Some College Anti-Discrimination Policies Include Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity
and Some Do Not -- Read 15 College Policies Below

The following are the anti-discrimination policies of 16 colleges in the Greater Lehigh Valley and Berks County area. Some of these policies protect students, employees and staff from discrimination based on sexual orientation and some do not. Pay careful attention to the wording of each policy. Remember there is no PA State or federal anti discrimination law that protects people from discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity in employment, housing and public accommodation. In the Greater Lehigh Valley and Berks County only Allentown and Easton have laws that protect people based on sexual orientation and gender identity.
(For other PA towns with similar protections click here.)

The opinion after each policy is written by a GLBT civil rights activist who advocates for the community but who is not a lawyer. The opinion should not be construed as legal advice. If you feel you are being discriminated against, contact a qualified lawyer for help. See the legal section in resources for referrals.(
click here for legal help referrals)

The policies below were either furnished by the college’s HR department to PA Diversity Network or can be found at the college’s web site. When it is very hard to find the the actual language of a college’s anti discrimination policy, the policy is ultimately less effective. Ideally the policy should be at the bottom of a college’s home page and on all the college’s publications.

College and University nondiscrimination policies may be updated without notification. Please let PA Diversity Network know if a college policy is updated or expanded so this list can be updated. If you are dismayed that your college's policy is not fully supportive, contact the college and encourage a policy update.

Rating System for Policies:
***** (Five Star) Best! Includes protections for sexual orientation and gender identity with no loopholes
^^^ (Three Up Arrows) Only Partly Inclusive. Includes protections for sexual orientation but not gender Identity.
0 (Zero) Supports GLBT Discrimination because it has a policy that does not include sexual orientation or gender identity
F (The Big F) Failing. The policy is nullified by poor language and loopholes that say it applies “if required by law” in a town where there is no law that requires it or something equally weak.
Les Than An F -- A college that has just removed all mention sexual orietnation protections - that it had had previously - beware, GLBT people are now at risk at this institution - perhaps based on new administrative anti-minority attitudes.

XX (Double Crosses) Supports Discrimination Against Everyone! because it has no protections for anybody, no protected classes at all. Yipe!

Ratings:
***** Muhlenberg College
***** Lehigh University
***** The Pennsylvania State University
***** Moravian College
***** Lafayette College
***** Kutztown University
***** Susquehanna University
***** Lehigh Carbon Community College
^^^(*)Cedar Crest College
^^^ Albright College
^^^ Lehigh Valley College (no longer exists)
^^^ Northampton Community College
^^^ Reading Area Community College

##Alvernia College

XX DeSales University

15 College Anti-Discrimination Policies:
Also includes whether or not domestic partner and/or equal spousal benefits.

Muhlenberg College does not discriminate against any person based on age, color, disability, gender, gender identity, national or ethnic origin, race, religion, sexual orientation, veteran status, or any other basis protected by applicable federal, state or local laws.
*****---Opinion: This is a well written policy that clearly protects people based on sexual orientation and gender identity with no equivocation and no loopholes. Muhlenberg College has also instituted a partial gender neutral housing policy. Muhlenberg is in Allentown, PA which has a nondiscrimination policy that includes sexual orientation and gender identity. Muhlenberg is a private college.
Muhlenberg College offers employees equal spousal and domestic partner benefits (since 2000). As of May 20, 2014 the State of PA began to fully recognize legal same-sex marriage.

Lehigh University does not discriminate against any person based on age, color, disability, gender, gender identity, marital status, national or ethnic origin, race, religion, sexual orientation, or veteran status. For students, this applies to educational programs, residential environments, athletics and other co-curricular programs, social and recreational programs, and student services. For faculty, staff, and student employees, this applies to all employment decisions, including selection, benefits, compensation, tenure, training and educational programs, transfer, promotion/demotion, layoff, return from layoff, and termination.
*****---Opinion: This is a well written policy that clearly protects people based on sexual orientation and gender identity with no equivocation and no loopholes. Lehigh University is a private college in Bethlehem, PA. Bethlehem also has a full nondiscrimination ordinance.
Lehigh University offers employees equal spousal and domestic partner benefits (since 2000).

