Berkeley Lab

The University invites comments on Proposed Revised Presidential Policy on Nondiscrimination and Affirmative Action

The University invites comments on Proposed Revised Presidential Policy on Nondiscrimination and Affirmative Action regarding Academic and Staff Employment and Proposed Revised Academic Personnel Policy Section 015, The Faculty Code of Conduct (APM – 015).

Proposed revisions modify language to comply with:

  • California state law (AB 1433), by extending non-discrimination and non-harassment protections to individuals applying for or engaged in positions as “volunteers, unpaid interns and trainees;”
  • the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) Pay Transparency Rule, prohibiting certain employers from discharging or discriminating against employees and job applicants for discussing, disclosing or inquiring about compensation; and
  • amendments to the California Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA), requiring employers to develop and distribute anti-harassment and discrimination policies with certain required elements.

The proposal is located on the UCOP Academic Personnel and Programs website, “Policies under review”, under the “Systemwide Review” tab at

If you have any questions or if you wish to comment, please complete the Speak Your Mind section below, no later than January 13, 2017.


  1. Honestly, there is some text that makes me wary:
    “no provision of this policy shall be interpreted to prohibit conduct that is legitimately related to the course content, teaching methods, scholarship, or public commentary of an individual faculty member or the educational, political, artistic, or literary expression of students in classrooms and public forums”– that adverb ‘legitimately’ appears to leave too much leeway and imprecision. Who is to evaluate what is legitimate? By what criteria? It has been evident for quite a while now that open expressions of anti-semitism are increasing on the UCB campus, including (as I understand it) by some professors and instructors.

    In addition, the other document talks about:
    “Types of Unacceptable Conduct– 5. Discrimination, including harassment…” and then lists quite a few different groups of people.
    Again that word ‘harassment’ looks entirely too imprecise, especially as we are seeing it played out on various college campuses around the nation. I would hope that word and concept and notion are VERY precisely defined, because otherwise it opens it up to various people being threatened simply because someone else found their words or actions to be ‘harassment.’ Truly, I don’t think this needs to be explained, just look around at what is happening on so many college campuses these days!

    And finally, let me point out that UC Berkeley, the fount of the Free Speech Movement, is now moving towards political and ideological restriction masquerading as protecting people’s feelings, with the result that ‘self-censorship’ takes place–” what dare I say, what dare I not say, who knows how this might be perceived– I’d better just not say anything.” To be blunt, this is a childish and fascist attempt to control people.

  2. “The University invites comments…”– the University may think it is inviting comments, but they make it virtually impossible to find the text of the changes. This link goes to that link, to another link, and it is by no means self-evident which link(s) might lead to the new text.

    One wonders whether this is intentional, so that in fact they can say there has been a Comment period, yet without the real possibility of receiving any Comments.