Employee Handbook

12.7 Statement on Consensual Relations

Relationships between a faculty member and a student should be considered ones of professional and client in which the initiation of sexual relationships is inappropriate and unethical. Relationships between a supervisor and an employee are also ones under which initiation of a sexual relationship is inappropriate and unethical. The power differential inherent in sexual relationship is inappropriate and unethical. The power differential inherent in faculty/student and supervisor/employee relationships compromises the subordinate's ability to freely decide about such relationships. The faculty member or supervisor exercises great power in giving praise or blame, grades, recommendations for further study or future employment. Under these circumstances, the subordinate's actual freedom of choice is greatly diminished even in relationships that appear to be based on mutual consent. Codes of ethics for most professional associations forbid the initiation of sexual relationships where professional/client or supervisor/employee relationships exist.

Macalester College is opposed to and discourages sexual relationships between the referenced parties. College employees who engage in such relationships are risking serious legal claims against themselves and the College as well as the possibility of disciplinary action through campus procedures.