Formal Procedures

Formal Complaint

Within seven (7) working days of the decision of the Director, EOO or the reviewer determining further action is warranted, the complainant must meet with the Director, EOO or designee to review/discuss the incident or situation, attempts at resolution (if any), as well as to learn about formal procedures. If the complainant wants to file a formal complaint, he or she must do so in writing directly to the Director, EOO or designee within seven (7) working days following this consultation. If the complainant is unable to write the complaint, it will be related orally or via the appropriate medium, transcribed into written form, and verified for accuracy by the complainant.

Notification of the Respondent and the Equal Opportunity Review Panel

Within three (3) working days of receiving the written complaint, the Director, EOO or designee will notify the respondent that a formal written complaint has been filed, supply a copy of the written complaint to the respondent, and provide a description of the procedures to be followed. This notification will be made by certified or registered letter, postage prepaid, and return receipt requested, addressed to the most recent address listed in university records. Within five (5) working days of receiving the written complaint, the Director, EOO or designee will select and notify the Equal Opportunity Review Panel that a formal inquiry will be required.

Equal Opportunity Review Panel Composition

The Equal Opportunity Review Panel will consist of five members - two full-time faculty, two staff (administrative, managerial/professional, and office/service), and one student selected by the Director, EOO from a pool of six faculty selected by the Faculty Senate, six staff selected by the Staff Advisery Council, and six students selected by Student Government. Students must be currently enrolled in at least 6 credit hours (undergraduate and/or graduate) and in good academic standing.

The pool of names will be used until the beginning of the following academic year. If during the year, a nominated person becomes ineligible to be in the pool, the appropriate body, (i.e, Faculty Senate, Staff Advisory Council or Student Government) will nominate a replacement for that person in the pool. Selection of pool members and actual Panel members will be done in a manner that attempts to provide the widest possible diversity with respect to gender, ethnic background and other relevant socio/demographic traits. Should a selected member of the panel identify himself/herself as having a legitimate conflict of interest, the Director, EOO shall select a different member from the pool of names so as to maintain the required representation.

Formal Inquiry

Upon selection and contact by the Director, EOO, panel members will have ten (10) working days to convene, select a chair (student members are not eligible to chair), and schedule the start of the formal inquiry. The inquiry will be conducted as expeditiously as possible. During the inquiry the Panel will review the complaint in its entirety and conduct an impartial inquiry on the complaint. Documents and other information relevant to the complaint may be requested by the Panel, and witnesses may be called by the Panel. The complainant (and his/her representative[s], the respondent (and his/her representative[s]), and witnesses (if any) will only be present in the inquiry when their own testimony is being sought by the Panel. The inquiry will be audio taped.

The Panel has five (5) working days after the inquiry to reach a preliminary recommendation. In the event that it concludes that the complaint should proceed further, both parties will have access to all evidence presented before the Panel, including the audio tape. When the Panel concludes no additional action is warranted, neither of the parties will have access to the evidence. In cases where the Panel concludes that the complaint should go forward, both parties will have five (5) working days to rebut the evidence. The Panel then will have ten (10) working days to consider rebuttals and present its advice in writing to the appropriate Vice Chancellor. This written advice should report any dissenting views or include a written minority statement if the minority on the Panel chooses to do so. The Panel’s advice will be forwarded to the Vice Chancellor of the administrative unit in which the respondent is assigned (i.e, Senior Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs for faculty respondents, Vice Chancellor of Business and Finance for staff respondents, Associate Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs for student respondents).

Upon receipt of the Panel’s advice, the Vice Chancellor will have seven (7) working days in which to reach a conclusion whether or not this set of circumstances warrants additional investigation. The Vice Chancellor will communicate his/her decision in writing to the complainant and to the respondent and shall have the authority to implement such action as is deemed appropriate for non-faculty respondents. If the Vice Chancellor’s conclusion is that no further action be taken, no further action will be taken by the university. If, on the other hand, for faculty respondents the conclusion is that additional investigation should be undertaken, it will be in accord with and/or follow procedures detailed in the Bylaws of the Board of Regents of the University of Nebraska and policies promulgated pursuant thereto, and, in the case of faculty respondents who are members of the bargaining unit, in accord with the Collective Bargaining Agreement between the Board of Regents of the University of Nebraska and the University of Nebraska at Omaha Chapter American Association of University Professors.