EPIC for Girls prohibits discrimination and harassment based on race, color, religion, creed, sex, national origin, ancestry, age, disability, marital status, pregnancy, genetic testing information, military or veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity, or any other status protected by local, state, or federal law. Each employee has the right to work in a professional atmosphere that promotes equal employment opportunities and is free from discriminatory practices, including without limitation, harassment. Statements or actions that you make regarding fellow employees, whether done jokingly or otherwise, may create feelings of ill will and interfere with productivity. The desired standard of employee behavior is one of cooperation and respect for each other, despite any differences.
In general, statements, slurs, jokes, and other verbal or physical conduct relating to any of the protected classes, characteristics, or bases listed above, constitute unlawful harassment when they unreasonably interfere with the person’s work performance or create an intimidating work environment. Prohibited conduct includes sexual harassment, but extends far beyond that. Prohibited conduct may include, but is not limited to the following:
- Epithets, racial “jokes”, slurs or negative stereotypes, intimidating or hostile acts based upon protective classification, and/or written or graphic material that denigrates or shows hostility or aversion to persons of a protected class that is posted or circulated on EPIC property.
- Verbal harassment and unwelcome discussions relating to or motivated by a person’s protected characteristic or class.
- Unwelcome requests or demands for sexual favors. This includes subtle or blatant expectations to engage in sexual relations and pressures for dates, especially when submission to such conduct is a condition of employment, or when submission or rejection of such conduct is used as a basis for employment decisions affecting the individual.
- Unwelcome or unwanted sexual advances, such as patting, pinching, brushing up against, hugging, cornering, kissing, fondling, sexual flirtations, or any other similar contact.
- Using coercive sexual behavior to control or affect the career, salary, or performance review of another employee.
- Verbal harassment or unwelcome kidding of a sexual nature, such as telling “dirty” jokes and comments about body parts, appearance, or clothing, where such comments go beyond mere courtesy or are unwelcome.
- Making threats of reprisal a term or condition of employment (explicitly or implicitly).
Harassment may exist when co-workers or even non-employees, such as vendors, suppliers, or customers engage in such conduct, when the conduct unreasonably interferes with an employee’s work performance or creates an intimidating, hostile, or offensive work environment. Sexual harassment does not have to involve conduct of a sexual nature in order to constitute improper behavior. For example, abusive, offensive, or demeaning behavior that is directed to members of one gender only (whether male or female) may be deemed a form of sexual harassment, even though the conduct was not motivated by sexual desire or gratification. In addition, harassment of a male by another male, or a female by another female also constitutes a form of sex discrimination. Likewise, disparate treatment motivated by any other protected characteristic is discrimination and will not be tolerated. If there are questions about whether conduct is permissible under this policy, employees should refrain from the conduct. Anyone found to be engaging in any type of discrimination or harassment will be subject to disciplinary action, up to and including termination of employment.
Any employees with questions or concerns about any type of discrimination or harassment in the workplace are encouraged to bring these issues to EPIC’s attention by immediately reporting the conduct in the manner set forth in the EPIC Employee Handbook. Employees can raise concerns and make reports without fear of reprisal or retaliation.