This policy was a part of the former UPS Policy set that was integrated into the System Administrative Policy set. It applies to all University of Wisconsin institutions except for UW-Madison. For UW-Madison’s policies, please see the Human Resource Design Policies website.

Original Issuance Date: July 1, 2015
Last Revision Date:

1. Policy Purpose

The purpose of this policy is to ensure equal employment opportunity to all qualified individuals within all areas of employment across UW institutions.

2. Policy Background

In accordance with Regent Policy 17-4, Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action in Employment (RPD 17-4), Executive Order 11246, and federal laws established by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, UW System institutions shall ensure equal opportunity to all employees and applicants for employment, and they shall maintain the affirmative action plans required by RPD 17-4.

Effective July 1, 2015, the equal employment and affirmative action provisions contained in Wis. Stat. §§ 230.04(9)(a), (b) and (c) and 230.06(1)(g) no longer apply to UW System employees; therefore, the director of the office of state employment relations no longer monitors, evaluates, or makes recommendations regarding the provision of equal opportunity to UW System employees and applicants for employment and no longer establishes standards for affirmative action plans.

3. Policy Definitions

 Please see SYS 1225, General Terms and Definitions, for a list of general terms and definitions.

Definitions specific to this policy:

Affirmative action means specific actions in employment which are designed and taken for the purposes of all of the following:

  1. Ensuring equal opportunities.
  2. Eliminating a substantial disparity between the proportion of members of racial and ethnic, gender or disabled groups in job groups within faculty, academic staff and university staff personnel structure, and the proportion of members of racial and ethnic, gender or disabled groups in the relevant labor pool.
  3. Eliminating present effects of past discrimination.

Job group means a set of titles combined on the basis of similarity in responsibility, pay range and nature of work.

Under representation means having fewer women and/or minorities in a particular department, rank, or classification than would be reasonably expected by their availability.

4. Policy

It is the policy of the University of Wisconsin System to adopt and support measures designed to prevent and eliminate discrimination against employees and prospective employees of the University of Wisconsin System on the basis of race, color, creed, sexual orientation, religion, sex, gender identity or expression, ancestry, national origin, age, or disability.

As a part of this policy, the University of Wisconsin System is committed to the implementation of affirmative action employment programs to recruit, employ, and promote qualified women and racial minorities.  The University of Wisconsin System shall continue to take such steps as may be necessary to accelerate the final elimination of any and all vestiges of discrimination because of race, color, creed, sexual orientation, religion, sex, gender identity or expression, ancestry, national origin, age, or disability that may still exist in the employment policies, practices and/or procedures of the University of Wisconsin System.

A. Basic Requirements

Each institution shall:

  1. Examine periodically all employment policies, practices, and procedures dealing with recruiting, interviewing, testing, screening, selection, placement, classification, evaluation, transfer, promotion, training, compensation, fringe benefits, layoffs, and terminations for discrimination on the basis race, color, creed, sexual orientation, religion, sex, gender identity or expression, ancestry, national origin, age, or disability and take remedial action to correct such discrimination if found to exist.
  2. Maintain a written affirmative action plan for the recruitment, employment, and promotion of women and minorities and monitor both hiring and termination for non-discrimination in accordance with System affirmative action guidelines and federal and state laws. Make the plan available upon request. Make summaries of affirmative action plans available upon request or through campus publications. Update the plan as necessary to keep it current. Prepare affirmative action reports for distribution at least once a year. The report should include an analysis of progress made together with any specific corrective action necessary to meet expected goals and objectives of the institution’s affirmative action plan.
  3. Establish and maintain an affirmative action committee (or committees, as appropriate) composed of faculty, academic staff, university staff, and students to advise the administration on affirmative action needs and concerns, and to assist affirmative action directors in designing and implementing programs. Committee members should have a genuine interest in affirmative action and represent the concerns of women, minorities and disabled persons. The affirmative action director should serve as a resource and support person for affirmative action advisory committees and other institutional groups legitimately concerned with affirmative action.
  4. Establish and publish effective procedures for addressing discrimination complaints.
  5. Evaluate the performance of institutional administrators to include an assessment of their attention to and support of affirmative action.
  6. Provide an adequate budget and staff support to each affirmative action director commensurate with institutional needs so that the affirmative action director can address the needs of all personnel.
  7. Present to the Board of Regents an annual affirmative action report assessing institutional progress toward affirmative action goals and compliance with Regents policies. The UW System President shall make the presentation.
  8. Disseminate widely affirmative action and equal employment opportunity policies in the university community so that everyone, including students, will be apprised of such policies.

B. The Affirmative Action Plan

The Plan shall contain, as a minimum, the following components:

  1. A current policy reflecting the institution’s commitment to affirmative action and equal employment opportunity.
  2. A description of who is responsible for the implementation and monitoring of the affirmative action plan, including the specific responsibilities of the affirmative action director, institutional administrators, deans, department chairpersons, and line supervisors.
  3. A description of the procedures established for monitoring the plan and for measuring program effectiveness.
  4. A description of the affirmative action procedures to be followed in the recruitment, employment, and promotion of women and minorities.
  5. A profile of the number and percent of women and minority employees by department, rank, and/or classification.
  6. The identification of under representation of women and minorities by department, rank, and/or classification, in all job groups.
  7. The identification of availability-data sources used for measuring under representation.
  8. The establishment of realistic goals and timetables relative to expected accretion potentials for overcoming the underutilization of women and minorities.
  9. A review of promotional patterns to determine if the rate of advancement for women and minorities as a group has been equal to that of other employees as a group.
  10. An account of the procedures by which employee salary equity is measured and maintained.
  11. A statement of the procedures followed for addressing discrimination complaints.
  12. A commitment to conduct training and professional development programs to aid in the promotion and career advancement of women, minorities, and disabled individuals.
  13. A commitment to carry out community outreach programs sponsored by the institution with the aim of increasing educational and employment opportunities for women, minorities, and disabled individuals.

5. Related Documents

Wis. Stat. § 230.16(6), Applications and examinations
Wis. Stat. § 230.25(3)(b), Certification, appointments and registers
Regent Policy 14-2, Sexual Harassment Policy Statement and Implementation
Regent Policy 14-10, Nondiscrimination on Basis of Disability: Policy Statement
Regent Policy 17-2, Establishment of Equal Opportunity Employment Offices (rescinded July 9, 2021)
UW System Administrative Policy 1201, Affirmative Action Data
UW System Administrative Policy 1203, Employment of Veterans

6. Policy History