VII. 713 - Title IX - Sexual Misconduct Policy
Effective 8-1-13, Rev 2-25-14, Rev 6-1-15, Rev. 9-1-16
Drury University (the “University”) strives to be a safe, education-oriented and community minded campus that maintains an academic and social environment conducive to intellectual and personal development of students, promotes the safety and welfare of all members of the campus community, and is free of discrimination on the basis of sex. Sex discrimination constitutes a violation of this policy, is unacceptable, and will not be tolerated. Sex discrimination includes discrimination on the basis of pregnancy, gender identity, and failure to conform to stereotypical notions of femininity and masculinity.
Sexual harassment, whether verbal, physical, visual, or digital, is a form of prohibited sex discrimination, and sexual violence is a particularly severe form of sexual harassment. The specific definitions of sexual harassment and sexual violence, including examples of such conduct, are set forth below.
The University’s Sexual Misconduct Policy defines the various forms of sexual misconduct that violate the standards of our community, identifies resources, and outlines the University’s student conduct process, including the outcomes imposed for violations of this policy.
This policy applies to all University employees, including staff, faculty, and administrators; students; applicants for employment; customers; third-party contractors; and all other persons that participate in the University’s educational programs and activities, including third-party visitors on campus (the “University Community”). This policy prohibits sex discrimination, sexual harassment, and sexual violence even when the complainant and alleged perpetrator are members of the same sex, and it applies regardless of national origin, immigration status, or citizenship status. The University’s prohibition on sex discrimination and sexual harassment extends to all aspects of its educational programs and activities, including, but not limited to, admissions, employment, academics, housing, athletics, and student services.
The University has jurisdiction over Title IX-related complaints regarding conduct that occurred on campus, during or at an official University program or activity (regardless of location), or off campus when the conduct could create a hostile environment on campus. The University will investigate all complaints made under this policy and, if necessary, take action to prevent the recurrence of sex discrimination and remedy its effects.
Title IX Statement
It is the policy of the University to comply with Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 and its educational programs and activities, which prohibit discrimination based on sex in the University’s educational programs and activities. Title IX and its implementing regulations also prohibit retaliation for asserting claims of sex discrimination.
The following Title IX officers have been appointed from members of the senior staff to ensure that Drury University is in compliance with Title IX, and can be contacted regarding any Title IX issues.
Title IX Coordinator
Scotti Siebert, Associate Vice President of Human Resources
Barbara Cowherd, Associate Athletic Director
Tijuana Julian, Executive Vice President - Student Affairs & Dean of Students
Bruce Callen, Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs - Operations
Charles Taylor, Director - M.A. Communication Program
It is the responsibility of the Title IX Coordinator to: (1) receive complaints under this policy; (2) coordinate dissemination of information and education and training programs; (3) assist members of the University Community in understanding that sexual misconduct is prohibited by this policy; (4) answer questions about this policy; (5) ensure that employees and students are aware of the procedures for reporting and addressing complaints of sexual misconduct; and (6) to implement the Complaint Resolution Procedures or to designate appropriate persons for implementing the Complaint Resolution Procedures. The Deputy Coordinators will assist the Title IX Coordinator in carrying out these responsibilities.
A person may also file a complaint of sex discrimination with the United States Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights regarding an alleged violation of Title IX by visiting this link or by calling 1-800-421-3481.
Sexual Misconduct is an umbrella term covering sex discrimination, sexual harassment, and sexual violence and this term will be used throughout the remainder of this policy and the Complaint Resolution Procedures when collectively referring to these types of conduct.
