Sexual Misconduct Policy

TITLE IX COORDINATOR

As Title IX Coordinator, Dean of Multicultural Affairs Karla Spurlock-Evans ensures that Trinity establishes and follows a prompt, thorough, and equitable process for addressing allegations of sexual harassment, sexual assault, and discrimination or differential treatment based on sex. Dean Spurlock-Evans receives a copy of all reports filed. She encourages campus members to contact her with questions or concerns regarding this process. With respect to specific cases, the Title IX Coordinator will work with the appropriate offices to provide academic and residential accommodations as well as no-contact orders.

Dean of Multicultural Affairs, Karla Spurlock-Evans: Karla.Spurlockevans@trincoll.edu:860-297-4234

____________________________________________________________________________________________

POLICY ON SEXUAL MISCONDUCT AND HARASSMENT

 

Overview
Harassment and discrimination are contrary to the College’s mission as an educational institution in which tolerance and respect are central.  Trinity College takes allegations of all types of harassment, abuse and discrimination seriously and will promptly investigate complaints, take any action necessary to end the behavior and impose appropriate penalties.  

Discrimination
Members of the College community are prohibited from engaging in physical or verbal acts that have the purpose or effect of denying the right to equal access to education or employment on the basis of race, ethnic or national origin, sex, age, disability, religion, sexual orientation, color, gender expression or gender identity.  Discrimination is deemed to have occurred when there is evidence of differential treatment, i.e., when an agent or employee of the College, acting in his or her official capacity, treats a student or employee differently based on membership in the aforementioned protected classes without a non-discriminatory reason to do so, with the result that the person is prevented from participating in or gaining the privileges of programs and services of the College. Discrimination may also occur between parties of equal authority, or between students, based on the protected classes.

General Harassment/Abuse
Harassment includes, but is not limited to, physical or non-physical behavior, such as assault, abuse, stalking, hazing, invasion of privacy, and intimidation.  The following definitions provide examples of behavior that will not be tolerated:

  1. Assault is nonconsensual physical contact that places someone in fear or apprehension of immediate harm.  Relationship violence or Intimate Partner Violence (IPV) may also be categorized as assault. (Please see a more detailed definition of IPV under: definitions of domestic and Dating Violence)

  2. Stalking refers to a pattern of behavior where an individual willfully, maliciously, and repeatedly follows another in his/her course of daily activities in such a way that the stalker’s actions can reasonably be found to interfere with another person’s ability to perform his or her regular duties or cause that person to feel frightened, intimidated, harassed, threatened or molested.

  3. Invasion of privacy is unauthorized taking and use of facts, information, and/or property not in the public domain that a reasonable person would desire to keep from the public eye.

  4. Intimidation is spoken, written or physical conduct directed toward an individual or individuals that unreasonably interferes with his/their full participation in the Trinity College community or that is intended to create or may be reasonably determined to have created a threatening or hostile environment.

Discriminatory harassment is harassment based on race, ethnic or national origin, sex, age, disability, sexual orientation, color, gender expression or gender identity.  Discriminatory harassment includes conduct specifically directed at an individual or a small group of individuals and expresses hatred or contempt on the basis of stereotyped group characteristics or because of a person’s identification with a particular group.  Discriminatory harassment also includes any action or speech directed toward members of the aforementioned groups that reasonably can be determined to be threatening in content or is spoken in a manner that suggests violence toward such persons in imminent. 

Discriminatory harassment is deemed to have occurred when harassing conduct is sufficiently severe, pervasive, or persistent that it interferes with or limits a student’s or employee’s ability to participate in or gain the privileges of programs and services of the College.  

Sexual Harassment
Sexual harassment is not only incompatible with the mission of the College; it is also a form of sex discrimination that violates federal law (Title VII and Title IX), Connecticut law and Trinity College policy.  The College, its agents, supervisory employees, staff, and students shall be held liable for their acts of sexual harassment and are subject to appropriate college disciplinary action and personal liability.

Sexual harassment, whether opposite or same sex, includes but is not limited to: unwelcome sexual advances, unwelcome requests for sexual favors, or other behavior of a sexual nature, on or off-campus, when:

  1. submission to such conduct is made a condition, explicit or implicit, of an individual's education or employment; or

  2. submission to or rejection of such conduct is used as a factor in or basis for decisions affecting an individual’s education or employment;  or

  3. such conduct has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with an individual’s education or employment by creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive educational, living, or work environment.

