The following Employee Incident Review (EIR) procedure is applicable to all faculty and staff of Eastern Mennonite University.
The purpose of this policy is to define procedures to handle employment decisions related to EMU’s 'Life Together: Commitments for a Community of Learning.' This review process is initiated by the employer.
The individuals involved are asked to handle the proceedings as confidentially as possible to protect the integrity of the process.
- EIR Initiation: Employee Incident Review will begin when a signed written statement of an alleged violation of the Life Together: Commitments for a Community of Learning statement is given to the director of human resources. The name of the person reporting the alleged violation will be kept as confidential as possible. In a case where the alleged violator is the director of human resources, a signed written statement should go to the president. In the event that the person reporting the alleged violation is unwilling to provide a signed written statement, the administrator who has become aware of the alleged violation will use his or her own discretion, in consultation with the director of human resources and/or the president, in deciding whether to provide a written statement that includes information about the reported violation but does not name a person who reported it.
- Complaint Handling: Allegations against the president will be handled by the Chair of the Board of Trustees and the human resources director. Allegations against a vice president or provost will be handled by the president and the human resources director. Allegations against the human resource director will be handled by the vice president for finance and the president.
- Supervisory Discussion: After receipt of the written statement (signed or provided by the administrator as noted in #1), the director of human resources will confer with the employee’s department head/chair, and the appropriate vice president/provost. Some initial investigation may occur prior to the employee meeting.
- Employee Meeting: A meeting will be scheduled to communicate the allegation in writing and allow the employee to respond. This meeting will be held in person and will include the employee and at least one of the following employer representatives: the director of human resources, the department head/chair, and/or the vice president/provost. The employee may have another employee present for support. If the employee wishes to have more time to respond, another meeting will be scheduled within the next business day. (Adjustments may be made to the requirement that the meeting be held in person with all required persons present when meeting with the accused violator would require international travel.)
- Employee Response: If the employee confirms the allegation, the employee will have an option to discuss his/her wishes on how to proceed. The employer representatives will take the employee’s wishes into consideration.
- Incident Investigation: If the employee denies the allegation, additional information must be gathered through an investigation. The investigation will be handled in conjunction with the director of human resources. If the director of human resources is accused of the violation, the investigation will be handled by the president. The investigation should be completed within 10 working days unless circumstances require additional time, in which case the administration will report to the accused violator an estimated time frame for completing the investigation.
- Administrative Decision: After the investigation, the respective vice president/provost, the department head/chair, and the director of human resources will meet to review the evidence and will make a decision on the validity of the allegation and any disciplinary action warranted. Violations may result in disciplinary action up to and including termination.
- Employee Notification: The department head/chair or the vice president/provost and the director of human resources (or other person as designated in #1 for selected administrators) will call another meeting with the employee. The employee may have another employee present for support. The decision, the evidence upon which the decision is based, and any disciplinary action will be communicated orally and in writing to the employee. This meeting will occur within five (5) working days of the confirmation of the allegation or as soon as feasible after the investigation. If the investigation does not provide sufficient information to establish a violation of the Life Together: Commitments for a Community of Learning statement the department head/chair and the director of human resources will communicate this response to the employee.
- Conduct: Throughout the proceedings, the employee is expected to conduct himself or herself appropriately while employed by the institution. Any public expression or statement should be agreed to by both parties.
- Appeal Process: If the employee believes that the procedures or policies were not followed correctly, the employee may appeal through the grievance procedure.
Written documentation of all meetings must occur. All parties will be asked to sign the documentation to indicate that it is a fair representation of the conversation. All documentation will be filed in the human resources office. If the allegation is found to be accurate, a copy of the letter given to the employee will be placed in the employee file. If the allegation is not substantiated, no documentation will be placed in the employee file.
The responsibility for this policy lies with human resources.
This policy is to be reviewed every five years.
This policy is distributed via the Faculty/Staff Handbook.
Approved by President’s Cabinet, January 10, 2007
Revised August 5, 2008
Revised July 5, 2017