Sexual Harassment is defined as unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal, physical, or visual conduct of a sexual nature when:
- Submission to such conduct is made or threatened to be made, either explicitly or implicitly, a term or condition of an individual’s employment or education
- Submission to or rejection of such conduct by an individual is used or threatened to be used as the basis for academic or employment decisions affecting that individual, or
- Such conduct has the purpose or effect of substantially interfering with an individual’s academic or professional performance or creating what a reasonable person would perceive as an intimidating, hostile, or offensive employment, education, or living environment
Examples of sexual harassment include:
- Pressure for a dating, romantic, or intimate relationship
- Unwelcome touching, kissing, hugging, or massaging
- Pressure for sexual activity
- Unnecessary references to parts of the body
- Sexual innuendos or sexual humor
- Obscene gestures
- Sexual graffiti, pictures, or posters
- Sexually explicit profanity
- Asking about, or telling about, sexual fantasies
- Social media use that violates this policy
- Sending sexually explicit emails or text messages
- Sexual violence (as defined below)
Sexual violence is a form of prohibited sexual harassment. Sexual violence includes physical sexual acts perpetrated against a person’s will or where a person is incapable of giving consent because of his or her temporary or permanent mental or physical incapacity, because he or she is below the minimum age of consent in the applicable jurisdiction, or because of his or her incapacitation due to the use of drugs and/or alcohol.
Some types of sexual violence are described as:
Rape or Sexual Assault
Having or attempting to have non-consensual sexual intercourse with another person. Sexual intercourse includes an act of oral, vaginal, or anal penetration, however slight, with an object or body part by any individual upon another person.
The use of, or attempt to use, pressure and/or oppressive behavior, such that the application of such pressure or behavior causes the person who is the object of the pressure or behavior to engage in unwelcomed sexual activity. Coercion can take the form of pressure, threats, intimidation, or the use of physical force, either expressed or implied, which places a person in fear of immediate harm or physical injury. Coercion can also take the form of pressure to consume alcohol or other drugs prior to engaging in a sexual act.
An act or acts attempted or committed by a person for sexual gratification, financial gain, or advancement through the abuse or exploitation of another person’s sexuality. Examples include observing individuals without consent, non-consensual audio or videotaping of sexual activity, unauthorized presentation of recordings of a sexual nature, prostituting another person, allowing others to observe a personal consensual sexual act without the knowledge or consent of all involved parties, and knowingly exposing an individual to a sexually transmittable infection or virus without his or her knowledge.
Lack of consent is a critical factor in determining whether sexual violence has occurred. Consent requires an affirmative act or statement by each participant. Consent is not passive.
- Consent to engage in sexual activity must exist from the beginning to end of each instance of sexual activity. Consent consists of an outward demonstration indicating that someone has freely chosen to engage in sexual activity. In the absence of an outward demonstration, consent does not exist. Consent is informed, knowing, and voluntary. Consent is demonstrated through mutually understandable words and/or actions that clearly indicate a willingness to engage in sexual activity. Consent is not effective if it results from the use of physical force, intimidation, coercion, or incapacitation. If a sexual act is occurring and physical force, intimidation, coercion, or incapacitation develops, there is no longer consent.
- Consent to one form of sexual activity does not imply consent to other forms of sexual activity.
- Being in a romantic relationship with someone does not imply consent to any form of sexual activity.
- Consent to engage in sexual activity may be withdrawn by either party at any time. Withdrawal of consent must also be outwardly demonstrated by words or actions that clearly indicate a desire to end sexual activity. Once withdrawal of consent has been expressed, sexual activity must cease.
- Incapacitation is the inability, temporarily or permanently, to give consent, due to mental or physical incapability, unconsciousness, or vulnerability due to drug or alcohol consumption (voluntarily or involuntarily), or for some other reason. Examples of incapacitation may include, but are not limited to, vomiting, being unconscious, or being unable to communicate for any reason.
Domestic Violence, Dating Violence, and Stalking
The crimes of domestic violence, dating violence and stalking can also constitute sexual misconduct when motivated by a person’s sex. These crimes, no matter the motivation behind them, are a violation of this policy.
Domestic violence includes felony or misdemeanor crimes of violence committed by a current or former spouse or intimate partner of a victim, by a person with whom the victim shares a child in common, by a person who is cohabitating with or has cohabitated with the victim as a spouse or intimate partner, by a person similarly situated to a spouse or the victim under the domestic or family violence laws of the jurisdiction […], or by any other person against an adult or youth victim who is protected from that person’s acts under the domestic or family violence laws of the jurisdiction.