While it is not possible to list all the circumstances that may be considered sexual harassment, the following are examples of conduct which, if unwelcome, may constitute sexual harassment:  physical, verbal, visual or written conduct of a sexual nature, including, but not limited to, pressuring someone for dates; retaliation for non-submission to a request for sexual favors; and electronic messages or photos.  

Romantic Relations
All relationships that occur in a hierarchical relationship present an imbalance of power.  By virtue of his or her position, a supervisor has control over the terms and conditions of a person’s employment, or a student’s academic standing.

Therefore, Trinity College affirms and upholds a policy which discourages romantic relations between supervisors, whether staff or faculty, and non-supervisors when a supervisory relationship exists.  Additionally, this policy forbids such relationships when a faculty member has or may have responsibility for a student through any professional supervisory obligations, including teaching, advising, departmental, committee, and coaching.

This latter statement applies equally to graduate and IDP students. We expect faculty and supervisors to avoid engaging in romantic relationships with individuals over whom they exercise or have the potential to exercise power.  When such situations cannot be avoided, counsel should be sought from the appropriate College representative to ensure that any necessary steps are taken to avoid potential conflict. 

Student Sexual Harassment
Investigations and procedures related to sexual harassment of students by students are conducted by the Dean of Students.  The procedures are outlined in the College Regulations section of the Student Handbook.

If the complaint-taker deems the situation to be a case of sexual harassment, it is his/her responsibility under the law to bring the matter to the appropriate party - Dean of Students, Dean of Faculty, or Human Resources. In all other cases, an investigation will go forward only with the consent of the complainant.  In all cases, confidentiality at all levels will be maintained to the extent possible within the scope of state and federal law.

An investigation, which may include meeting with witnesses, followed by a hearing, may need to be conducted to determine the status of the accused parties.  A student may make a report of sexual harassment up to five years following graduation. 

The procedures for filing a complaint against a Faculty member are published in the Student Handbook, and in the appendix to the Faculty Manual.  No actions concerning a Faculty member’s behavior which could be construed to affect his or her status at the College should be taken outside of the procedures of Appendix A.4 of the Faculty Manual.

Following an investigation, disciplinary measures will be taken commensurate with the findings.  This may include penalties up to and including termination or expulsion. 

Retaliation
State and federal laws and College policies protect against retaliation for reporting prohibited discrimination and harassment, filing a complaint of prohibited discrimination or harassment, or participating in the investigation of such a complaint.  Any person who retaliates against an individual reporting or filing a complaint of discrimination or harassment is subject to disciplinary procedures up to and including expulsion or termination by the College. 

This protection exists even if a complaint is eventually dismissed or is deemed to lack merit.  Intentionally false accusations will be tolerated, however, and a person will be held accountable for making intentionally false claims of prohibited discrimination or harassment.

Colleagues who assist others in raising a complaint of prohibited discrimination or harassment by offering advice and moral support, or by giving testimony or documentary evidence in support of a complaint, are similarly protected.

Instances of retaliation should be promptly reported to the individual responsible for handling the original claim of discrimination or harassment.

Training
In accordance with Connecticut law, all faculty and staff members who have supervisory responsibilities (this includes the supervision of a Teaching Assistant, Graduate Student or mentor) are required to attend a two-hour sexual harassment prevention training program within six months of their assumption of supervisory responsibilities.

Sexual Misconduct
Trinity College expressly prohibits sexual misconduct in all forms.  Sexual misconduct includes the following:

  • Non–consensual Sexual Intercourse: Rape
    Any sexual penetration (oral, vaginal, or anal), however slight, with any object or sexual intercourse by a man or a woman upon a man or a woman without effective consent.   Rape is a crime of violence in which one person forces, coerces or manipulates another person into sexual intercourse.  Rape includes vaginal, oral or anal penetration and includes forced or coerced oral sex.

  • Non-consensual Sexual Contact: Sexual Assault
    Any intentional sexual touching by a man or woman upon a man or woman without effective consent, whether such touching is direct or through clothing.  Sexual touching includes any intentional sexual contact with the breasts, buttocks, groin, genitals, mouth, or other bodily orifice of another, or touching another with any of these body parts, or making another touch you or himself or herself with or on any of these body parts; any intentional bodily contact in a sexual manner, even though not involving the previously mentioned body parts. 

  • Sexual Exploitation
    Sexual exploitation is any conduct in which a person takes nonconsensual, unjust, or abusive sexual advantage of another for his or her own benefit or to benefit or advantage anyone other than the person being exploited.  This refers to behavior that does not constitute sexual misconduct or sexual harassment.

