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equal opportunity officeOU homepageEqual Opportunity Office

About the Equal Opportunity Office

What are equal opportunity, equal employment opportunity and affirmative action?

Equal Opportunity is the right of all persons to enter, study and advance in academic programs on the basis of merit, ability, and potential without regard to race, color, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, genetic information, disability or status as a veteran.

Equal Employment Opportunity is the right of all persons to work and to advance on the basis of merit, ability, and potential without regard to race, color, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, genetic information, religion, disability, age or status as a veteran.

Affirmative Action requires the employer to do more than ensure employment neutrality. As the phrase implies, Affirmative Action requires employers to make additional efforts to recruit, employ, and promote qualified members of groups formerly limited or excluded.

What are the legal bases of equal opportunity, equal employment opportunity and affirmative action?

Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits discrimination based on race, color, or national origin in all programs or activities which receive federal financial assistance.

Title IX of the Education Amendments Act of 1972 prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex against employees and students.

Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits discrimination in employment based on race, color, religion, sex, or national origin.

The Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 prohibits employment discrimination against those age 40 and older.

The Act also prohibits discrimination in access to programs and activities based upon age for persons age 40 and above.

Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 prohibit discrimination based on disability in employment and access to educational programs, public buildings and activities. The Rehabilitation Act requires that affirmative action be implemented for qualified individuals with a disability.

The Vietnam Era Veterans Readjustment Assistance Act of 1974, as amended 38 U.S.C. 4212, prohibits job discrimination in employment and requires affirmative action to employ and advance in employment disabled veterans, recently separated veterans (within three years of discharge or release from active duty), other protected veterans (veterans who served during a war or in a campaign or expedition for which a campaign badge has been authorized), and Armed Forces service medal veterans (veterans who, while on active duty, participated in a U.S. Military operation for which an Armed Forces service medal was awarded.

Executive Order 11246 prohibits discrimination against any employee or applicant for employment because of race, color, religion, sex, or national origin. The Order requires affirmative action to ensure equality of opportunity in all aspects of employment.

The Oklahoma Anti-Discrimination Act prohibits discrimination in employment based on race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age or disability.

Who is responsible for the implementation of the equal opportunity, equal employment opportunity, and affirmative action plans, policies and procedures at The University of Oklahoma?

All individual staff and faculty members have a shared responsibility to see that Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action procedures are considered in all academic and employment practices - admissions, grading, recruiting, hiring, transfers, promotions, compensation, discipline, benefits and other terms, conditions, benefits and privileges associated with academia or employment.

All department chairs, directors, administrative officers, deans, and executive officers are individually responsible for supervising the implementation of the Affirmative Action Plans in their respective areas.

The President of the University bears ultimate administrative responsibility for the implementation of the Affirmative Action Plans.

How are the equal opportunity, equal employment opportunity and affirmative action programs coordinated at The University of Oklahoma?

The Equal Opportunity Office monitors the implementation and administration of all elements of the Affirmative Action programs, interprets for the University the regulations related to Equal Opportunity, Equal Employment Opportunity and Affirmative Action, and disseminates such information; prepares official University reports to federal and state compliance agencies; serves as an administrative liaison to standing or special University committees to provide guidance on Equal Opportunity, Equal Employment Opportunity and Affirmative Action; reports directly to the President on the status of plan implementation and coordinates equal opportunity and affirmative action activities with the Provost and other university officials.

What is covered in the affirmative action plan?

Statements of institutional policy on Equal Employment Opportunity and Affirmative Action:

Procedures for implementing the Plan.
A work force analysis which identifies the representation of women and minority groups by job titles.
Hiring goals and timetables for overcoming any deficiencies.
Action-oriented programs, specific in nature and result-oriented, for achieving hiring goals.

A copy of the Affirmative Action Plan will be made available to any employee upon request by calling (405) 325-3546.

