Roles and Duties of Unit EOAA Liaisons

The EOAA liaison program is essential to implementing the University’s equal opportunity and affirmative action policies. The EOAA liaison is appointed to a two-year term by the head of the unit. Essentially, the EOAA liaison has five key responsibilities:

Primary unit resource

The liaison serves as the primary unit resource on EOAA issues within the unit. This includes communications and outreach to the faculty, staff and students in the unit about EOAA services within the unit and centrally. It also includes taking initiative to ensure compliance with University policies within the unit.

Searches and hiring decisions

The liaison advises hiring authorities and search committees about the importance of equity and diversity in the search process and the responsibility to review affirmative action goals in the process. For additional information on “Equity and Diversity in the Search Process”, please visit https://diversity.umn.edu/eoaa/searchprocesstoolkit. If you are seeking additional resources to help you recruit a more diverse pool of candidates see the EOAA Diversity Recruitment Source Database at http://eoaa.software.umn.edu/.

Complaints of discrimination or harassment

The liaison is often the first individual to respond to complaints or concerns about discrimination and harassment, retaliation, and nepotism. The liaison works with the EOAA Office to respond promptly and appropriately to complaints.

Education

The liaison participates in educational updates and works with the central EOAA office to provide appropriate educational programming within the unit. This includes educational efforts to improve the climate for diversity in the unit.

New initiatives

The liaison supports leadership in developing new initiatives and programs—such as recruiting or mentoring programs—that are customized for effectiveness within that unit.
 


Considerations in Selecting a Unit EOAA Liaison

  • The primary qualification is an understanding of and commitment to the principles of equal opportunity and affirmative action, as well as an ability to work with diverse constituencies.

  • The performance of these responsibilities involves a measurable time commitment, although the exact amount will vary with the size of the unit.

  • The EOAA Liaison should hold a position in which the liaison can exercise the appropriate influence and independent judgment.

  • The role of the EOAA liaison is to assure that consideration of equal opportunity and affirmative action is specifically addressed. If the liaison also has human resource responsibilities, the liaison must be able to exercise the EOAA perspective independently.

  • The EOAA liaison needs to be available as a contact not just for employees, but also for students, volunteers or interns working with the unit, and other members of the University community. University policies regarding equal opportunity and affirmative action apply to educational programming as well as employment.
  • The EOAA liaison may receive personal and private information, which must be treated differently than other information received in the consultant's primary employment capacity.