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Statement on Discrimination and Harassment

Wednesday, January 29, 2020
Kimberly Hewitt

On January 29, 2020, Kimberly Hewitt, Vice President for Institutional Equity & Chief Diversity Officer sent the following message to the Duke community:

Dear Duke Colleagues,  

Duke University is committed to creating and maintaining a positive environment where all members of the community can thrive in their research, teaching, work and learning. In this spirit, Duke University is a community of collaboration, innovation, creativity, and belonging. Our collective success depends on the robust exchange of ideas which takes place when the rich diversity of our perspectives, backgrounds, and experiences flourishes. Thus, it is essential that all members of the community feel secure and welcome, that the contributions of all individuals are respected, and that all voices are heard.   

Duke strictly prohibits discrimination and harassment based on age, color, disability, gender, gender expression, gender identity, genetic information, national origin, race, religion, sex, sexual orientation, or veteran status. These prohibitions extend to anti-Semitic discrimination and harassment, and other forms of discrimination and harassment based on an individual’s religion and/or national origin.  Simply put, the University does not tolerate anti-Semitism, and I encourage any member of the community to report when such conduct occurs.  

If you believe you have experienced discrimination or harassment, please contact the Office for Institutional Equity (OIE). OIE is available to consult with you about your concerns to determine how they should be addressed and to explain the OIE process. Call OIE at (919) 684-8222 or email oie-help@duke.edu.  To report a concern about sexual misconduct against a student please contact the Office of Student Conduct at (919) 684-6938. Retaliation is prohibited for making a good-faith reporting of or opposition to discrimination or harassment; participation in Duke’s complaint process or the follow-up to a complaint; or other forms of good-faith opposition to what an individual reasonably believes to be discrimination or harassment.

The OIE process is discrete, but not completely confidential because in some cases there is an obligation to take action when the University becomes aware of misconduct or potential harm.  However, there are confidential resources available to you.  If you are a student or a faculty member you may access a University ombudsperson (919-660-2444 for students; 919-613-7055 for faculty). University staff seeking confidential advice may contact Personal Assistance Service (PAS) at 919-416-1727.   

The Policy on Prohibited Discrimination Harassment and Related Misconduct governs protected class-based discrimination and harassment at Duke.  According to Duke policy, if you are a supervisor or a manager you are required to report potential violations of the policy to OIE.  According to the Student Sexual Misconduct Policy, all employees are expected to report concerns they learn about under that policy. I encourage you to become familiar with our policies and in particular these reporting requirements and to utilize the available resources to ensure all members of our community can live, work, teach and learn in an environment free from discrimination and harassment.    

Sincerely,  

Kimberly Hewitt
Vice President for Institutional Equity & Chief Diversity Officer


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