The internal discrimination complaint procedure is a process for resolving claims/allegations by MCCCD employees, visitors, vendors, or external applicants who have been subjected to discrimination by MCCCD staff or students.
Complaints may be brought on the basis of race; color; religion; national origin; citizenship status (including document abuse); sex (including pregnancy discrimination, sexual harassment); sexual orientation; gender identity; physical or mental disability; age (40 or older); veteran status; genetic information; or retaliation for expressing concerns about prohibited discrimination, participating in a discrimination investigation, and/or the filing a discrimination complaint.
MCCCD employees who are experiencing discrimination may use either the informal or formal discrimination complaint process.
Informal Resolution of Discrimination Complaints
An employee ("complainant") who has been subjected to prohibited discrimination may attempt to resolve the problem before the issue(s) escalate or require more formal attention. S/he may report (either verbally or in writing) the discriminatory act(s) to any or all of the following MCCCD officials within 90 calendar days of the last occurrence of the act (30 days for complaints of national origin and citizenship status, including document abuse):
- The academic or administrative official(s) responsible for the unit or department involved(i.e., department chair, department manager);
- The appropriate vice president or designee at each campus; or
- The MCCCD EEO MAnager (located at 2411 West 14th Street, Tempe, AZ 85281, 480-731-8473).
Once the complainant contacts one of the administrative officials listed above, the administrative official will schedule a meeting with the person who allegedly engaged in the discriminatory behavior (“respondent”) within 10 working days of the receipt of the complaint. (Before having this meeting, all administrative officials must consult with the MCCCD EEO Manager).
At the meeting, the administrator will inform the respondent of the alleged discriminatory behavior and ask for a written response to the allegation(s).
If the respondent admits to discriminatory act:
- Provide the individual with a copy of MCCCD's Non-Discrimination Policy.
- Require the individual to stop the behavior or face more formal sanctions.
- Discuss acceptable workplace behavior.
- Encourage attendance of MCCCD's workshops to educate the individual about creating a respectful and inclusive workplace and/or understanding of differences among employees.
- Encourage greater awareness of behaviors which may lead to perceptions of discrimination.
If the respondent denies the discriminatory act:
- Ask the respondent why s/he believes the complainant would make a false complaint and what other persons or documents might support this.
- Let the complainant know the respondent denied the behaviors and ask the complainant if s/he would like to file a formal complaint with the MCCCD EEO Office for further investigation or if the complainant would like to work on some type of mediation or resolution between the two parties.
- If mediation/resolution is the choice, work with MCCCD resources to accomplish this.
If the complaint is informally resolved, a summary of the allegations of the report and the outcome of the meeting will be forwarded to the MCCCD EEO Office within 7 working days of the meeting.
If the complaint cannot be informally resolved to the satisfaction of the complainant, s/he may proceed with filing a formal complaint to the MCCCD EEO Office or with any of the appropriate state/federal offices.
Formal Discrimination Complaint
An employee (“complainant”) who has been subjected to prohibited discrimination may begin the formal in-house complaint process by contacting the MCCCD Equal Employment Opportunity/Affirmative Action (EEO/AA) office within 180 calendar days of the last occurrence of the alleged discriminatory event:
Maricopa County Community College District
2411 West 14th Street
Tempe, Arizona 85281
The employee must complete and sign the form provided by the MCCCD EEO Office.
The complaint must identify the action/decision/conduct that the employee believes is discriminatory on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, citizenship status (including document abuse), age (40 or older), disability, veteran status, genetic information, or retaliation.
The MCCCD EEO Office will investigate the matter. The EEO Office serves as a neutral, fact-finding party. The EEO office will review its role and the complaint process with both the complainant and person(s) who performed the alleged discriminatory act (the “respondent”).
- Upon receipt of a complaint, the EEO Office will notify the appropriate college president/vice chancellor of the complaint. Other administrators may also be notified as appropriate.
- A summary of the allegations will be provided to the respondent in advance of the initiation of the investigation. The respondent, and other appropriate parties, will be reminded that retaliatory actions against the complainant are prohibited and may result in disciplinary action being taken against the perpetrator.
