Administration Policies

VI-1.60(B)

UMB PROCEDURES FOR ADJUDICATING COMPLAINTS AGAINST UMB PERSONNEL OF SEXUAL MISCONDUCT AND SEX AND GENDER-BASED DISCRIMINATION

Administration   |   Approved August 26, 2015


Responsible VP/AVP

Roger J. Ward, EdD, JD, MPA


Revision History

Approved by the President August 17, 1993; revised April 9, 1998; revised May 15, 2009, replaced UMB VI-1.20(A) and UMB VI-1.30(A), to comply with USM VI-1.60 (eff. June 27, 2014, revised June 19, 2015) and UMB VI-1.60(A) (eff. Date March 30, 2015); revised August 26, 2015


Policy Statement

  1. Purpose

    The University of Maryland, Baltimore ("UMB") prohibits sexual misconduct and other sex and gender-based discrimination ("Prohibited Sex Discrimination") against and by employees (faculty or staff) and other persons involved in activities conducted under the auspices of UMB. Employment decisions will not be based on stereotypes and assumptions about abilities, traits, or the performance of individuals on the basis of sex. Furthermore, both intentional discrimination and neutral procedures that disproportionately exclude individuals on the basis of sex that are not job related are prohibited.

    Prohibited Sex Discrimination is an infringement of an individual's right to work in an environment free from unwanted sexual attention and sexual pressure of any kind. Prohibited Sex Discrimination can result in a significant human resource drain for UMB, can hinder the service and efforts of faculty, administrators, staff and students, and may violate the law of Maryland and the United States. A UMB faculty or staff employee found responsible for Prohibited Sex Discrimination will be subject to appropriate disciplinary action up to and including discharge.

    These Procedures are not limited to UMB employment relationships. Many UMB employees work with, supervise, or are under supervision of, employees of UMB's affiliates and teaching sites (e.g., University of Maryland Medical System, University of Maryland Faculty Physicians, faculty practice professional associations, Veterans' Administration Medical Center). UMB Personnel (defined below) in all UMB activities are entitled to an environment free of Prohibited Sex Discrimination and are prohibited from illegally discriminating against other UMB Personnel and students. These Procedures provide a process for the prompt and equitable investigation and resolution of complaints of Prohibited Sex Discrimination against UMB Personnel. These Procedures are intended to comply with, and will be interpreted under federal and state law and USM and UMB policies prohibiting discrimination based upon sex and gender, including, but not limited to, VI-1.60(A) UMB Policy Prohibiting Sexual Misconduct and Sex and Gender-Based Discrimination.

    Related Policies:

    System Policy: VI-1.60 - Policy on Sexual Misconduct PDF

    Campus Policy - General: VI-1.60(A) UMB Policy Prohibiting Sexual Misconduct And Sex and Gender-Based Discrimination.

    Campus Procedure - Students: VI-1.60(C) UMB Procedures for Adjudicating Complaints Involving Students of Sexual Misconduct and Sex and Gender-Based Discrimination.

  2. Definitions

    For purposes of these Procedures, UMB Personnel means all UMB employees, full-time and part-time, including faculty, staff, post-doctoral fellows, volunteers, visiting employees, student employees, acting within their scope of employment, and others working under the auspices of UMB or doing work using UMB resources.

    See VI-1.60(A) UMB Policy Prohibiting Sexual Misconduct and Sex and Gender-Based Discrimination for definitions of:

    • Consent
    • Complainant
    • Dating Violence
    • Domestic Violence
    • Interim Protective Measures
    • Respondent
    • Responsible Employee
    • Retaliation
    • Sexual Assault
    • Sex and Gender-Based Discrimination
    • Sexual Exploitation
    • Sexual Harassment
    • Sexual Intimidation
    • Sexual Misconduct
    • Sexual Violence
    • Stalking
  3. Reporting Complaints
    1. Complaints of Prohibited Sex Discrimination against UMB Personnel should be reported to the Title IX Coordinator, who is responsible for overseeing and coordinating UMB's response to Prohibited Sex Discrimination inquiries and complaints. Complaints of Prohibited Sex Discrimination against UMB Personnel may also be reported to the Deputy Title IX Coordinator/EEO Manager (Deputy Title IX Coordinator") or any Responsible Employee, who will promptly report the complaint to the Title IX Coordinator.

