Special Provisions Relating to Complaints of Sexual Harassment, Sexual Violence, Domestic Violence, Dating Violence or Stalking
Please note that this information should be viewed in conjunction with the Discrimination and Harassment Policy, Complaint Procedure and Investigation Procedures.
PURPOSE OF THE POLICY
Champlain College is committed to providing its staff, faculty and students the opportunity to pursue excellence in their academic and professional endeavors. This opportunity can only exist when each member of our community is assured an atmosphere of mutual respect, free from unlawful discrimination and harassment. This Policy outlines expectations regarding how individuals who are members of the Champlain College community are to treat others in order to ensure such an atmosphere of mutual respect and a safe environment for our students, faculty and staff.
It is an essential goal of Champlain College to provide and maintain a safe campus for all members of its community, free from violence and threats of violence. Sexual misconduct, domestic violence, dating violence and stalking will not be tolerated on campus, including in residential halls, offices and other facilities owned or leased by the College, or in connection with College programs on or off campus. Champlain College students, employees or covered third party respondents who engage in sexual misconduct, domestic violence, dating violence or stalking on campus or who use campus facilities, property, vehicles, communications media (such as phones, fax, e-mail, texting or social networking sites) or other resources to engage in such activity are subject to disciplinary action, up to and including suspension or dismissal from College enrollment and/or employment, and criminal prosecution.
Champlain College prohibits conduct by students, employees and covered third party respondents that affects other students and covered third parties and that constitutes sexual misconduct, domestic violence, dating violence or stalking, as defined below. While this policy incorporates by reference portions of the definitions of domestic violence, dating violence and stalking used in the federal Clery Act, the College determines responsibility for such conduct through its own procedures and standard of proof (that is, by a preponderance of the evidence), not through the procedures or standards of proof employed in the criminal justice system.
Complainant: For purposes of this policy, a complainant is usually a student, employee, or third party involved in some way in an academic, athletic, extracurricular or residential program of the College (“covered third party complainant”) who has allegedly been subjected to conduct in violation of this policy by a student, employee or covered third party respondent.
In some cases (such as, for example, cases in which a student, employee or covered third party complainant involved in an alleged incident of sexual harassment, sexual misconduct, domestic violence, dating violence or stalking does not wish to participate in the process but the College decides that the alleged misconduct needs to be investigated and addressed), the College may move forward with an investigation and/or related disciplinary proceedings. In such cases, the College may extend the full rights of a complainant as defined in this policy to affected parties as deemed appropriate by the College. For ease of reference and consistency, the term “complainant” is used hereafter in this policy to refer to a person who believes that he or she has been subjected to sexual harassment, sexual misconduct, domestic violence, dating violence or stalking, or who is believed by another to have possibly been subjected to such conduct.
Respondent: For purposes of this policy, a respondent is a student, employee or third party over whom the College has some type of control or jurisdiction (“covered third party respondent”) who is reported to have violated the College’s Sexual Harassment, Sexual Misconduct, Domestic Violence, Dating Violence and Stalking Policy. For ease of reference and consistency, the term “respondent” is used hereafter in this policy to refer to a student, employee or covered third party respondent who is believed by a complainant or other reporting person to have, or who the College believes possibly may have, engaged in sexual harassment, sexual misconduct, domestic violence, dating violence or stalking toward or with a student, employee or covered third party.
Sexual Harassment: Sexual harassment of students, employees, or covered third parties by students, employees or covered third parties is prohibited by Champlain College. Sexual Harassment is defined as: Unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors and other unwelcome verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature. Such conduct constitutes sexual harassment when:
- Submission to such conduct is 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 as the basis for employment or academic decisions affecting that individual; or
- The conduct has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with an individual’s work or academic performance or creating an intimidating, hostile or offensive employment, education or living environment.
