DENVER CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION EQUAL EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITY POLICY (Effective January 16, 2009)
It is the policy of the Civil Service Commission (“Commission”) that its employees, contract employees, temporary workers, and applicants for employment or promotion with the Commission or Classified Service of the Denver Fire Department or Denver Police Department have a right to be free of discrimination, harassment, and retaliation based upon actual or perceived race, color, creed, national origin, ancestry, sexual orientation, physical or mental disability, age, gender/sex (including pregnancy, childbirth, or caregiver status), marital status, military status, religion, political affiliation, or any other basis protected by federal, state, or local law or regulation.
- Examples of conduct that could violate this policy include but are not limited to:
- Verbal conduct such as epithets, derogatory comments, slurs, unwanted sexual advances, invitations, or comments;
- Visual conduct such as derogatory posters, photographs, cartoons, drawings, or gestures;
- Physical conduct such as assault, unwanted touching, blocking normal movement, or interfering with work directed at a person because of a protected basis;
- Threats or demands to submit to sexual requests in order to keep a job or avoid some other negative consequence, and offers of job benefits in return for sexual favors;
- Basing an employment decision (such as hiring, promotion, discipline, pay increase, job assignment, or termination) on any of the protected categories identified above; and
- Retaliation for good faith reporting, opposing, or otherwise participating in a complaint or investigation process concerning potential violations of this policy.
- Individuals who believe they are being subjected to prohibited discrimination or harassment are strongly encouraged to make it clear to the offending employee that such behavior is offensive and should be discontinued.
- Any alleged violations of this policy should be promptly reported to any of the following:
- The Executive Director of the Commission;
- The supervisor of the Commission’s Human Resources unit;
- Any member of the Board of Commissioners; or
- The Executive Director of the City’s Agency for Human Rights and Community Relations. The HRCR will present the matter to the City Attorney’s Office (specifically, the Litigation Section’s Employment Law group), for further investigative action.
A report or complaint of discrimination, harassment, and/or retaliation may be made verbally or in writing. Any person reporting a potential violation of this policy or otherwise participating in the complaint or investigation process should understand that confidentiality will be maintained to the extent possible but that absolute confidentiality and anonymity cannot be guaranteed.
- If the supervisor of the Human Resources unit, the Executive Director of the Commission, or any member of the Board of Commissioners becomes aware, by any formal or informal means, of possible discrimination, harassment, or retaliation, such person must take prompt, reasonable actions to stop any prohibited behavior. Additionally, the supervisor of the Human Resources unit or the Executive Director of the Commission must promptly report any information concerning the possible prohibited behavior to the Board of Commissioners.
- The Commission maintains “zero tolerance” regarding violations of this policy, meaning the Commission will not knowingly tolerate acts of discrimination, harassment, or retaliation. Allegations about potential violations of this policy will be taken seriously and the Commission will promptly undertake reasonable steps to address all allegations of discrimination, harassment, or retaliation. If an investigation is deemed necessary, it will be conducted promptly, thoroughly, and impartially. Appropriate actions may include, but are not limited to, discipline (up to and including termination), training, mediation, or other effective remedial action commensurate with the severity of the offense and any such actions will occur as soon as practicable for even a single violation of the policy.
- Retaliation is strictly prohibited against any employee or applicant who has in good faith:
- Opposed conduct that potentially violates this policy, including but not limited to making a complaint or protest on behalf of another individual;
- Reported conduct that the employee experienced or observed and reasonably believes to constitute a potential violation of this policy; or
- Assisted or participated in an investigation, claim, lawsuit, or hearing concerning a complaint of discrimination, harassment, or retaliation. This includes but is not limited to making a report or complaint or providing a witness interview during an investigation.
Retaliation is conduct taken against an employee or applicant because the employee or applicant has engaged in any of the above-listed protected activities. Retaliation can include but is not limited to such acts as disciplining an employee, giving an employee a negative performance evaluation, refusing to recommend an individual for a benefit for which he or she qualifies, giving an employee a less desirable job assignment, spreading rumors about an individual, encouraging hostility from co-workers, and escalating harassment. Any Commission employee engaging in or encouraging retaliation will be subject to appropriate disciplinary actions.