Notice of Non-Discrimination, Anti-Harassment and Non-Retaliation

Michigan State University is committed to an inclusive atmosphere where students, faculty, staff, and guests may participate in university life without concerns of discrimination. Diversity is one of MSU’s principal strengths and the university takes its responsibility under federal civil rights laws to prohibit discrimination very seriously. For information about applicable laws and university policy please see one of the following versions of the Michigan State University Notice of Non-Discrimination, Anti-Harassment and Non-Retaliation Policy.

Anti-Discrimination Policy (ADP)

Michigan State University is committed to fostering an environment free of discrimination and harassment. The University prohibits discrimination and harassment as a foundational expectation of behavior to facilitate safe and equitable participation in University programs and activities. The University and members of the University Community are prohibited from discriminating against or harassing any person on the basis of age, color, disability status, ethnicity, gender, gender expression, gender identity, genetic information, height, marital status, national origin, political affiliation, race, religion, sex (including pregnancy), sexual orientation, military or veteran status and weight, or any other status protected by applicable federal or state law in any of its programs or activities. The University also prohibits retaliation against those who oppose or report discrimination or harassment, or who participate in the University's investigation and handling of such reports.

The University complies with federal and state laws that prohibit discrimination and harassment, as described in this Policy.

This Policy explains how to report potential prohibited conduct and obtain support and resources, as well as the University’s processes for responding to and addressing reports and formal complaints of prohibited conduct.

Reports of sex discrimination that include harassment based on sex, gender, gender identity, gender expression, sexual orientation, or sexual identity or relationship violence, sexual misconduct, or stalking will be reviewed under the University’s Relationship Violence and Sexual Misconduct and Title IX Policy (RVSMTIX Policy).

For more information regarding reasonable accommodations, please visit the ADA Coordinator's page

Mandatory Reporting

Responsible employees, including undergraduate and graduate employees, and volunteers are required to report when a community member discloses that they experienced prohibited conduct under the Relationship Violence and Sexual Misconduct and Title IX Policy. 

MSU recognizes the complexities associated with fulfilling your mandatory reporting obligations as an employee while offering support and maintaining the relationship you have built with the student or employee. To that end, MSU has created the Mandatory Reporting for Relationship Violence, Sexual Misconduct and Stalking policy to provide employees with information about the mandatory reporting process, including what happens when a report is made, as well as tips for responding and supporting students and employees.

Unless otherwise exempt, all university employees and volunteers are obligated to promptly report to OCR information about incidents or conduct that may be prohibited by the RVSM and Title IX Policy that:  

  1. They observe or learn about in their working or professional capacity; and  
  2. Occurred at a University-sponsored event or on University property or involves a University community member with respect to conduct that may have occurred while they were a University community member. 

If you have any questions about your mandatory reporting obligations, please reach out to OCR by calling (517) 353-3922 or emailing oie@msu.edu.

Mandatory Reporting for Relationship Violence, Sexual Misconduct and Stalking policy

Mandatory Reporting FAQs

Mandatory Reporting Failure Investigation Procedures

University Reporting Protocol: Child Abuse and Other Harm to Children

Relationship Violence and Sexual Misconduct and Title IX Policy

MSU has established the Relationship Violence and Sexual Misconduct and Title IX Policy in keeping with the university's commitment to fostering a safe and inclusive campus community. 

The policy, administered by OIE, prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex and sexual harassment, including gender-based harassment, sexual assault/misconduct, relationship violence and stalking. Title IX prohibits retaliation against reporters of sex discrimination, including reports of sex discrimination against administrators and other employees. MSU will independently investigate alleged retaliation for participation in the Title IX process.

For complete information, including definitions contained in the policy, read the Relationship Violence and Sexual Misconduct and Title IX Policy.

For questions or concerns regarding accessibility, please reach out to MSU's ADA Coordinator Office Director & ADA / Section 504 Coordinator, Tracy Leahy.