- Missouri’s definition of domestic violence can be found at Mo. Rev. Stat. § 455.010.
- Under Missouri law, domestic violence also includes the crime of “domestic assault” which can be found at Mo. Rev. Stat. §§ 565.072-565.074.
Dating violence is violence committed by a person who is or has been in a social relationship of a romantic or intimate nature with the victim. The existence of such a relationship shall be determined based on a consideration of the length of the relationship, the type of the relationship, and the frequency of interaction between the persons involved in the relationship.
- Missouri law does not specifically define dating violence, but conduct of this nature is covered by Missouri’s definitions of domestic violence and domestic assault.
A course of repeated non-consensual conduct directed toward another specific person that could be reasonably regarded as likely to alarm, harass, or cause reasonable fear of harm or injury to that person. Stalking may include, but is not limited to, unwelcomed and repeated visual or physical proximity to a person, repeatedly conveying oral or written threats, extorting money or valuables, threatening physical conduct, or any combination of these behaviors directed at or toward a person.
- Missouri’s definition of stalking can be found at Mo. Rev. Stat. § 455.010 and § 565.225.
- Cyber-stalking is a type of stalking in which electronic media, such as internet, social networks, blogs, cell phones, texts, or other similar devices or forms of contact are used to pursue, harass, or to make unwelcomed contact with another person in an unsolicited fashion. Examples of cyber-stalking include, but are not limited to, unwelcomed or unsolicited emails, instant messages, and messages posted on on-line bulletin boards. It also includes, but is not limited to, unsolicited communications about a person, their family, friends, or co-workers, or sending or posting unwelcomed and unsolicited messages with another username.
Reporting Incidents of Sexual Misconduct
Employees' Duty to ReportContent of the Complaint
All University employees have a duty to report sexual misconduct to the Title IX Coordinator or a Deputy Coordinator when they receive a report of such conduct, witness such conduct, or otherwise obtain information about such conduct. This includes employees who may have a professional license requiring confidentiality if they are not employed by the University in that professional role. Reports should be made by employees as soon as is reasonably possible after such information is obtained. An employee not reporting sexual misconduct, or not reporting in a timely manner, as required by this policy may be disciplined accordingly, up to and including termination.
Students and Other Persons
Students and any other persons who wish to report sexual misconduct should file a complaint with the Title IX Coordinator or a Deputy Coordinator. Students should be aware that all employees at the University have an obligation to report sexual misconduct that they become aware of or witness, except those identified later in this section.
An anonymous report can also be made at: http://falkor.drury.edu/forms/inforeport/inforeport.cfm. However, employees cannot fulfill their reporting obligation by using this anonymous mechanism.
If a student or employee victim desires to talk confidentially about his or her situation, there are resources available. The following resource is available to assist you and will not further disclose any identifying information about you, unless otherwise required to do so by law (e.g., if the victim is a minor):
- The University’s Student Counseling Center is available to students. University mental health counselors are bound to professional standards regarding confidentiality, and will not reveal the identity of victims, unless there is an imminent safety concern or as otherwise required by law. Contact information for the Student Counseling Center is as follows: Findlay Student Center, Room 114, (417) 873-7357.
- The University’s Chaplain is available to talk with students and employees. Contact information is as follows: Burnham Hall, Room 211, (417) 873-7231.
So that the University has sufficient information to investigate a complaint, the complaint should include: (1) the date(s) and time(s) of the alleged conduct; (2) the names of all person(s) involved in the alleged conduct, including possible witnesses; (3) all details outlining what happened; and (4) contact information for the complainant so that the University may follow up appropriately.
Timing of Complaints
The University encourages persons to make complaints of sexual misconduct as soon as possible because late reporting may limit the University’s ability to investigate and respond to the conduct complained of.
Information Provided to Complainant and Respondent
A complainant who makes a claim of sexual misconduct to the University will be given a copy of the document titled “Complainant Rights and Options for Recipients of Sexual Misconduct.” This document provides information about this policy and the Complaint Resolution Procedures used to investigate and resolve complaints of sexual misconduct, options for filing complaints with the local police, resources that are available on campus and in the community, etc. A person against whom a complaint has been filed will also be given information about the process.
