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Complaints and Grievances

I want to discuss an issue informally with someone before going any further?

The Ombuds Council is an independent, informal, neutral and confidential resource that provides assistance to members of the University community in exploring options to resolve problems, complaints and conflicts at a preliminary and informal level. An ombuds can serve as a resource for those who seek informal guidance on policies, procedures and regulations affecting faculty and staff. Faculty and academic staff may also contact the Office of the Secretary of the University. If the question involves discrimination, contact EDS

I’m a classified employee and I want to file a grievance?

The UWM Grievance Procedure for Nonrepresented Classified Employees is found on the Department of Human Resources website. The primary step is to seek informal resolution through a pre-filing process, by bringing the issue to the attention of your immediate supervisor. If you cannot approach your supervisor or the manager, you may also approach the Personnel Representative of your School, College or Division for directions on whom to approach.

I think I have been subjected to harassment, discrimination or retaliation?

The Office of Equity/Diversity Services administers campus policies related to protected-class discrimination, sexual harassment and hate/bias crime reporting. An employee that believes he or she has been the subject of prohibited discrimination, harassment or retaliation is encouraged to clearly tell the person engaged in the conduct to stop. If the employee is uncomfortable with this, he or she may discuss the situation with his or her supervisor or Department Chair. If the supervisor or Chair believes the situation warrants further action, the employee should be referred to the Office of Equity/Diversity Services. There are several options for informal and formal complaints.

A student tells me (faculty member or teaching academic staff member) that he or she been sexually assaulted?

Other than calling the police, what do I need to do? Incidents that are not an immediate threat (even when they involve an employee) should be reported to the Dean of Students Office using the online incident form, by calling 414-229-4632, or sending a message to dos@uwm.edu . You may also contact the Office of Equity/Diversity Services.

I want to report an incident involving someone displaying threatening, disruptive, anti-social or dangerous behavior?

Incidents involving an immediate threat should always be reported to the University Police Department by calling 9-911 from a campus phone, 911 from an off-campus phone, using a campus S.A.F.E. phone (on a yellow pole with a blue light). For nonemergencies call the University Police (414) 229-4627. Incidents that are not an immediate threat (even when they involve an employee) should be reported to the Dean of Students Office using the online incident form, by calling 414-229-4632, or sending a message to dos@uwm.edu.

I am a faculty member and want to learn what actions might be grievable?

Contact the Office of the Secretary of the University or the Office of Equity/Diversity Services.

I am a faculty member and I have a complaint about another faculty member?

The Secretary of the University facilitates all faculty governance committees. The FRRC (Faculty rights and responsibilities committee) information can be found at: http://www4.uwm.edu/secu/faculty/standing/frrc/ If the complaint is alleging discrimination contact the Office of Equity/Diversity Services.

I am a faculty member and I have a complaint about my department chair? Dean?

The general procedure is to go to the next level up—so that if you have a complaint about a chair, you would see the dean, if you have a complaint about a Dean, you would see the Provost. If the complaint is alleging discrimination contact the Office of Equity/Diversity Services.

I believe the tenure and promotion process has not been fair to me?

The Office of the Secretary of the University facilitates the activities of grievance committees. Information is available in Chapter 5 or P and P. Specific information about the Faculty Appeals and Grievance committee is available at: http://www4.uwm.edu/secu/policies/faculty/upload/P-P-Chapter5.pdf and http://www4.uwm.edu/secu/faculty/standing/fagc/. If the complaint is alleging discrimination contact the Office of Equity/Diversity Services.

I believe that discrimination plays a part in tenure denial?

The Office of the Secretary of the University facilitates the activities of grievance committees. Information is available in Chapter 5 or P and P. Specific information about the Faculty Appeals and Grievance committee is available at: http://www4.uwm.edu/secu/policies/faculty/upload/P-P-Chapter5.pdf and http://www4.uwm.edu/secu/faculty/standing/fagc/. If the complaint is alleging discrimination contact the Office of Equity/Diversity Services.

