MCC Daily Tribune

Rumors and Reality

In a typical year, the stress of the end of the academic year can be difficult. This year, these stressors are layered on top of concerns about declining enrollment and the impact of the challenges MCC has faced this year, as well as a 24-hour news cycle that seems to careen from bad to worse. It's hard. Throw rumors and misinformation into the mix, and the stress builds. So, each day from today through the end of academic year, I'll be tackling one rumor. I have a whole list, but if you have one you would like addressed, please send it along through the portal.

Rumor: The Ethics Hotline is used inappropriately against employees.

Reality: No

As a publicly-funded institution accountable to our students, our employees, and the taxpayers, MCC needs to provide an avenue for employees and others to report activities that may be unethical or inappropriate and/or those that are in violation of policies or applicable regulations or contractual obligations. For this reason, under then-interim President Tyree, MCC established an Ethics Hotline. The Ethics Hotline website lists the criteria for activities that can or should be reported, and any report that meets these criteria is investigated by MCC's Internal Auditor.

Over the past few years, there has been an uptick in employees reporting behavior and actions by colleagues that do not meet these criteria. These reports are not investigated or pursued by the Internal Auditor but, in fairness, are communicated to the reported employee for their information.

Civility is central to an effective workplace, and MCC's expectation is that all employees act in a professional and respectful manner in all interactions, even in matters of disagreement. Yet, conflict between colleagues will occur from time to time. Most such issues, however, do not meet the bar set for reporting as ethical violations. The College provides employees with pathways to address workplace issues if they cannot resolve the conflict themselves. They can pursue discussions facilitated by a supervisor, other administrator, or Human Resources; or mediation facilitated by their union. Employees in the FA or CSEA also have access to grievance processes through their unions. Employees who feel they have experienced discrimination can access the College's discrimination complaint procedure. In the case of most workplace issues, each of these pathways offers the appropriate alternative to filing an Ethics Hotline complaint.

Kress, Anne
Office of the President