Conduct that Constitutes a Crime
Any person who wishes to make a complaint of sexual misconduct that also constitutes a crime—including sexual violence, domestic violence, dating violence, or stalking—is encouraged to make a complaint to local law enforcement. If requested, the University will assist the complainant in notifying the appropriate law enforcement authorities. In the event of an emergency, please contact 911. A victim may decline to notify such authorities.
Special Guidance Concerning Complaints of Sexual Violence, Domestic Violence, Dating Violence, or Stalking
If you are the victim of sexual violence, domestic violence, dating violence, or stalking, do not blame yourself. These crimes are never the victim’s fault. When physical violence of a sexual nature has been perpetrated against you, the University recommends that you immediately go to the emergency room of a local hospital and contact local law enforcement, in addition to making a prompt complaint under this policy.
If you are the victim of sexual violence, domestic violence, or dating violence, do everything possible to preserve evidence by making certain that the crime scene is not disturbed. Preservation of evidence may be necessary for proof of the crime or in obtaining a protection order. As necessary to preserve evidence, victims of sexual violence, domestic violence, or dating violence should not bathe, urinate, douche, brush teeth, or drink liquids until after they are examined and, if necessary, a rape examination is completed. Clothes should not be changed. When necessary, seek immediate medical attention at an area hospital and take a full change of clothing, including shoes, for use after a medical examination.
It is also important to take steps to preserve evidence in cases of stalking, to the extent such evidence exists. In cases of stalking, evidence is more likely to be in the form of letters, emails, text messages, etc., rather than evidence of physical contact and violence.
Once a complaint of sexual violence, domestic violence, dating violence, or stalking is made, the complainant has several options such as, but not limited to:
- Contacting parents or a relative
- Seeking legal advice
- Seeking personal counseling (always recommended)
- Pursuing legal action against the perpetrator
- Pursuing disciplinary action through the University
- Requesting that no further action be taken
- Requesting further information about the University’s policy and procedures for addressing sexual misconduct
- Requesting further information about available resources
This policy applies to the conduct of vendors, contractors, and third parties. Members of the University Community who believe they have been subject to sexual misconduct in violation of this policy by a vendor, contractor, or other third party can make a complaint in the manner set forth in this section.
It is a violation of this policy to retaliate against any member of the University Community who reports or assists in making a complaint of sexual misconduct or who participates in the investigation of a complaint in any way. Persons who believe they have been retaliated against in violation of this policy should make a complaint in the manner set forth in this section.
Protecting the Complainant
Pending final outcome of an investigation in accordance with the Complaint Resolution Procedures, the University will take steps to protect the complainant from further discrimination or harassment. This may include assisting and allowing the complainant to change his or her academic, living, transportation, or work situation, to the extent that the University has control over these environments, if options to do so are reasonably available and upon request of the complainant. Such changes may be available regardless of whether the victim chooses to report the crime to the University’s Department of Safety & Security or local law enforcement. Requests to change an academic, living, transportation, or work situation, or for any other protective measure, should be made to the Title IX Coordinator.
If a complainant has obtained an ex parte order of protection, full order of protection, or any other temporary restraining order or no contact order against the alleged perpetrator from a criminal, civil, or tribal court, the complainant should provide such information to the Title IX Coordinator. The University will take all reasonable and legal action to implement the order.
The University recognizes that an individual who has been drinking alcohol or using drugs may be hesitant to report sexual misconduct. To encourage reporting, the University will not take disciplinary action for drug or alcohol use against an individual reporting sexual misconduct, either as the complainant or as a witness, provided that these conduct violations did not and do not place the health or safety of any other person at risk. The University may, however, require the reporting individual to attend a course or pursue other educational interventions related to alcohol and drugs.
The University’s commitment to amnesty in these situations does not prevent action by police or other legal authorities against an individual who has illegally consumed alcohol or drugs.
