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Title IX Procedures









Title IX Grievance Procedures
for Reporting Complaints of Sexual Misconduct

Includes Procedures Resolving Instances of: Sex & Gender Discrimination, Limitations on Consensual Relationships, Sexual Harassment, Rape / Sexual Abuse, Other Sexual Misconduct, Forcible Touching, Stalking, Dating and Domestic Violence, and Intimidation and Retaliation for Reporting

I. Non-Discrimination Policy; Designated Title IX Coordinator

 
Fordham University is an academic institution that, in compliance with federal, state, and local laws, does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, creed, religion, age, sex, gender, national origin, marital or parental status, sexual orientation, citizenship status, veteran status, disability, genetic predisposition, carrier status, or any other basis prohibited by law. No otherwise qualified person shall be discriminated against in any programs or activities of the University because of disability. Likewise, no person shall be discriminated against on the basis of sex. Fordham University does not knowingly support or patronize any organization that engages in unlawful discrimination.

This policy is strictly enforced by the University and alleged violations receive prompt attention and appropriate corrective action. The University will take steps to prevent discrimination and harassment, to prevent the recurrence of discrimination and harassment, and will take appropriate action to remedy the effects of discrimination.
 
Complaints of discrimination by students against other students should be brought to the Department of Public Safety or to the Dean of Students for the campus at which the student is enrolled for handling, Dean of Students at Rose Hill or the Dean of Students at Lincoln Center; students at the Westchester campus should contact the Dean of Students at Lincoln Center; students at Calder Center should contact the Dean of Students at Rose Hill. All other complaints involving students and employees, faculty and employees only, or third parties should be brought to the Department of Public Safety or to the Director of Institutional Equity and Compliance / Title IX Coordinator for handling.
 
The Director of Institutional Equity and Compliance is the University’s compliance officer for all forms of discrimination and is specifically designated as the University’s Title IX Coordinator, responsible for the University’s Title IX compliance efforts and violations of University policies, including gender equity in athletics, and all forms of discrimination, limitations on consensual relationships, sex and gender discrimination, sexual harassment, rape / sex abuse, other sexual misconduct, stalking, forcible touching, dating and domestic violence, intimidation and retaliation for filing such complaints.  Inquiries concerning the application of Title IX and its implementing regulation may be referred to the designated Title IX Coordinator or to the Office for Civil Rights of the U.S. Department of Education. Fordham’s Title IX coordinator may be contacted at:
 
            Anastasia Coleman
            Director of Institutional Equity and Compliance / Title IX Coordinator
            Cunniffe House, Room 114
            Rose Hill Campus
            718-817-3112    TitleIX@Fordham.edu

        
Members of the University community may also refer to the student brochure Campus Assault and Relationship Education (CARE) for detailed information on what steps to take to protect oneself and others from all forms of sex discrimination, sexual harassment, rape / sexual abuse, other sexual misconduct, dating and domestic violence, forcible touching and stalking, before it happens, or in the aftermath of an incident. 

II. Who May Use These Grievance Procedures

These procedures may be used by all full-time and part-time undergraduate and graduate students, faculty, staff, and applicants for admission or employment, and third parties. A third party is someone who is on campus or participating in a Fordham sponsored program, activity, or event.   

The purpose of these procedures is to provide for the prompt and equitable resolution of complaints brought by the complainant (the person who believes they were discriminated against or a victim of sexual misconduct) and the respondent (the person whose actions are being evaluated as to whether there was a violation of the University’s policies) The procedure involves reporting to the University, an investigation and fact-finding process, and a resolution of the grievance.  The University has attempted to use gender-neutral terms for this procedure in an effort to invite and welcome reporting by persons all genders, all sexual orientations, with disabilities, and undocumented citizens of other countries. 

 
III. Prohibited Conduct Covered by These Grievance Procedures

These grievance procedures are used to resolve complaints and allegations of violations of the University’s policies relating to the following prohibited activities: all forms of sexual discrimination, limitations of consensual relationships, sexual harassment, rape / sexual abuse, other sexual misconduct, stalking, forcible touching, dating and domestic violence, and intimidation and retaliation for reporting the above listed suspected policy violations. 