  • Retaliation

    MSU's Relationship Violence and Sexual Misconduct Policy prohibits retaliation against individuals who provide information to the university, bring forth a complaint or who are asked to cooperate in an investigation.

    Even if you choose not to participate in the university's investigation process, you have a right to be protected from retaliation related to the information you share with MSU. This provision remains in effect even if the university finds that no violation of the policy occurred and MSU will take strong responsive action if retaliation occurs.

    • Retaliation is defined as an adverse action or adverse treatment against an individual involved in an investigation by an individual who knew of the individual's participation in the investigation.
    • If a claimant or witness believes that she or he is being subjected to retaliation (including retaliatory harassment), she or he should promptly contact OIE.

    Additionally, federal civil rights laws, including Title IX, make it unlawful for the university to retaliate against an individual who brings concerns about possible civil rights violations to its attention. It is also unlawful for the university to retaliate against an individual (such as a witness) for participating in the complaint or investigation process. If MSU is made aware of retaliation against a complainant, witness or respondent by other students, employees or third parties, the university immediately will investigate to determine what has occurred and take strong responsive action in cases of retaliation.

  • RVSM Title IX Rights and Information Sheet
  • Hearing Procedures
    At the conclusion of the investigative process, after the investigation report is distributed to the parties and where the case is eligible for a hearing as outlined in the Policy, the Office of Institutional Equity (“OIE”) investigator will refer the matter to the Resolution Office for a live, virtual hearing before a Resolution Officer. The purpose of the hearing is to provide both parties the opportunity to ask questions of (cross-examine) the other party and any witnesses relevant to the allegations in dispute before a neutral Resolution Officer. For additional information, refer to the RVSM and Title IX Policy Hearing Procedures (pdf).
  • Appeal Procedures

    The RVSM and Title IX Policy Appeal Procedures provide a process to appeal the determination of responsibility contained in the written decision issued by OIE or the Resolution Officer following an investigation.

  • Emergency Removal Procedures - Students

    I.   Overview

    The University prohibits sexual harassment, including sexual assault, dating violence, domestic violence, and stalking as defined by the University’s Relationship Violence and Sexual Misconduct and Title IX Policy (“RVSM and Title Policy”).

    Under the Policy, the University may remove any student from its program or activity on an emergency basis if there is an immediate threat to the physical health or safety of any student or other individual arising from allegations of prohibited conduct as set forth in the RVSM and Title IX Policy, Section III.

    Prior to removal, the University shall undertake an individualized safety and risk analysis, and, where such analysis determines that there is an immediate threat to the physical health or safety of any student or individual, provide the party with notice of the emergency removal and an opportunity to challenge the decision immediately following the removal.

    II.  Procedures for Removal of Student

    Upon receiving information that a student who is either a claimant or respondent under the RVSM and Title IX Policy may pose an immediate threat to the physical health or safety of any student or other individual, an individualized risk analysis will be conducted by the Title IX Coordinator or their designee. The Title IX Coordinator may consult with the University’s Care and Intervention Team (“CAIT”) and/or the MSU Department of Police and Public Safety (DPPS) in determining whether an immediate threat to health or safety exists.

    Individualized Safety and Risk Analysis: The individualized safety and risk analysis will include consideration and analysis of the following:

    • the nature, duration, and severity of the threat posed by the student;
    • the probability that the threatened behavior or circumstance will occur or continue to occur; (e.g., formulation of a concrete plan; access to weapons or other means of harm; etc.);
    • whether the threat to a person’s physical health or safety arises from allegations of prohibited conduct as set forth in the RVSM and Title IX Policy;
    • whether or if there are reasonable alternatives to emergency removal that would sufficiently mitigate any risk; and
    • consideration of applicable disability laws.