- The respondent will be given the opportunity to provide a written response to the complaint. However, the response must be provided to the MCCCD EEO Office within seven (7) working days of his/her receipt of the complaint.
- After accepting a complaint, the MCCCD EEO Office will conduct a fact-finding investigation. Upon request, the EEO Office may apprise the appropriate college and/or district official(s) of the status of the complaint without disclosing any matters that may be confidential.
- Within 90 days of accepting the complaint (30 days for complaints of national origin or citizenship status, including document abuse), the EEO Office will issue a letter of findings to the complainant, respondent and the College President/Provost/Chancellor/Vice Chancellor. This letter will indicate whether there was/was not sufficient evidence or testimony to support the allegations. The College President/Provost/Chancellor/Vice Chancellor will accept, reject, or modify the recommendations and provide the written notification of his/her action to the parties within fifteen (15) working days of receiving the MCCCD EEO Office's findings. If either party is dissatisfied with the findings, they may submit a request for an administrative review (see below).
- If the evidence supports the allegation of discrimination, a report of the findings will recommend remedial action.
Appropriate corrective action is managed at the college level with the exception of demotion, suspension without pay, or termination which will need to be reviewed with the vice chancellor for human resources.
Evidence gathered during the investigation may be used in subsequent grievance/disciplinary procedures or performance reviews.
Timeframes for Investigation
The timeframes for complaint investigation and response may be extended for good reason, such as (but not limited to) when classes are not in session or upon mutual agreement by the parties to the complaint. Extensions will be confirmed in writing with the complainant and the respondent.
MCCCD Administrative Review Process: Request for Reconsideration
If any party is dissatisfied with the finding, s/he may submit a written request for administrative review to the Vice Chancellor for Human Resources. The request must be submitted within 10 working days of the date of receipt of the findings.
The request for administrative review must state specific reasons why the party believes the findings were improper.
The Vice Chancellor for Human Resources will review the findings and respond to the request within 10 working days from receipt of the request.
If the Vice Chancellor determines that the findings were not supported by the evidence, the case file will be reopened and reassigned for further investigation.
If the Vice Chancellor determines that the investigation is supported by the evidence, s/he will deny the request for reconsideration. There is no appeal of the Vice Chancellor’s determination.
Retention of Documentation
Documentation resulting from the investigation at each level in the complaint procedure will be maintained according to applicable records retention laws in the MCCCD EEO Office and is not considered part of an employee's personnel file. Documentation regarding corrective action will be made part of the employee's personnel file. The documentation shall be maintained in the MCCCD EEO Office.
Confidentiality of Proceedings
Every effort shall be made by the college and MCCCD to protect the confidentiality of the parties and records (to the extent permitted by law) during the processing of complaints under this procedure subject to law.
An employer may not fire, demote, harass or otherwise retaliate against an individual for filing a charge of discrimination, participating in a discrimination proceeding, or otherwise opposing discrimination.
Any retaliatory action by instructors, supervisors, managers, academic professionals, administrators, or other employees who have the authority to take adverse action against a complainant or witness is prohibited and may be grounds for disciplinary action up to and including termination of employment.
While MCCCD encourages individuals to use the MCCCD Internal Complaint Procedure for resolution of discrimination concerns, individuals also do have the right to file civil rights complaints with appropriate external agencies in addition to their internal complaint. No retaliation shall be taken against a person for filing a complaint with an external agency. The following agencies accept and investigate complaints of unlawful employment discrimination:
Office of the Attorney General
Civil Rights Division (ACRD)
1275 West Washington Street
Phoenix, Arizona 85007
U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC)
Phoenix District Office
3300 N. Central Ave., Suite 690
Phoenix, Arizona 85012
Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP)
Department Of Labor
230 North First Avenue, Room 503
Phoenix, AZ 85003
Office for Civil Rights, Region VIII (OCR)
U.S. Department of Education
1244 Speer Boulevard, Suite 310
Denver, Colorado 80204-3582
To file a complaint, please download the Internal Discrimination Complaint Form for Employees.
The Maricopa County Community College District is an EEO/AA institution.