We Welcome and Encourage Good-Faith Reporting
The University of Connecticut and UConn Health (collectively “UConn”) are dedicated to the highest standards of ethical and professional conduct in research, education, clinical service, and public service activities. Each individual associated with UConn is expected to conduct themselves according to this standard and ensure that their actions comply with UConn policies and relevant laws. To further this end, UConn welcomes and encourages reporting of compliance concerns and/or seeking guidance regarding compliance issues.
Individuals who report possible compliance issues in good faith will be accorded privacy and/or anonymity to the extent possible under the law, unless doing so prevents UConn from fully and effectively investigating or responding to the reported concerns. The reporting individual’s identity may also become known during the normal course of the investigation. While the highest level of privacy will be maintained, anonymity and confidentiality cannot be guaranteed. However, individuals who report in good faith, or who participate in a compliance investigation, are protected from retaliation per the University’s Non-Retaliation Policy.
University Compliance Investigation Protocol
The University of Connecticut is committed to conducting its affairs in accordance with its core values as stated in its Code of Conduct and as required by federal, state, and local laws and University policy. The Office of University Compliance (“University Compliance”) strives to prevent, detect, and assist management to correct violations of law or policy, which may result from mistake, inadvertence, lack of information, or deliberate misconduct. This protocol establishes an administrative process for dealing with allegations of misconduct so that the integrity of the conduct of business at the University of Connecticut may be preserved.
University employees are expected to report good faith concerns about possible violations of the University’s Code of Conduct, which includes possible violations of law and policy. Although employees are encouraged to resolve issues by reporting concerns to the appropriate contact person in their department, employees may not feel that adequate steps will be taken to resolve the expressed concerns or there may be a legitimate fear of retaliatory acts. Therefore, University Compliance maintains a private safe harbor to receive and direct compliance concerns for review, investigation, and resolution.
Employees may report such concerns through the University’s Reportline by calling 1-888-685-2637 or reporting via the web at https://uconncares.alertline.com/gcs/welcome. The identity of individuals who wish to report concerns to University Compliance anonymously will be protected to the extent possible under the law*. However, the identities of individuals who report or are involved in matters concerning immediate threat to life or property, if known, will be disclosed to the proper authorities.
Retaliation for making good faith reports is strictly prohibited. The University shall provide appropriate protection and support to those who may experience acts of retaliation related to the reporting of compliance concerns, in accordance with the University’s Non-Retaliation Policy.
Evaluation of Concerns: University Compliance shall evaluate the concerns raised and, if necessary, refer the matter to the most appropriate University office for review. If the reported concern is minor and the solution is straightforward without the need for an extensive investigation, University Compliance may ask the appropriate administrator to promptly take corrective action to resolve the concern. This will be assessed on a case-by-case basis.
Notification: Individuals who are the subject of a report shall be notified in writing. In some circumstances, such notification will be delayed if University Compliance concludes it may risk the integrity of the investigation.
Information Collection: University Compliance will make every effort to collect information pertinent to the allegations, including through conducting interviews and the review of documentation.
Privacy: Individuals, who report in good faith, will be accorded privacy and/or anonymity to the extent possible under the law**. In order to protect the integrity of the investigation and mitigate any potential instances of retaliation, any person made aware of a reported concern will be asked to keep the matter private. However, the identities of individuals who report or who are involved in matters concerning immediate threat to life or property, if known, will be disclosed to the proper authorities.
Cooperation: The subject of the reported concern and all individuals participating in the investigation are expected to cooperate and provide truthful information throughout the investigation. Failure to comply with these requirements is a violation of University policy and may result in further disciplinary action, up to and including dismissal.
University Compliance is authorized to have access to all University records, facilities, and personnel necessary to conduct a thorough review of the concerns, except as may be restricted by law. All units are expected to cooperate with any request University Compliance may make in an effort to access necessary evidence during the course of an investigation.
Standard of Evidence: There is no assumption of wrongdoing; rather the investigation shall be an impartial and objective fact-finding function in order to determine, based upon a preponderance of the evidence, whether the allegations have been substantiated. If allegations are substantiated, University Compliance will recommend appropriate follow up measures to management.
Internal Disposition/External Reporting: At the conclusion of an investigation, the Chief Compliance Officer (or designee) may refer the matter to the proper internal division of the University for any appropriate action (e.g. Human Resources). In addition, the Chief Compliance Officer (or designee), in consultation with the Office of the General Counsel, shall consider whether any notification or report should be directed to an outside entity. Such entities may include, but are not limited to: the Office of State Ethics, the Office of the Chief State's Attorney, the Auditors of Public Accounts, and the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA).
Timeline: It is the intention of University Compliance that investigations are conducted thoroughly and expeditiously. University Compliance will provide the subject of the investigation updates, when appropriate, regarding the estimated progress of the investigation.
Documentation: Appropriate records will be maintained that document the nature of the allegation(s), the investigation, the findings, and any recommendations for corrective action. Documents will be retained in accordance with relevant State statutes and University policies and procedures.
The University of Connecticut complies with all applicable federal and state laws regarding non-discrimination, equal opportunity and affirmative action, including the provision of reasonable accommodations for persons with disabilities. Employees and students with disabilities engaging with University Compliance in the course of an investigation may request reasonable accommodations to address limitations resulting from a disability.
The Chief Compliance Officer (or designee) shall keep the President and Board of Trustees appropriately info1med of any potential serious or widespread compliance concerns.
