When consulting campus resources, all parties should be aware of confidentiality, privacy, and mandatory reporting in order to make informed choices. Students have the right and can expect to have incidents of sexual misconduct to be taken seriously by the institution and to have those incidents investigated and properly resolved through administrative procedures. A report of sexual misconduct will be considered confidential, and only the people who need to know will be advised of the situation.
Students who wish to talk confidentially are encouraged to seek out the following:
It is important for students to feel comfortable reaching out to campus personnel for support, guidance, and advice. For this reason, most staff are not designated as"responsible employees" and can generally maintain student confidentiality and privacy. These people must share incident reports with their supervisors, but they will not share personally identifiable information about the report unless the reporting person gives permission, or in the rare event that the incident reveals a need to protect the student or other members of the community.
If unsure of someone's duties and ability to maintain privacy, students are asked to confirm that person's status before engaging in discussion. They will be able to help make decisions about who can help best.
Students are encouraged to make formal reports of incidents to officials of the institution. These officials are considered as "responsible employees," and official notice to them is official notice to the institution. They include:
If a formal report is made, information will only be shared as necessary (e.g., with investigators, witnesses, and the accused individual).
The University reserves sole discretion and the right to take whatever measures it deems necessary in response to an allegation of sexual misconduct in order to protect students' rights and personal safety and the University community. Such measures include, but are not limited to, modification of living arrangements, reassignment of classes as available or removal from classes, interim suspension from campus pending a hearing, and reporting the matter to the law enforcement.
Victims of sexual misconduct usually have two avenues to consider in filing a formal complaint. These options are not mutually exclusive. The first offers a University process and the second a criminal process. Either or both may be pursued:
The accusing party can decide to not pursue a formal complaint. When possible, the University will respect the wishes of the accusing party. The University's ability to investigate the matter may be negatively impacted by the accusing party's desire to keep the matter confidential. When necessary due to the circumstances, the University may initiate its own investigation of instances of sexual misconduct.