Policy on Discrimination and Harassment
Northwestern University does not discriminate or permit discrimination by any member of its community against any individual on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, parental status, marital status, age, disability, citizenship or veteran status in matters of admissions, employment, housing or services or in the educational programs or activities it operates.
Harassment, whether verbal, physical or visual, that is based on any of these characteristics, is a form of discrimination. This includes harassing conduct affecting tangible job benefits, interfering unreasonably with an individual's academic or work performance, or creating what a reasonable person would perceive is an intimidating, hostile or offensive environment.
While Northwestern University is committed to the principles of free inquiry and free expression, discrimination and harassment identified in this policy are neither legally protected expression nor the proper exercise of academic freedom.
Examples of discrimination and harassment may include:
- refusing to hire or promote someone because of the person's protected status
- demoting or terminating someone because of the person's protected status
- jokes or epithets about another person's protected status
- teasing or practical jokes directed at a person based on his or her protected status
- displaying or circulating written materials or pictures that degrade a person or group
- verbal abuse or insults about, directed at, or made in the presence of an individual or group of individuals in a protected group.
Investigation and Confidentiality
All reports describing conduct that is inconsistent with these policies will be promptly and thoroughly investigated. Complaints about violations of these policies will be handled discreetly, with facts made available only to those who need to know in order to investigate and resolve the matter.
The University prohibits retaliation against anyone for registering a complaint pursuant to these policies, assisting another in making a complaint, or participating in an investigation under the policies. Anyone experiencing any conduct that he or she believes to be retaliatory should immediately report it to one of the individuals listed below.
If a complaint of discrimination, harassment or sexual harassment is found to be substantiated, appropriate corrective action will follow, up to and including separation of the offending party from the University, consistent with University procedure.
Where to Get Advice and Help
Division of Student Affairs
Jim Neumeister, Assistant Dean of Students and Director of Judicial Affairs
Scott Hall, Room 7
601 University Place
Title IX Coordinators
For current year appointments, please contact the Office of Equal Opportunity and Access or the University Sexual Harassment Prevention Office.
Discrimination and Harassment Prevention Advisors
In addition to the people listed above, each school or unit of the University has advisors on the faculty or staff who have been trained to answer questions about the University's discrimination and harassment policies and to receive complaints.
EthicsPoint provides another means of reporting discrimination, harassment, and sexual harassment. You may file a report online or by phone at 866-294-3545. Any complaints reported via EthicsPoint will be reviewed in accordance with current University procedures.