Sexual Harassment Policy

The Illinois School Psychologists Association (ISPA) is committed to a policy of nondiscrimination on the basis of race, religion, age, national origin, disability, gender, or sexual orientation. Sexual harassment by staff, leadership, or members is specifically prohibited at all Association functions and activities.

Sexual harassment is unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature that makes a person feel offended, humiliated and/or intimidated. Sexual harassment can involve one or more incidents, and actions constituting harassment may be physical, verbal and/or nonverbal.

Physical conduct:

  • Unwelcome physical contact including patting, pinching, stroking, kissing, hugging, or inappropriate touching;
  • Physical violence, including sexual assault;
  • The use of job-related threats or rewards to solicit sexual favors;
  • The use of power dichotomies to solicit sexual favors;

Verbal conduct:

  • Comments on a person’s appearance, age, private life, etc.;
  • Sexual comments, stories or jokes
  • Repeated and unwanted social invitations for dates or physical intimacy
  • Condescending or paternalistic remarks
  • Sending sexually explicit messages via phone, email, other electronic communication etc.

Non-verbal conduct:

  • Display of sexually explicit or suggestive material
  • Sexually suggestive gestures, including whistling

ISPA recognizes that anyone can be a victim of sexual harassment, regardless of their gender or the gender of the harasser. ISPA recognizes that sexual harassment may also occur between people of the same gender. What matters is that the sexual conduct is unwanted and unwelcome by the person against whom the conduct is directed.

ISPA recognizes that sexual harassment may be, but is not limited to, a manifestation of a power differential which often occurs within unequal relationships, for example between supervisors and interns or faculty and students.

Anyone who is subject to sexual harassment should, if possible, inform the alleged harasser that the conduct is unwanted and unwelcome. If an individual member experiences sexual harassment and believes that an informal solution of the situation is unlikely, he or she should report the incident to the ISPA leadership. The Association is committed to investigating all complaints in a timely manner and taking all warranted corrective action. ISPA will take the necessary steps to protect from retaliation those individuals who, in good faith, report incidents of potential sexual harassment. It is a violation of both federal and state law and this policy to retaliate against someone who has reported possible sexual harassment.

Complaints regarding violations of this Policy by staff, leadership, or members of the ISPA shall be reported to the ISPA Ethics Committee, which shall initiate an investigation. Every report of harassment will be investigated promptly and impartially, with every effort to maintain employee confidentiality. The complainant and the accused will be informed of the results of the investigation. If the Association finds that its policy has been violated, it will take appropriate corrective and remedial action, up to and including terminating membership of offending officers or members, and/or similarly appropriate action towards offending vendors, contractors, or members.  Any reports of sexual harassment will be treated seriously and promptly with sensitivity.