Philosopher Charles Hermes (UT Arlington) writes:
Two years ago I filed a complaint with the APA regarding institutions that violate its anti-discrimination policy. The original complaint was posted on this website.
Many universities that advertise in Jobs for Philosophers require applicants to sign statements of ‘faith’ which discriminate on the basis of sexual preference. One of the offending universities cited in the original complaint to the APA was Wheaton College.
Wheaton College requires its applicants to sign a form with the following statement. “We believe that these Christian standards will show themselves in a distinctly Christian way of life, an approach to living we expect of ourselves and one another. This lifestyle involves practicing those attitudes and actions the Bible portrays as virtuous and avoiding those the Bible portrays as sinful…Scripture condemns the following:…homosexual behavior” A version of this form can be found here.
While this complaint addressed an advertisement in the 2006-2007 JFP, Wheaton College also advertised in the 2007-2008 JFP. Further, while some universities are listed as censored universities, Wheaton is not. Azusa Pacific University, Belmont University, Biola University, Calvin College, Malone College, and Pepperdine University all advertised in the 2007-2008 or 2008-2009 JFP. None of these programs are listed as censored universities. Nevertheless, all of these programs possess ‘ethics’ requirements that prohibit homosexual activity. This is especially troubling given that the APA claims to endorse the following anti-discrimination policy
Further, The American Philosophical Association rejects as unethical all forms of discrimination based on race, color, religion, political convictions, national origin, sex, disability, sexual orientation, gender identification or age, whether in graduate admissions, appointments, retention, promotion and tenure, manuscript evaluation, salary determination, or other professional activities in which APA members characteristically participate. At the same time, the APA recognizes the special commitments and roles of institutions with a religious affiliation; it is not inconsistent with the APA's position against discrimination to adopt religious affiliation as a criterion in graduate admissions or employment policies when this is directly related to the school's religious affiliation or purpose, so long as these policies are made known to members of the philosophical community and so long as the criteria for such religious affiliations do not discriminate against persons according to the other attributes listed in this statement. Advertisers in Jobs for Philosophers are expected to comply with this fundamental commitment of the APA, which is not to be taken to preclude explicitly stated affirmative action initiatives. The APA Board of Officers expects that all those who use the APA Placement Service will comply with the letter and spirit of all applicable regulations concerning non-discrimination, equal employment opportunity and affirmative action.
Members of the APA should either convince the APA to enforce its policy or abandon it. Pretending to be an enlightened organization that cares about defending the rights of our colleagues is counterproductive if the APA refuses to act upon its fundamental commitments.
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