Bad Faith Complaints
While the University encourages all good faith complaints of sexual misconduct, the University has the responsibility to balance the rights of all parties. Therefore, if the University’s investigation reveals that a complaint was knowingly false, the complaint will be dismissed and the person who filed the knowingly false complaint may be subject to discipline.
Investigation and Privacy
All complaints of sexual misconduct will be promptly and thoroughly investigated in accordance with the Complaint Resolution Procedures, and the University will take disciplinary action where appropriate. The University will make reasonable and appropriate efforts to preserve an individual’s privacy and protect the confidentiality of information when investigating and resolving a complaint, and all reports of sexual misconduct will be handled in confidence to the extent allowed by law. However, because of laws related to reporting and other state and federal laws, the University cannot guarantee confidentiality to those who make complaints.
In the event a complainant requests confidentiality or asks that a complaint not be investigated, the University will take all reasonable steps to investigate and respond to the complaint consistent with the request for confidentiality or request not to pursue an investigation. If a complainant insists that his or her name not be disclosed to the alleged perpetrator, the University’s ability to respond may be limited. The University reserves the right to initiate an investigation despite a complainant’s request for confidentiality in limited circumstances involving serious or repeated conduct or where the alleged perpetrator may pose a continuing threat to the University Community.
Further, if a report of sexual misconduct discloses an immediate threat to the University campus community, where timely notice must be given to protect the health or safety of the community, the University may not be able to maintain the same level of confidentiality. Immediately threatening circumstances include, but are not limited to, reported incidents of sexual misconduct that included the use of force, a weapon, or other circumstances that represent a serious and ongoing threat to students, faculty, staff, or visitors.
The appropriate Deputy Coordinator, in collaboration with the Title IX Coordinator and Director of Safety and Security, is responsible for evaluating requests for confidentiality.
If a complaint of sexual misconduct is found to be substantiated, the University will take appropriate corrective and remedial action to prevent the recurrence of the conduct and correct its discriminatory effects. Students and employees found to be in violation of this policy will be subject to discipline up to and including written reprimand, probation, suspension, demotion, termination, or expulsion. Affiliates and program participants may be removed from University programs and/or prevented from returning to campus. Remedial steps may also include counseling for the complainant, academic, transportation, work, or living accommodations for the complainant, separation of the parties, and training for the respondent and other persons.
Faculty and Staff Standards
While the University is committed to the principles of free inquiry and free expression, sexual misconduct is neither legally protected expression nor the proper exercise of academic freedom.
Relationships with Students
Members of the faculty or staff at the University shall not engage in amorous or sexual relations with, or make amorous or sexual overtures to any student over whom he or she holds a position of authority with regard to academic or administrative judgments and decisions.
The university prohibits supervisors and managers from dating or otherwise entering into a personal relationship with any subordinate or any employee reporting to that supervisor or manager. Such relationship can become disruptive to the work environment, create a conflict or the appearance of a conflict of interest, and lead to charges of favoritism, discrimination, and claims of indirect sexual harassment.
Resources and Support
Drury University offers non-judgmental support and resources to any party involved in a sexual misconduct incident. Please contact the Title IX Coordinator or a Deputy Coordinator for more information about available resources and accessing those resources.
Because the University recognizes that the prevention of sexual misconduct, as well as domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking, is important, it offers educational programming to a variety of groups such as: campus personnel; incoming students and new employees participating in orientation; and members of student organizations. Among other elements, such training will cover relevant definitions, procedures, and sanctions; will provide safe and positive options for bystander intervention; and will provide risk reduction information, including recognizing warning signs of abusive behavior and how to avoid potential attacks. To learn more about education resources, please contact the Title IX Coordinator.
Sexual Misconduct Complaint Resolution Procedures
These Complaint Resolution Procedures apply to the resolution of all reports under the Sexual Misconduct Policy. They apply to the resolution of complaints against students, faculty, administrators, staff, and third parties, and they are the exclusive means of resolving complaints of sexual misconduct.
