In its latest effort to resolve at least a year’s worth of disputes with its lowest-paid employees, the University has hired a consulting firm to examine a culture within housekeeping that has elicited multiple complaints from housekeepers.
The University hired the PRM Consulting Group in March to identify problems within the housekeeping culture, according to a memorandum from Chancellor Holden Thorp to housekeeping employees.
In April, dozens of University employees, many of whom were housekeepers, staged a sit-out in protest of a scheduling change workers said represented management’s lack of concern for workers’ rights.
In the fall, housekeepers protested the “sit-down policy” they claimed was evidence of a discriminatory work environment.
But the consulting firm will also examine an issue that hasn’t been formally protested this year — sexual harassment.
Ann Penn, an Equal Opportunity/Americans with Disabilities Act officer, said she has received multiple complaints of sexual harassment and race discrimination from employees.
The report will cover a wide array of issues, including the no sit-down policy and sexual harassment, said Van Dobson, chief facilities officer and executive director for Facilities Services.
Meanwhile, housekeeper Amanda Hulon is formally appealing a University ruling on a complaint she filed against her supervisor. In the complaint, Hulon claims that her supervisor sexually harassed her.
The director of housekeeping services, Bill Burston, did not respond to several calls and in-person requests for interviews.