Lafayette College Lafayette College complies with all applicable federal and state legislation and does not in any way discriminate in educational programs or in employment on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, national origin, age, or disability. *****---Opinion: This is a well written policy that clearly protects people based on sexual orientation and gender identity and expression with no equivocation and no loopholes. Lafayette College is also in Easton PA, where there is a nondiscrimination law that protects people on both sexual orientation and gender identity. Lafayette College is a private college.
Lafayette College offers employees equal spousal and domestic partner benefits (since 1995). It was the first college in the Greater Lehigh Valley to do so.

Moravian College is a welcoming community that embraces and values the diversity of all members of the campus community. We accept the uniqueness of all individuals, and we cultivate an environment that respects, affirms, and defends the dignity of each member of our community.
Moravian College does not discriminate against any person based on actual or perceived race, color, sex, religion, ancestry, genetic information, national origin, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, familial status, marital status, age, veteran status, mental or physical disability, use of guide or support animals and/or mechanical aids, or any other basis protected by applicable federal, state, or local laws.
*****---Opinion: This is a well written policy that clearly protects people based on sexual orientation and gender identity or expression with no equivocation and no loopholes, it even has the words actual or perceived at the beginning of the statement. Moravian College is a private college in Bethlehem, PA. Bethlehem also has a full nondiscrimination ordinance. This policy was adopted in 2014, Pennsylvania Diversity Network worked with Moravian for several years to adopt this policy.
Moravian College offers employees equal spousal and domestic partner benefits (since 2000).

The Pennsylvania State University (including- Berks and Lehigh County Branches) prohibits discrimination and harassment against any person because of age, ancestry, color, disability or handicap, national origin, race, religious creed, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or veteran status. Discrimination or harassment against faculty, staff or students will not be tolerated at The Pennsylvania State University.
*****---Opinion: This is a well written policy that clearly protects people based on sexual orientation and gender identity with no equivocation and no loopholes. Penn State is a public college. The main campus is in State College, PA which has a nondiscrimination ordinance that includes sexual orientation and gender identity. However, the branches of Penn State in Berks and Lehigh Counties are not in areas which have nondiscrimination ordinances.
Penn State offers employees equal spousal and domestic partner benefits (and has done so since 2007)

Susquehanna University
Policy:
Harassment or discrimination in any context is reprehensible but of particular concern to an academic community in which students, faculty and staff must rely on bonds of intellectual trust and dependence. Therefore, harassment or discrimination will not be tolerated. Specifically, the university expressly prohibits any form of unlawful harassment of its employees or students based on age, color, disability, gender, gender identity, national or ethnic origin, race, religion, sexual orientation, veteran status or any other basis protected by applicable federal, state or local laws. Those inflicting such behavior on others are subject to the full range of institutional disciplinary actions, up to and including termination from the university, but also any legal action that may accompany such acts.
http://www.susqu.edu/human_resources/Forms/App4EmploymentNewLogo.pdf
Benefits As noted in the "2008 - 2009 BRIEF SUMMARY OF BENEFITS FOR FULL-TIME AND ELIGIBLE PART-TIME EMPLOYEES", monthly employment benefits are eligible to the following categories: Employee Only, Two-Party-
Employee plus one eligible dependent including: spouse, same sex domestic partner, or child, and Family- Employee plus two or more eligible dependents including: spouse, same sex domestic partner, or child. http://www.susqu.edu/human_resources/benefits.htm
*****---Opinion: This is a well written policy that clearly protects people based on sexual orientation and gender identity with no equivocation and no loopholes. Susquehanna University is a public college. It is in SUnbury, PA which does not have a local non-discrimination policy. Susquehanna University offers employees equal spousal and domestic partner benefits (and has done so since 2007).

