Report An Incident

Frequently Asked Questions

WHY:

Why does the University have a “Reporting Policy”?

The University has developed a policy (the “Reporting Policy”) to clarify the reporting process and to fulfill its legal obligations under Title IX. Title IX is a federal law that prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in education programs and activities that receive federal financial assistance. It applies to issues of program equity, such as in athletics, and also to sexual and gender-based harassment and sexual violence. Under Title IX, once an institution has notice of an act of sexual or gender-based harassment or sexual violence (these and certain other, related acts are defined in the University’s Policy on Sexual and Gender-Based Harassment and Other Forms of Interpersonal Violence (the “Policy”) as “Prohibited Conduct”), it is required to (1) take immediate and appropriate steps to investigate what occurred; and (2) take prompt and effective action to (a) end any misconduct that occurred; (b) remedy its effects; and (c) prevent its recurrence. The University must have an effective reporting policy and procedures to meet these requirements. One important objective of the Reporting Policy is to provide information to students about their reporting options and about the roles and responsibilities of University employees in the reporting process.

Why can’t the University simply refer these matters to the police?

The University’s Title IX obligations exist independent of any law enforcement action. The University must investigate all reports of Prohibited Conduct and take prompt and effective action regardless of whether a criminal complaint is filed. The criminal justice system has different purposes and distinct rules. It is governed by statutory definitions (criminal law), and it applies the highest evidentiary standard – beyond a reasonable doubt – to determine whether a defendant has committed a crime. The University evaluates reports of Prohibited Conduct under separate definitions, and it applies a  lower evidentiary standard – preponderance of the evidence – to determine whether a student is responsible for violating University policy.  For more information, see the Policy.

WHO:

Who is subject to the University’s Reporting Policy?

All academic division and medical center employees (i.e., all University employees) are subject to the University’s Reporting Policy. Under the Reporting Policy, all University employees are designated either as “Confidential Employees” or “Responsible Employees.” These distinctions have critical implications for reporting and may affect a student’s decision to disclose (or not disclose) information following an incident of Prohibited Conduct.

Who is a “Confidential Employee?”

A “Confidential Employee” is: (1) Any University employee who is a licensed medical, clinical or mental-health professional (e.g., physicians, nurses, physicians’ assistants, psychologists, psychiatrists, professional counselors and social workers, and those performing services under their supervision), when acting in his or her professional role in the provision of services to a patient who is a University student (“health care providers”), and  (2) any University employee  providing  administrative, operational  and/or related support for such health care providers in their performance of such services.  

A Confidential Employee will not report information about alleged Prohibited Conduct to the University’s Title IX Coordinator (or anyone else) without permission from the person who disclosed that information (subject to limited exceptions set forth in the Reporting Policy).

For contact information and locations of many Confidential Employees, see the chart of “Confidential Resources.”

Who is a “Responsible Employee?”

A “Responsible Employee” is any University employee who is not a Confidential Employee.  A Responsible Employee is required to report to the University’s Title IX Coordinator all relevant details about an incident of alleged Prohibited Conduct—including the names of the parties, any witnesses, and any other relevant details (e.g., the date, time and specific location of the alleged incident)—that have been disclosed by a student to the Responsible Employee. Responsible Employees fulfill their reporting obligations by reporting such information through this secure, on-line reporting system.

Who is the Title IX Coordinator?

The Title IX Coordinator is the person designated by the University to monitor and ensure compliance by the University with Title IX. The duties of the Title IX Coordinator may also be performed by any Deputy Title IX Coordinator and/or any of their respective designees.  For the names and contact information of the Title IX Coordinator and the Deputy Title IX Coordinators, see Contacts.

WHAT:

What information does a Responsible Employee report to the Title IX Coordinator?

Except with respect to disclosures at public events and certain research-based disclosures, as described below, Responsible Employees must report to the Title IX Coordinator any information disclosed to them by a student about an incident of Prohibited Conduct. “Prohibited Conduct” is a broad term that is defined in the University’s Policy on Sexual and Gender-Based Harassment and Other Forms of Interpersonal Violence (the “Policy”) to include Sexual Assault, Sexual Exploitation, Intimate Partner Violence, Stalking, Sexual and Gender-Based Harassment, Complicity in the commission of any prohibited act, and Retaliation against a person for the good faith reporting of any of these forms of conduct or participation in any related investigation or proceeding.

Responsible Employees are not expected to be experts in federal law or in the Policy. They are required to report any information they believe fits the plain meaning of the terms defined in the Policy as “Prohibited Conduct” so that the University may evaluate the information, take appropriate action to ensure the health and safety of the University community, and otherwise fulfill its obligations under Title IX.

Responsible Employees are required to report all relevant details that have been disclosed to them by a student about an incident of Prohibited Conduct (including the names of the parties, any witnesses, and any other relevant facts, including the date, time and specific location of the alleged incident) through this secure, on-line reporting system. (Responsible Employees are not expected to conduct an investigation, however, and should not ask questions to elicit more information than the student wishes to provide.)

What happens to the information once it is reported to the Title IX Coordinator?

The Title IX Coordinator will perform an initial assessment and refer the report to an “Evaluation Panel” for a threat assessment.  The reporting student may pursue University disciplinary resolution or may choose not to participate in any University process. Based on the information reported and the outcome of the threat assessment, the University may take any appropriate action(s), which may include, among other things, the imposition of a no-contact directive and/or referral for a full investigation and University resolution. The reporting student will be informed of the outcome of the threat assessment and any action(s) taken and will be protected from retaliation. Reporting students and others affected by Prohibited Conduct may also access a wide array of University resources for information, assistance and support. For a full description of such resources, see the Student Resource Guide.  For a full description of the reporting process and the University’s response after a report is received, see the Policy and the related Procedures for Reports Against Students and Procedures for Reports Against Employees.

Are there any exceptions to the reporting obligations of Responsible Employees?

Yes. A Responsible Employee will not report to the Title IX Coordinator any disclosure of alleged Prohibited Conduct that is made by a University student during or in connection with (1) public awareness events (e.g., “Take Back the Night,” candlelight vigils, protests, “survivor speak-outs” or other public forums in which students may disclose incidents of Prohibited Conduct), or (2) a student’s participation as a subject in an Institutional Review Board-approved human subjects research protocol.  These disclosures are not considered notice to the University of Prohibited Conduct for purposes of triggering its obligation to investigate any particular incident(s). The University may, however, provide information at such events, and to subjects of such research trials, about students’ Title IX rights and about available University and community resources and support services.

HOW:

How will Responsible Employees report information disclosed by a student about an incident of Prohibited Conduct?

In order to fulfill their reporting obligations, Responsible Employees will complete the Just Report It form.

WHEN: 

When will Responsible Employees file a report with the Title IX Coordinator?

Responsible Employees will report information about an incident of alleged Prohibited Conduct promptly in order to ensure that the University meets its Title IX obligations. Under Title IX, once an institution has notice of an act of Prohibited Conduct, it is required to (1) take immediate and appropriate steps to investigate what occurred; and (2) take prompt and effective action to (a) end any misconduct that occurred; (b) remedy its effects; and (c) prevent its recurrence.

WHERE:

Where is a Responsible Employee’s report of Prohibited Conduct directed?

The report will be directed to the University’s Title IX Coordinator (or a Deputy Title IX Coordinator) and those University officials responsible for responding to reports of Prohibited Conduct. A student’s disclosure to a Responsible Employee constitutes a report to the University—and generally obligates the University to investigate the incident and take appropriate steps to address the situation. This is distinct from any criminal investigation conducted by law enforcement.