University of Iowa’s faculty support & safety guidance
In recent years there has been a rise in the online harassment of faculty for their views and speech, to the point that many have either been forced to self-censor or even leave their positions. When a professor is harassed, the university has a responsibility to take that harassment seriously. Ideally, institutions have a plan of action set up not only to address the abuse but also to educate the general community about its effects and the best means of support. The University of Iowa’s Faculty Support & Safety Guidance provides advice and resources for faculty and administrators responding to harassment.
What we like about this policy
- Provides specific advice to faculty who experience threats and to other staff who witness them.
- Walks affected faculty through steps to manage their inbox and followers, to gather necessary information about their harassment, and to reach out to relevant departments and university personnel who can offer support. Includes the contact information of all relevant campus departments for faculty to turn to when they receive threatening messages.
- Acknowledges the threat that harassment poses to a professors’ academic freedom.
- Provides not only immediate measures but also preventive steps to mitigate abuse.