Kutztown University Kutztown University values diversity and seeks talented students, faculty and staff from diverse backgrounds. The University does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, national or ethnic origin, age, disability or status as a disabled or Vietnam Era veteran in the administration of its educational policies, programs, or activities, admissions policies and procedures, scholarship and loan programs, employment, recreational, athletic or other University administered programs. Questions or concerns regarding the University's equal opportunity and affirmative action programs and activities or accommodations for people with disabilities should be directed to the Office of Social Equity, 1 Old Main, Kutztown University, Kutztown, PA 19530
*****---Opinion: This is a well written policy that clearly protects people based on sexual orientation and gender identity with no equivocation and no loopholes.
Kutztown University offers employees equal spousal and domestic partner benefits (and has done so since 2007).

Lehigh Carbon Community College Lehigh Carbon Community College will not discriminate against any employee, applicant for employment, student or applicant for admission on the basis of race, color, sex, pregnancy, political affiliation, religion, ethnicity, national origin (including ancestry), citizenship status, disability, age, marital status, family responsibilities, sexual orientation, gender identity, veteran or military status (including special disabled veteran or recently separated veteran), genetic information or any other protected category under applicable local, state or federal law, including protections for those opposing discrimination or participating in any grievance process on campus or within the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission or other human rights agencies. Inquiries about this policy and procedure may be made internally to: Donna Williams, Director of Human Resources/Title IX/Equity Coordinator, Office of Human Resources, 4525 Education Park Drive, Schnecksville, PA 18078, 610-799-1107, dwilliams@lccc.edu.
*****---Opinion: This is a well written policy that clearly protects people based on sexual orientation and gender identity with no equivocation and no loopholes. LCCC is a community college in Schnecksville and Allentown in Lehigh County and also has a campus Carbon County. The College began to offer domestic partner and equal spousal benefits in early 2014.


Albright College is committed to a policy of equal opportunity and does not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, sex, age, national origin, sexual orientation, veteran status, marital status or disability. This policy extends to all educational, service and employment programs of the College. Student concerns should be directed to the Assistant Dean, 610-921-7662. Faculty, staff and student employee concerns should be directed to the Director of Human Resources/Affirmative Action Coordinator, at 610-921-7629.
^^^---Opinion: This policy protects people based on sexual orientation but does not include gender identity. Albright College is a private college. However, it is in Reading PA, which now has a new city-wide non-discrimination policy that includes sexual orientation and gender identity, so technically employees and students are fully protected.

Lehigh Valley College does not discriminate on the basis of gender, sexual orientation, age, physical handicap, race, creed or religion, in its admission to, or treatment in its programs and activities, including advertising, training, placement and employment. (This college no longer in exists.)
^^^---Opinion: This policy protects people based on sexual orientation but not gender identity. Lehigh Valley College is a private technical college in Center Valley, PA. Center Valley has no nondiscrimination ordinance.
Lehigh Valley College is now out of business. The building in which it was housed now hold the Lehigh Valley Branch of Penn State University.

Northampton Community College does not discriminate against any person in employment or educational opportunities because of race, color, religion, age, national origin, ancestry, sex, sexual orientation, or based on an individual's actual or perceived disability, or on a person's association with a person with a disability.  The Vice President for Administrative Affairs has been designated to handle inquiries regarding the College's non-discrimination policies, to accept discrimination/ harassment complaints from members of the college community, and to monitor the institution's compliance with state and federal non-discrimination laws and regulations.
^^^---Opinion: This policy protects people based on sexual orientation but does not include gender identity. Northampton Community College is a public college which is part of the PA State system. It is in Bethlehem PA, which has no nondiscrimination ordinance.
Northampton Community College offers employees equal spousal and domestic partner benefits and has since at least 2006.