Help with Personal Problems

I am having personal or family problems that are affecting my performance and my job?

The Employee Assistance Program (EAP) was established at because family, marital, alcohol, drug, financial, stress, emotional, and other personal problems can affect the quality of an employee’s life at home and performance on the job. UWM has contracted with Empathia, a private, nonprofit human services agency, to provide this employee benefit to all permanent employees and their immediate families/household members. There is more information on the Department of Human Resources website.

I need more information on applying for federal or Wisconsin Family and Medical Leave Act leave (FMLA) or I need the application forms for applying for an FMLA absence?

Information and FMLA/WFMLA leave application forms are found on the Department of Human Resources website. Leave is available under the Wisconsin Family and Medical Leave Act (WFMLA) for individuals who have worked at least 52 weeks and who have been on the payroll for a total of 1,000 hours. It provides two weeks of leave for an employee's own serious medical condition, two weeks for the care of a child, spouse, in-law or parent, and six weeks of leave for birth or adoption of a child. Leave is available under the federal Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) for employees who have been employed with UWM for 12 months, who have worked 1,250 hours in the year preceding the start of the leave, and who need the leave for a qualifying reason. A qualifying reason includes leave for treatment for a serious health condition for the employee; leave for caring for a spouse, child or parent with a serious health condition; or for birth or adoption of a child. Leave for the previously listed reasons is for a total of 12 weeks and it can be used all at once for 12 consecutive weeks, or it may be used intermittently. Leave provided under the WFMLA and FMLA is unpaid leave but employees may substitute any accrued leave.

I need to know who is the Personnel or Unit Business Representative for my School, College, or Division?

On a campus the size of UWM, many personnel and business functions are conducted at the School/College or Division level, rather than being managed centrally. A comprehensive list of the Personnel Representatives and the Unit Business Representatives for the various Schools, Colleges and Divisions is found on the Department of Human Resources website.

I want an accommodation for my disability?

The campus policy on Reasonable Accommodation for Employees is S-45.1. It is applicable to all UWM employment classifications, including full- or part-time, student, LTE, classified, faculty, or academic staff. The Disability Accommodation Request Form is available on the Department of Human Resources website, and should be presented to your Supervisor. The policy sets forth the procedures. If you are dissatisfied with the response from your School/College or Division, you may appeal to the Disabilities Coordinator in the Department of Human Resources.

I need to report an injury on the job?

The Worker's Compensation Act provides benefits when an employee is injured performing service growing out of and incidental to his or her employment. Injuries should be immediately reported to your supervisor who will provide an Employee Occupational Injury and Illness Report. For further information regarding worker's compensation, please contact the UWM Workers Compensation Coordinator at 414-229-5652.

I am having trouble with my health insurance carrier?

Contact Benefits in the Department of Human Resources, or email hr-contact@uwm.edu.

Questions About the Governance Process

I have questions about the tenure and promotion process?

UWM Policies and Procedures Chapter 5 will give information. Other information is available from the Office of the Secretary of the University.

I have questions about the Open Meetings requirement?

The Secretary of the University web site has a section on Open Meetings Law.

I have questions about the Academic Staff review process?

Information is available through the office of the Secretary of the University.

I have questions about honorary degrees?

Information on honorary degrees is found in several places: SAAP -30, The Honorary Degrees committee. Questions can be directed to the Office of the Secretary of the University.

I have questions about distinguished professorships?

Graduate School/Provost

Student Questions

I have questions about my eligibility for graduation?

Graduation Processing.

What is the process I use to make a complaint about a grade?

Faculty Member, Department Chair, Dean, Academic Affairs or Office of Equity/Diversity Services if discrimination alleged.

What is the process I use to make a complaint about sexual harassment or discrimination?

Contact the Office of Equity/Diversity Services.