[HISTORY: Adopted by the Borough Council of the Borough of Catasauqua 10-4-1993 by Ord. No. 1005 (Ch. I, Part 9B, of the 1962 Code). Amendments noted where applicable.]
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- SEXUAL HARASSMENT
- Any unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature when:
- A. Submission to such conduct is made either explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of a person's employment; or
- B. Submission to or rejection of such conduct by a person is used as a basis for employment decisions affecting that person; or
- C. Such conduct has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with a person's work performance; or
- D. Such conduct creates an intimidating, hostile or offensive work environment.
Sexual harassment is hereby prohibited between employees of the Borough of Catasauqua. Sexual harassment is declared to be a serious violation of the work rules of this Borough and, if proven, shall be grounds for the imposition of discipline. Discipline for the offense shall range from an oral or written reprimand to suspension without pay or, ultimately, termination depending upon the following:
Any employee who believes that another employee is engaging in sexual harassment may file a complaint within a reasonable period of time after the event (normally not more than 180 days).
No person filing a complaint under this policy or who legitimately assists another in prosecution of any such complaint shall be subjected to retribution or retaliation of any kind for doing so.
All complaints of sexual harassment shall be filed in writing with the Borough Manager or, in cases involving the Borough Manager, the Council President. The complaint shall state with specificity the dates, times and places of the actions complained of and the specific facts surrounding the incidents complained of.
Complaints filed under this policy shall be promptly and thoroughly investigated by the Borough Manager or his designee. If the complaint involves the Borough Manager, the investigation shall be conducted by the Council President or his designee.
Upon completion of the investigation, the investigator shall prepare a comprehensive report addressing all allegations in the complaint and objectively documenting all relevant factual findings of the investigation. The investigatory report shall contain conclusions as to the complaint's validity and the sanction or penalty to be imposed.
The report shall be immediately forwarded to Borough Council and a copy of the same shall be sent to both the complainant and the party subject to the investigation.
Either the complainant or the party subject to the investigation shall have the right to request a hearing before Borough Council by filing a request for the same, in writing, within 15 days after receipt of the report of the investigator. If no request for a hearing is filed, the report of the investigator shall become final and the decision dismissing the complaint or imposing sanctions shall become the final determination of the complaint.
Within 30 days after receiving receipt of a request for hearing, the Borough Council shall hold an administrative hearing in public or in private at the request of the defendant on the complaint. The hearing shall be conducted before a court reporter. Witnesses may be subpoenaed and required to provide testimony. The court reporter shall require all witnesses to provide testimony under oath and shall prepare a verbatim transcript/recording of the proceedings which shall serve as the official record of the hearing.
Either party shall be entitled to attend the hearing and testify in his or her own behalf, and shall be entitled to confront and cross-examine the employee who filed the complaint. Either party may have his or her own counsel at said hearing. At the conclusion of the hearing or within 15 days thereafter, the Borough Council shall make findings concerning the innocence or guilt of the accused of the offense of sexual harassment.
If the Council President has acted in the capacity of investigator, he shall not participate as a hearing officer with the rest of Council nor shall he have any vote at the conclusion of said hearing.
The standard required for a finding of guilt is that the record be supported by substantial credible evidence.
If a finding of guilt is made by Borough Council, Council may impose any penalty it deems appropriate.
Due to the serious and private nature of this offense, false accusations of sexual harassment are, and will be treated as, a disciplinary offense and will result in the same level of punishment as that applied to one who engages in sexual behavior.