*This post is part of a series on Isaac v. Duke, a federal complaint filed with OFCCP.

On June 8, 2016, Logan Isaac filed an internal complaint of discrimination with Assistant Vice President for Affirmative Action & Equal Opportunity at Duke’s Office of Institutional Equity (OIE). At that time, however, “veteran status” was not one of the traits covered by the university’s Discrimination Grievance Procedure. This is a direct violation of 41 CFR 60-300.44(e).

Policies & Procedures

For the duration of the internal complaint procedure, until it was closed in October, “Veteran Status” did not appear in the university’s

  1. Discrimination Grievance Procedure,” dated April 22, 2015.
  2. Harassment Policy and Procedures,” dated April 22, 2015.
  3. Taskforce on Bias and Hate activities, as well as their April 2016 “Final Report
  4. A Review of Duke University’s Grievance and Complaint Procedures for Fairness and Related Requirements for Contractors,” dated September 13, 2016.

Isaac was informed by OIE of their closing his case on October 10, 2016. When the university failed to send him their report in writing, per their own procedure (item 1, above, p.2, §5), he requested it by email on November 4, 2016. Then, on November 7th, items 1 and 2 above were revised to include veteran status. OIE sent him their “Final Report” after that, postmarked by the USPS on November 9, 2016.

The Department of Labor’s Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) began a compliance review after Isaac filed a federal complaint with them on September 13, 2016. For 55 days while the DoL was involved, the university remained out of compliance with their obligations under federal labor law, even after their own internal inquiry process. After the unannounced revision on November 7th, the university withdrew those documents under which Isaac was subject during the internal complaint. The PDFs linked above are of the versions as they existed prior to the date.

When the university’s Chief Diversity Officer was asked by DoL officers, on January 31, 2017, if the University’s EEO and/or harassment policy did “cover veteran status discrimination” he answered “Yes.” This is false, and this person was either mistaken or is covering up the fact that they revised documents after 55 days of noncompliance while under review. In their interview with the DoL, the Chief Diversity Officer went further to insist that trainings and materials offered by OIE included veteran status as well. This is also false.

Training & Materials

“Implicit Bias” training provided by OIE lacked veteran status when given to Divinity School staff on February 29, 2016 and again to Divinity preceptors on August 23, 2016. Isaac was in attendance in February, when the presentation was “sponsored” by the office of the Dean of the Divinity School. The OIE representative did not mention veteran status at any time during the faculty training.

Nor did the training include veteran status when the same presentation was given to incoming preceptors at their mandatory orientation on August 23, 2016. Isaac was also present on that day because he was to precept for the Fall 2016 semester and was required to attend. The lack of veteran status in university EEO training is corroborated by the testimony of another preceptor present in August, who asked to remain anonymous;

the presentation mostly covered racial bias and I don’t recall veterans coming up.

The statement above is therefore suspicious at the least, but possibly also willfully deceptive. Unless this person did not know of the revision, immediately following a case in which they were directly involved, they have provided false testimony to a federal agency.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s