For purposes of these Complaint Resolution Procedures, “Deputy Coordinator” means the appropriate Deputy Coordinator depending on the status of the respondent. “Investigators” refers to one or more individuals from a trained pool of employees who have been assigned to investigate a particular complaint. “Title IX Team” refers to the individuals serving as the Coordinator, Deputy Coordinators, or Investigators.
Promptness, Fairness and Impartiality
These procedures provide for prompt, fair, and impartial investigations and resolutions. The Title IX Coordinator, Deputy Coordinators, and Investigators shall discharge their obligations under these Complaint Resolution Procedures fairly and impartially. If any individual involved in the administration of these procedures determines that he or she cannot apply these procedures fairly and impartially because of the identity of a complainant, respondent, or witness, or due to any other conflict of interest, another appropriate individual shall be designated to administer these procedures.
These procedures will be implemented by officials who receive annual training on the issues related to sexual misconduct, domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking and how to conduct an investigation that protects the safety of victims and promotes accountability.
- Preliminary Matters Related to the Investigation and Resolution of a Complaint
Timing of the Investigation
The University will endeavor to conclude its investigation and resolution of the complaint within sixty (60) calendar days of receiving it. Both the complainant and the respondent will be given periodic updates regarding the status of the investigation. If either the complainant or respondent needs additional time to prepare or to gather their witnesses or information, they shall notify the Investigators in writing explaining how much additional time is needed and why it is needed. The Investigators shall respond to any such request within three (3) days.
Informal means of resolution, such as mediation, may be used in lieu of the formal investigation and determination procedure. The following standards apply to any informal resolution method that is utilized:
- Can only be used with the complainant’s voluntary cooperation and the involvement of the Title IX Coordinator
- The complainant will not be required to work out the problem directly with the respondent
- Either party may terminate the informal process at any time and elevate the complaint to the formal investigation procedures described below
- Informal means, even on a voluntary basis, will not be used to resolve complaints alleging any form of sexual violence
At any time during the investigation, the Deputy Coordinator, in consultation with the Title IX Coordinator, may determine that interim remedies or protections for the parties involved or witnesses are appropriate. These interim remedies may include separating the parties, placing limitations on contact between the parties, suspension, or making alternative class-placement or workplace arrangements. Failure to comply with the terms of these interim remedies or protections may constitute a separate violation of the Sexual Misconduct Policy.
During the investigation process, both a complainant and a respondent may ask a support person/advisor to accompany him or her at all stages of the process. In cases involving multiple complainants or respondents, the support person/advisor cannot be another complainant or respondent. The support person/advisor does not serve as an advocate on behalf of the complainant or respondent, may not be actively involved in any proceedings, and must agree to maintain the confidentiality of the process. A support person/advisor may be removed if he or she becomes disruptive or does not abide by the limitations discussed in the previous sentence.
Pending Criminal Investigation
Some instances of sexual misconduct may also constitute criminal conduct. In such instances, the complainant is also encouraged to file a report with the appropriate law enforcement authorities and, if requested, the University will assist the complainant in doing so. The pendency of a criminal investigation, however, does not relieve the University of its responsibilities under Title IX. Therefore, to the extent doing so does not interfere with any criminal investigation, the University will proceed with its own investigation and resolution of the complaint.
Rights of the Parties
During the investigation and resolution of a complaint, the complainant and respondent shall have equal rights. They include:
- Equal opportunity to identify and have considered witnesses and other relevant evidence
- Similar and timely access to all information considered by the Investigators
- Equal opportunity to review any statements or evidence provided by the other party
- Equal access to review and comment upon any information independently developed by the Investigators
- Equal opportunity to appeal determinations pursuant to Section IV, below
Process for Investigating Reports of Sexual Misconduct
Commencement of the Investigation
Once a complaint is made, the Title IX Coordinator will commence the investigatory process as soon as practicable, but not later than seven (7) days after the complaint is made. The parties will be notified of any delays to the commencement of the process. The Title IX Coordinator will meet with the Deputy Coordinator, and they will analyze the complaint to ensure it involves conduct covered by this policy, notify the respondent that a complaint has been filed, and assign Investigators. If it is determined that the complaint does not involve conduct covered by this policy, the matter will be referred to another University official and addressed via the appropriate process.