Examples of verbal or physical conduct that could violate this policy if they meet the standards described above may include, but are not limited to:
- either explicitly or implicitly conditioning any term of employment or educational decision on the provision of sexual favors;
- touching or grabbing any part of a person’s body after that person has indicated, or it is known or should be known that such physical contact is unwelcome;
- continuing to ask a person to socialize on or off-campus when that person has indicated he or she is not interested;
- displaying or transmitting sexually suggestive pictures, objects, cartoons, or posters if it is known or should be known that the behavior is unwelcome;
- continuing to write sexually suggestive notes or letters if it is known or should be known that the person does not welcome such behavior;
- referring to or calling a person a sexualized name if it is known or should be known that the person does not welcome such behavior;
- telling sexual jokes or using sexually vulgar or explicit language in the presence of a person if it is known or should be known that the person does not welcome such behavior;
- retaliating in any way against anyone who has filed or supported a complaint of sexual harassment (e.g. ostracizing the person, pressuring the person to drop or not support the complaint, adversely altering that person’s educational, shared living, or work environment, etc.);
- directing harassing acts or behavior against a person on the basis of his or her sex; or
- off-campus conduct which falls within the above definition and affects a person’s on-campus educational, shared living, or work environment.
The College encourages reports of unwelcome verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature (regardless of whether such conduct necessarily or obviously meets the full definition of sexual harassment above) so that it can determine whether this policy has been violated and take appropriate responsive action. Prohibited sexual harassment can occur regardless of the sex, gender identity or sexual orientation of any individual involved.
Sexual Misconduct: Sexual misconduct may include sexual assault, sexual exploitation, or both.
Sexual assault may be either rape, fondling without consent, incest, or statutory rape, as defined in the Clery Act and below. Rape is the penetration, no matter how slight, of the vagina or anus with any body part or object, or oral penetration by a sex organ of another person, without the consent of the victim. Fondling is the touching of the private body parts of another person for the purpose of sexual gratification, without the consent (as defined below) of the victim, including instances where the victim is incapable of giving consent because of his/her temporary or permanent mental incapacity. Incest is sexual intercourse between persons who are related to each other within the degrees wherein marriage is prohibited by law in the applicable jurisdiction. Statutory rape is sexual intercourse with a person who is under the statutory age of consent in the applicable jurisdiction.
Sexual assault can be committed by any person against any other person, regardless of gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, or past or current relationship status. Sexual assault may occur with or without physical resistance or violence.
Sexual assault is defined as including participating in a sexual act with another person:
- By compelling the other person to participate in the sexual act without consent; or
- By threatening or coercing the other person; or
- By placing the other person in fear that any person will suffer imminent bodily injury; or
- By impairing substantially the ability of the other person to appraise or control conduct by administering or employing drugs or intoxicants without the knowledge of or against the will of the other person; or
- When the respondent knows, or reasonably should know based on an objective standard, that the other person’s ability to give or withhold consent is impaired:
- by the consumption of drugs, alcohol or other intoxicants; or
- because the other person is subject to a physical or mental incapacity such as sleep or unconsciousness.
- By participating in situations when the other person is physically incapable of resisting or of communicating an unwillingness to participate; or
- By participating in situations when the other participant is under the age of 16.
Domestic Violence: : Domestic violence is violence committed-
- By a current or former spouse or intimate partner of the person subjected to the violence;
- By a person with whom the person subjected to the violence shares a child in common;
- By a person who is cohabitating with, or has cohabitated with, the person subjected to the violence as a spouse or intimate partner;
- By a person similarly situated to a spouse of the person subjected to the violence under the domestic or family violence laws of the jurisdiction in which the violence occurred, or;
- By any other person against an adult or youth who is protected from that person’s acts under the domestic or family violence laws of the jurisdiction in which the violence occurred.
As a matter of Champlain College policy, the College strictly prohibits conduct that would constitute domestic violence as defined above. The College encourages complainants who believe they are being or have been subjected to such conduct, and others with knowledge of such conduct, to report the conduct to the College through the procedures described below, and to seek the support of the College and/or external resources identified in this policy.
Dating Violence: 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 person subjected to the violence. The existence of such a relationship shall be determined based on the reporting party’s statement and with consideration of the length of the relationship, the type of relationship, and the frequency of interaction between the persons involved in the relationship.
For the purposes of this definition, dating violence includes, but is not limited to, sexual or physical abuse or the threat of such abuse, if involving individuals who are or have been dating as defined here.
Dating violence does not include acts covered under the definition of domestic violence stated above.
As a matter of Champlain College policy, the College strictly prohibits conduct that would constitute dating violence as defined above. The College encourages individuals who believe they are being or have been subjected to such conduct, and others with knowledge of such conduct, to report the conduct to the College through the procedures described below, and to seek the support of the College and/or external resources identified in this policy.
