Below is an excerpt from YHC's Guide to Student Life.
Discrimination and Harrassment
Discrimination and Harassment based on age, color, ethnicity, gender, gender identity or expression, genetic information, national origin or ancestry, physical or mental disability, race, religion, sexual orientation, veteran status or any other basis protected by federal, state, or local laws will not be tolerated by Young Harris College. The College does not discriminate in the administration of its scholarships and loan program, admissions procedure, athletic or other school administered College programs.
Discriminatory and/or harassing behavior includes, but is not limited to:
• Verbal conduct such as threats, epithets, derogatory comments, jokes, or slurs;
• Visual conduct such as derogatory or offensive pictures, posters, photographs, cartoons, drawings, objects or gestures, and sending or displaying derogatory emails; and
• Physical conduct such as assault, unwanted touching, or blocking normal movement.
In addition, unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, or other unwanted verbal, visual, or physical conduct of a sexual nature may constitute sexual harassment or sexual assault (see Sexual Misconduct Policy) and are prohibited by the College.
Students who believe they are victims of discrimination or harassment are encouraged to immediately report all facts and information to the following:
1. A student who alleges sex discrimination or harassment should submit a report to the Title IX Coordinator, Dr. Laura Whitaker-Lea, Vice President for Student Development, (706) 379-5170, whose office is in the Rollins Campus Center. Reports can also be submitted to Dr. Whitaker-Lea by completing this form. For employees, allegations of sex discrimination or harassment may be reported to the supervisor, the supervisor’s supervisor, the Chief Operating Officer, or the Title IX Coordinator. For employees, the process for resolution may be through the Title IX process or through the process outline in Policy 703 of the Employee Handbook, depending on the allegations presented.
2. Allegations of disability discrimination or harassment should be reported to the ADA/Section 504 Coordinator who is the Vice President for Student Development, (706) 379-5118, whose office is in the Rollins Campus Center;
3. Allegations of age discrimination or harassment should be reported to the Age Act Coordinator, Bo Wright, Chief Operating Officer, located in the Human Resources Office in the Pruitt-Barrett Building;
4. Allegations of race discrimination or harassment or national origin discrimination or harassment should be reported to the Vice President for Student Development, (706) 379-5170, whose office is in the Rollins Campus Center.
All complaints will be investigated promptly and corrective action, if appropriate, will be taken. Please see the section below entitled “How to File a Discrimination or Harassment Complaint,” for more information on the process and procedures for resolution of discrimination and/or harassment complaints.
Retaliation for reporting, assisting in reporting, or threatening to report discrimination or harassment is a violation of this policy. The procedures outlined below will be applied to claims of retaliation.
How to File a Discrimination or Harassment Complaint
If a student believes he or she has been the victim of discrimination and/or harassment, or is aware that another student has experienced discrimination and/or harassment, he or she should submit a report, without fear of reprisal, regarding the alleged conduct to the appropriate Coordinator listed in the Discrimination and Harassment policy above, as soon as possible.
The report should include as much detail as possible, such as the name(s) of the individual(s) involved, the names of any witnesses, direct quotations if language is relevant, descriptions of any conduct or gestures, and any documentary evidence (notes, pictures, cartoons, etc.) the student may have in his or her possession or is aware exists. All complaints shall be investigated according to the following procedures:
1. The College shall issue a written notice indicating receipt of the complaint to both the accused and the complainant.
2. Within ten (10) days of receipt of the complaint the College shall initiate an investigation.
3. The investigation shall be conducted in an impartial manner, and shall utilize an impartial decision-maker designated by the College. The investigation process shall allow the parties to submit evidence and witness testimony according to the guidelines set forth in the Student Code of Conduct below.
4. The College shall protect the confidentiality of the student(s) reporting suspected violations of the Discrimination and Harassment policy to the extent possible and consistent with the College’s investigation.
5. The College may take interim steps pending the investigation, as appropriate.
6. Any attempts to resolve the matter informally by the complainant must be strictly voluntary and facilitated by the appropriate Coordinator listed in the Discrimination and Harassment policy above. The complainant must be informed of his or her right to end the discussion at any time.
7. Upon completion of the investigation, the parties will be provided with a written response concerning the resolution of the complaint. This will occur no later than thirty (30) working days from the College’s receipt of the complaint, unless additional time is required and the time of a later response is provided to the parties in writing.
8. If a complaint of prohibited behavior is substantiated, appropriate disciplinary action, up to and including expulsion (if the accused is a student) or discharge (if the accused is a College employee), will be taken and communicated to the student who complained.
9. Based upon the outcome of the investigation, the College will take all steps necessary to prevent the recurrence of the discrimination and/or harassment, and to correct the effects the discrimination and/or harassment may have on the complainant and others, if appropriate.
10. If the student is not satisfied with the College’s resolution of the complaint, or if a response was not provided as required under Paragraph 8, the student may appeal to the Chief of Staff. Any appeal must be in writing and received by the Chief of Staff no later than ten (10) working days from the date of the written response, or the date by which the written response was to have been received, and must state the reason why the student is not satisfied with the College’s resolution of the complaint.
11. The Chief of Staff will provide a written response to the appeal within ten (10) working days from receipt unless additional time is required, in which case, the student will be notified in writing of how much additional time is needed.
12. The Chief of Staff’s decision on appeal is final.
13. If the complaint involves either the Vice President for Academic Affairs or the Vice President for Student Development, the Chief of Staff will investigate the complaint. The student will receive a written response to his or her complaint.
14. If the complaint involves the President, the Chair of the Board of Trustees will investigate the complaint. The student will receive a written response to his or her complaint.
15. If the Chief of Staff investigates the initial complaint, the appeal will be processed by the Trusteeship Committee of the Board of Trustees. The student will receive a written response to his or her appeal.
16. If the discriminatory and/or harassing behavior continues after the College has taken appropriate action to stop it, the student should report the continuing behavior as soon as possible to the appropriate Coordinator listed in the Discrimination and Harassment policy above.
17. Retaliation against the student making the complaint or individuals participating in the investigation is prohibited and should be reported to the appropriate Coordinator listed in the Discrimination and Harassment policy above.
18. Any student who makes a good faith complaint regarding alleged discriminatory and/or harassing behavior will be protected from student conduct charges related to the making of the complaint (see Immunity for Victims Policy below). Any student who is found to have made a false complaint of discrimination and/or harassment may be subject to student conduct charges.
19. Employee grievance procedures are further outlined in the Employee Handbook.