- Issue Date: February 7, 2003
- Revision Date: July 3, 2012
- Primary Contact: Director of Human Resources and EEO Officer
- Responsible Member of Directorate: Vice President of Finance & Administration
- Responsible Office: Human Resources
Policy StatementThe Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution is committed to maintaining a positive working and learning environment, and an environment free of illegal discrimination and harassment. Institution scientists, administrators, managers and supervisors ashore and at sea are obligated to strongly support this effort; all shore-based and at-sea employees, postdocs and students of the Institution are expected to support this goal.
Reason for PolicyAs a matter of policy, the Institution endorses the principle of equal employment opportunity and prohibits sexual harassment and all other forms of discriminatory harassment.
Reason for Policy
Who Should Be Familiar With This Policy
Definitions & Responsibilities
Other Discriminatory Harassment
Condition of Employment/Status in a Program
Where and When Policy Applies
Use of Institution Property
Other Discriminatory Harassment
Forms of Sexual Harassment and Other Discriminatory Harassment
Reporting Perceived Harassment
Who Should Be Familiar With This PolicyEmployees
Other individuals who have a relationship with the Institution that enables the Institution to exercise some control over their conduct in places and activities that relate to the Institution's business (e.g. Trustees, Corporation members, contractors, vendors, customers, etc.)
|Institution Policies||Other Documents|
|Human Resources: Equal Employment Opportunity/Affirmative Action Policy
Human Resources: Respectful Workplace and Violence Prevention Policy
|Brochure – Harassment: What is it and what can be done about it? (pdf)|
ContactsEEO Officer/Title IX Coordinator
WHOI Ethics Hotline
Definitions & ResponsibilitiesThese definitions apply to these terms as they are used in this policy.
|Reporting Perceived Harassment||Employees of the Institution, postdocs and students should report promptly any incident of perceived harassment affecting them or others according to the procedure below: |
Whenever possible, such incidents should be reported to the supervisor or academic advisor, department head or administrator, ship's Captain or Chief Scientist, or other appropriate resource personnel. The individual to whom the incident is reported should ordinarily report a serious allegation to the EEO Officer/Title IX Coordinator. The EEO Officer is available to help an employee, postdoc or student resolve concerns while offering as much privacy and confidentiality as the Institution can provide under the circumstances.
If the circumstances warrant an investigation, the EEO Officer/Title IX Coordinator or designee will investigate the allegations, typically including interviewing anyone identified as an offending individual and witnesses who may have relevant information. The investigation will be undertaken promptly. While the location of incidents (e.g., at sea) may affect the timing of an investigation, the Institution will strive to complete an investigation as promptly as can reasonably be expected under the circumstances.
An alternative resource for employees, postdocs, and students is OpenLine. OpenLine is an outside service which provides a neutral, independent, confidential resource to help with resolving concerns in an informal manner acceptable to the individual. Employees, postdocs, and students can access the OpenLine by phoning 508-566-OPEN (6736) or emailing email@example.com. Communications with the OpenLine are not considered official notice to the Institution and are confidential to the full extent possible unless or until the individual decides otherwise.
Initially, resolution through informal means is encouraged and, in most instances, will be satisfactory. However, if the problem remains unresolved, more formal action, including an investigation, may be taken.
Whether the report is made informally (through OpenLine) or formally (through the EEO Officer/Title IX Coordinator), it will be handled as discreetly and with as much confidentiality as is reasonably possible.
In situations where an individual prefers to place an anonymous report in confidence, they are encouraged to use the WHOI Ethics Hotline, hosted by a third party hotline provider, EthicsPoint.
WHOI Ethics Hotline: 866-868-0920
Website: www.whoi.ethicspoint.com.The information provided through the WHOI Ethics Hotline noted above will be shared with the Institution’s EEO Officer/Title IX Coordinator by EthicsPoint on a completely confidential and anonymous basis. Unless the individual allows differently, personal contact information will not be shared. Means of communication between individuals filing a report and the Institution’s EEO Officer/Title IX Coordinator will be facilitated entirely through EthicsPoint. The WHOI Ethics Hotline noted above should not be used casually or inappropriately.
|Other Reporting||The Institution strongly encourages employees, postdocs and students to bring any concerns about possible sexual or other discriminatory harassment to the Institution’s attention. Inquiries may also be directed to the agencies responsible for government enforcement of employment discrimination laws as listed below:
Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination
One Ashburton Place, Rm. 601
Boston, MA 02108
United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
One Congress Street, 10th Floor
Boston, MA 02114
|Violations||As with any other Institution EEO policy, individuals found in violation of this policy are subject to disciplinary action, which can include counseling, warnings, transfers, suspensions, reductions in pay or duties, and termination of employment.
Appropriate disciplinary action also will be taken against anyone who engages in any retaliation against a person reporting sexual harassment or other discriminatory harassment or against any other person who cooperates with an investigation into alleged violations of this policy.