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Responsibility of University Employees
University policy commits the institution to preventing and eliminating sexual
harassment in the university community. University supervisors, administrators,
and faculty have the responsibility of preventing and eliminating sexual harassment
within the areas they oversee. In addition, the University may be legally liable if a
person with supervisory responsibility knows or should have known about the alleged
sexual harassment and fails to take any action to stop it. University procedures do
not require a grievant to file a formal complaint in order to trigger the University’s
responsibility to take some kind of action.
University supervisors, administrators, and faculty must report immediately any and
all incidents or complaints of sexual harassment to an administrative officer or to the
Office of Affirmative Action/EEO, even if such complaints or incidents have been
resolved within the department.
University employees are encouraged to report immediately any and all incidents of
sexual harassment to an administrative officer or to the Office of Affirmative Action/
Harassment on the basis of sex may be discrimination in violation of Title VII of
the Civil Rights Act of 1964, 42 U.S.C. Sec. 2000e, and Title IX of the Educational
Amendments of 1972, 20 U.S.C. Sec. 1681. In addition, sexual harassment by a
public servant may be a criminal offense under Texas Penal Code Sec. 39.02, and
sexual harassment by any individual may constitute assault, sexual assault, public
lewdness, or indecent exposure under Chapters 21 and 22 of the Texas Penal Code or
sexual assault under the University of Houston’s Interim Sexual Assault Policy. For
the complete Sexual Harassment Policy, please visit the Office of Affirmative Action/
EEO’s website at
or call 713.743.8835.
Additional avenues for filing a complaint at any time before, during, or after use of
the University Sexual Harassment Procedures, but within time limits required by law,
include but are not limited to, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission; the
Texas Workforce Commission Civil Rights Division, the Office of Federal Contract
Compliance Programs and, for students, the Office of Civil Rights, and the U.S.
Department of Education.
Students who violate this policy shall be subject to discipline under the university’s
student life or residential life disciplinary procedures as set forth in the Student
Handbook. Persons who smoke in areas where smoking is prohibited by state law
i.e., an elevator, enclosed theater or movie house, library, hospital or transit system
bus) are subject to fines not to exceed $500 (Texas Penal Code, Section 48.01).