*In some circumstances, given the information contained within the report, it is difficult to ensure anonymity. For example, if a report includes information that could reveal the reporter's identity based on specific details or proximity to the issue being reported.
**Individuals may also have no expectation or request anonymity.
Why does UConn have a REPORTLINE?
UConn is committed to fostering a culture of compliance, which includes encouraging a speakup culture. Providing an avenue for individuals to share concerns regarding potential violations of policies and/or law allows UConn the opportunity to address potential wrongdoing and strengthen processes and systems.
When I submit a report through the REPORTLINE, who receives it?
The Office of University Compliance receives a notification via email that a report has been submitted through the REPORTLINE.
What if I am not sure if there is an actual compliance concern – can I ask for guidance using the REPORLINE?
Yes. Staff in the Office of University Compliance will provide guidance and information for inquiry-only type reports. If you submit an anonymous question through the REPORTLINE, because of the anonymous nature of the system, you will need to affirmatively log back into the system using the unique pin number to access the response from University Compliance.
Do I have to submit my compliance concern anonymously?
No. If you wish to use the REPORTLINE, there are options to provide your name and contact information. If this is provided, University Compliance can communicate with you directly regarding any follow-up, whether it be a reported concern or a request for guidance.
What should I make sure I include in a report that I submit through the REPORTLINE?
Be sure to include specific information. This allows University Compliance to fully understand the nature of the concern and conduct a thorough review. When submitting a report through
the REPORTLINE, please try to include the following information, if known:
- What (specifically) occurred?
- Who was involved and what was their role? (Having full names as well as job titles or departments is helpful)
- Where did the conduct or incident occur?
- When did it occur? If it is an on-going issue, when did it begin and how often does it occur? If there are specific dates or times, that will be helpful in conducting a thorough review.
- Are there any documents or evidence regarding the conduct that you can share? Please note the REPORTLINE web form allows reporters to upload PDF files of additional documentation. If a reporter utilizes the REPORTLINE call center, they can later submit a follow-up report utilizing the web form later to include additional documentation to the file.
Will my report be kept confidential?
University Compliance will make every effort to keep the report private, to the extent that the law and University policy allows. Information is only shared regarding the reported concern with the select few who may have a direct need to know. In these circumstances and when possible, University Compliance makes every effort to ensure the information shared does not include reporter identification, or any information that could potentially lead to the reporter being identified. Confidentiality is a legal privilege held by a narrow group of professions under specific circumstances; therefore, it cannot be guaranteed in these circumstances.
Can I meet with a staff member in University Compliance after submitting a report?
Yes. University Compliance is always willing to meet with reporters to gather further information. It is important that a reporter understand that while University Compliance will take all action to keep a reporters identity private, they would not be able to guarantee anonymity in this circumstance.
Will I know what the outcome of my report was?
Most reported concerns tie into personnel issues, therefore the results of a review or investigation are usually not shared with a reporter. This is out of respect for all parties involved and for the integrity of the process. University Compliance will, however, update the status of the reported concern through the REPORTLINE. Therefore, reporters who utilize the system will know if the matter is still pending or has been resolved.
What does the term “in good faith” mean when you talk about reporting?
A report “in good faith” is a report made with an honest and reasonable belief that a universityrelated violation of law or policy may have occurred. Conversely, a “bad faith report” is a report made that is knowingly false and/or made with malicious intent.
If I am an employee who is considering utilizing the REPORTLINE to make a report, what other resources might I utilize to help me with my concerns?
There are several resources for employees at UConn to help in navigating workplace situations. The Office of the Ombuds is a neutral and confidential resource where employees can engage in productive discussion regarding conflict resolution and explore solutions to existing concerns or problems (https://ombuds.uconn.edu/). The Employee Assistance Program is also a confidential resource for employees and provides brief counseling and/or referrals for services to assist with personal and/or work-related circumstances impacting job performance, health, mental and emotional well-being (https://hr.uconn.edu/employee-assistance-program/).
The REPORTLINE is NOT a 911 or Emergency Service. Do not use the REPORTLINE to report events presenting an immediate threat to life or property. Reports submitted through the REPORTLINE may not receive an immediate response. If you require emergency assistance or believe a crime is in progress, call 911.
How to Report
Contact Us Directly
Anyone can contact the Office of University Compliance directly to report a concern or request guidance. When contacting the Office of University Compliance, we will likely ask follow-up questions in an effort to fully understand what you are looking for and how we can help. Please note communication via email is subject to public records laws under the Freedom of Information Act and therefore may limit the privacy and anonymity of a reporter's identity.
Anonymous Reportline Web Form or Call
UConn’s Reportline is supported by a third-party vendor, NAVEX, and is staffed by professionals. It is available to anyone, including UConn employees, through phone, by an online web form, or through the mobile website with discrete intake and anonymous reporting options 24 hours a day, 7 days per week.
Alternative Reporting Options
In addition, Section 4-61dd of the Connecticut General Statutes is known as the Whistleblower Act. Employees may also file a written complaint regarding corruption, unethical practices, violation of state laws or regulations, mismanagement, gross waste of funds, abuse of authority and/or danger to the public safety with the Auditors of Public Accounts. If you file such a complaint with the State Auditors, you may be treated as a whistleblower. Whistleblowers are provided confidentiality and protection from retaliation for bringing the claim. More information regarding this process can be obtained by contacting the Auditors of Public Accounts.
Auditors of Public Accounts
Attention: Maura Pardo, Administrative Auditor
165 Capitol Avenue
Hartford, CT 06106
Phone: (959) 710-5605
Toll Free within Connecticut: (800) 797-1702