Definitions of Domestic Violence and Dating Violence, i.e. Intimate Partner Violence (IPV)
‘Domestic violence’ is a pattern of abusive behavior in any relationship that is used by one partner to gain or maintain power and control over another intimate partner. It includes asserted violent misdemeanor and felony offenses committed by the victim’s current or former spouse, current or former cohabitant, person similarly situation under domestic or family violence law, or anyone else protected under domestic of family violence law. Domestic violence can be physical, sexual, emotional, economic or psychological actions or threats of actions that influence another person.

‘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 victim; and where the existence of such a relationship shall be determined based on a consideration of the following factors:

Length and type of the relationship

Frequency of interaction

Definition of Effective Consent

Effective consent is informed, freely- and actively-given mutually understandable words or actions that indicate a willingness to participate in a mutually agreed upon sexual activity.  Consent may never be given by minors (in Connecticut, those not yet sixteen (16) years of age), mentally disabled persons and those who are incapacitated as a result of alcohol or other drug use (voluntary or involuntary) or those who are unconscious, unaware or otherwise physically helpless.  Consent that is obtained through the use of fraud or force (actual or implied) whether that force be physical force, threats, intimidation, or verbal coercion, is not effective consent.  

Penalties
Students found guilty of sexual assault face a range of disciplinary measures up to and including expulsion. In cases of alleged sex offense, 

The accuser and the accused are entitled to the same opportunities to have others present during a disciplinary proceeding; and

  • Both the accuser and the accused must be informed of the outcome of any institutional disciplinary proceeding that is brought alleging a sex offense.  Compliance with this paragraph does not constitute a violation of the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). 

  • For the purpose of this paragraph, the outcome of a disciplinary proceeding means only the institution’s final determination with respect to the alleged sex offense and any sanction that is imposed against the accused 

Who oversees the reporting and complaint processes?

The Title IX Coordinator  860-297-4234860-297-4234 Hamlin Hall  Dean of Multicultural Affairs Karla Spurlock-Evans

As Title IX coordinator, Dean of Multicultural Affairs Karla Spurlock-Evans ensures that Trinity establishes and follows a prompt, thorough, and equitable process for addressing allegations of sexual harassment, sexual assault, and discrimination or differential treatment based on sex. Dean Spurlock-Evans receives a copy of all reports filed. She encourages campus members to contact her with questions or concerns regarding this process. With respect to specific cases, the Title IX coordinator will work with the appropriate offices to provide academic and residential accommodations as well as no-contact orders.

 

What do you do If you or a friend is sexually assaulted?

You Are Encouraged to Get a Medical Exam

Campus Safety at (860)-297-2222(860)-297-2222 can provide transportation to Hartford Hospital for this exam. You or whomever you are seeking assistance from can call an advocate from the rape crisis center if you wish their help. The advocate will meet you at the hospital and stay for the duration. S/he will provide assistance and advocacy if you wish. You need to have the exam performed within 72 hours of the assault; an exam can take up to four or more hours.  The Health Center can also test for “date-rape” drugs if you do not want to go to the hospital. Please contact the Health Center at 860-297-2018860-297-2018 for more information. 

REPORTING OPTIONS


You Can File an External Complaint with the Hartford Police Department: Press Criminal Charges
The College encourages you to file a report with the Hartford Police and College officials will assist you in notifying the police, if you so choose. You have five years from the date of the incident to file a report in Connecticut. A member of Campus Safety or SART can accompany you. Evidence can be used from the evidence collection kit (see below) if one is completed within 72 hours of the incident.

Hartford Police   Emergency  911    Non-Emergency:   860-757-4000860-757-4000

You Can Call Trinity’s Campus Safety Department   860-297-2222   76 Vernon Street
Campus Safety officers are mandated reporters. They must report all relevant details of the incident, including names of those involved, to the Title IX coordinator and other campus officials who may need to be informed. If you do not want your name or the name of the offender reported you have other options (see below). If the College determines that there is a serious or ongoing risk to the campus community, a timely warning will be issued to the campus. You can file an anonymous report or speak to a fully or semi-confidential person.

Director, Cisco Ortiz; Sergeant Ramon Rosario, Officer Martin Torres; and all other officers

You Can Disclose Anonymously  
This link offers an anonymous disclosure/reporting site for all violations of Trinity College policy including sexual assault, rape, stalking, intimate partner violence and sexual harassment. This report is sent to the Title IX coordinator and Campus Safety director. It can be accessed from the Campus Safety site. If substantial information and/or names are provided the Title IX coordinator needs to take action on the report, and it is possible a timely warning to the campus will be issued if deemed necessary by the Title IX coordinator in consultation with the appropriate College officer. The College is obligated to investigate every report and can do so up to the degree that is possible depending on the information provided.

http://adsvm26.cc.trincoll.edu/CESIReportExec/olr/OLRMain.aspx?IsAuth=1&groupid=102

You Can Disclose in Full Confidence: No Report Filed 
The Counseling Center staff, ordained Chaplains, and 24-hour state hotline advocates have privileged communication under the law. They do not file reports to the Title IX coordinator. They will keep your information and name confidential unless it is determined that you and/or the campus are in imminent danger. 