The policy definitions of prohibited activity are listed below.
 
A.    Unlawful Sex and Gender Discrimination is any action that denies a person access to, or the benefits of, any program or activity or employment opportunity, solely on the basis of sex or gender.

B.    Limitations on Consensual Relationships: In order to protect the integrity of the university academic and work environment, this policy outlines limitations on consensual romantic or sexual relationships between and among faculty, staff and students.  When individuals are involved in a consensual romantic or sexual relationship and are in positions of unequal authority or power, there is the potential for a conflict of interest, favoritism, and exploitation of power.  Anyone with supervisory authority or evaluative, mentoring authority who controls or influences another person’s employment, academic advancement, extracurricular or athletic team participation, scholarship or financial support, grades, recommendations, wage status, or promotion at the University should not be in a romantic or sexual relationship with that person regardless of consent.  If anyone is promoted into a position that results in a conflict with this policy limiting consensual relationships, this information must be reported to a supervisor, Vice President, or Executive Director of Human Resources who will contact the Title IX Coordinator for assistance in resolving the conflict.

C.    Sexual Harassment is a form of sex discrimination. It is defined as unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature when:
 
1. submission to such conduct is made either explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of an individual’s employment or status in a program, course or activity;
2. submission to or rejection of such conduct by an individual is used as the basis for employment or educational decisions affecting an individual; or
3. such conduct is sufficiently pervasive, offensive or abusive to have the purpose or reasonable effect of interfering with an individual’s work or educational performance, or creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive work or educational environment.
Some examples of sexual harassment include, but are not limited to:
i.               physical assault; 
ii.        unwanted sexual advances, requests for sexual favors or propositions of a sexual nature;
iii.        direct or implied threats that submission to sexual advances is a condition for employment promotion, good grades, recommendations, etc.
iv.    unwelcome verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature which an individual regards as undesirable or offensive, including, but not necessarily limited to, sexually explicit jokes, statements and questions or remarks about sexual activity or experience.
 
D.    Rape / Sexual Abuse is defined as physical sexual acts against another person that include: vaginal, anal, or oral sexual intercourse with another person, touching sexual or intimate parts of another person, or inserting a foreign object, however slight, into any sexual or intimate parts of another person:
1.    without consent from the other person; or by coercion or threat.
2.    when the other person is incapable of giving consent due to: being physically or mentally helpless for any reason, including incapacity because of the use of alcohol and / or drugs, or is unconscious or sleeping at the time; or
3.    when the other person is unable to give consent due to a disability, mental incapacity or age (person under 17 years of age cannot consent to sexual activity with anyone over 18 years of age).
This definition includes, but is not limited to, any form of non-consensual intercourse and or sexual activity, actual or attempted, by person(s) known or unknown to the victim.  See New York State Penal Law Section(s) 130.00.

Consent is defined as all people in a sexual encounter agree to the sexual activity.  Agreement to sexual activity means there are informed, freely given, mutually understandable words or actions that indicate a willingness to participate in the particular sexual activity.  A person may decide at any time that he/she no longer consents and want to stop sexual activity. 

Minors Lack Consent: A minor is defined as anyone less than 17 years of age and incapable of consenting to sexual activity with a person 18 years of age or older according to New York state law.  The University adopts this prohibition of sexual activity by adults with minors on all University property, and at any and all University sponsored activities or functions outside New York State regardless of out-of-state laws.

E.    Other Sexual Misconduct occurs when someone takes advantage of another person without the person’s consent and is being sexually exploited or there is an attempt to sexually exploit another.  Some examples of other sexual misconduct include, but are not limited to:
1.    Voyeurism or Peeping which is exceeding the boundaries of consent whether purposefully watching, videotaping or recording another without their consent who is naked, dressing or undressing, and / or engaging in sexual activity.
2.    Sexual exhibitionism where a person engages in sexually explicit activity in public spaces on campus or to be viewed by the public while on campus using computer hardware or software.
3.    Displaying or distributing nude or sexually explicit images of another person on campus or the Internet without the person’s consent.
4.    Sexual Coercion is when someone threatens another by stating an intention or threat to expose the other person’s sexual orientation, consensual sexual experiences, sexually explicit photographs or videotapes or other images to family, friends, or the public.
5.    Writing or marking of graffiti on University property that is sexually graphic in nature.
6.    Unwelcome gestures of a sexual nature toward another person.