”Stalking” is defined as engaging in a course of conduct directed at a specific person that would cause a reasonable person to-
- Fear for the person’s safety or the safety of others; or
- Suffer substantial emotional distress.
For the purposes of this definition-
- Course of conduct means two or more acts, including, but not limited to, acts in which the alleged stalker directly, indirectly, or through third parties, by any action, method, device, or means, follows, monitors, observes, surveils, threatens, or communicates to or about a person, or interferes with a person’s property.
- Reasonable person means a reasonable person under similar circumstances and with similar identities to the person subjected to the stalking.
- Substantial emotional distress means significant mental suffering or anguish that may, but does not necessarily, require medical or other professional treatment or counseling.
As a matter of Champlain College policy, the College strictly prohibits stalking as defined above. The College encourages complainants who believe that they are being or have been subjected to such conduct, and others with knowledge of such conduct, to report the conduct to the College through the procedures described below, and to seek the support of the College and/or external resources identified in this policy.
When part of a pattern of behavior that falls within the definition of stalking described above, examples of stalking behaviors or activities may include, but are not limited to:
- Non-consensual communication, including face-to-face communication, telephone calls, voice messages, e-mails, text messages, written letters, gifts, or any other communications that are unwelcome;
- Use of online, electronic or digital technologies in connection with such communication, including but not limited to:
- posting of pictures or text in chat rooms or on websites;
- sending unwanted/unsolicited e-mail or talk requests;
- posting private or public messages on Internet sites, social networks, and/or school bulletin boards;
- installing spyware on a person’s computer;
- using Global Positioning Systems (GPS) or similar technology to monitor a person.
- Pursuing, following, waiting, or showing up uninvited at or near a residence, workplace, classroom, or other places frequented by the person;
- Surveillance or other types of observation including staring or “peeping”;
- Non-consensual touching;
- Direct verbal or physical threats;
- Gathering information about an individual from friends, family, or co-workers;
- Accessing private information through unauthorized means;
- Threats to harm self or others;
- Using a third party or parties to accomplish any of the above.
Consent: Under Vermont law, “consent” to sexual activity is defined to mean “words or actions by a person indicating a voluntary agreement to engage in a sexual act.”
For purposes of this policy, “consent” is defined as follows:
- Consent is a voluntary agreement to engage in sexual activity, demonstrated by words or actions freely and actively given by each party, which a reasonable person would interpret as a willingness to participate in agreed-upon sexual conduct;
- Someone who is incapacitated cannot effectively consent (such as when a person is incapacitated by the use of drugs or alcohol, when a person is asleep or unconscious, or when a person has an intellectual or other disability that prevents the person from having the capacity to give consent);
- Past consent does not imply future consent;
- Silence or an absence of resistance does not imply consent;
- Consent to engage in sexual activity with one person does not imply to consent to engage in sexual activity with another;
- Consent can be withdrawn at any time; and
- Coercion, force or threat of either invalidates consent.
The College will use an objective standard when determining whether a complainant was incapacitated; that is, the College will determine whether from the standpoint of a reasonable (and not incapacitated or intoxicated) person, the respondent knew or should have known that the complainant could not effectively consent because he or she was incapacitated. It is the responsibility of those who initiate and/or engage in sexual activity to be clear that informed, voluntary consent is given before proceeding with further sexual activity. It should be noted that ignorance of the policy noted above, or the intoxication of the respondent, will not (particularly given the College’s objective standard) be considered an excuse for violating this policy.
Other Sexual Misconduct: The College also prohibits through this policy other forms of sexual misconduct and sexual exploitation, such as (but not limited to) video or audio recording or photographing of sexual acts, intimate body parts or nudity of another member of the College community without the consent of a person involved, taking sexual advantage of another person for the benefit of anyone other than that other person without that other person’s consent, prostituting another person; distributing images (e.g., video, photograph) or audio of another person’s sexual activity, intimate body parts, or nudity, if the individual distributing the images or audio knows or should have known that the person(s) depicted in the images or audio did not consent to such disclosure and object(s) or would object to such disclosure; and viewing another person’s sexual activity, intimate body parts, or nudity in a place where that person would have a reasonable expectation of privacy, without that person’s consent, if the individual viewing the other person’s or persons’ sexual activity, intimate body parts, or nudity in such a place knows or should have known that the person(s) being viewed would object to that.