      Title IX Coordinator

      Ms. Mikhel A. Kushner, JD, MSW

      Deputy Title IX Coordinator/EEO Manager 

      Office of Accoutability and Complaince
      620 West Lexington Street, 5th Floor
      Baltimore, MD 21201
      Telephone: 410-706-1852
      Email: mikhel.kushner@umaryland.edu

      Deputy Title IX Coordinator/EEO/AA Director 
      Sheila G. Blackshear, MS, CAAP 
      Director, EEO and Affirmative Action 
      Office of Accountability and Compliance
      620 West Lexington Street, 5th Floor
      Baltimore, MD 21201
      Telephone: 410-706-2281
      Email: sheila.blackshear@umaryland.edu

      Office of Accountability and Compliance 
      Main Telephone: 410-706-2281
      Website: http://www.umaryland.edu/titleix/

    2. The Title IX Coordinator will review all complaints alleging Prohibited Sex Discrimination to determine if the allegations are subject to these Procedures or are instead allegations subject to other UMB policies and procedures. The Title IX Coordinator in collaboration with the Deputy Title IX Coordinator will ensure that complaints of Prohibited Sex Discrimination are investigated and resolved by the Title IX Coordinator, a Deputy Title IX Coordinator, or a qualified designee, in accordance to these Procedures.
    3. UMB encourages prompt reporting of an allegation of Prohibited Sex Discrimination whenever possible. Reporting an incident close in time to its occurrence will enhance UMB's ability to promptly and effectively investigate complaints, protect employees and students, and educate and discipline offenders. Nevertheless, UMB will investigate any and all complaints filed.
    4. In certain circumstances, Interim Measures may be available while a complaint is being investigated. Requests for Interim Measures should be directed to the Title IX Coordinator. The Title IX Coordinator, in coordination with the Deputy Title IX Coordinator(s), will contact appropriate UMB personnel to coordinate and implement appropriate Interim Measures.
  4. Complaint Response and Investigation

    A Complainant should refer to the procedures below to file a complaint to allow the process to begin as soon as practicable. UMB is committed to working with the Complainant and the Respondent throughout the investigation.

    Deviations from these procedures that do not materially prejudice the rights of a participant will not invalidate findings or other actions taken in implementation of this process or other UMB policies.

    1. Informal Resolution

      Once a complaint of Prohibited Sex Discrimination has been made, the parties may elect to informally resolve the complaint. The Title IX Coordinator, in collaboration with the Deputy Title IX Coordinator, will work with the parties to come to a mutually agreeable resolution. At any point during an informal resolution, the parties may request a formal investigation in accordance with the procedures contained herein. Informal resolution is not available for allegations of Sexual Assault.

