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KSRE Employee Resources

Policy and Procedures

As an integral part of a Land-Grant university that receives funds from USDA through the National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA), K-State Research and Extension is committed to fair and equitable treatment of all employees and program participants. In fact, as the nation’s oldest Land-Grant institution, K-State has been putting service and compassion into action since 1863. The university was only the second public institution of higher learning in the U.S. to admit women and men equally. Throughout history, the university has remained committed to creating a level playing field where all can succeed and overcome challenges.

K-State Research and Extension also believes in the principles of diversity, equity and inclusion because we know that human differences enrich our lives, work and communities. We embrace our responsibility to be a resource for all, regardless of their cultural, ethnic or economic background.

While there are clear distinctions between compliance concepts and diversity concepts, the two are intertwined. Our actions as Extension professionals should reflect our organizational beliefs. What is expected of us and the mechanisms used to demonstrate those actions are known as civil rights compliance.

Below, you can find information about Policies and Procedures related to civil rights compliance that must be followed to ensure we remain a resource for all members of our communities.

Policy


Federal Legislation 

The Civil Rights Act of 1964; Title VI

  • Ensures access to Federally funded programming/assistance
  • Prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, and national origin

The Civil Rights Act of 1964; Title VII

  • Outlaws Employment Discrimination
  • Prohibits discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, and national origin
  • Created the Commission on Equal Employment Opportunity

The Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967

  • Outlaws discrimination on the basis of age in the workplace
  • Focuses on persons age 40 and older

Education Amendments of 1972; Title IX

  • Bans Sex Discrimination 
  • Focused on educational programming

Rehabilitation Act of 1973; Sections 501 and 505

  • Prohibits Disability Discrimination in federal employment
  • Governing remedies for disability discrimination

Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990; Titles I and V

  • Bans discrimination against those with physical or mental disabilities
  • Focused on "all aspects of society"
  • Compensatory and punitive damages for victims of disability discrimination 

Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Amendments Act of 2008

  • Clarifies and broadens the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 

 The Civil Rights Act of 1991; Title I

  • Compensatory and punitive damages for victims of discrimination
  • Mandates reasonable accommodations and good faith efforts to avoid discrimination

Limited English Proficiency Initiative of 2000; Executive Order 13166

  • Requires that federal agencies develop and implement systems to provide their services so that Limited English Proficiency persons can have meaningful access to them

 

Abridged list of Federal Civil Rights for K-State Research and Extension offices  pdf

Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Guide for State and Local Governments

USDA and ECOP Policies 

United States Department of Agriculture (USDA)

Cooperative Extension

State Policies 

Kansas State University Policies 

K-State Research and Extension Policies 

 

Our All Reasonable Efforts Policy 

The intent of the Civil Rights Act is that all people have the opportunity to participate in educational programs and employment opportunities in federally assisted programs.  This intent and the means for achieving it are consistent with the Extension philosophy that its programs are open to all persons and that those programs will be designed to best meet their needs.

A sincere effort must be made to encourage participation by minority members and to overcome barriers and concerns that might interfere. It is not enough to simply announce the program is open to all. An effort must be made to tailor the program to meet the needs and concerns of the target audience.

Examples of barriers to participation include means of publication, location of meetings, etc., not normally used by the target
audience.

The minimum reasonable effort required by Extension staff include three steps:

  1. Use of all available mass media, including websites, radio, newspaper, and television, to inform potential recipients of the program and of the opportunity to participate.
  2. Personal letters addressed to defined potential recipients inviting them to participate, including dates and places of meetings or other planned activities.
  3. Personal visits by the Extension staff member(s) to a representative number of defined potential recipients in the geographically defined area to encourage participation.

Documentation is needed that"All Reasonable Efforts" have been made. Copies of mass media releases and circular letters meet requirements for 1 and 2 above. Personal visits may be documented by making a record for filing of personal visits including visitor, dates, person reached, responses and other related information. 

 

Local Partner Certification of Non-Discrimination 

All local unit offices must provide partner agencies with written notification of non-discrimination and ask that they return a signed assurance of non-discrimination. Local partners are any clubs, groups and organizations with which local unit offices cooperate with on an on-going basis.  These include but are not limited to 4-H clubs, Master Gardener groups, livestock producer groups, libraries, PRIDE groups, schools, senior centers, and non-profits.

Notification should state that K-State Research and Extension cannot provide assistance to any organization that excludes any person from membership or participation in any activities of the organization, or subject any person to discrimination because of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, age or disability.

There should be on file:

  1. Copies of this written notification from the local unit office to any club, group or organization with which local units offices cooperate on an on-going basis. 
  2. Written responses from all organizations being served on a continuing basis stating whether or not that organization's policies or practices conform with conditions stated in the notification.

Written notification and collection of assurance of non-discrimination should be repeated every four years.  Certification of non-discrimination from partner organizations should be kept in the local unit civil rights files.  

Limited English Proficiency 

As an agency that receives federal funds, K-State Research and Extension is obligated to take reasonable steps to ensure that those with Limited English Proficiency (LEP) have meaningful access to our programs, services and information.  Limited English Proficiency refers to persons who do not speak English as their primary language and/or who have limited ability to read, write, speak or understand English. 

K-State Research and Extension has certain legal obligations to ensure nondiscrimination for LEP persons.

  • Requests for language support services--KSRE has a legal obligation to provide accommodations for individuals with limited English proficiency. Therefore, it is unlawful to deny a request for language support services to a person who is a participant, or wants to participate in KSRE programs, services, and activities.
  • Requests made by members of the public—KSRE is legally obligated to provide translation or interpretation services any time a member of the public requests services in connection to their—or someone else’s—restricted ability to access or understand English-only information that is related to our educational programming activities.
  • Programming that requires critical or vital communication--Critical or vital communication means information in any format that clientele/participants need to access programming. Any English-only document used by KSRE in an official capacity is subject to translation. This is particularly true for applicant participation, release or consent forms, documents related to a participant’s medical history, emergency information, and other documents that ask for information that is sensitive in nature.
  • General educational programming--KSRE may be legally obligated per Title VI to provide language support services in educational programming based on, among other things, 1) the nature and scope of the project, 2) the target audience, and 3) community demographics within the designated service area.

Local units should access the number or proportion of limited English speakers in the local population to determine whether or not a local language services plan needs to be developed.

Disability and Title IX protections in K-State Research and Extension  pdf

K-State Research and Extension's Plan for Public Notification of Civil Rights  pdf

K-State Research and Extension's Civil Rights Performance Plan  pdf

K-State Research and Extension's Mailing List Policy PDF

 

Procedures


Complaints 

Program participants have a right to complain if they feel they have been denied access to extension programming. Each extension staff member should know the proper procedure for handling a complaint:  

Responding to Discrimination Complaints

 Resources Regarding Discrimination Complaints

Filing Civil Rights Information