Academic Discourse: Champlain College recognizes that the protection of free and open speech and the open exchange of ideas are important to any academic community. This recognition is therefore an important element in the “reasonable person” standard used in judging whether sexual harassment or other harassment prohibited by this policy has occurred. This policy is meant neither to proscribe nor to inhibit discussion, in or out of the classroom, of complex, controversial or sensitive matters, when in the judgment of a reasonable person they arise appropriately and with respect for the dignity of others. Champlain College also recognizes, however, that verbal conduct can be used specifically to intimidate or coerce and to inhibit genuine discourse, free inquiry and learning. Such abuses are unacceptable. If someone believes that another’s speech or writing is offensive, wrong or hurtful, he or she is encouraged to express that judgment in the exercise of his or her own free speech or to seek redress under the policy.
As an educational institution, Champlain College is committed to promoting, through education and awareness-raising activities, a campus environment where sexual harassment, sexual misconduct (including sexual violence), domestic violence, dating violence and stalking are recognized as serious violations of the Standard of Conduct and where individuals who have or believe they have been subjected to such misconduct are provided support and avenues of redress as appropriate. These forms of misconduct are prohibited by the College. Additionally, gender-based discrimination and harassment, sexual harassment and sexual violence are prohibited by a federal law known as Title IX. The College’s Vice President for Student Life serves as the College’s Title IX Coordinator. In that role, the Title IX Coordinator has oversight responsibility for Title IX-related complaints and identifying and addressing any patterns or systemic problems that arise during the review of such complaints. Inquiries concerning the application of Title IX may be referred to the Title IX Coordinator, or to the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights (“OCR”). The Vice President for Student Life’s contact information is: Leslie Averill, Student Life, (802) 651-5907, email@example.com. OCR’s contact information is listed below.
The College understands that individuals who have concerns about sexual harassment, sexual misconduct, domestic violence, dating violence or stalking may look for assurances of confidentiality. The College encourages individuals who may have been subjected to these forms of misconduct and/or crime to talk to somebody about what happened, so they can get the support they need, and the College can respond appropriately to the extent appropriate and possible given the circumstances and/or the complainant’s wishes. Different employees on campus have different abilities to maintain confidentiality about these issues.
All College employees are responsible employees and have the obligation to report sexual harassment, sexual misconduct, domestic violence, dating violence or stalking to the Title IX Coordinator (firstname.lastname@example.org.) The only exception to this are those employees listed under “Confidential Resources” below. Responsible employees are respectful of a complainant’s wishes to the extent appropriate and are discreet, but they are not able to guarantee confidentiality. General inquiries or questions about the Sexual Harassment, Sexual Misconduct, Domestic Violence, Dating Violence and Stalking Policy and procedures may remain private, and the College will strive to protect the privacy of individuals to the extent it can while maintaining its obligations to uphold relevant policies and regulations and/or to take reasonable steps to promote the safety of members of the College community. Otherwise, responsible employees will report relevant details (such as the name of the complainant and respondent, any witnesses, and other relevant facts, such as the date, time and specific location of the alleged incident) to the Title IX Coordinator or other College officials. The College will then investigate the report and take reasonable steps to prevent recurrence of the behavior.
Reporting and Resources
If you feel that you may have experienced an incident of sexual misconduct, domestic violence, dating violence or stalking, you should contact appropriate College offices and/or local agencies immediately. Counseling staff, Student Health Center staff, Campus Public Safety staff, Residential Life staff and administrative staff are available to assist students, and the People Center (formerly known as Human Resources) staff is available to assist employees. Confidentiality is strictly observed by professional staff at the Counseling and Accommodation Services Center and the Student Health & Wellness Center (confidentiality issues are addressed in more detail below). Students can contact Campus Public Safety at (802) 865-6465 or any emergency call box (blue light phone), a Residential Life staff member, the Burlington Police (911), or a College counselor (RAs and Campus Public Safety Officers can contact the counselor on call). In addition, students may go directly to the emergency services department at the University of Vermont Medical Center. College staff are available to assist you in seeking help from outside law enforcement and health care resources. Even if you are unsure initially whether you will want to pursue criminal charges or seek a protection order, it is important to preserve all possible evidence in case you decide at some point to do so. Therefore, you should refrain from changing clothes, showering or otherwise changing your physical state after an incident, until after you have consulted with medical personnel, campus public safety and/or law enforcement about how to best preserve evidence. You should also consult with College officials, law enforcement officers or health care professionals regarding your ability to have evidence collected by a Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner (“SANE”). You should also endeavor to preserve other evidence that may be relevant to a case of sexual harassment, sexual misconduct, domestic violence or dating violence or stalking, such as text messages, email messages, other electronically stored information, and other physical evidence. If you have questions about how to do this, you should consult with College officials, confidential resources, or law enforcement.
