaint, the Vice Chancellor of Human Resources shall:
- 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, as described above, and has the right to end the
informal resolution process at any time.
Mediation is not appropriate for resolving incidents involving sexual
- Advise a student complainant that he/she may file a complaint with the
Office of Civil Rights of the U.S. Department of Education and employee
complainants may file a complaint with the Department of Fair Employment and
Housing. All complainants should be
advised that they have a right to file a complaint with local law
enforcement. The District must
investigate even if the complainant files a complaint with local law
enforcement. In addition, the District
should ensure that complainants are aware of any available resources, such as
counseling, health, and mental health services.
The Vice Chancellor
of Human Resources shall also notify the State Chancellor’s Office of the complaint.
- Take interim steps to protect a complainant from coming into contact
with an accused individual, especially if the complainant is a victim of sexual
violence. The Vice Chancellor of Human
Resources should notify
the complainant of his or her options to avoid contact with the accused
individual and allow students to change academic situations as
appropriate. For instance, the District
may prohibit the accused individual from having any contact with the
complainant pending the results of the investigation. When taking steps to separate the complainant
and accused individual, the District shall minimize the burden on the
complainant. For example, it is not
appropriate to remove complainants from classes or housing while allowing
accused individuals to remain.
- Authorize the investigation of the complaint, and supervise and/or
conduct a thorough, prompt and impartial investigation of the complaint, as set
forth below. Where complainants opt for
informal resolution, the designated officer will determine whether further
investigation is necessary to ensure resolution of the matter and utilize the
investigation process outlined below as appropriate. In the case of a formal complaint, the
investigation will include interviews with the complainant, the accused, and
any other persons who may have relevant knowledge concerning the
complaint. This may include victims of
- Review the factual information gathered through the investigation to
determine whether the alleged conduct constitutes harassment, or other unlawful
discriminatory conduct, giving consideration
to all factual information and the totality of the circumstances, including the
nature of the verbal, physical, visual or sexual conduct, and the context in
which the alleged incidents occurred.
- Set forth the results of the investigation in a written report. The written report shall include a
description of the circumstances giving rise to the complaint, a summary of the
testimony of each witness, an analysis of any relevant data or other evidence
collected during the investigation, a specific finding as to whether there is
probable cause to believe that discrimination did or did not occur with respect
to each allegation in the complaint, a description of actions the District will
take to prevent similar conduct, the proposed resolution of the complaint, the
complainant’s right to appeal to the District’s governing board, and if the
complaint does not involve employment discrimination, the right to appeal to
the State Chancellor. If the complaint
involves employment discrimination, the report shall include the right to file
an administrative complaint with the Department of Fair Employment and
Housing. The report may contain any
other appropriate information.
- Provide the complainant and accused with a copy or summary of the
investigative report within ninety days from the date the District received the
complaint. The complainant and accused
shall also be provided with a written notice setting forth the determination of
the RSCCD Chancellor or designee as to whether harassment or other
discriminatory conduct did or did not
occur with respect to each allegation in the complaint; a description of action
taken, if any, to prevent similar problems from occurring in the future; the
proposed resolution of the complaint; and notice of the parties’ rights to appeal
to the District's Board of Trustees and the State Chancellor’s Office (for
non-employment matters). If the
complaint involves allegations of employment discrimination, the complainant
will be notified of his/her right to file a complaint with the California
Department of Fair Employment and Housing or the U.S. Equal Employment
Opportunity Commission. The results of
the investigation and the determination as to whether harassment or other
discriminatory conduct occurred shall also be reported to the accused, and the
appropriate academic or administrative official(s). Reports to the complainant shall be prepared
so as not to violate any applicable privacy rights of the accused.
Investigation of the Complaint: The
District 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 District, whether those
programs take place in the District’s facilities, on a District bus, or at a
class or training program sponsored by the District at another location.
As set forth above, where the complainant opts for
an informal resolution, the Vice Chancellor
of Human Resources may limit the scope of the investigation, as
appropriate. The District will keep the
investigation confidential to the extent possible, but cannot guarantee
absolute confidentiality because release of some information on a
“need-to-know-basis” is essential to a thorough investigation. When determining whether to maintain
confidentiality, the District may weigh the request for confidentiality against
the following factors: the seriousness
of the alleged harassment; the complainant’s age; whether there have been other
harassment complaints about the same individual; and the accused individual’s
rights to receive information about the allegations if the information is
maintained by the District as an “education record” under the Family
Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), 20 U.S. Code Section 1232g; 34 Code
Federal Regulations Part 99.15. The
District will inform the complainant if it cannot maintain confidentiality.
Steps: The District will fairly and objectively
investigate harassment and discrimination complaints. Employees designated to serve as
investigators under this policy shall have adequate training on what
constitutes sexual harassment, including sexual violence, and that they
understand how the District’s grievance procedures operate. The investigator may not have any real or
perceived conflicts of interest and must be able to investigate the allegations
Investigators will use the following steps: interviewing the complainant(s); interviewing
the accused individual(s); identifying and interviewing witnesses and evidence
identified by each party; identifying and interviewing any other witnesses, if
needed; reminding all individuals interviewed of the District’s no-retaliation
policy; considering whether any involved person should be removed from the
campus pending completion of the investigation; reviewing personnel/academic
files of all involved parties; reach a conclusion as to the allegations and any
appropriate disciplinary and remedial action; and see that all recommended
action is carried out in a timely fashion.
When the District evaluates the complaint, it shall do so using a preponderance
of the evidence standard. Thus, after
considering all the evidence it has gathered, the District will decide whether
it is more likely than not that discrimination or harassment has occurred.
for Completion: The District will undertake its investigation
promptly and swiftly as possible. To
that end, the investigator shall complete the above steps, and prepare a
written report within 90 days of the District receiving the complaint.
