ACVP Anti-Harassment and Discrimination Policy
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Anti- Harassment and Discrimination Policy

Board of Directors Approved Revised Policy: May 20, 2020




The American College of Veterinary Pathologists (ACVP) is committed to providing a respectful environment free from harassment, discrimination, retaliation, intimidation and disruptive behavior for all our members, staff, residents, veterinary and graduate students, speakers, exhibitors, guests, and volunteers. Such conduct will not be tolerated. ACVP members and those associated with this organization are role models for personal and professional ethical standards as set forth in the ACVP Code of Professional Ethics and enforced by the ACVP Code of Conduct Policy. Standards also are stated for the veterinary profession in the Veterinarian’s Oath and the American Veterinary Medical Association’s Principles of Veterinary Medical Ethics.



  • Harassment/Discrimination includes, but is not limited to, verbal or physical conduct that denigrates or shows hostility or aversion toward an individual because of the individual’s age, race, creed, color, disability, marital status, gender, sexual orientation, national origin, ancestry, membership in the armed forces, or any other basis prohibited by law. Examples include:
    • An implied or expressed threat of reprisal for refusal to comply with a sexually oriented request;
    • Physical contact such as touching, patting, or pinching, with an underlying sexual connotation;
    • Unwelcome or insulting gestures, remarks, jokes, innuendoes, propositions, or taunting about a person’s body, attire, sex or sexual orientation, religious affiliation, racial or ethnic origin, place of birth, citizenship or ancestry, age, disability, veteran status, or any other reason not related to scientific merit;
    • Suggestive or offensive remarks, bragging about sexual prowess, or displaying pornographic, sexist, racial, or derogatory pictures or other offensive material.
    • Stalking, defined as follows: engaging in a course of conduct directed at a person that serves no legitimate purpose and seriously alarms, annoys, or intimidates that person.



  • This policy extends to all ACVP-related settings, including but not limited to:
    • Annual Meeting, including scientific sessions, pre- and post-meeting workshops, exhibitions, tours and social events
    • Board of Directors teleconferences and meetings
    • Committee and Task Force teleconferences and meetings
    • Certifying examination




Reporting of discrimination or harassment can be made to any ACVP Board of Directors Member and may be in person, by telephone or in writing. The existence of this policy is not intended to, and does not, supersede any employer, educational institution, or other agency’s policies, standards of conduct, and related reporting requirements applicable to a particular individual. ACVP encourages individuals to first consider any such policies, standards of conduct, and related reporting requirements before making a report to ACVP.




Every report of harassment will be investigated promptly and impartially. The scope of an investigation may depend on investigations of the same or similar conduct by other parties such as employers or educational institutions. The individual raising concerns regarding harassment or discrimination may be asked to prepare a written statement. ACVP prohibits retaliation against any individual who in good faith reports discrimination, harassment or any other conduct prohibited by this policy. ACVP further prohibits retaliation against any individual who in good faith participates in an ACVP investigation into a report made under this policy.




ACVP will take appropriate action against any individual who violates this policy. The

process is outlined in the ACVP Bylaws Article III, Section 5, Disciplinary Action and is given below.


Article III, Section 5. Disciplinary Action Any Member or individual granted Certification and alleged to have engaged in improper behavior, including, but not be limited, to unethical conduct or professional fraud, is subject to Disciplinary Action. Accuser(s) must present documentation of the allegation(s) to the BOD which, upon a majority vote, shall direct the President to appoint an ad hoc Hearing Panel consisting of five Diplomate or Emeritus Members in good standing, including both specialties, and none of whom shall be acquainted with any of the persons or circumstances at issue to the greatest extent possible. The Hearing Panel shall appoint its own chair and establish its own procedures but shall convene within 30 days of its appointment to consider the allegations and supporting documentation. During the procedures, the accused Member shall have the right to address the Hearing Panel but not confront the accuser(s). The Hearing Panel shall provide a recommendation to the President for, or against, disciplinary action and a recommended disciplinary action. The Hearing Panel also has the authority to determine that the allegations are unfounded in which case the issue is closed, and the accused Member shall remain a Member in good standing provided he or she has met all the other requirements of a Member in good standing. The President shall present the Hearing Panel’s recommendation to the BOD, which shall determine the appropriate course of action within 30 days. Disciplinary actions include censure, or suspension or termination of Certification or Membership. The BOD may impose conditions or require corrective actions necessary to reinstate Certification or Membership in good standing. Any Member on whom the BOD has imposed disciplinary action may appeal the adverse decision to the Appeals  Committee (Article VIII).

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