Seek medical and counseling help immediately. Prompt medical and counseling attention will help begin the healing process and will also assist in preservation of evidence. Your health and safety are of utmost importance. You can call one of the offices listed immediately above with questions about how to best preserve evidence.
Consider reporting the incident to campus public safety and local law enforcement authorities. It is recommended that you take advantage of the opportunity to report any incident of sexual misconduct, domestic violence, dating violence or stalking to campus public safety and local law enforcement authorities. Your well-being is paramount; you have the option to notify law enforcement authorities, to be assisted by College authorities in notifying law enforcement authorities if you choose, or to decline to notify law enforcement authorities. The College contact information is listed above. In cases where there appears to be an imminent safety risk, the College may be required to pursue an internal investigation or disciplinary proceeding itself, and/or to involve local law enforcement authorities as necessary. In assessing such situations the College will consider factors such as, but not limited to, the seriousness of the alleged conduct, the complainant’s age, whether there have been other complaints about the same alleged perpetrator(s).
Protective Measures: Sometimes it is necessary to take steps before or during an investigation to protect the rights and interests of the Complainant and/or Respondent. Such measures may be designed to reduce or eliminate contact between the Complainant and/or the Respondent so that both parties may feel safe in their work/educational environment. Protective measures may also guard against further actual or perceived discrimination or retaliation. Protective measures may include temporary changes in working conditions, (such as changes to supervisor or office location), change in class or work schedule, change in on campus residence and directives to the Complainant and Respondent to avoid personal contact or refrain from such contact without a neutral third person present and, in severe cases, suspension of an individual.
Lifescope, the College’s Employee Assistance Program (EAP) is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week for counseling support for faculty and staff who are seeking confidential resources for counseling. They will put you in touch with a local counselor who is covered on the College’s health insurance plan. http://www.champlain.edu/faculty-and-staff/people-center/benefits/employee-assistance-program
Continued educational or employment experience: Every reasonable attempt will be made to support continued educational or employment experience within a safe and comfortable environment on campus, including opportunities for assistance in changing your academic, living situations, transportation and working situations after an alleged incident within the scope of this policy, if such changes are requested and if such changes are reasonably available. Individuals do not have to pursue a criminal or College disciplinary system complaint in order to request such assistance from the College.
Relief From Abuse Orders: Individuals who are being or who may have been subjected to sexual violence, domestic violence, dating violence or stalking may have the right to obtain orders of protection, restraining orders and/or relief from abuse orders from Vermont courts. The College will support complainants if they wish to have the College’s assistance in making contact with law enforcement authorities and other external resources to seek such orders. The College will respect such orders to the extent applicable. In addition, the College can also impose no-contact conditions on students, employees and third parties over which it has some measure of control. The College will inform complainants of their options in this regard.
Mental Health Counselors and Health Services Professionals as Confidential Resources for Students:
On-campus counseling services are available 24 hours a day to all students. Students are encouraged to work with College counselors, who will provide confidential counseling or refer students to local police, mental health agencies and other off-campus agencies if appropriate and/or as requested by the student. http://www.champlain.edu/current-students/campus-services/health-and-wellness/counseling
At Champlain College, the professional counselors at the Counseling and Accommodations Services Center and the licensed professionals at the Student Health Center respect and protect confidential communications from students to the extent that they are able to do so under applicable law. This means that in most cases, these confidential resources will not inform anyone of such communications without a student’s consent, and the College will not endeavor to take any action in response to such communications. These professionals may have the responsibility to disclose otherwise-privileged information appropriately when they perceive an immediate and/or serious threat to any person or property. In addition, medical and mental health professionals are required by law to report any allegation of sexual assault of a person under age 18. Students who wish to talk about sexual harassment, sexual misconduct, domestic violence, dating violence or stalking-related issues confidentially, with the understanding that the College will not take any action based on such confidential communications, are encouraged to contact one of these confidential resources. In accordance with the Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Crime Statistics Act (“Clery Act”), these confidential resources will not report Clery crimes they learn about through confidential communications for purposes of the College’s compilation of campus crime statistics.