F.    Forcible Touching
is defined as forcibly touching sexual or intimate parts of another person for the purpose of degrading or abusing such persons, or for gratifying the actor’s sexual desire.

G.    Stalking is a pattern of repeated intentional and unwanted attention, harassment, contact, following or any other course of conduct directed at a specific person that makes that person afraid, emotionally stressed, or concerned for his or her safety or property or to their immediate family members or acquaintances. Stalking occurs by frightening, unwanted communication by any means, including, but not limited to, by phone, mail or e-mail, or internet social networks. Threats may be direct or indirect, and conduct may include, but are not limited to the following: any form of writing or leaving messages or objects for another person, damaging property, or threatening family members. 

The University prohibits any member of the University community from stalking other members of the University community, on University property, at University sponsored events, functions, activities or by using University equipment or e-mail accounts to stalk another person.  When a person is told by a University authority to discontinue whatever activity they are engaged in, and this activity continues, the person so warned may be expelled, suspended, terminated, and/or not be permitted to be on University property or at University functions effective immediately before any disciplinary or conduct proceeding is undertaken.

H.    Dating and Domestic Violence
is a pattern of abusive behavior, usually involving an intimate relationship that is used by one partner to gain or maintain control over another partner and can also be between and among other adults and youths protected by criminal and family laws. Dating and domestic violence can be physical, sexual, emotional, economic, or psychological actions or threats of actions that influence another person. This includes any behaviors that intimidate, manipulate, humiliate, isolate, frighten, terrorize, coerce, threaten, blame, hurt, injure, or wound the other partner. Domestic violence may include dating violence based on the type and frequency of interaction of the relationship and how the people describe the relationship.  Generally, the University will view domestic relationships as people who are currently or formerly married, domestic partners currently or formerly living together, or people with children in common.

The definition, protocols, and practices of dating vary; however, for the purposes of these grievance procedures dating is defined as people engaged in activities as a form of courtship. Whether there was such a relationship will be gauged by its length, type and frequency of interaction.

I.    Intimidation and Retaliation for Reporting: Any member of the University community or third party who attempts either directly or indirectly to: intimidate, threaten, retaliate, interfere with, restrain, coerce, discriminate against, violate a University No Contact Order, or harass any person for reporting, attempting to report, or responsibly pursuing a complaint, or is a witness cooperating in a University investigation regarding possible violations of any of the University’s policies regarding sexual misconduct, will be subject to prompt and appropriate disciplinary action, including possible termination or expulsion from the University. 

An individual who brings a reasonable complaint of a suspected violation of the above referenced prohibited acts that is made in good faith, even if it may be found to be erroneous, will not be subject to discipline.  However, the use of this policy for false, malicious, or frivolous purposes is strictly prohibited. Anyone who knowingly brings a false, malicious, or frivolous complaint against another University community member may be subject to disciplinary action.

IV. Privacy, Confidentiality, and Records of Investigations
The University strongly supports a person who is involved in sexual misconduct matters’s interest in confidentiality.  Even if a person does not ask for confidentiality, these matters are considered private and are shared with a limited number of employees who have a “need to know” and are responsible for the University‘s response, including taking appropriate steps to respond to what happened, to support complainants, respondents, witnesses, and to resolve the matter promptly and fairly.  To the extent practicable and appropriate to the circumstances, investigatory and resolution procedures, as well as appeal procedures, shall be held in strict confidence to reasonably insure the privacy of the parties concerned and to offer as much protection as reasonably possible to the careers and reputations of the parties involved.

A.    Records of Reports and Investigations:

Personal information about any witness and records regarding these matters will remain confidential insofar as it does not interfere with the University’s right to investigate allegations of misconduct and take corrective action where appropriate and practicable. Written records will be retained with regard to the complaint, the investigation and fact finding, and the resolution.  However, the University will comply with criminal legal subpoenas or other civil court ordered requests for information or paperwork in compliance with Family Educational Rights & Privacy Act (FERPA).