Reading Area Community College, an equal opportunity college, does not discriminate against persons in employment, educational programs or activities, vocational programs or awarding of contracts based on race, gender, religion, national origin, age, color, sexual orientation, veteran status or disability. Affirmative Action and Nondiscrimination, extends to all other legally protected classifications and is published in accordance with state and federal laws.
^^^---Opinion: This policy protects people based on sexual orientation but does not include gender identity. Reading Area Community College is a public college, which is part of the PA State system. However, RACC is in Reading PA, where there is a nondiscrimination law that protects people on both sexual orientation and gender identity.


Alvernia University
For Employees: Alvernia University is an equal employment opportunity employer dedicated to a policy of non-discrimination in employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender, national origin, sexual orientation, disability, or age.  Anyone who believes that he/she has been subjected to discrimination in violation of this policy is encouraged to report the problem to the Associate Director of Human Resources.
For Students: Nondiscrimination Policy (from the Alvernia University Undergraduate Catalog, 2011-2012) (students) Alvernia University complies with all applicable federal, state and local nondiscrimination laws in the administration of its educational programs, services, and employment relationships. We are committed to equality. Continued and responsible growth of our University results from enhancing and utilizing the abilities of all individuals to their fullest extent practicable within the framework of our environment. All employment decisions advance the principle of equal employment opportunity. In addition, personnel activities such as recruitment, interviewing, selection, promotion, training, benefits, transfers, lay-offs, demotion and discipline are administered according to good business practices, the Equal Employment Opportunity Act of 1972, Executive Orders concerning equal employment opportunity, and Equal Employment Opportunity Commission regulations and guidelines, all of which require that all persons have equal employment opportunities and strictly prohibit discriminatory and harassment practices.The participation of women and minorities in management by employment and promotion will continue to be emphasized so that they may be given the opportunity to contribute to the success of the University. All employees of Alvernia University will continue to approach this responsibility with the sensitivity and human concern they have in the past. ##--Opinion: Though Alvernia is a Catholic College it has a clearly stated non-discrimination statement for employees that includes sexual orientation (but not gender identity). In the past, Alvernia had a policy similar to DeSales, which did not protect anyone. Alvernia’s newer policy that includes sexual orientation demonstrates a commitment to diversity and also demonstrates to other Catholic colleges that a policy of discrimination is not a requirement for Catholic schools. Oddly, Alvernia does not seem to extend this policy to its students, who are not protected from discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity at all.
Cedar Crest College does not have a non-discrimination policy that is accessible by the community or students, at this time. Students have actively asked Cedar Crest administrators to provide guidelines on its transgender student policy. The College is considering it, but has not done so. The College will not state whether it will follow the anti-discrimination law of the City of Allentown.
F Opinion: Cedar Crest is a women’s college that allows men to take classes and get degrees but does not allow men to live on campus, it is its mission to support women in a way exclusive of men. Though Cedar Crest College is in Allentown, PA and Allentown has an anti-discrimination policy that includes gender identity, the College has so far refused to state that it will allow self-identified Trans women to live on campus, though the law does seem to require it to do so. It also has not stated whether it will allow students who transition to male after they have been admitted into the College, to remain in student housing (they way other women’s college policies, like Smith College, allow).
Cedar Crest College DOES seem to have a fully inclusive non-discrimination policy for faculty and staff that includes sexual orientation and gender identity. The College has offered employees equal spousal and domestic partner benefits (since 2005).


DeSales University is firmly and publicly committed to the principles of Roman Catholic doctrine and morality. It also fully recognizes that the search for truth requires an atmosphere of intellectual freedom and that love demands an openness to all that is good. DeSales University distinguishes carefully between the free pursuit of truth, which it guarantees every member of the campus community, and its own commitment to the teachings of the Catholic Church.
XX---Opinion: This policy does not protect students, employees or faculty based on sexual orientation or gender identity, nor does it have a list of any protected classes. DeSales University is a Catholic college. It is in Center Valley PA, which has no nondiscrimination ordinance.
DeSales does not offer any spousal or domestic partner benefits.




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