If an individual who makes a report to a confidential resource and insists that his or her name or other identifiable information not be revealed, the College will be unable to conduct an investigation into the particular incident or pursue disciplinary action against the alleged perpetrator. Even so, these confidential resources will still assist the individual in receiving other necessary protection and support, such as existing counseling, victim advocacy, academic support or accommodations, disability, health or mental health services, legal assistance, visa and immigration assistance, student financial aid, and other services available to victims both within the College and in the community and changes to living, working or course schedules or working, living, academic and/or transportation situations or protective measures. An individual who at first requests confidentiality may later decide to file a complaint with the College or report the incident to local law enforcement, and thus have the incident fully investigated. These confidential resources will provide the individual with assistance if the individual wishes to pursue those options, regardless of whether the individual wishes to pursue a complaint within the College or with outside law enforcement.
Contact information for confidential resources is as follows:
Skip Harris, M.S. Director, Counselor
Luke Lewis, M.S., LCMHC, Assistant Director, Counselor, Alcohol/Drug Educator
Denise Myers, M.S., Counselor and 504 Coordinator
Maggie Riley, M.S., N.C.C., Counselor/Accommodations Specialist
Kara Berg, M.A., Counselor
Reporting to “Responsible Employees”
All College employees are responsible employees and have the obligation to report sexual harassment, sexual misconduct, domestic violence, dating violence or stalking to the Title IX Coordinator, Leslie Averill, email@example.com or other College officials. “Responsible employees” are all College employees (with the exception of those listed above under Confidential Resources) who have the authority to address sexual harassment, sexual misconduct, domestic violence, dating violence or stalking, who have a duty to report related incidents to the Title IX Coordinator or other College officials, or who a student or employee could reasonably believe has such authority or duty. Responsible employees are respectful of a complainant’s wishes to the extent appropriate and are discreet, but they are not able to guarantee confidentiality. General inquiries or questions about the Sexual Harassment, Sexual Misconduct, Domestic Violence, Dating Violence and Stalking Policy and procedures may remain private, and the College will strive to protect the privacy of individuals to the extent it can while maintaining its obligations to uphold relevant policies and regulations and/or to take reasonable steps to promote the safety of members of the College community. Otherwise, responsible employees will report relevant details (such as the name of the complainant and respondent, any witnesses, and other relevant facts, such as the date, time and specific location of the alleged incident) to the Title IX Coordinator or other College officials. The College will then investigate the report and take reasonable steps to prevent recurrence of the behavior.
If a complainant discloses an incident to a responsible employee but wishes to maintain confidentiality or requests that no investigation into a particular incident be conducted or disciplinary action taken, the College will weigh that request against the College’s obligation to provide a safe, non-discriminatory environment for all students, faculty and staff. Factors to be considered may include but are not limited to consideration of circumstances suggesting that there is a risk of the alleged perpetrator committing additional acts of sexual violence, domestic violence, dating violence or stalking involving the complainant or others in the campus community, whether the College has received other similar complaints regarding the alleged perpetrator, whether the alleged perpetrator has a history of arrests or records from a prior school indicating a history of violence, whether the alleged perpetrator threatened or appears to pose a risk of further sexual misconduct, domestic violence, dating violence or stalking against the complainant or others, whether sexual violence was allegedly committed by multiple perpetrators, whether a pattern of perpetration (e.g., more than one report involving a particular location or group), whether violence was perpetrated with a weapon, and whether the College possesses other means to obtain relevant evidence. The Title IX Coordinator will in most cases determine whether the College needs to perform an investigation and/or take some other action in cases where a complainant would prefer complete confidentiality. If for some reason the Title IX Coordinator is not able or is not the appropriate person to make such a determination, the determination will be made by the Provost, the Senior Vice President, Institutional Advancement & Finance, or another appropriate person designated by the President.