B.    Requests for Confidentiality and Requests to the University Not to Investigate:
If a person discloses an incident or reports an incident of sexual discrimination or sexual misconduct to the University but then wishes to remain confidential or does not want to the University to proceed with an investigation, the University will attempt to honor and abide by a person’s wishes.  By honoring such a request, the University will not be able to meaningfully investigate and pursue disciplinary or student conduct proceedings to find anyone responsible for the violation. The University will provide support and accommodations, as much as possible under the circumstances. 

In some limited circumstances, the University may not be able to honor the request.  The person investigating the matter, either the Title IX Coordinator or the Deans of Students for the campus, as fact finders, will weigh the request against the University’s obligation to provide a safe, non-discriminatory environment for the entire community and decide whether the request can be honored.  Some, not all, of the factors that are reviewed when determining whether or not the University has an over-riding responsibility to proceed against someone’s wishes not to proceed or to remain confidential, include: an increased risk that someone will commit additional sexual misconduct or other relevant misconduct; whether there was a threat of violence; whether multiple people, a weapon, or a minor were involved; or whether the current report reveals a pattern of prohibited behavior. 

If possible, the University will make attempts to inform the complainant prior to proceeding with an investigation.  The University will not require anyone to participate in an investigation or a sexual misconduct disciplinary proceeding.  Nonetheless, the University may, under certain circumstances, be required to report and/or file a complaint with external authorities. An example is the legal requirement that all Violent Felony Offences listed in the New York State Penal Law 70.02 must be reported to N.Y.P.D. or other local law enforcement agencies, and the University may elect to conduct its own investigation when the University deems it is in the best interest of the community to do so.  Confidentiality will be respected insofar as it does not interfere with the University’s right to investigate allegations of misconduct and take corrective action where appropriate.

*Please see Section V. (B) below regarding speaking with a Confidential Counselor and not reporting an incident to the University.


V. Grievance Process: Reporting, Investigation, Resolution


*Please see Section IV above addressing concerns regarding privacy, confidentiality & records of proceedings, and requests to the University not to investigate.

A. Reporting


1.    Reporting on Campus:  The Department of Public Safety can receive complaints 24 hours a day 7 days per week, 365 days per year.  If it is an emergency, please call the Department of Public Safety at 718-817-2222.  Supervisors are former ranking police officers who have prior experience working with victims of all crimes. 


The purpose of reporting is so any victim of any sexual discrimination, sexual misconduct or sexual violence is properly supported by the University and the University can make efforts to stop the discrimination, prevent it from recurring, and remedy the effects.  All reported incidents are centrally tracked in order to review for patterns and to assist in stopping recurrence of similar incidents. 
There are professionals on campus who can assist and support any victim/complainant and are specifically trained to respond appropriately. There will be an initial discussion with the complainant who can provide a recount of what has taken place and discuss how best to proceed.   The dean or administrator as described below will explain available medical and counseling resources, the University’s sexual misconduct procedures and possible sanctions, how to report the incident to the local police or prosecutor, interim measures for possible accommodations, and the University’s policy against intimidation and retaliation for reporting a sexual discrimination or misconduct violation.  An Administrative Support Person (ASP) will be assigned to both the student-complainant and student-respondent to assist and support both students through the process if the conduct is evaluated through the University student conduct process. 

Complaints by students against other students (students include full-time, part-time, undergraduate, graduate or non-matriculated students) should be brought to the Dean ofStudents for thecampus at which the student is enrolled during business hours, or to the Department of Public Safety.  The deans, who are the finders of facts, are listed below and, with the assistance of the Department of Public Safety, are the investigators for all Title IX cases involving complaints by students against other students, and if necessary will impose student conduct sanctions for students who are found in violation of these policies.

If you are a student at the Rose Hill Campus or the Calder Center, contact:        
Christopher Rodgers, Assistant Vice President/Dean of Students at Rose Hill
McGinley Center 242
(718) 817-4755     chrodgers@fordham.edu


If you are a student at the Lincoln Center or Westchester Campuses, contact:
Keith Eldredge, Dean of Students at Lincoln Center
Leon Lowenstein, 408D
(212) 636-6250     eldredge@fordham.edu

Please Note: The Department of Public Safety can receive complaints 24 hours a day 7 days per week, 365 days per year.