    2. Investigation
      1. After receiving a complaint and doing a preliminary review, the Title IX Coordinator will determine whether the complaint alleges Prohibited Sex Discrimination and is subject to these Procedures. The Title IX Coordinator will work in coordination with the Deputy Title IX Coordinator, or designee, to ensure that the complaint is promptly investigated and resolved.
      2. Investigations will be conducted in accordance with the due process requirements of VI-1.60(A) UMB Policy Prohibiting Sexual Misconduct and Sex and Gender-Based Discrimination. The Title IX Coordinator will conduct the investigation through or with the Deputy Title IX Coordinator or another designee ("Investigator").
      3. The Investigator will interview the Respondent, Complainant and other relevant persons regarding their factual knowledge of the circumstances surrounding the complaint. The parties will be given the opportunity to present relevant witnesses and evidence. The Investigator is authorized to require UMB offices to produce relevant documentary evidence (e.g., emails, work records, prior grievances) relevant to the allegation.
      4. All participants are free to consult personal or legal advisors, at their own expense. Each participant may have one advisor of the participant’s choice present in meetings during the investigative process. The advisor is present as a support and may not speak for a participant during meetings. The schedule for the investigation will allow time for the participants to consult with and obtain advice from personal and legal advisors.
      5. Timely access to documents considered relevant to the investigation will be provided to the parties. Particularly sensitive material may be available for inspection only in order to ensure no unauthorized distribution of copies. All material will be considered confidential and shared only with those with a need to know.
      6. Records of the investigation, including copies of evidence and related communications, are confidential and shall be kept secure in the office of the Title IX Coordinator or a place directed by the Title IX Coordinator.
      7. The investigation will be completed as expeditiously as possible, generally within a period of sixty (60) calendar days from receipt of the complaint unless circumstances warrant a longer period. If this deadline cannot be met, a request for extension may be made to the Title IX Coordinator which includes a description of the progress to date, and an anticipated schedule for completing the investigation, and all involved persons shall be informed of the time extension.
      8. Upon timely completion of the investigation conducted in an impartial manner, a draft written Report shall be prepared that summarizes the information gathered and synthesizes the areas of agreement and disagreement between the parties with any supporting information or accounts. Prior to finalizing the Report and before reaching a finding, the Investigator will provide the Complainant and Respondent an opportunity to review the draft Report (absent a finding). The Complainant and Respondent may submit any additional comment or information in writing within five (5) business days of receiving the draft Report. This is the final opportunity for the parties to identify any additional information or witnesses and review their statements for accuracy.
      9. Once the draft Report is reviewed by the parties and any additional pertinent information is incorporated, or after the five (5) business day comment period has lapsed without comment by either party, the Investigator will finalize the Report and make a finding as to whether there has been a violation of the Policy.
      10. The finding will be based on the Investigator’s assessment of the evidence gathered in the course of the investigation, using the preponderance of evidence standard (i.e., whether it is more likely than not that a violation of the Policy has occurred). In reaching this determination, the Investigator will consult with the Title IX Coordinator about the Report and finding. The finding will be added to the final Report.
      11. After the final Report has been approved by the Title IX Coordinator, it will be directed to the appropriate UMB dean, vice president, unit head, or designee. The Report will also be given promptly and concurrently to the Complainant and the Respondent. The Report shall notify the parties of their rights of appeal.
    3. Appeal

      If the Complainant or Respondent wishes to appeal the finding, the Complainant or Respondent must submit their written appeal to the appropriate dean, vice president, unit head, or designee detailing the basis for the appeal within five (5) business days of receiving the final Report. Appeals submitted after five (5) business days may be denied.

      Appeals must be based upon either (1) procedural error, (2) production of previously unavailable relevant evidence that could significantly impact the outcome of the case, or (3) a violation of substantive due process (e.g., the decision was based upon an illegal or constitutionally impermissible consideration such as a party’s gender, race, age, national origin, sexual orientation, or exercise of First Amendment rights).

      Appeals are not intended to allow for a new investigation of the matter. Instead, the review will be narrowly tailored to the specific grounds requested for in the appeal. In most cases, appeals are confined to a review of the written record and the pertinent documentation.

      Upon receipt and prompt review of the Report and any written appeals, the UMB dean, vice president, unit head or designee may (a) affirm the finding; (b) alter the finding; or (c) return the matter to the Title IX Coordinator with instructions to cure a procedural or substantive error or to assess the weight and impact of newly discovered evidence. In the event that a matter is returned to the Title IX Coordinator under this section, the investigative steps set forth in Section IV.B(8) - (11) of these Procedures shall apply.

    4. Final Outcome Notice

      At the conclusion of the investigative and appellate process after the finding has become final, the Title IX Coordinator, or designee, shall issue a Final Outcome Notice to both parties separately and concurrently, in writing, and in person, when possible. Issuance of the Notice completes the investigation and adjudication under these Procedures.

  5. Sanctions or Remedial Action

    Discipline or sanctions may be imposed if the Final Outcome Notice reflects a violation of the Policy. Additional administrative or remedial measures, including environmental changes and educational programing, may be required where, in consultation with the Title IX Coordinator, the UMB dean, vice president, unit head, or designee determines that these measures will improve compliance with and understanding of the Policy.

    If there is an allegation of Sexual Violence, the Complainant will receive notice of the final results of any disciplinary proceeding.

