National Institutes of Health

The National Institutes of Health Director, Dr. Francis Collins, published a notice on September 17, 2018 titled. "Changing the culture of science to end sexual harassment." 

Related to this notice, the NIH has developed the webpage, NIH Anti-Sexual Harassment, which includes their policy statement, frequently asked questions, laws and regulations, and a link to the NIH Office of Extramural Research's Anti-Sexual Harassment webpage.  Additionally, Mike Lauer's, "Open Mike" blog post from September 17, 2018  provides content on the subject. 

Update - March 1, 2019

The National Institutes of Health have convened a working group under the Advisory Committee to the Director to review Changing the Culture to End Sexual Harassment.  This working group, comprised of leaders in the field, are charged with assessing the current state of sexual harassment allegation investigations at NIH-funded organizations, advising on oversight, accountability and reporting measures for awardee institutions, propose actions and policies that will promote a safe and inclusive environment and to suggest system-wide changes to culture and climate to prevent harassment and discrimination in the future.  Dr. Francis Collins also released a statement on February 28th updating NIH's efforts on this topic.  Please review the information contained in the links above for more details.

Update - June 14, 2019

The NIH's Deputy Director for Extramural Research, Mike Lauer, published an update on a new form that is available for use to notify the agency about a concern that sexual harassment is affecting an NIH-Funded activity.  Building on the information included in the statement from NIH leadership on addressing  sexual harassment in science, the NIH announced a new webform that allows for anyone in the biomedical research community to share information related to a potential case of sexual harassment directly and, if desired, anonymously, to NIH.   For additional information and resources, please see NIH’s Anti-Sexual Harassment website.


Training Grant Application Information

Applications for National Institutes of Health (NIH) institutional training grants (T15, T32, T34, T35, T36, T37, T90/R90, TL1, TL4) must include a letter on institutional letterhead signed by a key institutional leader that describes the institutional commitment to ensuring that proper policies, procedures, and oversight are in place to prevent discriminatory harassment and other discriminatory practices.

This policy applies to applications submitted for due dates on or after January 25, 2019. 

The specific section in which the harassment and discrimination protections should appear is detailed below.    

For Institutional Training (T) Applications (T15, T32, T34, T35, T36, T37, T90/R90, TL1, TL4): 

As part of the Letters of Support on the PHS 398 Research Training Program Plan form, applications must now include a signed letter on institutional letterhead from a President, Provost, Dean, Department Chair, or other key institutional leader that describes institutional commitment to the following areas:  

(i)    ensuring that proper policies, procedures, and oversight are in place to prevent discriminatory harassment and other discriminatory practices;  

(ii)   responding appropriately to allegations of discriminatory practices, including any required  
notifications to OCR (see NOT-OD-15-152); and

(iii)  adopting and following institutional procedure for requesting NIH prior approval of a change in the status of the Program Director/Principal Investigator (PD/PI) or other senior/key personnel if administrative or disciplinary action is taken that impacts the ability of the PD/PI or other key personnel to continue his/her role on the NIH award described in the training grant application (also see NOT-OD-18-172 re policy on change in PD/PI status).

This letter to ensure that proper policies, procedures, and oversight are in place to prevent discriminatory harassment and other discriminatory practices will be in addition to the content that is currently included in the Letters of Support describing the applicant institution's commitment to the planned program in order to ensure its success (e.g., providing facilities and a research environment conducive to preparing trainees for successful careers as biomedical research scientists; providing appropriate inter- or multidisciplinary research training opportunities and courses which will allow trainees to acquire state-of-the-art scientific knowledge). 

Combine all Letters of Support into a single PDF file.