Complaints that are between students and faculty or staff, complaints involving faculty and staff only, or complaints involving third parties should be brought to the Title IX Coordinator during business hours or to the Department of Public Safety.  With the assistance of the Department of Public Safety, the Title IX Coordinator is the investigator, finder of facts, and if necessary, will make recommendations to the appropriate University officer regarding imposing any disciplinary action.

Anastasia Coleman
Director of Institutional Equity and Compliance / Title IX Coordinator
Rose Hill Campus, Cunniffe House, Room 114
(718) 817-3112     TitleIX@Fordham.edu
 
Please note: The Department of Public Safety can receive complaints 24 hours a day 7 days per week, 365 days per year.

2. The University’s Expectations for Faculty and Staff to Report:

a)    Incidents of Sexual Violence or Prohibited Physical Touching Against Any Victim OR
When a Student is a Victim of Any Prohibited Sexual Misconduct Policy:
  All faculty and staff members who observe, obtain knowledge, learn of, or reasonably suspect: (1) sexual violence or prohibited physical touching against any faculty, staff, student, or third party; or (2) when a student is a victim of misconduct that violates any sexual misconduct policy, must report the information to the Department of Public Safety (for any incident), or the Dean of Students for the campuses (for incidents involving students only) or to the Title IX Coordinator (for all other incidents) as soon as reasonably possible.

b)    Incidents Coming to the Attention of Faculty Department Heads and Employees with Supervisory Authority over Others: Any faculty department head or other employee with supervisory authority who observes, obtains knowledge, learns of, or reasonably suspects that an employee, faculty, student or third party has engaged in prohibited sexual misconduct, or has been a victim of any prohibited sexual misconduct policy, must report the information to the Title IX Coordinator or the Department of Public Safety. The department head or supervisor can simultaneously report this information to their own supervisor, the Department and/or the Human Resources Department. However, it is important to file a report with the Title IX Coordinator or the Department of Public Safety as soon as reasonably possible. 

c)    Incidents of Any Non-Violent Sexual Misconduct Against Faculty, Staff, or Third Parties:

Faculty and staff who observe, obtain knowledge, learn of, or reasonably suspect that an employee, faculty member or third party is a victim of non-violent sexual misconduct, or any prohibited acts cited in these procedures, should report this information to the Title IX Coordinator or the Department of Public Safety as soon as reasonably possible. 
3.   Reporting to Police, a Local Prosecutor and/or Seeking Medical Treatment at a Local Hospital
 
A victim of any criminal sexual offense has legal recourse outside the University and can commence civil or criminal proceedings against the offending person(s).  Many of the prohibited behaviors of the University’s policies are also violations of New York State criminal laws where a person can be charged criminally with rape, sex abuse, stalking, and other charges.  If convicted of such crimes, a person can be subject to severe penalties, including imprisonment for up to 25 years.  If the action takes place outside New York, a person is subject to the criminal laws of the applicable jurisdiction.

A person may report an incident to either the police or the University, or to both simultaneously.  The University reserves the right to conduct its own investigation and proceedings notwithstanding the status or resolution of any criminal proceedings. There may be times when the Department of Public Safety or another administrator may contact the police regarding the nature of an alleged incident.  However, it is always the victim / complainant’s decision as to whether or not to cooperate with any police or University investigation. The Department of Public Safety or other administrators stand ready to assist in reporting incidents to the police or local prosecutors.

Orders of Protection: In addition to a University’s No Contact Order issued by the University to University community members, victims of stalking, dating and domestic violence, or any other violence/crime can seek orders of protection from both the family and criminal courts. 

Moreover, anyone who is physically injured or raped should seek a medical examination to determine the extent of injuries.  It is also important to understand that physical evidence collected in a rape examination (i.e. a rape kit) is a way to preserve evidence should anyone want to pursue criminal charges with the police or a local prosecutor at a later time.  

