Responding to Perceived Instances of Bias at Manhattanville College
Manhattanville College is committed to maintaining and nurturing a community of inclusivity where every member is valued. Dating back to 1938 when former College President, Mother Grace Dammann, affirmed the right of the first African-American student to be admitted to this institution, Manhattanville College has stood for a commitment to the inclusion and celebration of the diverse backgrounds, cultures, experiences, and perspectives of our community members.
Our community is committed to maintaining an inclusive campus climate, yet we recognize that incidents of bias and hate have occurred to and are committed by our community members. When this happens, we want our students, staff, and faculty to fully understand their options for support and to be aware of established procedures for reporting and responding to such behaviors.
The free expression of ideas, even those that may be unpopular or controversial, is an essential part of a vibrant, diverse community. Problems arise, however, when members of a community act on biases that are based on fear, misunderstanding, or dislike of a certain group of people. The College’s policy on Non-discrimination and Harassment provides guidance and reporting information for those who believe they have experienced discrimination and/or harassment as employees, applicants for employment, volunteers, students, or applicants for admission on the basis of their perceived age, race, creed, color, religion, national origin, immigration or citizenship status, ethnicity, sexual orientation, military status, sex, gender, disability, predisposing genetic characteristics, criminal conviction, marital status, familial status, domestic violence victim status, gender identity, or transgender identity.
Behavior reflecting negative bias that is directed against or that targets an individual or group based on the perceived or actual characteristics listed above, but which does not meet the Federal and State statutes covered by the College’s Policy on Non-Discrimination and Harassment, can still cause harm to individuals and the community. Such harmful behaviors run counter to the mission and values of Manhattanville College. These bias behaviors can include oral, written or visual use of degrading language or stereotypes, insults which, intentionally or not, communicate hostile or derogatory messages to persons based solely upon their perceived identity.
Manhattanville Bias Education Response Team
The Manhattanville Bias Education Response Team (BERT) helps in promoting a campus climate in which all members thrive personally, professionally, and academically. Team members serve as supportive resources for community members who have reported incidents of bias not addressed by the Manhattanville Student Handbook or the Faculty/Staff Handbook. Team members are trained on issues related to bias response.
The team also serves as a clearinghouse for reported incidents of bias. Data is collected in aggregate and shared with the community annually. Where appropriate, the Bias Education Response Team will advise the President on appropriate actions and communication to the community.
BERT does not have the authority to conduct disciplinary proceedings or impose discipline on students, staff or faculty. The chair shall review all reports and make referrals as appropriate. Reports involving violations of the Student Handbook, Title IX policies, Faculty or Staff Handbooks will be referred and addressed in accordance with Manhattanville’ s policies as follows:
Reports of policy violations related to the Student Handbooks will be directed to the Dean of Students;
Reports of policy violations related to the behavior of staff members will be directed to Human Resources;
Reports of policy violations related to the behavior of faculty members will be directed to the Dean of the faculty member’s school;
Reports of sexual misconduct or harassment will be directed to the Title IX Coordinator or appropriate deputy coordinator.
Bias Education Response Team Membership
Chair (Dean of Students)
Three faculty members selected through established procedures
Three members of the professional staff including the Director of the Center of Inclusion
*The team may include other members of the community in its response when appropriate.