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Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action

VANDERBILT UNIVERSITY AND MEDICAL CENTER HUMAN RESOURCES POLICIES AND PROCEDURES SUBJECT: EQUAL OPPORTUNITY AND AFFIRMATIVE ACTION POLICY
EFFECTIVE DATE: April 16, 2012

POLICY

Vanderbilt is an Equal Employment Opportunity and Affirmative Action Employer. The University’s Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action Policy is reflected in the following statements:

  • In compliance with federal law, including the provisions of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Title IX of the Education Amendment of 1972, Sections 503 and 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990, the ADA Amendments Act of 2008, Executive Order 11246, the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act, as amended, and the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 2008 i , Vanderbilt University does not discriminate against individuals on the basis of their race, sex, religion, color, national or ethnic origin, age, disability, military service, or genetic information in its administration of educational policies, programs, or activities; admissions policies; scholarship and loan programs; athletic or other University-administered programs; or employment. In addition, the University does not discriminate against individuals on the basis of their sexual orientation ii , gender identity iii , or gender expression iv consistent with the University’s nondiscrimination policy.
  • In compliance with federal law, Vanderbilt University does not retaliate against individuals for 1) filing or encouraging one to file a complaint of unlawful discrimination, 2) participating in an investigation of unlawful discrimination, or 3) opposing unlawful discrimination. In addition, the University does not retaliate against individuals for filing or encouraging one to file a complaint of discrimination, participating in an investigation of discrimination, or opposing discrimination based on grounds not necessarily protected by federal or state law, but protected by the University’s nondiscrimination policy, such as sexual orientation. “Retaliation” includes any adverse employment action or act of revenge against an individual for filing or encouraging one to file a complaint of discrimination, participating in an investigation of discrimination, or opposing discrimination.
  • University officials will base employment decisions on the principles of equal employment opportunity consistent with our intent to achieve the goals outlined in the University’s affirmative action programs.
  • University officials will take affirmative action to ensure that promotion decisions are in accord with principles of equal employment opportunity as outlined in the University’s Affirmative Action Plan by imposing only valid requirements for promotional opportunities.
  • University officials will ensure that all personnel actions such as compensation, benefits, transfers, layoffs, return from layoffs, University sponsored training, education, tuition assistance, social and recreational programs, will be administered without regard to individuals on the basis of their race, sex, religion, color, national or ethnic origin, age, disability, military service, sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression.

PROCEDURE

I. RESPONSIBILITIES

  • A. Each University supervisor must be aware of his or her individual responsibility to ensure adherence to the University’s Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action Policy.
  • B. The Equal Opportunity, Affirmative Action, and Disability Services Department (EAD) is charged with the overall responsibility of monitoring compliance with Vanderbilt’s Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action Policy and for coordinating and implementing provisions of Vanderbilt’s affirmative action programs. The Human Resources Department assists in implementing this policy. Every supervisor is expected to adhere to and support this policy.

II. GUIDELINES

Each University official has an important role in the employment process that includes keeping up to date on policies, procedures, and affirmative action commitments. Records pertaining to employment decisions must be complete and accurate in accordance with record keeping guidelines.

  • A. Recruitment As specified in the University’s Affirmative Action Plan, the Human Resource Services Department includes the phrase "Equal Opportunity Affirmative Action Employer" in all printed employment advertisements. All regular staff positions must be listed with the Human Resources Recruitment and Staffing Office prior to the formal initiation of recruitment efforts. Media and organizational sources specializing in recruitment and referral of women, people of color, and individuals with disabilities will be provided copies of vacancy announcements as determined practicable and useful by Vanderbilt.

    The Human Resources Department informs all recruiting sources of the University’s affirmative action commitment to recruit and refer minorities, women, and individuals with disabilities to positions listed.
  • B. Hiring Vacancies must be listed and available for referrals for five days before a hiring offer can be made. Decisions to hire individuals must be based on specified job-related criteria. To fulfill this obligation, the hiring manager should solicit only information which directly relates to an applicant's ability to perform the tasks of the position sought. To ensure appropriate documentation is maintained, the Self Audit Report (SAR) must be completed. For more detail, refer to the Recruitment and Hiring Policy.
  • C. Compensation Supervisors should make compensation decisions regarding staff on the basis of established pay procedures. Variations in pay may be justified if based on education, experience, merit, or other legitimate documented factors. When a pay for performance system is utilized, to the extent possible, performance criteria should relate to objective standards and measurements, and be uniformly applied.
  • D. Promotions and Transfers The Human Resources Recruitment and Staffing Office will assist with promotions and transfers. Refer to the “Career Opportunity Program” in the University’s Affirmative Action Plan for specific guidelines. The Affirmative Action Plan is revised annually. Copies of the Affirmative Action Plan are available at the Equal Opportunity, Affirmative Action, and Disability Services Department, all major departments, and each of the University Libraries.
  • E. Discharge Termination decisions are based upon objective criteria. Performance deficiencies and other disciplinary action are administered according to established Vanderbilt policies. See Performance Accountability and Commitment and Progressive Discipline policies.

III. GENERAL

All employment actions will be handled in full compliance with Vanderbilt’s Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action Policy. For specific guidance, please contact the EAD or Employee Relations.


This policy is intended as a guideline to assist in the consistent application of University policies and programs for staff. The policy does not create a contract implied or expressed, with any Vanderbilt staff members, who are employees at will. Vanderbilt reserves the right to modify this policy in whole or in part, at any time, at the discretion of the University.

Approved by Traci K. Nordberg, Chief Human Resource Officer and Associate Vice Chancellor 
Approved by Jerry Fife, Vice Chancellor for Administration
Approved by Jeff Balser, M.D., Ph.D.,  Vice Chancellor for Health Affairs


 

i The Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 2008 (GINA) prohibits discrimination in health coverage and in employment based on genetic information.

ii Sexual orientation refers to a person’s self-identification as heterosexual, homosexual, bisexual, asexual, pansexual, or uncertain.

iii Gender identity is generally defined as a person's own sense of identification as male, female, both, or neither as distinguished from actual biological sex, i.e. it is one’s psychological sense of self.

iv Gender expression is everything we do that communicates our sense of identification to others.


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