  6. Grievance Rights

    UMB Personnel may grieve disciplinary actions depending on the rights afforded to them based on their employee status and the applicable USM or UMB Appointment, Rank and Tenure Policies, other faculty policies, applicable collective bargaining agreements, or other procedures under state law or USM or UMB policy.

    Employees may not grieve administrative and/or other remedies that do not constitute formal disciplinary action.

  7. Complaints Involving UMB Affiliates and Third Parties Not Affiliated with UMB

    UMB's affiliates will be informed of UMB's commitment to provide UMB Personnel and others with a workplace free of Prohibited Sex Discrimination and will be asked to work with UMB in confidence to investigate complaints and eliminate Prohibited Sex Discrimination through education and, if need be, employee sanctions.

    UMB affiliates and affiliates' employees are encouraged to report complaints of Prohibited Sex Discrimination involving UMB Personnel to the Title IX Coordinator. UMB cannot discipline employees of its affiliates, but UMB will cooperate with its affiliates to resolve such complaints and take reasonable steps to prevent Prohibited Sex Discrimination that may be directed toward the Complainant and others. UMB will attempt to resolve the issue, as soon as practicable, and may reassign the Complainant to another area or supervisor, if a resolution is not feasible. If necessary, UMB may also work with the affiliate to co-investigate the complaint under the affiliate’s process. UMB Personnel are subject to discipline for Prohibited Sex Discrimination directed toward employees and others in the affiliate's workplace.

    Failure to file a complaint with one's own employer may jeopardize legal remedies. Therefore, employees of affiliates should be aware that their complaints involving UMB Personnel should be filed with their own employer as well as with UMB. Likewise, UMB Personnel should file complaints involving affiliates' employees with UMB as well as with the affiliate.

    Any UMB Personnel who believe they have been subjected to Prohibited Sex Discrimination by a third party not affiliated with UMB, should report a complaint to the Title IX Coordinator. After discussion with the Complainant and a review of the circumstances, UMB will take reasonable steps to prevent Prohibited Sex Discrimination that may be directed toward the Complainant and others, which may include requesting from the UMB President’s Office a formal letter to the third party denying access to UMB buildings or grounds for acting in a manner that disrupts or disturbs the normal operational or educational functions of UMB. The UMB President is authorized by State law to deny campus access to a third party engaged in disruptive behaviors (see Sections 26-101 and 26-102, Education Article, Annotated Code of Maryland).

  8. External Complaints

    UMB Personnel have the right to file complaints of Prohibited Sex Discrimination with external government agencies. UMB investigations may offer the potential of more timely resolutions of complaints. Complaints of employees may be directed to the following agencies:

    Office of the Statewide EEO Coordinator (OSEEOC), Maryland State Department of Budget and Management, 301 West Preston Street, Room 607, Baltimore, MD 21201, (410)767-3800

    Maryland Commission on Civil Rights (MCCR), 6 Saint Paul Street, Suite 900, Baltimore, MD 21202, (800) 637-6247

    Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), 10 South Howard Street, 3rd Floor, Baltimore, MD 21201, (800) 669-4000

    To protect legal rights and remedies, certain time deadlines must be met in connection with external filings. Failure to meet these deadlines can result in a loss of all rights to seek a legal remedy for one's complaint.

  9. Counseling

    The Employee Assistance Program or personal counselors can be useful in helping employees cope with the stress resulting from experiencing Prohibited Sex Discrimination or participating in an investigation of a complaint of Prohibited Sex Discrimination. Please call (667)214-1555 for information about employee counseling services. More information can also be found at www.umb-eap.org. For more information, seeVI-1.60(A) UMB Policy Prohibiting Sexual Misconduct and Sex and Gender-Based Discrimination.

  10. Educational Programs and Consultations

    Through the Office of Human Resource Services, educational programs and preventive consultations with employees can be arranged. Contact the EEO Manager at 410-706-7302. In addition, detailed information regarding required educational programs and other trainings related to Prohibited Sex Discrimination can be found at the Office of Accountability and Compliance website: www.umaryland.edu/titleix/training. For more information, see VI-1.60(A) UMB Policy Prohibiting Sexual Misconduct and Sex and Gender-Based Discrimination.

Fill out my online form.