    Removal Procedures:
    Following the safety and risk analysis, if the Title IX Coordinator or designee determines that a credible, immediate threat to physical health or safety exists, the Title IX Coordinator or designee will issue a written notice to the student. This written notice will indicate:

    • the effective date of the emergency removal;
    • the reasons for removal;
    • the scope of the removal;
    • the length of the removal and any conditions or requirements that must be met before the student can be reinstated;
    • and the student’s right to challenge and/or appeal the decision.

    III.  Notifications

    Written notice will be sent to the Dean of the student’s primary academic unit (if applicable); the University Registrar (if applicable); and administrators of other University units as necessary (e.g., Office of Student Support and Accountability, Residence Education and Housing Services, Campus Living Services, Athletics, etc.).[1]

    Additionally, if an emergency removal of a student is issued under these procedures, a copy of the written notice, including the nature of the reported conduct, will also be immediately sent to MSU DPPS and the MSU Clery Act Compliance Coordinator at clery@msu.edu.

    IV.  Challenge and Appeal

    Students who are removed under these procedures may appeal by submitting a written appeal to the Equity Review Officer (ERO) within five (5) days[2] of receiving written notice of emergency removal. The ERO will review the written appeal and provide a determination in writing within five (5) days of receiving the student’s appeal. The ERO may consult other University administrators or experts as necessary in reaching a decision. During the pendency of the appeal, the emergency removal will remain in effect.

    [1] The student’s parents/guardians may also be notified of the decision to implement an emergency removal when applicable.

    [2] References to days in this document are to business days.


    Relationship Violence and Title IX Policy Emergency Removal Procedures-Students (pdf)

  • Process to Appeal a Dismissal of a Formal Complaint
    Pursuant to section XII.F of the RVSM Policy, a formal complaint may be dismissed by the University under certain conditions as described by the RVSM Policy. Please refer to the RVSM and Title IX Policy Process to Appeal a Dismissal of a Formal Complaint.

Pregnancy, Childbirth, Pregnancy-Related Conditions, and Parenting Information

Michigan State University is committed to creating an accessible and inclusive environment for students and employees affected by pregnancy, childbirth and pregnancy-related conditions.

This Policy addresses the University’s obligations under federal law to provide reasonable accommodations for employees affected by pregnancy, childbirth or pregnancy-related conditions, and academic modifications and extended leaves of absence for students who are affected by pregnancy, childbirth, and pregnancy-related conditions, and/or students who are parenting, including, adoptive parents, foster parents, stepparents and/or legal  guardians.

Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 (Title IX) prohibits discrimination based on sex in education programs or activities that receive federal financial assistance. This prohibition includes discriminating against or excluding a student from an education program or activity, extracurricular activity, athletic program, or other program or activity of the University, on the basis of the student’s pregnancy, childbirth, false pregnancy, termination  of  pregnancy,  or  recovery  from  any  of  these  conditions.  Additionally, the Pregnancy Discrimination Act of 1978, which amended Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, prohibits discrimination on the basis of pregnancy, childbirth or other related medical conditions. The Pregnant Workers Fairness Act requires covered employers to provide reasonable accommodations to an employee’s known limitations related to pregnancy, childbirth or related medical conditions. The Fair Labor Standards Act and the Providing Urgent Maternal Protections (PUMP) for Nursing Mothers Act provide nursing employees up to one year after birth, the right to receive break time and private space at work to express breast milk.

The University prohibits any action based on actual or potential parental, family, or marital status which discriminates on the basis of sex.

University Policy - Pregnancy, Childbirth and Pregnancy-Related Conditions for Students and Employees

  • Pregnant and Parenting Student Accommodation Frequently Asked Questions

    What types of adjustments can I receive while pregnant?      

    The University provides reasonable and responsive adjustments to ensure a pregnant student’s access to educational programs.  Specific adjustments will vary, but may include: 

    • a larger desk
    • allowing frequent trips to the bathroom
    • permitting temporary access to elevators

    Are my absences from class due to pregnancy or childbirth excused?

