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From: University Senate Council <SenateCncl@UKY.

Sent: Thursday, December 22, 2016 5:11 PM
To: Jones, Grace M
Subject: Information about Faculty Privilege and Disciplinary Processes

Dear University Faculty and Senators,

I am writing as Chair of the University Senate Council in regard to recent issues which have come to
public attention through Linda Blackfords Open Records request to the University of Kentucky and the
subsequent publication of the results of that request on Friday, December 16, 2016, in the Lexington
Herald-Leader. The newspaper requested the cover letters of UKs sexual harassment investigations
since 2011. In response, UK provided redacted copies of the investigations final cover pages (or
summary letters) that were sent from the Office of Institutional Equity to each faculty members Dean.
(Letters also were sent to the faculty and staff whose records were being provided to the media). The
majority of these letters were written by Patty Bender, interim associate vice president for institutional
equity at UK.

UK records indicate that eight faculty have been investigated since 2011. In two cases, it was
recommended that the faculty member no longer have teaching responsibilities. In both of these cases,
the faculty have left UK. In the other cases, faculty were required to attend anti-harassment training
and received various penalties.

Following Ms. Blackfords article on Friday, there has been a series of letters and opinions published in
the press concerning the disciplinary process for one of these faculty. This letter is not written to
provide comment on that case. Instead, I write to share the work of University Senate committees to
explore whether the University can further strengthen its procedures for investigation and discipline of
faculty, staff, and students.

Early in the Fall 2016 semester, the Senate Council empaneled an ad hoc committee of University
community members to review Administrative Regulation (AR) 6:2 - Policy and Procedures for
Addressing and Resolving Allegations of Sexual Assault, Stalking, Dating Violence, and Domestic
Violence. This regulation establishes the universitys policies and procedures for alleged violations in
these areas. The Universitys Title IX Coordinator and the Office of Institutional Equity and Equal
Opportunity administer this regulation. This Senate ad hoc committee is chaired by Jennifer Bird-Pollan,
a faculty member in the College of Law, and includes faculty from multiple colleges with expertise in
these issues. Also on the committee are representatives from the Staff Senate, the Student Government
Association, the Legal Office, and the Office of Institutional Equity and Equal Opportunity. We believe
this committee will propose recommendations that will further strengthen our current practice and
policies. We are encouraged by the collaborative efforts of faculty, staff, students, and administrators in
this work.

More recently, in order to consider whether the complaints published in recent days might bear further
examination, on Monday, December 19, 2016, the University Senate Council held a special session. In
that meeting, the Senate Council broadened the charge of the ad hoc committee referenced above to
also include review of Administrative Regulation 6:1 Policy on Discrimination and Harassment. This ad
hoc committee expects to produce a final report with recommendations during the Spring 2017

Finally, I want to emphasize that faculty who believe their academic freedom, academic privilege,
scholarly inquiry, or expression of opinion has been abridged can request a review by the Senate
Advisory Committee on Privilege and Tenure (SACPT). The charge to this committee specifically includes
issues of privilege as a scholar (Senate Rule Under the University Senate Rules, the
petitioning faculty employee is guaranteed a personal hearing before the committee, and can submit
documentation, have witnesses testify and observe the evidentiary testimony heard by the committee.
Furthermore, the right of a faculty employee to file with the SACPT Chair a request for a hearing
pursuant to SR,, and shall not be impeded. The
investigatory hearing process exercised by the SACPT shall include the rights prescribed in SR
At the conclusion of deliberations, the SACPT will submit to the President its analysis of the alleged
violations and will recommend to the President for his consideration what commensurate remedial
action, if any, ought to be taken. See University Senate Rule (pg. 52) for additional procedural
information. Please note, this committee is charged with privilege and tenure, not promotion and
tenure. Privilege is a broader issue that affects both tenured and untenured faculty.

I hope this information is helpful to you. Please know that your college Senators are interested in your
thoughts and opinions as am I and the Senate Council members. Please contact me or Dr. Bird-Pollan if
you have concerns, questions, or comments about these matters.


Katherine McCormick, Ph.D.

Senate Council Chair

Cc: Trustee Lee Blonder

Trustee Robert Grossman
President Eli Capilouto
Provost Timothy Tracy