Affirmative Action Charge to Search Committees



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Affirmative Action Charge to Search Committees

Acceptable and Unacceptable Pre-Employment Inquiries

The general rule is that all questions asked must be related to the performance of the specific job duties.

This chart provides general guidelines, both for job applications and employers, as to what can or cannot be asked during a job interview in regard to anti-discrimination laws pertaining to race, religion, color, national origin, sex, age, disability, or marital status. This applies to recruitment, hiring, transfers, promotions, and other applicable conditions of employment.



SUBJECT

ACCEPTABLE

UNACCEPTABLE

Race or Color

None

Any inquiry regarding race, complexion, color, or ethnic affiliation

Birthplace

None

Birthplace of applicant. Birthplace of applicant’s parents, spouse, or other close relatives.

Religion

Willingness to work required work schedule

Inquiry into an applicant’s religious denomination, affiliations, church, parish, pastor, or religious holiday observed.

National Origin

None

Inquiry into applicant’s lineage, ancestry, national origin, descent, parentage, or nationality. Nationality of applicant’s parents or spouse.

Citizenship

Is U.S. residence legally? If hired, can you show proof of authorization to work in the United States?

If applicant or applicant’s parents are native born or naturalized. Require proof of citizenship

Organizations

Inquiry into organizational membership and offices held. Exclude organizations which indicate race, creed, color, or nation origin of its members.

Listing all clubs, societies, and lodges to which you belong.

Military Experience

Inquiry into the service in the U.S. Armed Forces, including branch and rank or any job related experience.

General military experience, such as, inquiry into military service records or typed of discharge.

Sex/Gender

None

A pre-employment inquiry as to sex on an applications form is unlawful.

Marital Status

None

Are you married? Where does your spouse work? What are the ages of your children, if any? What are your plans for childcare?

Age

Are you at least 18 years of age?

How old are you? What is the date of your birth? Avoid: What is the date of your graduation?

Disability

If the applicant can perform the essential functions of the job with or without reasonable accommodation.

Do you have a disability? What diseases are you being treated for?

Name

For access purposes, whether the applicants work records are under another name.

To ask if a woman is a Miss, Mrs., or Ms. Or to ask for a maiden name.

Residence

Applicant’s length of current and previous address and phone number (for contact purposes).

None

Relatives

Names of relatives already employed by the company.

Information concerning applicant’s children or other relative not employed by the company.










Photograph

None

Requirement that an applicant affix a photograph to employment application at any time before hiring.

Language

Inquiry into language applicant speaks, writes, or reads fluently.

Inquiries into how applicant acquired ability to speak, write, or read a foreign language.

Education

Inquiry into the academic, vocational or professional education of an applicant and the public and private schools the applicant has attended.

Nationality, racial or religious affiliation of schools attended.

Criminal Record

Have you ever been convicted of a crime? If so, when, where and disposition of the offense?

Have you ever been arrested? Inquiry into arrest record.



University’s Diversity Efforts

Creating a diverse and inclusive environment



  • Federal and state non-discrimination laws

  • Diversity defined

  • Affirmative Action defined (no quotas, set-asides, or reverse discrimination)

  • University mirrors the multi-racial, multi-ethnic, pluralistic world of our students

Charge

  • Aggressively advertise and network for diversity candidates, including solicitation letters

  • Hire the best applicant for the job…that’s the essence of ‘equal opportunity’

  • Affirmative Action does NOT mean preferential treatment and selection of unqualified candidates over qualified candidates

  1. Selection among equally qualified candidates

  2. Selection among comparable candidates

  1. Everything you do must be directly job related (screening criteria, ranking methods, interview questions, reference questions, etc.)

  2. Screening criteria must be objective and measurable

  3. TREAT ALL APPLICANTS THE SAME

  • Increase the representation of diversity in the EOU workforce

  • Move expeditiously/systematically…stick to a timeline that reflects urgency and rigor

  • For the University, your teammates, and the applicants…each of you must do the work on time…know the PD/criteria…come to the meetings prepared…defend your assessments!

Confidentiality

Absolute confidentiality must prevail about the search process and candidates (critical)



  • Do NOT discuss outside the Committee. Do NOT confirm speculation

  • Zero tolerance for disclosure of any candidate information outside Committee (for all time…but qualifications and experience divulged by candidates may be publicly shared at the time of the campus visitations). This is especially critical with regard to internal candidates.

  • No side-bar deals among Committee members regarding candidates

  • Severely limit involvement/influence of hiring manger

  • Committee provides hiring manager with strengths and weaknesses of finalist

  • Committee ranking of candidates (optional) can prematurely exclude candidates

  • Hiring manger must justify hire as the ‘most qualified’

Roles of Search Chairman, Search Coordinator

Again..Arms-length relationship of hiring manager to committee deliberations



Interviews: Phone and Campus

Pre-plan questions and secure HR approval in advance



  • Legal questions only (see attachments)

  • Comfortable, non-judgmental conversational flow vs. inquisition

  • Best: Open-ended, behavior-based (experience), hypothetical scenarios…the past predicts the future

  • Feel free to pursue follow-up questions (clarification, greater depth)

  • All candidates should receive same selected questions

  • All candidates should have a similar interview experience, and leave with a sense of fairness

  • Caution: First impression biases, especially those tied to prohibited areas (physical attributes, accents)

  • Ask if any ‘reasonable accommodations’ (physical access) will be necessary for the interview

  • Always ask candidates their experience working with diverse populations

  • Signal the University’s interest in accommodating dual career couples

Be aware of your attitudes and unconscious biases re: accents, communication styles, tone/volume of speech, eye contact, degree of formality, handshake, dress, individual vs. group achievements, etc.

Internet Searches

Do not conduct any searches by candidate name on the internet. There is no way to know for certain if you have information on the correct person. The information is not vetted so there is no way of knowing if it is fact or an opinion. It is possible that photographs may populate this is also something that you want to stay away from because it could be deemed prejudice. Any of the information mentioned in this paragraph could cause issues of a biased and unfair search.



References

Crucial…best done by the Committee



  • Get references from multiple work-related sources…former bosses, subordinates, peers

  • Pre-plan behavior-based questions tied to selection criteria, and

  1. Verification of application information

  2. Verification of what applicant has said in interviews

  3. Probe potential performance ‘red flags’, areas of Committee concern

  • Be assertive in pursuing follow-up questions (clarification, greater depth)

  • ALWAYS ask candidate’s permission to talk to secondary references

  • ALWAYS ask…

    • If they would re-hire, and if not, an explanation

    • What should have been asked, but wasn’t (other performance areas)

    • Other knowledgeable individuals with whom the Committee should talk

  • Written and/or unsolicited references have dubious value

Dual Career Policy

The University may devote resources to support the recruitment of dual career academic couples. Eastern Oregon University cannot provide job placement or guarantee employment to spouses/partners of candidates.



The initiation of discussions regarding dual career appointment should be left up to the candidate in order to avoid intrusive and potentially illegal inquiries about a candidate’s family situation and to acknowledge that the appropriate time to communicate the need for spousal/partner accommodation will vary across different search contexts.

  • If Human Resources is notified by the candidate of a dual career situation the chair of the search will be notified of the candidate.

  • The candidate has to qualify for the position on their own merit.

  • Policy is in the process of being updated


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