campus quad

SUNY ULSTER
TITLE IX

policies on sexual violence 

WHEREAS, the SUNY Ulster Board of Trustees approved Board Policy 4.18 Sexual Misconduct Policy in an effort to be in compliance with the forthcoming Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) via Resolution #14-8-120, and

WHEREAS, the Chancellor of the State University of New York has requested that all campuses adopted the attached Sexual Violence Prevention and Response Policy, and

WHEREAS, the Vice President and Dean of Enrollment Management recommends, and the
President concurs, and

WHEREAS, said policy has been reviewed and approved by the College Attorney, and

WHEREAS, the Personnel, Educational Programs and Services Committee has met and concurs,now, therefore be it

RESOLVED, that the Board of Trustees approves the Policy on Sexual Violence Prevention and Response Sexual Misconduct Policy, a copy of which policy is attached hereto.

Backgrounds & Implications:

Certain areas of this policy will be updated to meet SUNY Ulster’s needs, which will be determined at meetings with campus stakeholders.

Submitted by: 
Ann M. Marrott 
Vice President & Dean of Enrollment Management  
Title
____________________________________
Signature/Date          
Approved by:
Donald C. Katt
President 
Title
____________________________________
Signature/Date

 

SUNY Policies on Sexual Violence Prevention and Response
December 1, 2014

 These policies reflect comments from:

For more information about the Chancellor’s Temporary Working Group on Continual Improvement to Sexual Violence Prevention Policies and its membership, visit: http://system.suny.edu/sexual-violence-prevention-workgroup/

For the SUNY Board of Trustees’ resolution calling for the establishment of these policies, visit: http://www.suny.edu/media/suny/content-assets/documents/boardoftrustees/memos/Sexual-Assault-Response-Prevention-REVISED.pdf

 

SUNY Policies on Sexual Violence1 Prevention and Response

Contents
Definition of Affirmative Consent
Policy for Alcohol and/or Drug Use Amnesty in Sexual Violence Cases
Campus Climate Assessment Policy
Sexual Violence Victim/Survivor Bill of Rights.
Sexual Violence Response Policy
Options for Confidentially Disclosing Sexual Violence
Student Onboarding and Ongoing Education Guide

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1 Sexual violence, as that term is used in this document and prior U.S. Office for Civil Rights guidance, refers to physical sexual acts perpetrated against a person’s will or where a person is incapable of giving consent (as defined by the affirmative consent policy included herein). A number of different acts fall into the category of sexual violence, including rape, sexual assault, sexual battery, sexual abuse, and sexual coercion. Sexual violence can be carried out by other students, college employees, or third parties. All such acts of sexual violence are forms of sex discrimination prohibited by Title IX.
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Definition of Affirmative Consent

Affirmative consent is a clear, unambiguous, knowing, informed, and voluntary agreement between all participants to engage in sexual activity. Consent is active, not passive. Silence or lack of resistance cannot be interpreted as consent. Seeking and having consent accepted is the responsibility of the person(s) initiating each specific sexual act regardless of whether the person initiating the act is under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol. Consent to any sexual act or prior consensual sexual activity between or with any party does not constitute consent to any other sexual act. The definition of consent does not vary based upon a participant’s sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression. Consent may be initially given but withdrawn at any time.  When consent is withdrawn or cannot be given, sexual activity must stop. Consent cannot be given when a person is incapacitated. Incapacitation occurs when an individual lacks the ability to fully, knowingly choose to participate in sexual activity. Incapacitation includes impairment due to drugs or alcohol (whether such use is voluntary or involuntary), the lack of consciousness or being asleep, being involuntarily restrained, if any of the parties are under the age of 17, or if an individual otherwise cannot consent. Consent cannot be given when it is the result of any coercion, intimidation, force, or threat of harm.

Policy for Alcohol and/or Drug Use Amnesty in Sexual Violence Cases

The health and safety of every student at the State University of New York and its State-operated and community colleges is of utmost importance. Ulster County Community College recognizes that students who have been drinking and/or using drugs (whether such use is voluntary or involuntary) at the time a sexual violence incident occurs may be hesitant to report such incidents due to fear of potential consequences for their own conduct. Ulster County Community College strongly encourages students to report incidents of sexual violence to campus officials. A bystander reporting in good faith or a victim/survivor reporting sexual violence to Ulster County Community College officials or law enforcement will not be subject to campus conduct action for violations of alcohol and/or drug use policies occurring at or near the time of the sexual violence.

Campus Climate Assessment Policy

Climate assessments afford institutions the opportunity to better understand their campus and to make informed decisions when it comes to providing a safe educational environment. Beginning in the 2015-2016 academic year, each State University of New York State-operated and community college will conduct a uniform climate survey that analyzes prevalence and attitudes regarding sexual harassment, including sexual violence, and other related crimes.

