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Sexual Harassment

Sexual Harassment Policies: Excerpts

The University of Wyoming will neither tolerate nor condone any act of sexual harassment. Sexual harassment is a form of sex discrimination which violates state and federal laws. All students, faculty and staff have a responsibility to assist in the enforcement of this policy, to be aware of its contents, and to abide by its terms. In addition to mandatory training for managers and supervisors, training will be available during new employee orientation and on an as needed basis. Sexual harassing behavior consists of unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, sexually motivated physical conduct, or other verbal or physical conduct or communication of a sexual nature when:
  • Submission to that conduct or communication is made a term or condition, either explicitly or implicitly, of obtaining or retaining employment, of obtaining an education, or of obtaining educational benefits or opportunities; or
  • Such conduct is pervasive, has the purpose or effect of substantially or unreasonably interfering with an individual's employment, education, educational benefits or opportunities, creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive employment or education environment. Sexual harassment as defined herein is generally limited to conduct or communication by someone in authority but also includes any sexual harassment as defined when perpetrated on any student or employee by any other student or employee.

Sexual harassing conduct includes but is not limited to:
  • Sexual name calling, jokes, spreading sexual rumors, or overly personal conversations of a sexual nature
  • Subtle pressure for sexual activity
  • Inappropriate patting, pinching or fondling, pulling at clothes, or intentional brushing against an individual’s body
  • Demanding sexual favors accompanied by implied or overt promises of preferential treatment with regard to an individual’s employment or educational status
  • Any sexually motivated unwelcome touching, cornering, or blocking an individual’s movement
  • Conditioning a student’s grade or academic progress on submission to sexual activity
  • Hanging or displaying sexually explicit pictures, posters, drawings, or any other inappropriate items in the workplace
  • A pattern of conduct intended to cause discomfort or humiliation, or both, that includes one or more of the following: unnecessary touching or hugging, remarks of a sexual nature about a person’s clothing or body, or remarks about sexual activity or speculations about previous sexual experiences.

The university recognizes that not every advance or consent of a sexual nature constitutes harassment. Whether a particular action or incident is a personal social relationship without a discriminatory effect requires a determination based on all the facts and surrounding circumstances.

Consensual/amorous relationships 
Common sense dictates whether supervisors/managers or faculty should enter into intimate relationships with subordinates and students or whether such individuals should supervise those with whom they are intimately involved. Further, the university urges supervisors and faculty to consider whether their actions will be seen as unethical by other employees and students who may consider themselves to be disadvantaged by the personal relationship. Such relationships are potentially exploitive and should be avoided.

 

Responsibility
Any person who believes he or she has been the victim of sexual harassment by any employee,student, or visitor of the university, or any third person with knowledge or belief of such conduct should report the alleged acts immediately. See below for contact information. Employees and students should make clear through affirmative conduct and/or verbal statements to an alleged harasser that such conduct is unwelcome and uninvited and should cease immediately. However, the employee or student’s inability to curtail the conduct or verbal statements does not, in itself, negate the validity of the offensiveness of the conduct alleged.

 

Confidentiality
All complaints of sexual harassment and other forms of unlawful harassment (race, color, religion, gender, national origin, age, disability, and sexual orientation) shall be considered confidential (particularly complaints of sexual harassment) and only those persons necessary for the investigation and resolution of the complaint will be given any information. The university will respect the confidentiality of the complainant and the individual against whom the complaint is filed to the extent possible consistent with the university’s legal obligations to protect the rights and security of its employees and students.

For the full sexual harassment policy, see materials at the Office of Diversity and Employment Practices Website: www.uwyo.edu/diversity

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