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Reporting Instance Of Sexual Misconduct/Campus Procedures

Reporting Sexual Misconduct
Thomas More College encourages any victim of sexual misconduct to report the incident immediately. Victims of sexual assault may feel uncomfortable in reporting the incident. The College offers support to any student in reporting such an incident and dealing with emotional and physical trauma, which may result from the assault.

Incidents of Sexual Misconduct involving student victims should be reported to the:

  1. Office of the Dean of Students; or
  2. Department of Campus Safety; or
  3. Title IX Co-Coordinator (Director of Student Support Services/ Director of Human Resources)
  4. In incidents involving sexual assault, the victim is encouraged to immediately contact one of these offices after contacting local law enforcement

All faculty, staff and student workers at Thomas More College, except where protected by privilege, are required to notify the Dean of Students, Campus Safety or a Title IX Co-Coordinator if an instance of sexual misconduct is reported to them.

College Response

  1. All victims of sexual misconduct will be assigned a victim's advocate (also a Title IX co-coordinator) who will immediately advise the victim of:
    • Their rights within the College
    • The requirement to investigate the allegation and duty of the College to respond to on-going threats
    • The internal and external support systems available (required in writing)
    • The right to remain anonymous whenever possible
    • The right to notify law enforcement (and assist if requested)/ process to obtain protective orders (required in writing)
    • The process and importance of preserving Evidence
    • The right to change living conditions and academic classes (required in writing)
  2. The Victim's advocate will serve as an advisor throughout the investigation, completion of the College's response and the College discipline process (if initiated) to assist the victim, advise of process and serve as a source of support for the victim.
  3. The College, consistent with federal regulations and best interests of the students, will make available to the student victim the ability to change residence hall rooms and course schedules when deemed necessary to protect the victim or allow for the student to fully participate as a member of the community.
  4. In collaboration with the Dean of Students, the Title IX co-coordinator will initiate an investigation to determine whether sufficient evidence of an on-going threat exists to the victim or the community and to determine whether to initiate discipline proceedings if requested. Upon determination of an on-going threat to the community or victim, the Dean of Students will notify the Chief Student Affairs Officer and an action plan to address the threat/ notify the community implemented. Upon determination that there is probable cause of a Student Code of Conduct violation, discipline proceedings are initiated at the request of the victim pursuant to the Thomas More College Student Code of Conduct or the matter referred to the executive officer responsible for the division which employs the accused in situations involving a member of the faculty or staff.
  5. Appropriate sanctions will be administered where appropriate as a result of the student discipline process for complaints against students.
  6. Appropriate action will be taken against a member of the faculty or staff, consistent with faculty/staff manual for complaints against members of the faculty and staff.
  7. Notification will be made to the Office of Civil Rights, Department of Education whenever an investigation provides probable cause that a violation of the sexual misconduct policy occurs.

Confidentiality/ Duty to Notify/ Notification of Parents
Thomas More College encourages every victim to report instances of sexual misconduct and to utilize the resources available to provide support. Victims have the right to request that they remain anonymous and the College will make every effort honor this request. It is a requirement of the institution that an investigation to be conducted, even when anonymity is requested, to ensure that an on-going threat does not exist to the community. When the result of the investigation finds that there is indeed an on-going threat, the College is obligated to issue a timely warning to the College community. However, every effort will be made to honor the confidentiality of the victim when requested. Thomas More College does reserve the right to notify parents when there exists a substantial concern for the student's safety and well-being, pursuant to the provisions of the Federal Education Right to Privacy Act.

Private Reporting
Students have the opportunity to seek the assistance of the College's counseling staff and to seek the assistance of other faculty and staff members on campus. When engaging in a counseling relationship with the College's licensed therapists, your personal information is protected, with the EXCEPTION, that the counseling staff must make notification of non-personalized information regarding the incident when a threat exists to others. Other campus offices, faculty, staff and student staff are required to report information of sexual misconduct to the Dean of Students. The information will be treated confidentially and will be shared only as outlined in this policy.

Retaliation
Thomas More College does not tolerate conduct that discourages students, staff, and faculty to express their concerns regarding sexual harassment or sexual assault. Any act of retaliation by a College employee, student, or representative of the College which interferes with or penalizes an individual for exercising his/her rights to file a complaint, will result in appropriate and prompt disciplinary action, including possible termination or expulsion.