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Classified Employee Handbook

Consensual Relationships

Incidents of sexual harassment may involve persons having unequal power, authority, or influence. Threats of adverse consequences or promises of reward may be implied solely by circumstances of unequal power. Therefore, the University recognizes an inherent conflict of interest when an individual exercises supervisory, educational, or other institutional authority over an individual and makes sexual overtures toward that individual.

For this reason, no faculty member shall begin an amorous relationship with a student who is enrolled in a course taught by the faculty member or whose academic work (including work as a teaching assistant) is supervised by the faculty member. Furthermore, a faculty member who has had or is currently involved in an amorous relationship with a student shall, to the extent possible, withdraw from participation in instructional activities, or decisions which may reward or penalize that student. Finally, the University strongly recommends that no faculty or staff member participate in an amorous relationship with a student or an employee of the University who is being supervised by that faculty or staff member.

Decisions affecting employees and students should be made solely on the basis of merit. This includes, but is not limited to, decisions affecting an employee’s job responsibilities, promotion, pay, benefits, or other term or condition of employment; a student’s grades, academic progress, benefits, or other term or condition of academic evaluation or student status; and recommendations, references, referrals, and opportunities for further study, employment or career advancement.

University grievance procedures are available to individuals who wish to pursue complaints of sexual harassment. In addition to or in lieu of reporting incidents of sexual harassment as outlined above, faculty, staff and students may report such acts directly to the UALR Human Relations Officer. Refer to page 82 for procedures for filing complaints of sexual harassment.

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Last revision 11/1995

Updated 10.26.2011