The purpose of the investigation is to determine whether it is more likely than not that the alleged behavior occurred and, if so, whether it constitutes sexual misconduct. During the course of the investigation, the Title IX Coordinator, Deputy Coordinator, and Investigators may receive counsel from University administrators, the University’s attorneys, or other parties as needed.
In certain narrow circumstances, an investigation may be commenced even if the complainant requests that the matter not be pursued. In such a circumstance, the Title IX Coordinator, Deputy Coordinator, and Investigators will take all reasonable steps to investigate and respond to the matter in a manner that is informed by the complainant’s articulated concerns.
Content of the Investigation
During the investigation, the complainant will have the opportunity to describe his or her allegations and present supporting witnesses or other evidence. The respondent will have the opportunity to respond to the allegations and present supporting witnesses or other evidence. The Investigators will review the statements and evidence presented and may, depending on the circumstances, interview others with relevant knowledge, review documentary materials, and take any other appropriate action to gather and consider information relevant to the complaint. All parties and witnesses involved in the investigation are expected to cooperate and provide complete and truthful information.
At the conclusion of each interview during the investigation, the Investigators will prepare a written summary of the interview. The interviewee, whether it be the complainant, respondent, or third-party witness, will have an opportunity to review the written summary, discuss any adjustments that he or she believes should be made, and provide a signature confirming the content of the written summary and allowing it to be shared with other appropriate individuals during the course of the investigation.
At the conclusion of the investigation, the Investigators will prepare a written investigation report. The written investigation report will explain the scope of the investigation, including parties and witnesses involved and evidence reviewed, identify findings of fact, and make a recommendation as to whether any allegations in the complaint were found to be substantiated by a preponderance of the evidence. The written investigation report and any evidence reviewed during the investigation will be given to the Title IX Coordinator and Deputy Coordinator for a determination on the matter. Upon review of the written investigation report and discussions with the Investigators, the Title IX Coordinator and Deputy Coordinator may conclude that additional investigatory measures are needed. In such cases, the written investigation report will be returned to the Investigators, the investigation will continue, and the written investigation report may be modified following the additional investigatory measures.
Following a sufficient investigation and written investigation report being provided, the Title IX Coordinator and Deputy Coordinator will make a determination as to whether sexual misconduct occurred, and issue a Notice of Findings Letter and, if necessary, include in the Notice of Findings Letter those steps necessary to maintain an environment free from discrimination and harassment and to protect the safety and well-being of the complainant and other members of the University Community. Such actions will also include reasonable steps to correct the effects of such conduct on the complainant and others and to prevent the recurrence of discrimination, harassment, and retaliation. Examples of such action include: no-contact orders, classroom reassignment, the provision of counseling or other support services, training, and discipline for the perpetrator, including up to termination, expulsion, or other appropriate institutional sanctions.
If necessary, the version of the Notice of Findings Letter provided to the complainant and/or respondent will be redacted to ensure that information concerning any remedial and/or disciplinary measures is disclosed in a manner consistent with Title IX, the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (“FERPA”), and the Clery Act, as explained by the April 4, 2011 Dear Colleague Letter issued by the U.S. Department of Education, available at http://www2.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ocr/letters/colleague-201104.pdf.
The Notice of Findings Letter drafted by the Title IX Coordinator and Deputy Coordinator shall be final subject only to the right of appeal set forth in Section IV, below.