Counseling Center    860-297-2415 - 135 Allen Place

Director Dr. Randy Lee; Assistant Director Dr. Kristine Kennen; Dr. Kate Marinchak

Chaplain   860-297-2013860-297-2013- Chapel   The Reverend Allison Read

Statewide Sexual Violence Toll-Free 24 hour Hotlines

1-888-999-55451-888-999-5545

1-888-568-83321-888-568-8332 for Spanish

Statewide Domestic Violence Toll-Free 24 hour Hotline  

1- 888-774-2900

1-844-831-9200 for Spanish

You Can Disclose Privately and in Semi-Confidence: Names Not Reported
The Women & Gender Resource Action Center (WGRAC) and Health Center staffs offer support, guidance and referrals. Their reports to the Title IX coordinator will not contain your name or the name of the accused person/s unless they deem it necessary due to a threat of imminent danger to the student or the campus, or they have knowledge that the accused person/s is a repeat offender. If the College determines that there is a serious or ongoing risk to the campus community, a timely warning will be issued to the campus. The College is obligated to investigate every report and can do so only up to the degree that is possible depending on the information provided.

Women and Gender Resource Action Center (WGRAC)   860-297-2408860-297-2408/4131 - Mather Hall,  Second  floor

Director Laura Lockwood; Training & Program Coordinator Melissa Richard, MSW

Health Center  8860-297-201860-297-2018 - Wheaton Hall     Director Martha Burke O’Brien and staff

You Can File an Internal Complaint with the College
The College encourages you to file a complaint with the deans of students for formal adjudication. The Title IX coordinator or the dean of students or an associate dean of students will help you understand the process and see that any pre-hearing accommodations such as a no-contact order, change of room, transportation, employment or classroom accommodation are put in place. The College will conduct an investigation in advance of any hearing. The College will discuss accommodations for the hearing that preserve the right of both parties to hear and respond to testimony. The College can pursue a complaint as long as the accused is still a student, administrator or faculty member.  The College encourages timely reporting.

Dean of Students   860-297-2156860-297-2156 - Hamlin/Cook

Dean Fred Alford, Associate Deans Ann Reuman, Christopher Card, Robert Lukaskiewicz

You Can Make a Report to a SART Member: Sexual Assault Response Team (SART)
www.trincoll.edu/cs/SART/     You can speak to a SART member to receive support, guidance, referrals, and information. SART members are trained in victim and survivor response. SART members are mandated reporters and are required to provide all relevant details of the incident, including the names of those involved, to the Title IX coordinator. If the College determines that there is a serious or ongoing risk to the campus community, a timely warning will be issued to the campus. The College is obligated to investigate every report and can do so only up to the degree that is possible, depending on the information provided.  Your report will be documented and reported to the Title IX coordinator. If you do not want your name on the report, you can file an anonymous report (above) or speak to a fully or semi-confidential person. A student who wishes to bring a complaint against a member of the administration/staff or faculty should consult the dean of the faculty: thomas.mitzel@trincoll.edu or the director of human resources: beth.iacampo@trincoll.edu. You can request confidentiality from the Title IX coordinator, who will consult with the appropriate College officer in consideration of your request.

Residential Life (ORL) 860-297-2305860-297-2305 - Hamlin/Cook
Area Coordinators: Veronica Young, Jennifer Douglas, Christina Knight

Student Activities and Involvement in Leadership (SAIL)  860-297-2011860-297-2011- Mather Hall
Assistant Director Romulus Perez

Trinity College Hillel    860-297-4195 -  74 Vernon Place 
Director Lisa Kassow

Student Services and Social Houses   860-297-5146860-297-5146 - Mather Hall 
Associate Director Timothy Dunn

Office of Multicultural Affairs   860-297-2562860-297-2562 - Hamlin/Cook
Program Coordinator Patti Maisch

Queer Resource Center (QRC)   860-987-6273- 114 Crescent Street
Coordinator Crystal Nieves,

Ferris Athletic Center    860-297-5279860-297-5279
Assistant Coach Volleyball and Softball Allee Beatty