All complainants of sex offenses, domestic or relationship violence, sexual misconduct, and stalking have several options for initiating a complaint and/or taking legal action. These are listed below and the individual may choose to implement one of these options or any combination of these options, including all. Individuals representing any one of the on-campus options below will be able to provide complainants with information about and assistance contacting the other options. Additionally, complainants have options to file informal or formal complaints with campus entities. Informal complaints will involve finding solutions that address the complainant’s concerns and allow the complainant to continue to matriculate or work without interference related to the incident. Formal complaints will trigger official investigations, processes such as adjudication, and potential hearings by a Discipline Committee or Anti-Discrimination Committee. Complainants may file both complaints and take legal action by filing reports with law enforcement, file a complaint only, halt the informal complaint process at any time and pursue a formal complaint, or bypass the complaint process and only take legal action by filing a criminal report with law enforcement. Informal complaints are not appropriate for all incidents included in this policy and there may be circumstances where the University is obligated to pursue formal protocols to maintain the safety of the institution. It should be noted that informal complaints/resolutions are not appropriate for all types of incidents.
It is also important that the complainant understands the level of confidentiality to which each individual is obligated. Privileged professionals have legally protected parameters when acting in their clinical role, which means that if a complainant reports that they have been a complainant, that professional cannot and will not disclose the information to any other individual or office without the complainant’s consent except under circumstances that require disclosure under the laws governing that profession (e.g. imminent danger to self or others). Mandatory Reporters (Campus Security Authorities) are employees and students who are required to report that an incident has occurred with basic non-identifying information about the incident, but will upon the request of the complainant, withhold the complainant’s identity. Confidential Advisors are specially trained individuals who primarily serve to aid a student involved in a sexual misconduct complaint in the resolution process as a confidential resource. Requests for accommodations that flow through a confidential advisor shall not trigger an investigation. These individuals are trained to serve as a liaison between the complainant and other entities on campus for accommodation request; fully and accurately explain to the complainant all reporting options, complainant’s rights, university obligations, and all procedures; and accompany complainant when requested to do so by the complainant to interviews and other proceedings if the complainant chooses to make a formal complaint or report. Responsible Employees have the authority to take action to redress sexual violence and have been given the duty of reporting incidents of sexual violence or any other misconduct by students to the Title IX Coordinator and must report all information related to the complainant’s report including the complainant’s name and full details of the incident. Below is a list of those individuals/offices by category.