Special Procedure Concerning Complaints Against the President, the Title IX Coordinator, or other Administrators Senior to the Title IX Coordinator
If a complaint involves alleged conduct on the part of the University’s President, the Executive Committee of the University’s Board of Trustees will designate an appropriate person to conduct the investigation required by these procedures. The written report of the investigation will be presented to the Executive Committee of the Board of Trustees, which will prepare and issue the written determination and implement any appropriate and reasonable measures. The determination issued by the Executive Committee of the Board of Trustees is final, unless the President or the complainant provides a written letter of appeal to the Full Board of Trustees within five (5) days of his/her receipt of the Executive Committee’s written determination and in accordance with Section IV, below. The full Board of Trustees will issue a resolution on the matter within twenty-one (21) days and the resolution will be final and not subject to further appeal. The full Board of Trustees shall issue a short and plain, written statement of the resolution of the appeal. The written statement shall be provided to the complainant, the President, and the Title IX Coordinator within three (3) days of the resolution.
If a complaint involves alleged conduct on the part of the Title IX Coordinator or any administrator senior to the Title IX Coordinator, the President will designate an appropriate person to conduct the investigation required by these procedures. The written report of the investigation shall be presented to the President, who will appoint three (3) members of the Title IX Team, who have no conflict of interest, to review the investigation report, make a determination, and prepare and issue the written determination and implement appropriate and reasonable measures. The resolution issued by the Title IX Team is final, unless the complainant or respondent provides a written letter of appeal to the Executive Committee of the Board of Trustees within five (5) days of his/her receipt of the Title IX Team’s written determination and in accordance with Section IV, below. The Executive Committee of the Board of Trustees will issue a resolution on the matter within twenty-one (21) days and the resolution will be final and not subject to further appeal. The Executive Committee of the Board of Trustees shall issue a short and plain, written statement of the resolution of the appeal. The written statement shall be provided to the complainant, respondent, and the Title IX Coordinator within three (3) days of the resolution. If the Title IX Coordinator is the respondent, a copy of the resolution should also be given to one of the Deputy Coordinators to ensure it is properly filed.
AppealsGrounds for Appeal
The complainant or respondent may appeal the determination of a complaint only on the following grounds:
- There is a substantial likelihood that newly discovered information, not available at the time evidence was presented to the Title IX Coordinator and Deputy Coordinator, would result in a different decision
- There was a procedural error significant enough to call the outcome into question
- There was a clear error in factual findings
- Bias or prejudice on the part of the Title IX Coordinator, Deputy Coordinator, or Investigators, or
- The punishment or the corrective action imposed is disproportionate to the offense
Method of Appeal
Appeals must be filed with the President within five (5) days of receipt of the written report determining the outcome of the complaint. The appeal must be in writing and contain the following:
- Name of the complainant
- Name of the respondent
- A statement of the determination of the complaint, including corrective action if any
- A detailed statement of the basis for the appeal including the specific facts, circumstances, and argument in support of it, and
- Requested action, if any
Resolution of the Appeal
The President will appoint an Appeal Panel, comprised of three (3) members of the Title IX Team, who have no conflict of interest, and have had no involvement in the investigation or adjudication of the relevant complaint. The Appeal Panel will resolve the appeal and inform the Title IX Coordinator of their decision within ten (10) days of receiving it and may take any and all actions that they determine to be in the interest of a fair and just decision. The decision of the Appeal Panel is final. The Title IX Coordinator shall issue a short and plain, written statement of the resolution of the appeal, including any changes made to the previous Notice of Findings and any sanctions or remedial measures imposed. The Title IX Coordinator’s written statement shall be provided to the complainant and respondent within three (3) days of the resolution of the Appeal Panel.
Throughout all stages of the investigation, resolution, and appeal, the Title IX Team members as the case may be, are responsible for maintaining documentation of the investigation and appeal, including documentation of all proceedings conducted under these Complaint Resolution Procedures, which may include written findings of fact, transcripts, and audio recordings. When an audio recording is used during an interview, a written summary of the interview is prepared by the Investigators and signed by the interviewee; at such time, the audio recording is destroyed.
Intersection with Other Procedures
These complaint resolution procedures are the exclusive means of resolving complaints alleging violations of the Sexual Misconduct Policy. To the extent there are any inconsistencies between these complaint resolution procedures and other University grievance, complaint, or discipline procedures, these complaint resolution procedures will control the resolution of complaints alleging violations of the Sexual Misconduct Policy.