April 5, 2018
Dear Brandeis Community,
No one at Brandeis should ever have to experience discrimination or harassment from any other member of this community. The university is committed to responding promptly, vigorously, and effectively once notified of any act of discrimination or harassment, and forbids retaliation against any individual who comes forward with a good-faith complaint.
Last year, several students filed serious discrimination complaints about Brandeis’ men’s head basketball coach, alleging preferential and discriminatory treatment, unprofessional behavior, and racially biased harassment. Brandeis, like all employers, has processes that must be followed in investigating complaints against employees, and employees have a right to due process. In this case, the complaints were investigated, and disciplinary action was taken.
Earlier this week, a new complaint was brought against the coach, and he was placed on immediate administrative leave. In light of the new complaint, we began a thorough examination and review of the prior incidents. As a result of this complaint and that review, the coach’s employment with Brandeis has now been terminated.
This incident underscores the need for us to regularly review policies and procedures dealing with the safety and well-being of all members of our community, and we are doing so now.
I am deeply disturbed by these complaints. I want to be absolutely clear: At Brandeis, there is zero tolerance for discriminating against any student, staff member, faculty member, or visitor because of their race, sex, religion, sexual orientation, gender, or any other aspect of their identity. You can and should read our official non-discrimination policy but this goes beyond policy. It is also very important to me that students, staff, and faculty members know where they can go if they feel they have experienced any type of discrimination. Please see this page of resources available to our community for that information.
Respect for our varied identities, for our similarities and our differences, is an absolute value at Brandeis. It is non-negotiable. The only way our community can attain our educational mission is if we can all assume an atmosphere of mutual respect.