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This policy applies to faculty, staff and applicants for employment, students, and third parties (including visitors, patients and community members).

The Tufts Non-Discrimination Policy establishes uniform guidelines in order to promote a work and educational environment at Tufts University that is free of discrimination and harassment, and to affirm the University’s commitment to equal opportunity and affirmative action.

Tufts prohibits discrimination against and harassment of any student, employee, applicant for employment, third party, patient, visitor or community member because of: race, color, national or ethnic origin, ancestry, age, religion, disability, sex or gender (including pregnancy, sexual harassment and other sexual misconduct including acts of sexual violence such as rape, sexual assault, stalking, sexual exploitation, sexual exploitation and coercion, relationship/intimate partner violence and domestic violence), gender identity and/or expression (including a transgender identity), sexual orientation, military or veteran status,  genetic information, the intersection of these identities or any other characteristic protected under applicable federal, state or local law, herein called “protected categories.” The university expects all Tufts employees, students, visitors, patients and community members to join with and uphold this commitment.

Defining and Recognizing Discrimination

Unlawful discrimination occurs when a person is harassed or treated arbitrarily or differently because of the person’s real or implied membership in a "protected category."


In the employment context, discrimination may begin with an adverse employment action, which is something an employer has done that is unfair to an employee (for example: terminating the employee or not selecting him/her/them for hire or a promotion, harassing the employee, denying the employee's request for a reasonable accommodation, etc.). If OEO determines, through fact-finding, that the employee or applicant’s membership in a protected category was the reason for the adverse employment action, this may lead to a policy violation of the non-discrimination policy and/or any other policy herein. 

Personality differences or conflicts, general mistreatment not based on the above protected categories, or a response to poor performance are usually employee relations issues, not discrimination matters. Human Resources can help you with these matters and will refer you to the appropriate resources.

Visitors, Patients, Applicants, Third Parties and Community Members

If a visitor, applicant, patient, third party or community member believes they were treated differently in their education program or activity because of their real or implied membership in a protected category as defined above, OEO will conduct a fact-finding investigation to determine whether or not the Complainant’s protected class was the reason for the different treatment and if that treatment violated the non-discrimination policy and/or any other policy herein.  

Process and Procedures

Employees and Third Parties

If you are an employee, applicant, patient, visitor, community member or third party please review the Discrimination Complaint Resolution Guidelines.


Title VI addresses non-sexual discrimination between students on the basis of race, color, ethnicity, national origin, language, disability, and/or retaliation for reporting discrimination on the basis of these protected categories. When the OEO receives such a complaint, the office will contact the student/s who felt harmed to see if they want to resolve the matter formally or informally.

Questions about the process?

Check out the Reporting FAQ: What to Expect page to learn more about informal and formal process options for both students and employees.

Rights and Responsibilities

As a member of the Tufts community you have the right to work, learn, and live in an environment free from discrimination and harassment. You also have the right to equal opportunity and equal access to all university programs, employment and activities.