    The University will excuse your absences from class for pregnancy or childbirth, for the period during which your doctor deems the absences medically necessary.  When you return to school, you will be reinstated to the status you held when you left and given the opportunity to make up missed work.  You may choose how you want to make up the missed work, including but not liited to the following alternatives:    

    • Retaking the semester
    • Taking part in an online course credit recovery program
    • Taking additional time in a program to continue at the same pace, and finish at a later date
    • Rescheduling of tests or exams

    Are my absences from class due to pregnancy or childbirth excused if my professor has a policy regarding class attendance and make-up work?  

    If your absences are medically necessary due to pregnancy or childbirth, you will be allowed to submit work after a deadline.  If your grade is based in part on class attendance or participation, you must be given the opportunity to earn back the credits you missed due to medically necessary pregnancy or childbirth absences, so that you are reinstated to the status you held before your absences.  

    What about internships, career rotations, and other off-campus elements of my program?  Do I have a right to participate in them?

    If your program requires an internship or other opportunity to “work in the field,” you cannot be denied participation based on your pregnancy. You may be required to submit a doctor’s note for continued participation, if required for all students who have other medical conditions.  

    Can I continue to be a member of a school club, interscholastic sports or other school-sponsored organization while pregnant?   

    You cannot be excluded from participating in any extracurricular activity, school club, academic society, or interscholastic sports because you are pregnant or have given birth.  This includes activities that are part of the University’s educational programs, even if the activity is not directly operated by the University.  You may be required to submit a doctor’s note if the program or activity requires students with other medical conditions to do so.  

    How do I request adjustments for pregnancy or childbirth related absences?   

    With most absences for pregnancy or childbirth, you should request adjustments directly from your professor, coach, program or activity director.  You should request adjustments as soon as you know you are pregnant.  

    For extended absences due to complications from pregnancy or childbirth (e.g., gestational diabetes, placenta previa, preeclampsia, cesarean deliveries, etc.), you will be required to register with the Resource Center for Persons with Disabilities (RCPD).  After you are registered with RCPD, you will be eligible to receive an Accommodation Letter and Temporary Accommodation Letter for extended absences due to complications from pregnancy or childbirth.    

    What if my professor refuses my requested adjustments? 

    If you are denied pregnancy or childbirth adjustments, or your medically necessary absences are not excused by your professor, you are encouraged to speak with the Department Chair or College Dean.  

    If your issue is not satisfactorily resolved by the Department Chair or College Dean or you do not feel comfortable addressing the issue with your Department Chair or College Dean, you can file a complaint with the Office of Institutional Equity.   

    The Office of Institutional Equity (OIE) reviews concerns related to discrimination and harassment based on sex, which includes a student’s pregnancy, childbirth, parental or family status.  OIE accepts calls, emails, and walk-in reports regarding any matters related to discrimination and harassment.  OIE staff can help you file a report, investigate your report, and connect you with resources. 

    Office of Institutional Equity
    5 Olds Hall
    East Lansing, MI 48824
    Phone: (517) 353-3922
    Fax: (517) 884-8513
    Email: oie@msu.edu
    OIE Website

    For specific questions regarding compliance with Title IX, you may contact the Associate Vice President and Title IX Coordinator:

    Laura Rugless
    Vice President & Title IX Coordinator
    Office for Civil Rights and Title IX
    408 W. Circle Drive, Olds Hall, Suite 105
    East Lansing, MI 48824
    Phone: (517) 355-3960
    Eltaro Hooper
    Executive Director, Senior Deputy Title IX Coordinator
    and Interim Title VI Coordinator
    Office of Civil Rights and Title IX
    408 W. Circle Drive, Olds Hall, Suite 5
    East Lansing, MI 48824
    Phone: (517) 353-3922

    Resources on Campus 

     Other Resources  


  • Pregnancy and Parenting Adjustment Request
Michigan State University Language Access Plan