Police Precincts:
Rose Hill Campus: 48th Precinct—450 Cross Bronx Expressway, Bronx, NY (718) 299-3900
Lincoln Center Campus: 20th Precinct—120 West 82nd St., New York, NY (212) 580-6411
Westchester Campus: Harrison P.D.—650 North Street, Harrison, NY (914) 967-5110
Calder Center:  North Castle Police Department —15 Bedford Road, Armonk, NY (914) 273-9500

Hospitals: *The hospitals listed below conduct rape examinations*

Rose Hill Campus:            North Central Bronx Hospital—3424 Kossuth Ave., Bronx,NY (718) 519-5000
                                            Jacobi Medical Center—Pelham Parkway South, Bronx, NY (718) 918-5000
Lincoln Center Campus:  Mt. Sinai Roosevelt Hospital—59th St. on Ninth and Tenth Aves., NY, NY (212) 523-6800
Westchester Campus:       Westchester County Medical Center—100 Woods Rd., Valhalla, NY (914) 493-7000
Calder Center:                  Westchester County Medical Center—100 Woods Rd., Valhalla, NY (914) 493-7000


B. Speaking with a Confidential Counselor and Not Reporting to the University:

Many victims of sexual misconduct experience acute stress after an assault or incident of sexual misconduct. Survivors also sometimes blame themselves or feel ashamed, angry or confused. Many find it helpful to talk in a supportive, confidential context.  There are staff members in certain offices on campus and also off-campus resources available for people to speak with a confidential counselor when a person chooses not to report any incident to the Department of Public Safety, the Title IX Coordinator or the Deans of Students for the campuses.  Those staff members at Fordham include clinical counselors in Counseling and Psychological Services and pastoral counselors in the Office of Campus Ministry.  It is important to note that confidential counselors  in these offices will not be able to directly provide other accommodations and support that Public Safety, the Deans of Students or the Title IX Coordinator can offer (i.e., changes is academic scheduling, living, transportation and working accommodations).

Counseling & Psychological Services:
Rose Hill Campus: (718) 817-3725
Lincoln Center Campus: (212) 636-6225
Westchester Campus: (914) 367-3733
Calder Center: please use the Westchester phone number

Office of Campus Ministry:
Rose Hill Campus: (718) 817-4500 
Lincoln Center Campus: (212) 636-6267  
Westchester Campus: (914) 367-3420
Calder Center: please use the Westchester phone number

Off-Campus -- 24/7 Confidential Hotlines:
RAPE Crisis Hotline (914) 345-911
Safe Horizon’s Rape/Sexual Assault & Incest Hotline (212) 227-3000
NYC Domestic Violence Hotline (800) 621-HOPE (4673)
Gay & Lesbian Anti-Violence Project (212) 714-1141
Crime Victim’s Hotline (212) 577-7777

C.    Investigation and Resolution 

Complaints to the University will be investigated immediately upon receipt.  The investigation will be thorough, reliable, and impartial.  Both parties will have an equal opportunity to provide witnesses and other information to the investigator who will weigh the reliability and credibility of information obtained.  The University reserves the right to conduct its own investigation and proceedings notwithstanding the status or resolution of any civil or criminal proceedings.

The evidentiary standard in determining the facts will be based upon a preponderance of evidence, i.e. a finding that it is more likely than not that the alleged sexual discrimination and misconduct occurred or did not occur.  Remedial action appropriate to the nature and severity of any misconduct found will follow.  Interim sanctions may be imposed such as changing academic or living situations, if requested, or if the University deems interim measures are necessary to secure personal safety or a viable academic environment for either party.
 
Possible sanctions for employees can include a letter of reprimand or warning letter, a reduction in pay, probation, suspension, termination of employment from the University or other appropriate sanctions.

Possible sanctions for students can include a disciplinary reprimand, residence hall probation, suspension or expulsion from University housing, student life probation, university disciplinary probation, and suspension or expulsion from the University. 

Both the complainant and the respondent will be advised in writing of the outcome of the process. A complainant or respondent may appeal from a resolution achieved by either the informal or formal process. While the time to resolve a reported incident will vary from case to case, depending on the specific facts and circumstances, it is expected that in most cases complaints will be resolved within 60 days.  If the process will take longer than 60 days, both the complainant and the respondent will be notified in writing as to the delay and the reason for the delay.