UNIVERSITY POLICIES AND PROCEDURES

The University of Oklahoma stands fully committed to a multicultural, multiethnic and multiracial university family. The University has written policies prohibiting racial, ethnic and sexual harassment. The University will not tolerate such harassment and perpetrators will be subject to disciplinary action as set forth in the policies, codes or procedures.

Recognizing that faculty and staff members may be in a position to exert authority and control over students, the University of Oklahoma has a written Consensual Sexual Relationships Policy. Consensual sexual relationships between faculty or staff and students are prohibited where the faculty or staff member have authority or control over the student.

The University of Oklahoma will reasonably accommodate otherwise qualified individuals with a disability. In recognition of its obligations, the University has instituted a Reasonable Accommodation Policy.

Individuals who have complaints alleging discrimination based upon any of the above mentioned policies may file them with the University's Equal Opportunity Office, in accordance with prevailing University discrimination grievance procedures. Copies of the entire policy or policies and grievance procedures may be obtained from the Office of Equal Opportunity or online at the Office of Equal Opportunity web site.

What is the university stand on grievances?

The University recognizes the right of applicants, students, staff and faculty to express their grievances and to seek a solution concerning disagreements arising from working relationships, working conditions, employment practices, or differences of interpretation of policy which might occur between the University and its applicants, students or employees. If a grievance cannot be resolved informally, a formal grievance procedure is available that guarantees a prompt and impartial review of all factors involved in the grievance, without fear of coercion, discrimination, or reprisal because of exercising rights under University policy.

Below are listed the offices where one may obtain details on the University's formal grievance procedures:

Students:
Equal Opportunity Office
Office of Student Affairs
Student Government Association (SGA - Norman campus)
University of Oklahoma Student Association Health Sciences Center (UOSAHSC - Health Sciences Center)

Staff:
Equal Opportunity Office
Office of Human Resources, Staff Senate (Norman campus)
Employee Liaison Council (HSC campus).

Faculty:
Equal Opportunity Office
Office of the Provost
College Deans
Department Chairs
Faculty Senate Office

Equal Opportunity Policy

This University of Oklahoma in compliance with all applicable federal and state laws and regulations does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, sexual orientation, genetic information, sex, age, religion, disability, political beliefs, or status as a veteran in any of its policies, practices, or procedures. This includes, but is not limited to: admissions, employment, financial aid, and educational services. For questions regarding discrimination, sexual assault, sexual misconduct, or sexual harassment, please contact the Office(s) of Institutional Equity as may be applicable: Norman campus at (405) 325-3546/3549, the Health Sciences Center at (405) 271-2110, or the OU-Tulsa Title IX Office at (918) 660-3107.

Please see www.ou.edu/eoo. The University of Oklahoma is an equal opportunity institutional.

University's Statement of Commitment to Affirmative Action

The University of Oklahoma, recognizing its obligation to guarantee equal opportunity to all persons in all segments of University life, reaffirms its commitment to the continuation and expansion of positive programs which reinforce and strengthen its affirmative action policies. This commitment stems not only from compliance with federal and state equal opportunity laws but from a desire to ensure social justice and promote campus diversity. The University will continue its policy of fair and equal employment practices for all employees and job applicants without insidious discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, genetic information, age, religion, political affiliation, disability or status as a veteran. The University will maintain a critical and continuing evaluation of its employment policies, programs and practices. Each budget unit bears a responsibility for constructive implementation of this Plan, and whenever possible, to the overall progress toward employment opportunity and participation in all University programs and activities. Our commitment to the concept of affirmative action requires sincere and cooperative efforts throughout all levels of our employment structure. We will continue to strive to reach the goals of fair and equal employment opportunities for all.

David L. Boren
President

Board Of Regents' Statement Of Commitment To Equal Opportunity, Equal Employment Opportunity And Affirmative Action:

This institution in compliance with all applicable Federal and State laws and regulations does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, genetic information, age, religion, disability, or status as a veteran in any of its policies, practices, or procedures. This includes but is not limited to admissions, employment, financial aid, and educational services.

OU Board of Regents