Encouraged: All employees are expected to cooperate with
a District investigation into allegations of harassment or discrimination. Lack of cooperation impedes the ability of
the District to investigate thoroughly and respond effectively. However, lack of cooperation by a complainant
or witnesses does not relieve the District of its obligation to
investigate. The District will conduct
an investigation if it is discovered that harassment is, or may be occurring,
with or without the cooperation of the alleged victim(s) and regardless of
whether a complaint is filed.
Discipline and Corrective Action
discrimination and/or retaliation occurred in violation of the policy or
procedure, the District shall take disciplinary action against the accused and
any other remedial action it determines to be appropriate. The action will be prompt, effective, and
commensurate with the severity of the offense.
Remedies for the complainant might include, but are not limited to:
- providing an escort to ensure that the complainant can move safely between
classes and activities;
- ensuring that the complainant and alleged perpetrator do not attend the
same classes or work in the same work area;
- preventing offending third parties from entering campus;
- providing counseling services;
- providing medical services;
- providing academic support services, such as tutoring;
- arranging for a student-complainant to re-take a course or withdraw from
a class without penalty, including ensuring that any changes do not adversely
affect the complainant’s academic record; and
- reviewing any disciplinary actions taken against the complainant to see
if there is a causal connection between the harassment and the conduct that lead
to the discipline.
If discipline is imposed, the nature of the
discipline will not be communicated to the complainant. However, the District may disclose
information about the sanction imposed on an individual who was found to have
engaged in harassment when the sanction directly relates to the complainant;
for example, the District may inform the complainant that the harasser must
stay away from the complainant.
Disciplinary actions against faculty, staff, and
students will conform to all relevant statutes, regulations, personnel policies
and procedures, including the provisions of any applicable collective
The District shall also take reasonable steps to
protect the complainant from further harassment, and/or discrimination, and to
protect the complainant and witnesses from retaliation as a result of
communicating the complaint and/or assisting in the investigation. The District will ensure that complainants
and witnesses know how to report any subsequent problems, and should follow-up
with complainants to determine whether any retaliation or new incidents of
harassment have occurred. The District
shall take reasonable steps to ensure the confidentiality of the investigation
and to protect the privacy of all parties to the extent possible without
impeding the District’s ability to investigate and respond effectively to the
If the District cannot take disciplinary action
against the accused individual because the complainant refuses to participate
in the investigation, it should pursue other steps to limit the effects of the
alleged harassment and prevent its recurrence.
If the District imposes discipline against a
student or employee as a result of the findings in its investigation, the
student or employee may appeal the decision using the procedure for appealing a
If the complainant is not satisfied with the
results of the administrative determination, he/she may, within fifteen days,
submit a written appeal to the Board of Trustees. The Board shall review the original complaint,
the investigative report, the administrative decision, and the appeal. The Board shall issue a final District
decision in the matter within 45 days after receiving the appeal. A copy of the decision rendered by the Board
shall be forwarded to the complainant, and for non-employment-related
complaints, to the State Chancellor’s Office.
The complainant shall also be notified of his/her right to appeal this
If the Board does not act within 45 days the
administrative determination shall be deemed approved and shall become the
final decision of the District in the matter.
For non-employment-related complaints, the
complainant shall have the right to file a written appeal with the State
Chancellor’s Office within thirty days after the Board issued the final
District decision or permitted the administrative decision to become
final. Such appeals shall be processed
pursuant to the provision of Title 5 Section 59350.
any case involving employment discrimination, including workplace harassment,
the complainant may, at any time before or after the issuance of the final
decision of the District, file a complaint with the Department of Fair
Employment and Housing. In such cases,
the complainant may also file a petition for review with the State Chancellor’s
Office within thirty days after the governing board issues the final decision
or permits the administrative decision to become final.
Within 150 days of receiving a formal non-employment-related
complaint, the District shall forward to the State Chancellor’s Office the
original complaint, the investigative report, a copy of the written notice to
the complainant setting forth the results of the investigation, a copy of the
final administrative decision rendered by the Board or indicating the date upon
which the decision became final, and a copy of the notification to the
complainant of his/her appeal rights. If, due to circumstances beyond its
control, the District is unable to comply with the 150-day deadline for
submission of materials, it may file a written request for an extension of time
no later than ten days prior to the expiration of the deadline.
Dissemination of Policy and Procedures
District Policy and Procedures related to
harassment will include information that specifically addresses sexual
violence. District policy and procedures
will be provided to all students, faculty members, members of the
administrative staff and members of the support staff, and will be posted on
campus and on the District’s website.
When hired, employees are required to sign that
they have received the policy and procedures, and the signed acknowledgment of
receipt is placed in each employee’s personnel file. In addition, these policies and procedures
are incorporated into the District's course catalogs and orientation materials
for new students.
By January 1, 2006, the District shall provide at least two hours of classroom or other
effective interactive training and education regarding sexual harassment to all
supervisory employees who are employed as of July 1, 2005. All new supervisory employees must be
provided with the training and education within six months of their assumption
of a supervisory position. After January
1, 2006, the District shall
provide sexual harassment training and education to each supervisory employee
once every two years.
The training and education required by this
procedure shall include information and practical guidance regarding the
federal and state statutory provisions concerning the prohibition against and
the prevention and correction of sexual harassment and the remedies available
to victims of sexual harassment in employment.
The training and education shall also include practical examples aimed
at instructing supervisors in the prevention of harassment, discrimination, and
retaliation, and shall be presented by trainers or educators with knowledge and
expertise in the prevention of harassment, discrimination, and retaliation.
Responsible Manager: Vice Chancellor of Human Resources
Revised: September 15, 2014 (Previously AR 3410
Revised: September 19, 2016