If an individual who makes a report insists that his or her name or other identifiable information not be revealed and the College is able to respect that request, the individual must understand that the College will be unable to conduct an investigation into the particular incident or pursue disciplinary action against the alleged perpetrator.
The College will protect the confidentiality of individuals allegedly subjected to sexual harassment, sexual misconduct, domestic violence, dating violence and/or stalking to the extent practicable in light of the need to do investigations and conduct disciplinary proceedings. Campus security authorities who become aware of Clery crimes will report them to the College’s Office of Campus Public Safety so that they may be included in the College’s compilation of campus crime statistics. The College will not include the names of complainants or other identifying information in publicly-available reports that are compiled as required by the Clery Act.
The Vice President, People and Technology, the Vice President of Student Life and/or the Provost and Chief Academic Affairs Officer will assign two individuals to investigate a Complaint. If the Complaint involves a student, one of the investigators will be assigned from the Office of the Vice President, Student Life. If the Complaint involves a faculty member, one of the investigators will be assigned from the Office of the Provost. If the complaint involves only students (no employees) both investigators will be assigned by the Vice President for Student Life.
The investigators will meet privately and separately with the Complainant, the Respondent(s), and any witnesses to the alleged incident(s), and will prepare a written report of the interviews and investigation. Any person being interviewed may elect to have an advisor or counsel present at these meetings.
The following procedural features apply to cases that involve allegations of sexual harassment and/or sexual violence, domestic violence, dating violence or stalking, notwithstanding any other provisions in this policy, or otherwise-utilized practices to the contrary.
For both students and employees, sexual harassment/domestic violence/dating violence/sexual violence-specific features of the investigation and adjudication process will include, but are not limited to, the following:
- Proceedings will provide a prompt, fair, and impartial investigation and resolution (i.e., proceedings will be completed within reasonably prompt timeframes designated by College policy (and the College will provide written notice to the parties where extensions of timeframes are granted for good cause, and the reason for the extension), they will be conducted in a manner that is consistent with College policy and transparent to the parties, timely notice of meetings will be provided to the parties, the parties will have equal access to any information that will be used during the meetings and other proceedings, and College officials involved will not have a conflict of interest or bias for or against any party);
- Proceedings will be conducted by officials who receive annual training on the issues related to domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault and stalking and how to conduct an investigation and hearing process that protects the safety of complainants and promotes accountability;
- The complainant and respondent are entitled to the same opportunities to have others present during an institutional disciplinary proceeding, including the opportunity to be accompanied to any related meeting or proceeding by an advisor of their choice;
- Both the complainant and the respondent will be simultaneously informed, in writing: a) of the outcome of any College disciplinary proceeding that arises from an allegation of domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault or stalking; b) that the College’s procedures for the complainant and respondent to appeal the results of the College disciplinary proceeding; c) of any change to the results that occurs prior to the time that such results become final; and d) when such results become final;
- Throughout the College’s investigation and any hearings, the complainant and the respondent will have an equal opportunity to present relevant witnesses and other evidence, they will be afforded similar and timely access to any information that will be used at any hearing, they will be allowed a similar opportunity to present character witnesses (but only if either party is allowed to do so), and each party will have a similar opportunity to review statements provided by the other party;
- If any hearings are held, direct cross-examination of the complainant by the respondent will not be allowed;
- Both the complainant and the respondent will have an equal right to file an appeal, if the respondent is in fact provided with an opportunity to appeal under otherwise-applicable procedures;
- The College’s investigation and adjudication of a such a case will ordinarily be completed within 60 days of the College’s first receiving notice of the complaint (exclusive of the time for any applicable appeal), absent extenuating circumstances (if a party has a need to extend one of these time lines, he or she should contact the designee who is administering the investigation and/or hearing process, and provide a written request for an extension that includes reference to the duration of the proposed extension and the basis for the request; the responsible person will decide whether or not to grant the request or provide a shorter extension, and will inform the other party of that decision).