The University may also impose additional remedies if needed and where appropriate for the University community.
 
1. Informal Approach to Resolution
 
A faculty, staff member, or student of the University believing that he/she may be experiencing a form of sexual discrimination or misconduct that does not involve physical touching or violence may attempt to resolve the situation personally if he/she is comfortable in approaching the individual whose conduct is being questioned.  Third parties are not expected to use this informal approach.

If a person is not so inclined to seek a resolution with that individual, faculty and staff should discuss their concerns and seek the advice from their immediate supervisor or department head.  If the alleged offending person is the supervisor or department head, then seeking the advice of the next highest level of authority is recommended. In such situations, the Title IX Coordinator can act as an advisor.  Students should seek the advice of any member of the student affairs staff as an advisor.  Third parties should consult with the Director of Institutional Equity and Compliance/Title IX Coordinator.  Any person acting in the role of advisor should seek assistance from the Title IX Coordinator or the Deans of Students in order to identify the problem and discuss options for resolution.  The complainant may withdraw from the informal process at any time; however, that complainant may still proceed with the formal process for investigation and resolution described below.

In cases of sexual violence, the U.S. Department of Education has made it clear that mediation is not appropriate, even on a voluntary basis.
 

2. Formal Approach to Resolution:
 
If a matter cannot be resolved through the informal approach, or if the complainant chooses not to proceed informally, or if the complainant is a third party, the complainant may seek the assistance of the official investigator and fact finder who is the Dean of Students for each campus (for complaints involving only students) or the Title IX Coordinator (for all other types of complaints). 

The Investigator will handle complaints impartially and objectively, perform fact-finding, and will follow certain procedures, including receiving assistance when appropriate by the Department of Public Safety.  If there is a significant conflict of interest where the investigator cannot be impartial, another investigator will conduct the investigation.  The investigation, depending upon the allegations, generally shall include interviews with the complainant and therespondent if available, interviews with other witnesses as appropriate, and gathering of relevant facts and information. With certain restrictions, the complainant and respondent can be accompanied by one advisor of their choice during interviews.  

In all student cases, an Administrative Support Person (ASP) will be assigned to both the complainant and the respondent in order to provide support and accompany the student to all interviews.  Disclosures of facts to witnesses shall be limited to what is reasonably necessary to conduct a fair and thorough investigation. Participants in an investigation shall be advised that maintaining confidentially is essential to protecting the integrity of the investigation and will be advised to refrain from discussing the matter during the pending investigation.  Depending on the nature and severity of the incident, other University officials may be involved in the investigation.  Using the preponderance of evidence standard, the Investigator will make a determination of facts based upon the nature and context of the conduct after assessing the credibility of witnesses and weighing the relevant information learned. 

In the cases handled by the Title IX Coordinator, the Coordinator makes a determination of the facts and a recommendation for resolution, including recommending possible disciplinary sanctions to the appropriate University officer. The officer receiving the recommendation has the responsibility to impose discipline or other resolution he/she deems appropriate based upon the circumstances and severity of the findings of facts.

In cases involving only students, the Dean of Students completes the investigation and fact finding and imposes appropriate student conduct sanction. In all cases, complainants and respondents receive written notice of the outcome of the investigation.

3. Appeal

 
All appeals will be conducted in an impartial and equitable manner by an impartial decision maker(s).
Students subject to student conduct sanctions that are appealable to the Student Conduct Review Council (SCRC) will follow the grievance process stated in the Student Handbook.  Student complainants in cases involving a student respondent may file a written appeal to the Senior Vice President for Student Affairs. Student complainants in cases involving a faculty or staff respondent may file a written appeal to the area Vice President to whom the faculty or staff respondent reports.  Faculty who are subject to sanctions may file their appeal as a grievance with the Faculty Hearing Committee.  Administrators may pursue their appeal as a grievance using the process outlined in the Handbook for Administrators.  Union members may appeal following the grievance procedures outlined in their respective collective bargaining agreements. 

Updated on Thursday, August 14, 2014

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