The survey will address at least the following:

Beginning in the spring semester of 2015, the Chancellor or designee will convene a group of scholars and practitioners to review methods of assessing campus climate, specific questions asked in past surveys, relevant data on responses and response rates, issues and problems encountered in survey implementation, and lessons learned from past surveys. The Chancellor or designee will gather this data and seek to develop a standardized survey, with the advice of relevant members of the SUNY community and knowledgeable outside entities, that uses established measurement tools, to be implemented every two years by all SUNY State-operated and community colleges beginning in the 2015-2016 academic year. This policy may be changed by the Chancellor or designee should federal and/or State legislation require a different process or duplicate efforts to assess campus climate via survey.

Sexual Violence Victim/Survivor Bill of Rights

The State University of New York and Ulster County Community College are committed to providing options, support and assistance to victims/survivors of sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, and/or stalking to ensure that they can continue to participate in College/University-wide and campus programs, activities, and employment. All victims/survivors of these crimes and violations, regardless of race, color, national origin, religion, creed, age, disability, sex, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, familial status, pregnancy, predisposing genetic characteristics, military status, domestic violence victim status, or criminal conviction, have the following rights, regardless of whether the crime or violation occurs on campus, off campus, or while studying abroad:

The right to:

Options in Brief:

Victims/survivors have many options that can be pursued simultaneously, including one or more of the following:

Copies of this Bill of Rights shall be distributed annually to students, made available on every college’s website, and posted in each campus residence hall, dining hall, and student union or campus center and shall include links or information to access the Sexual Violence Response Policy below and the Options for Confidentially Disclosing Sexual Violence.

Sexual Violence Response Policy

In accordance with the Victim/Survivor Bill of Rights, victims/survivors shall have the right to pursue more than one of the options below at the same time, or to choose not to participate in any of the options below:

I. - Reporting:

On-Campus

Counselors, Linda Farina VAN 119F 845-687-5192

Public Safety 845-687-5221

Health Services 845-687-5246

Dean of Students, John Frampton 845-687-5288

Title IX Coordinator, Ann Marrott 845-687-5070

Off-Campus

Ulster County Sheriff 845-338-3640

State Police 845-338-1702

Family of Woodstock 845-679-2485/845-338-2370

Crime Victims Assistance 845-340-3443

Coordinator of Personnel Services, Debbie Delanoy 845-687-5088, CLI 212

II - Resources:

Off-Campus

Domestic Violence Outreach 845-338-2370

Family of Woodstock 845-679-2485

SANE 845-340-3363

Crime Victims Assistance 845-340-3443

III. - Protection and Accommodations:

Associate Dean of Student Services, John Frampton, 845-687-5288, VAN 240

IV. - Student Conduct Process:

Associate Dean of Student Services, John Frampton, 845-687-5288, VAN 240

Options for Confidentially Disclosing Sexual Violence

The State University of New York and Ulster County Community College want you to get the information and support you need regardless of whether you would like to move forward with a report of sexual violence to campus officials or to police. You may want to talk with someone about something you observed or experienced, even if you are not sure that the behavior constitutes sexual violence. A conversation where questions can be answered is far superior to keeping something to yourself. Confidentiality varies, and this document is aimed at helping you understand how confidentiality applies to different resources that may be available to you.

In this Policy:

Privileged and Confidential Resources: 
Off-campus options to disclose sexual violence confidentially include (note that these outside options do not provide any information to the campus):

Off-Campus

Domestic Violence Outreach 845-338-2370

Family of Woodstock 845-679-2485

Ulster County SANE 845-340-3363

Crime Victims Assistance 845-340-3443

Note that even individuals who can typically maintain confidentiality are subject to exceptions under the law, including when an individual is a threat to him or herself or others and the mandatory reporting of child abuse.

Non-Professional Counselors and Advocates:
Non-professional counselors and advocates can also assist you without sharing information that could identify you. At Ulster County Community College, this includes Linda Farina, College Counselor, VAN 119F, ext. 5192.  These individuals will report the nature, date, time, and general location of an incident to Ulster County Community College's Title IX Coordinator, but will consult with you to ensure no personally identifying details are shared without your consent. These individuals are not considered confidential resources as discussed above.

Privacy versus Confidentiality:
Ulster County Community College offices and employees who cannot guarantee confidentiality will maintain your privacy to the greatest extent possible. The information you provide to a non-confidential resource will be relayed only as necessary to investigate and/or seek a resolution and to notify the Title IX Coordinator or designee, who is responsible under the law for tracking patterns and spotting systemic issues. Ulster County Community College will limit the disclosure as much as possible, even if the Title IX Coordinator determines that the request for confidentiality cannot be honored.

Requesting Confidentiality: How Ulster County Community College Will Weigh the Request and Respond:
If you disclose an incident to a Ulster County Community College employee who is responsible for responding to or reporting sexual violence or sexual harassment, but wish to maintain confidentiality or do not consent to the institution’s request to initiate an investigation, the Title IX Coordinator must weigh your request against our obligation to provide a safe, non-discriminatory environment for all members of our community, including you.

