Section 227 - Employment of Family/Household Members Policy

Section 227 - Employment of Family/Household Members Policy

The purpose of this policy is to provide guidance for the hiring of persons who may be related to or household members of faculty or staff of the College or members of the Board of Trustees for the College.

Lower Columbia College strives to attract and retain the best individuals for each employment opportunity and follow ethics laws related to conflicts of interest. Family relationships shall not be used as the basis or a factor in granting or denying rights, privileges, or benefits of regular job status with the following exceptions, which are bona fide occupational qualifications as described under RCW 49.60.180, WAC 162-12-140, WAC 162-16-240, and WAC 162-16-250.

Employees will not advocate for or hire members of their family/household. Employees may not serve on the selection committee for a position in which their family/household member is interviewing. Employees are expected to exercise good judgment in identifying potential conflicts of interest related to family members that are not included as part of this policy (i.e. aunt, uncle, niece, nephew, cousins). Employees will inform HR of any potential conflicts of interest related to their involvement in the recruitment process.

227.1 Prohibitions

Members of the same family/household may not:

  • Hold positions within the College that place them in a supervisory role over their family/household member
  • Be in the supervisory chain of command over their family/household member without HR approval
  • Have direct supervision of student employees who are members of their family/household without HR approval
  • Exercise decision-making authority in granting tenure, scheduling, assigning work, or offering overtime to their family/household member
  • Act as auditor or evaluate the work of their family/household member

227.2 Definitions

  • Family/household member: includes an employee's current or former spouse or domestic partner, mother, father, child, step-child, adopted child, foster child, child that employee is guardian of, brother, sister, grandparent, grandchild, or any of these same classifications who are in-laws. "Household member" also includes anyone who cohabitates with the employee such as roommates, friends, or other non-relatives.
  • Conflict of interest: occurs whenever an employee may have an interest, financial or otherwise, direct or indirect, or engages in a business or transaction or professional activity that is in conflict with the proper discharge of the employee's duties. Supervision of others, including members of an employee's family or household that may result in an interest to the employee is considered a conflict of interest.

Historic Information

  • Reviewed by Executive Leadership Team 6-19-19
  • Adopted 2-2-19


Resource/Reference/Procedure Title (if applicable) Unit Responsibility
Procedure 227.1A    
RCW 49.60.180 Unfair practices of employers VP of HR and Legal Affairs
WAC 162-12-140 Pre-employment inquiries VP of HR and Legal Affairs
WAC 162-16-240 Bona fide occupational qualification VP of HR and Legal Affairs
WAC 162-16-250 Discrimination because of marital status VP of HR and Legal Affairs
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