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Introduction

The Title IX Resource Guide on Sexual Harassment/Assault, adopted in 2012, aims to provide the campus community with the role and functions of a Title IX Coordinator and Title IX requirements as outlined in the 2011 Dear Colleague Letter: Sexual Violence.(See appendices) Title IX of the Education Amendment Act of 1972 requires that all entities in receipt of any federal funds or financial assistance must prohibit sex discrimination in their education programs and activities. Sexual harassment is a form of prohibited sex discrimination. The Title IX Coordinator, Mamie T. Thorns, is the individual responsible for ensuring compliance with the law in this area at SVSU.

Title IX requirements apply to all aspects of education programs and activities at SVSU, including recruitment, student admissions, financial assistance, housing, access to academic offerings, and athletics. The law also applies to all aspects of the University's employment process, including hiring, tenure, compensation, and training.

As a recipient of federal funds, Saginaw Valley State University is obligated to:

  • Provide assurances that all education programs and activities are in compliance with the Title IX
  • Designate a Title IX Coordinator to oversee compliance efforts
  • Establish procedures to resolve student and employee Title IX complaints
  • Provide notification to students and employees that sex discrimination is prohibited within its programs
  • Ensure that all administrators, managers, deans, and chairs, familiarize themselves with, and implement Title IX provisions
  • Prepare annual reports on the incidence of sexual harassment and present findings to the president and senior administrators. Note any trends or policy and procedural changes that need to be effectuated to enhance the university’s title IX compliance efforts. No information that identifies individuals will be reported in the annual statistical reports.

The Office of Diversity Programs is responsible for implementing and monitoring SVSU's Title IX compliance. The Office of Diversity Programs in conjunction with the taskforce has established procedures for handling possible Title IX violations.  


What is Sexual Harassment?

The law defines “sexual harassment” as unwelcome sexual advances, request for sexual favors, or verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature when (a) submission to or rejection of such advances, requests or conduct is made either explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of employment, education, housing or participation in any University activity; or (b) such advances, requests or conduct have the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with an individual’s employment, education, housing or participation in any University activity by creating an intimidating, hostile, humiliating or sexually offensive environment. It is the University’s policy to vigorously enforce the prohibitions.


What is Sexual Assault?

Actual, attempted or threatened sexual contact with another person without that person’s consent. Sexual assault can be a violation of SVSU’s Anti-Discrimination/Harassment Policy. It can also be a crime under the Michigan penal code.


Complaints of sexual assault are investigated and handled pursuant to the University’s Anti-Harassment/Discrimination Policy, and should also be reported to the SVSU Police Department. In addition to the SVSU Police Department, you also have the right to file a criminal complaint with any other appropriate law enforcement agency.


What should you do?

If you think that you are the victim of sexual harassment, do not keep it to yourself; contact someone who can assist you. You may feel embarrassed or think you are somehow responsible, but do not blame yourself. You have a right to function in your prescribed capacity in an environment free of discriminatory behavior.

A.       How to Report Sexual Harassment  

  1. Any individual who believes they have  been subjected to conduct prohibited by the University’s Anti-Harassment/Discrimination Policy by any University officer, employee, student, contractor, visitor, vendor or other person should report the inappropriate conduct to the University. Individuals are encouraged to report prohibited conduct before it becomes severe or frequent.  Reports may be in person or in writing.
    Student complaints should be made to the University’s Title IX Coordinator or any Title IX Representative.  All other complaints should be made to the Office of Diversity Programs or Human Resources.
  2. An individual may report the prohibited conduct to his or her supervisor. Alternatively, an individual may report a violation of this policy by contacting the office to whom the supervisor reports, to the Office of Diversity Programs or Human Resources. Under no circumstances is anyone required to report prohibited conduct to a person he or she believes may be responsible for that conduct.

Reporting Sexual Assault to the University Police

If you are sexually assaulted:

  1. Get to a safe place as soon as you  can.
  2. Try to preserve all physical  evidence.  Do not wash, use the toilet, douche, change clothing, or disturb the area if you can avoid it.  If you do change clothes, put all clothing you were wearing at the time of the attack in a paper bag, or other container.
  3. Contact the University Police Department by Calling 989-964-4141 or 9-911.  University Police will ensure you obtain medical treatment immediately.  The Saginaw County Sexual Assault Response Team will collect the appropriate evidence in the event you wish to take legal action.  A sexual assault advocate will also be contacted to assist you.
  4. Contact someone you trust to be with you and support you.  

Seeking medical treatment is important because:

  • It will allow professionals to assess and treat any physical injuries you may have sustained.
  • It will help determine the risk of  sexually transmitted diseases or pregnancy and take preventive measures.
  • It is crucial in gathering evidence that could aid in criminal prosecution.  Physical evidence should be collected immediately – ideally within 24 hours.  In some circumstances evidence may be gathered up to 96 hours after an assault.

The reasons to report the incident to the University Police are:

  • To ensure your safety and your wellbeing.
  • To take action which may prevent further victimization, including issuing a crime alert to warn the campus community of an impending threat to their safety.
  • To apprehend the assailant.
  • To seek justice for the wrong that has been done to you.

To have the incident recorded for purposes of reporting statistics about incidents that occurred

The University is committed to investigating and resolving reports of violation of this policy in such a way as to maintain confidentiality to the fullest extent permitted by the circumstances and to the extent permitted by law. Individuals who report violations or who are contacted in the course of an investigation are expected to treat reports of violations or information regarding reports as strictly confidential.  A breach of confidentiality may result in disciplinary action up to and including termination of employment.
If you feel you have been a victim of a sexual assault on campus, the University Police will meet with you privately at a place of your choice to make a report.  You will be treated with courtesy, sensitivity, dignity, understanding, and professionalism.  Your name will not be publicly released.  The University Police will do its best to accommodate requests for talking with a male or female police officer.  The police officer will take a statement from you and ask a number of questions about what happened and where the incident took place.  The police officer will also ask you about the assailant and any other witnesses present before, during, or after the incident.  You will be assisted in arranging for hospital treatment, medical needs, and future counseling.  Your case will be fully investigated, and you will be kept up-to-date on the progress of the investigation.  This may involve the arrest and full prosecution of the suspect responsible.  The police officer will help facilitate internal charges through the SVSU Code of Student Conduct or other University procedures. Disciplinary sanctions can include probation, suspension, or expulsion.  The police officer will also help should you request for a change in housing or your academic classes.  


Retaliation

Retaliation in any form against an individual who reports a violation of this policy or who provides information in the course of an investigation of a reported violation is strictly prohibited and will not be tolerated.

Title IX Resource Guide

Download and review the SVSU Resource Guide to Sexual Harassment.

Download Title IX Resource Guide (PDF 1kb)

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