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"No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance."
- Title IX, Education Amendments of 1972, (Title 20 U.S.C. Sections 1681-1688)
Fort Lewis College has identified and designated Responsible Employees to immediately report to the Title IX Coordinator any conduct that comes to the attention of the Responsible Employee that involves incidents of sexual misconduct. This responsibility is critical because the College is obligated to address conduct about which a Responsible Employee knew or should have known.
This training includes several slides that cover what is involved in being a Responsible Employee. It ends with a six question quiz about the most important information. It should take less than 1/2 hour to complete.
What is the College's sexual misconduct reporting requirement?
Responsible employees (faculty and FLC professional staff other than counselors and Health Center employees) must report all relevant details about alleged sexual misconduct involving FLC students, faculty, or staff, about which they know or have reason to know. This includes the names of the alleged perpetrator (if known), the student who experienced the alleged sexual misconduct, others involved in the alleged sexual misconduct, as well as relevant facts, including the date, time, and location of the alleged incident.
- Sexual Misconduct Policy, "Reporting Relevant Details"
Sexual Misconduct includes:
- Sexual harassment;
- Gender-based harassment;
- Non-consensual sexual intercourse;
- Non-consensual sexual contact;
- Domestic violence;
- Dating violence;
- Sexual exploitation;
- Prohibited Consensual Relationships OR
- Attempt to do any of these behaviors.
These terms are defined in the Sexual Misconduct Policy, online at www.fortlewis.edu/CARE.
The Grievance Procedure is used to resolve cases where students are accused of sexual misconduct. It, too, is online at www.fortlewis.edu.CARE.
How to Report Sexual Misconduct
The reporting form is online at www.fortlewis.edu/CARE. If you are unsure about whether to report or what to report, please consult with FLC's Title IX Coordinator:
- Molly Wieser, Title IX Coordinator
- 232 Miller Student Services Building, Fort Lewis College
How do I respond when someone is telling me about their traumatic incident?
Disclose Your Obligation to Report
Disclose to the student that you must report what you know to the Title IX Coordinator. The Coordinator will reach out and offer support and reporting options, including counseling, the police, civil restraining order support, options regarding the College grievance procedure, medical care, etc. The victim is not obligated to respond. If they do respond, they are not obligated to tell the Coordinator about what happened. Ask if they would like to talk with the Title IX Coordinator, and if they would like, assist them with calling and making an appointment.
Victim Amnesty and Anti-Retaliation Policy
Let them know that FLC offers amnesty for victims and witnesses who were intoxicated when the incident occurred, so that they are not concerned that reporting will "get them in trouble".
Inform the individual that FLC has an anti-retaliation policy to protect individuals who reporting or pursue a grievance procedure for sexual misconduct (see "Sexual Misconduct Policy" online at www.fortlewis.edu/CARE.)
"I believe you."
If it feels authentic and true for you, let them know you believe what they are saying. They will be looking for cues about whether or not you believe them, and you can simply say, "I believe you." If you are not sure where you stand, you can still express gratitude for reporting what happened. Do not voice doubt to the victim.
While it is important to report what you know, you should not press for details. Individuals who are traumatized may have memory problems related to the incident, and soon after may not be able to supply information. In addition, your role is not that of an investigator. Simply allow the student to speak, or say, "What would you like for me to know about what happened?" This gives a victim choices about sharing information without requiring that they tell you intimate details, or give a coherent and complete history that may not be available or relevant at that time.
"It's not your fault."
Let the victim know that what happened is not their fault. Victim blaming has a major chilling effect on reporting. Even when individuals choose to report, they are often questioning themselves about whatever choices they made related to the incident. This is a normal and understandable response. When we are victimized, we want to believe that making a different choice in the future will help us to avoid danger. Without argumentation, if you hear a victim blaming him or herself, feel free to simply say, "It's not your fault that this happened."
If the victim seems prepared for the information, share the victim resource sheet online at www.fortlewis.edu/CARE. See the link on the left, "Victim Resources". This is a one-page, printable document. It may be that they are only ready for one piece of information from it, such as the hotline run by Sexual Assault Services Organization of Durango, or the Counseling Center's contact information. Circle that piece and give them the whole sheet, if they want it. If they are not prepared to receive it at that time, let them know you can and will e-mail the link, if they wish. A direct link is at www.fortlewis.edu/caresheet.
Who are the Responsible Employees?
A responsible employee includes any employee who:
- Has the authority to take action to address the harassment
- Has the duty to report harassment or other student/employee misconduct to appropriate school officials
- OR someone a student could reasonably believe has such authority or responsibility.
What if I am not sure if sexual misconduct occurred or is reportable?
If you are not sure, call the Title IX Coordinator at (970) 247-7241 or fill out the reporting form without identifying information of the parties concerned, and we'll discuss it. The reporting form is online at www.fortlewis.edu/CARE. The Title IX Coordinator is responsible for ascertaining whether the possible sexual misconduct is reportable.
Take the online quiz for Responsible Employees.