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Civil Rights in Research Activities

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NC State College of Agriculture and Life Sciences

The NC State College of Agriculture and Life Sciences recognizes the mutual benefit of a diverse, inclusive, and welcoming community where the unique contributions, talents and skills of our faculty, staff and students are valued, respected and rewarded.

This site for CALS research faculty and staff serves as collection of policies, procedures and training relative to equal access/equal opportunity, affirmative action, complaint processing and resolution related to our civil rights obligations as recipients of federal grant funding.

Federal Laws and Regulations

piggy bank iconPrograms or activities receiving federal financial assistance must comply with Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, prohibiting discrimination on the basis of race, color or national origin; Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act, which prohibits discrimination against qualified individuals with disabilities; and the Age Discrimination Act, which prohibits discrimination on the basis of age. Education programs or activities that receive federal financial assistance also must comply with Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 which prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex.

As a recipient of federal HATCH, Animal Health, Smith Lever, and other competitive grant funding from the USDA for research and extension, the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, the North Carolina Agriculture Research Service (NCARS), and NC State Extension are required to comply with these federal civil rights laws.

Federal Laws, Regulations & Guidance


NC State Policies

NC State belltower iconEqual opportunity and a commitment to an inclusive and diverse community are vital to the achievement of NC State’s missions in teaching, research, and public service. The University strives to build and maintain an environment that supports and rewards individuals on the basis of such relevant factors as ability, merit, and performance; the prohibited behaviors of discrimination, harassment and retaliation are incompatible with the values and goals of NC State. It is our obligation to ensure that our research activities and the products of our research are conducted in a manner that promotes equal opportunity and prevents discrimination.

NC State provides equal opportunity and affirmative action efforts, and prohibits Discrimination and Harassment based upon the following, which is considered by NC State to be a “Protected Status”: race, color, religion (including belief and non-belief), sex, including but not limited to (i) pregnancy, childbirth, or related medical condition, (ii) parenting; and (iii) sexual harassment; sexual orientation; actual or perceived gender identity; age; national origin; disability; veteran status; or genetic information. NC State also prohibits Retaliation based upon a person’s engagement in a Protected Activity.

NC State Policies, Regulations & Guidance


Training for Faculty & Staff

light bulb iconEducating oneself on the issues related to civil rights is essential to complying with our civil rights obligations. Both federal and university regulations specify training requirements. All individuals with extension and research appointments are required to complete the CALS online Non-discrimination In Federally Assisted Programs Training at least once every five years. This required training for CALS employees with appointments in Research and/or Extension covers federal regulations and our responsibilities, as recipients of federal financial assistance, to prevent discrimination and ensure equal access to our research, information, programs and services. This training is to be completed once every 5 years. Self-registration for the online CALS Civil Rights Training can be completed through Reporter.

Individuals designated as Responsible Employees are required to  complete Title IX training annually. Title IX training for Employees educates responsible employees on how to respond to those who disclose incidents of interpersonal violence. 

NC State’s Discrimination and Harassment Prevention and Response (DHPR) training is available both in-person and online. DHPR training provides individuals with information about the laws, policies and practices surrounding the prevention of discrimination and harassment. All NC State employees complete DHPR training at new employee orientation and then once every three years.

NC State employees are also required to complete one additional training per year to fulfill the annual DEI Training requirement. NC State OIED and other groups on campus provide diversity training and other educational opportunities to fit your needs and interests and enhance your knowledge/understanding of diversity, civil rights or sexual harassment and to create and maintain a campus community that is inclusive and welcoming for all.


Public Notification

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A variety of methods are used to notify our staff and customers of our nondiscrimination policies. A nondiscrimination statement is required on print and electronic documents and websites that are made available to the public, participants, students, applicants, or employees. An accommodation statement is required to be included on all event announcements. This statement informs participants (employees, students, and the public) of the process to obtain a reasonable accommodation.

The And Justice for All poster is required to be posted in publicly visible location in all CALS facilities visited by the public. This poster notifies customers of their rights and how to file a discrimination complaint with the USDA.

Every campus building should display at least one Title IX Poster in English and preferably also one in Spanish to help ensure awareness and compliance with Title IX.


Complaint Procedures

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Complaints of discrimination, harassment or retaliation may be directed to NC State. The University will respond and provide a fair procedure with due process protections for complainants and respondents. Appropriate corrective measures will be instituted for violations of this policy. NC State Complaint Procedures

Individuals also have the option to file complaints of discrimination on the bases of race, color, sex, age, disability, national origin, or reprisal with the USDA. USDA Complaint Procedures 


Compliance Reviews

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Civil rights compliance reviews are a tool to determine how benefits and services are delivered by NIFA-funded programs and activities. Civil Rights reviews are intended, as part of a proactive effort, to determine how well Research projects and operations are being done in compliance with civil rights laws, rules and regulations. The civil rights compliance review guide serves as the primary document to help Research administrators, faculty and staff prepare for a civil rights review. Civil Rights Compliance Review Guide Research Programs and Projects  In addition to this external review, CALS HR conducts an annual EEO/AA review, departments undergo 5 year program reviews, and County Extension offices conduct annual civil rights compliance reviews. CALS is also subject to internal review by the NC State Office of the Internal Auditor.

A NIFA Compliance Review for CALS research programs is tentatively scheduled for October 2022.


For More Information on Civil Rights & Diversity

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NC State Office for Institutional Equity & Diversity
The Office for Institutional Equity and Diversity (OIED) facilitates efforts to ensure equity and opportunity, and awareness of diversity issues by providing guidance, programming, and outreach. Sheri Schwab, J.D. Vice Provost for Institutional Equity & Diversity and NC State Title IX Officer   slschwab@ncsu.edu