DH(LOCAL) - EMPLOYEE STANDARDS OF CONDUCT
All College District employees shall perform their duties in accordance with state and federal law, College District policy, and ethical standards.
All College District personnel shall recognize and respect the rights of students, other employees, and members of the community and shall work cooperatively with others to serve the best interests of the College District.
Employees wishing to express concern, complaints, or criticism shall do so through appropriate channels. [See DGBA]
The College District holds all employees to the ethical standards expressed in the Texas Community College Teachers Association Code of Professional Ethics (PDF).
Employees shall comply with the standards of conduct set out in this policy and with any other policies, regulations, and guidelines that impose duties, requirements, or standards attendant to their status as College District employees. Violation of any policies, regulations, or guidelines may result in disciplinary action, including termination of employment. [See DCC and DM series]
Electronic media includes all forms of social media, such as text messaging, instant messaging, electronic mail (email), web logs (blogs), electronic forums (chat rooms), video-sharing websites, editorial comments posted on the internet, and social network sites. Electronic media also includes all forms of telecommunication, such as landlines, cell phones, and web-based applications.
An employee shall comply with the College District's requirements for records retention and destruction to the extent those requirements apply to electronic media. [See CIA]
Employees shall be held to the same professional standards in their public use of electronic media as they are for any other public conduct. If an employee's use of electronic media violates state or federal law or College District policy, or interferes with the employee's ability to effectively perform his or her job duties, the employee is subject to disciplinary action, up to and including termination of employment.
All employees shall adhere to College District safety rules and regulations and shall report unsafe conditions or practices to the appropriate supervisor.
An employee shall not use tobacco products or e-cigarettes on College District property, in College District vehicles, or at College District-related activities, unless authorized by the College President or designee.
"E-cigarette" means an electronic cigarette or any other device that simulates smoking by using a mechanical heating element, battery, or electronic circuit to deliver nicotine or other substances to the individual inhaling from the device. The term does not include a prescription medical device unrelated to the cessation of smoking. The term includes:
- A device described by this definition regardless of whether the device is manufactured, distributed, or sold as an e-cigarette, e-cigar, or e-pipe or under another product name or description; and
- A component, part, or accessory for the device, regardless of whether the component, part, or accessory is sold separately from the device.
Alcohol and Drugs
A copy of this policy, the purpose of which is to eliminate drug abuse from the workplace, shall be provided to each employee at the beginning of each year or upon employment.
Employees shall not manufacture, distribute, dispense, possess, use, or be under the influence of any of the following substances during working hours while on College District property or at College District-related activities during or outside of usual working hours:
- Any controlled substance or dangerous drug as defined by law, including but not limited to marijuana, any narcotic drug, hallucinogen, stimulant, depressant, amphetamine, or barbiturate.
- Alcohol or any alcoholic beverage.
- Any abusable glue, aerosol paint, or any other chemical substance for inhalation.
- Any other intoxicant, or mood-changing, mind-altering, or behavior-altering drugs.
An employee need not be legally intoxicated to be considered "under the influence" of a controlled substance.
It shall not be considered a violation of this policy if the employee:
- Manufactures, possesses, or dispenses a substance listed above as part of the employee's job responsibilities;
- Uses or possesses a controlled substance or drug authorized by a licensed physician prescribed for the employee's personal use; or
- Possesses a controlled substance or drug that a licensed physician has prescribed for the employee's child or other individual for whom the employee is a legal guardian.
Each employee shall be given a copy of the College District's notice regarding a drug-free workplace. [See DI(EXHIBIT)]
Arrests, Indictments, Convictions, and Other Adjudications
An employee shall notify his or her immediate supervisor within three calendar days of any arrest, indictment, conviction, no contest or guilty plea, or other adjudication of the employee for any felony or offense involving moral turpitude.
Moral turpitude includes but is not limited to:
- Dishonesty, fraud, deceit, theft, or misrepresentation;
- Deliberate violence;
- Base, vile, or depraved acts that are intended to arouse or gratify the sexual desire of the actor;
- Felony possession, transfer, sale, distribution, or conspiracy to possess, transfer, sell, or distribute any controlled substance defined in Chapter 481 of the Health and Safety Code;
- Acts constituting public intoxication, operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol, or disorderly conduct, if any two or more acts are committed within any 12-month period; or
- Acts constituting abuse under the Texas Family Code.
The College District is committed to avoiding situations that may generate complaints of favoritism and sexual harassment. Any faculty or staff member who holds a position of supervisor or manager is strongly encouraged to refrain from becoming romantically involved with a subordinate and is prohibited from becoming romantically involved with a subordinate over whom the faculty or staff member has direct authority or the authority to influence the working conditions of the subordinate.
Similarly, any faculty or staff member is strongly encouraged to refrain from becoming romantically involved with a student and is prohibited from becoming romantically involved with a student over whom the faculty or staff member has direct authority or the authority to influence the educational conditions of the student.
In the event a romantic relationship develops, the staff supervisor or manager, or any staff member in the case of a relationship with a student, shall report the relationship to the vice president of instruction, if a faculty member, or to the director of human resources, if a staff member, in order to allow the College District to take appropriate action. This may include, but is not limited to, the transfer of one of the individuals involved. A faculty or staff member who fails to report such a relationship may face disciplinary action, up to and including termination. Questions about the above provisions may be addressed to the director of human resources.