We will assist you with academic, employment, and other reasonable and available accommodations regardless of your reporting choices. While victims/survivors may request accommodations through several college offices, the following office can serve as a primary point of contact to assist with these measures: Linda Farina, College Counselor, VAN 119F, ext. 5192. We also may take proactive steps, such as training or awareness efforts, to combat sexual violence in a general way that does not identify you or the situation you disclosed.

We may seek consent from you prior to conducting an investigation. You may decline to consent to an investigation, and that determination will be honored unless the Ulster County Community College’s failure to act may result in harm to you or other members of the Ulster County Community College community. Honoring your request may limit our ability to meaningfully investigate and pursue conduct action against an accused individual. If we determine that an investigation is required, we will notify you and take immediate action as necessary to protect and assist you.

When you disclose an incident to someone who is responsible for responding to or reporting sexual violence or sexual harassment, but wish to maintain confidentiality, Ulster County Community College will consider many factors to determine whether to proceed despite that request. These factors include, but are not limited to:

 Public Awareness/Advocacy Events:
If you disclose a situation through a public awareness event such as “Take Back the Night,” candlelight vigils, protests, [student organization or other event or forum], or other public event, Ulster County Community College is not obligated to begin an investigation. Ulster County Community College may use the information you provide to inform the need for additional education and prevention efforts.

Anonymous Disclosure:
To report anonymously an incident to one of the following college officials, who by law may maintain confidentiality, and can support and assist in obtaining services, you can use our anonymous internet reporting system by clicking here, or you can telephone a report anonymously by calling 845-688-6060.

  • Ann Marrott, Title IX Coordinator, VAN 250, 845-687-5070 or
  • Wayne Freer, Director of Public Safety, HAS 134, 845-687-5053.
  • To disclose confidentially an incident and obtain services, call the New York State Hotline for Sexual Assault and Domestic Violence: 1-800-942-6906.
    The Hotline is for crisis intervention, resources and referrals and is not a reporting mechanism.

    Institutional Crime Reporting
    Reports of certain crimes occurring in certain geographic locations will be included in the Ulster County Community College Clery Act Annual Security Report in an anonymized manner that neither identifies the specifics of the crime or the identity of the victim/survivor.

    Ulster County Community College is obligated to issue timely warnings of Clery Act crimes occurring within relevant geography that represent a serious or continuing threat to students and employees (subject to exceptions when potentially compromising law enforcement efforts and when the warning itself could potentially identify the victim/survivor). A victim/survivor will never be identified in a timely warning.
    The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act allows institutions to share information with parents when (1) there is a health or safety emergency, or (2) when the student is a dependent on either parents’ prior year federal income tax return. Generally, Ulster County Community College will not share information about a report of sexual violence with parents without the permission of the victim/survivor.

    Student Onboarding and Ongoing Education Guide

    The State University of New York and its State-operated and community colleges believe that sexual violence prevention training and education cannot be accomplished via a single day or a single method of training. To that end, SUNY campuses will continue to educate all new and current students using a variety of best practices aimed at educating the entire college community in a way that decreases violence and maintaining a culture where sexual assault and acts of violence are not tolerated.

    All new first-year and transfer students will, during the course of their onboarding to a SUNY State-operated or community college, receive training on the following topics, using a method and manner appropriate to the institutional culture of each campus:

    The onboarding process is not limited to a single day of orientation, but recognizes that students enroll at different times at different SUNY campuses and gives campuses the flexibility to best educate students at a time and manner that can most effectively bring these points to light. SUNY will conduct these trainings for all new students, whether first-year or transfer, undergraduate, graduate, or professional. Each campus shall use multiple methods to educate students about sexual violence prevention. Each SUNY institution will also share information on sexual violence prevention with parents of enrolling students.

    Students at SUNY State-operated and community college campuses shall receive general and specialized training in sexual violence prevention. Each institution will conduct a campaign, compliant with the requirements of the Violence Against Women Act, to educate the student population. Further, institutions will, as appropriate, provide or expand specific training to include groups such as international students, students that are also employees of the campus, leaders and officers of registered/recognized student organizations, online and distance education students. Institutions will also provide specific training to members of groups identified as likely to engage in high-risk behavior.

    Beginning in the 2015-2016 academic year, SUNY State-operated and community colleges will require that student leaders and officers of registered/recognized student organizations and those seeking recognition complete training on sexual violence prevention as part of the approval process and require student-athletes to complete training prior to participating in intercollegiate athletics.

    Methods of training and educating students may include, but are not limited to:

    Each SUNY campus must report back to the Chancellor on or before March 31, 2015 on their plan to comply with this policy. Each institution must engage in an occasional assessment of their programming under this policy to determine effectiveness. The institution may either assess its own programming or conduct a review of other campus programming and published studies to adapt its programming to ensure effectiveness and relevance to students.