The College does not tolerate retaliation against individuals who have made a good faith report of sexual misconduct, domestic violence, dating violence or stalking. Retaliation against an individual for reporting, in good faith, unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature, sexual harassment, sexual misconduct, domestic violence, dating violence or stalking, or for cooperating in the investigation of a complaint of such conduct, violates this policy and may be unlawful. Retaliation includes, but is not limited to, adverse actions that have a substantial adverse effect on the working or educational environment of any individual involved in the complaint or an investigation, such as:
- actions altering the person’s assignments, assessment of his or her work, or his/her living and learning environment;
- coercion; or
- otherwise discriminating against any individual for exercising his or her rights or responsibilities under this policy.
Any person who believes that he or she has been subjected to such retaliation should follow the complaint resolution procedures outlined in this policy. The College will take strong responsive action if it finds that retaliation in violation of this policy has occurred.
If, at any point during the process, an investigator determines that a complainant, respondent or witness has knowingly lied or deliberately provided false information to the investigator, the People Center or Student Life may recommend that disciplinary action be taken against that person. Action may include dismissal and such persons may also be subject to independent legal action by persons wrongfully accused of misconduct. A complainant whose allegations are truthful to the best of his or her knowledge will not be found to have provided false information within the meaning of this policy and procedure, even if the College does not conclude that discrimination or harassment occurred.
Remedies or sanctions for violations of the College’s policy against sexual harassment, or its policy against sexual misconduct that does not constitute sexual assault, may include but are not limited to:
- verbal or written warning;
- suspension of a student’s enrollment, or suspension of an employee without pay;
- dismissal from employment;
- expulsion from enrollment;
- temporary or permanent transfer to a different position;
- class or academic re-assignment;
- reassignment of work or academic work; or
- alteration of living or work environment.
Remedies or sanctions for violations of the College’s policies against sexual assault, dating violence, domestic violence or stalking may include:
- suspension of a student’s enrollment, or suspension of an employee without pay;
- dismissal from employment;
- expulsion from enrollment;
- temporary or permanent transfer to a different employment position;
- reassignment of work or academic work; or
- alteration of living or work environment.
As an educational institution, Champlain College is committed to promoting, through education and awareness-raising activities, a campus environment where sexual harassment, sexual misconduct (including sexual violence), domestic violence, dating violence and stalking are recognized as serious violations of the Standard of Conduct and where individuals who have or believe they have been subjected to such misconduct are provided support and avenues of redress as appropriate. These forms of misconduct, as defined above, are prohibited by the College. All first-year students are strongly encouraged to attend an orientation program during the first week of school that focuses on sexual violence, non-stranger sexual assault and the role of alcohol as a risk factor. Programs in personal safety with an emphasis on sexual violence prevention, bystander intervention, and risk reduction strategies are offered throughout the year. The College will also offer initial awareness programming and an ongoing campaign of educational programming to students and employees regarding domestic violence, dating violence, sexual misconduct, and stalking, and regarding related bystander intervention and risk reduction strategies. The College will launch a Bystander Intervention Training Program in the Fall 2015 in order to provide more prevention education opportunities. Additional training for faculty and staff will be offered in person and online. All new employees will be trained upon hire.
Individuals should contact the Vice President, People and Technology (Miller Center at Lakeside Avenue, P.O. Box 670, Burlington, VT 05402, telephone: 802-651-5807 firstname.lastname@example.org or Vice President, Student Life and Title IX Coordinator, Leslie Averill 802-651-5907 or email@example.com with any questions, discrimination complaints, inquiries concerning compliance with regulations or if reasonable accommodations are needed to participate in Champlain College programs or to apply for admission or employment.
Individuals may also contact the following State and Federal agencies concerning the application of nondiscrimination policies and enforcement of rights:
Employees may contact:
Vermont Attorney General’s Office, Civil Rights Unit,
109 State Street, Montpelier, VT 05609-1001
Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
John F. Kennedy Federal Office Building
Government Center, Room 475
Boston, MA 02203
(1-800-669-4000/VOICE or 1-800-669-6820/TDD)
Students may contact:
United States Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights
J.W. McCormack, Post Office Court House Building, Room 701
Boston, MA 02109-4557
Vermont Human Rights Commission
135 State Street, 2nd Floor, Drawer 33
Montpelier, VT 05633-6301
(802-828-2480/VOICE/TDD or 800-416-2010/VOICE)