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Public Notification Plan

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Purpose

This document establishes policy for ensuring positive and continuing notification of the Center for Agriculture, Food and the Environment’s equal opportunity policy to the public.

Policy

It is the policy of the Center for Agriculture, Food and the Environment and its units:

  1. That no person shall be discriminated against on the basis of race, color, national origin, gender, religion, age, disability, political beliefs, sexual orientation , or marital or family status in employment or in any program or activity conducted or funded by the Center for Agriculture, Food and the Environment. This policy will be communicated to the public through all appropriate University public information channels, in English and in languages appropriate to the local populations where ever possible and also through alternative means of communication (Braille, large print, audiotape, etc.) in accordance with the capacity of the University’s Office of Disability Services resources and the limitations of local program sites.
  2. To reach out in proactive ways to people who have not participated equally in its programs and activities in the past. This policy will be demonstrated to persons through all public contacts.
  3. Not to participate in any public meeting in which persons are illegally discriminated against because of their race, color, national origin, gender, religion, age, disability, political beliefs, sexual orientation , or marital or family status.
  4. To use positive examples of employment and program participation by minorities, women and other protected groups in pictures and other visual and sound public information materials.

Authority

NIFA Civil Rights Laws, Authorities, and Regulations

Description of Center for Agriculture, Food and the Environment Non-Discrimination Statements

The following non-discrimination statement is to be used in the next issuance of publications. It will be posted in all offices and included, in full on all materials which are produced by UMass Extension and its programs for public information, public education or public distribution, except for small brochures, business cards and web e-mail trailers where the short form may be used in a print size no smaller than the text. The statement shall be in English and in languages appropriate to the local population, and in alternative means of communication (Braille, large print, audiotape, etc.) whenever possible.

Non-discrimination Clause Short Form:
The Center for Agriculture, Food and the Environment is an equal opportunity provider and employer, United States Department of Agriculture cooperating. Contact your local Extension office for information on disability accommodations. Contact the Center Director’s Office if you have concerns related to discrimination, 413-545-4800 or see Civil Rights Information & Resources.

Non-discrimination Clause Long Form:
The Center for Agriculture, Food and the Environment provides equal access to its programs for all persons and is an equal opportunity provider and employer, United States Department of Agriculture cooperating.  It is the policy of the Center for Agriculture to maintain an academic and work environment free of discrimination and to prohibit discrimination and harassment against any person on the basis of race, color, national origin, gender, religion, age, disability, political beliefs, sexual orientation, and veteran, marital or family status. Harassment of Center for Agriculture program participants, faculty, staff or students will not be tolerated. 

The Center for Agriculture, Food and the Environment encourages individuals with disabilities to participate in its programs and activities. If you anticipate needing special accommodations, have questions about the physical access provided, or require alternative means for communication of program information (Braille, large print, audiotape, English as a Second Language materials; etc.), please contact your local Extension office before your visit. 

For university, state or USDA agency contact information, see Civil Rights Information & Resources.

Responsibilities

The Center for Agriculture will:

  • Follow policy guidance from NIFA Office of Civil Rights and their Review Teams.
  • Display the USDA Non-discrimination poster “And Justice for All” in Extension offices and Center facilities in a prominent location.
  • Monitor its internal programs, affiliated agency and program recipient actions through established review activities for compliance with NIFA policy.
  • Consult with NIFA on the appropriate content of new or revised non-discrimination statements.
  • Establish outreach education programs at the local level to ensure that all persons, especially those who previously may not have participated fully, know about the availability of and how to use NIFA/USDA/Center program services effectively and are encouraged to participate.
  • Include appropriate references to USDA equal opportunity policy in public speeches and meetings.
  • Include the non-discrimination statement in full on all materials which are produced by the Center and its agencies for public information, public education or public distribution. A rule of reason will be applied as to the need for the statement in specific situation with policy guidance provided by the NIFA Office of Civil Rights. Extension offices will post the non-discrimination statement in languages appropriate to the local population whenever possible.

Center for Agriculture, Food and the Environment Public Notification Methods

The Center for Agriculture, Food and the Environment requires that significant efforts be made to notify its constituents and potential program participants of its equal opportunity, non-discrimination policies. Public Notification methods include the following:

  • Equal opportunity/non-discrimination statements are required in all publications, on letterhead, applications and in any other printed Center for Agriculture materials.
  • Volunteers in the Center for Agriculture, Food and the Environment including advisories, task forces and committees are informed of the requirement that they comply with civil rights principles.
  • Legal contracts and memoranda of agreement with partnering organizations contain specific language requiring their compliance with EEO/AA/CR laws and regulations.
  • Catalog and brochure pictures, Center for Agriculture, Food and the Environment publications, videos, research bulletins, program announcements, web-site articles and other similar publications reflect diversity in programming, employment.
  • An ADA statement reflecting University and USDA specifications for the disabled is prominent in all materials promoting programs or services.
  • Staff of Center for Agriculture offices will begin to input into the main Center for Agriculture, Food and the Environment mailing list local churches, civic groups, etc. with large minority membership as a way to promote programs and employment.
  • Position descriptions for all Extension positions are in the process of being updated to include responsibility for programming in accordance with EEO/AA/CR guidelines.
  • A Center for Agriculture, Food and the Environment Civil Rights web resource guide will be active and link all audiences and staff to EEO/AA/CR federal and state laws, regulations and University offices providing services, including complaint procedures on campus and through the Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination.
  • All staff participate in EEO/AA/CR trainings in order to be current on the law, and are aware of the Public Notification Policy and able to communicate the same to their clientele as appropriate.
  • The Center for Agriculture, Food and the Environment’s commitment to affirmative action and equal opportunity in employment is emphasized in university presentations and public talks.
  • The Center for Agriculture, Food and the Environment programs' accomplishments in outreach to diverse audiences are consistently featured on the Extension web-site, publications and in major reports to University audiences.

University of Massachusetts and State Policies and Offices