When OSMRC receives a report, we reach out to the reporting party offering to meet to provide linkage with a confidential resource, facilitate accommodations, and review reporting and complaint options. As much as possible, we strive to put control over the decision to make a complaint in the hands of the reporting party; however, there are certain circumstances in which the university has an obligation to move forward with an investigation in order to maintain a safe campus environment. The reporting party will always be told if this happens, and it is always the reporting party’s choice to participate in an investigation.

 

Reports not moving forward

In the absence of an investigation, OSMRC works with the reporting party to explore their options. Sanctions are not imposed on the responding party unless an investigation has found evidence of a policy violation. However, there may be options to pursue environmental remedies that will help put an end to the unwelcome behavior in the absence of an investigation. Accommodations can be facilitated without making a complaint. A reporting party has the option to change their mind at any point; there is no time limit to making a university policy complaint.

Additional information about reports that do not move forward can be found in the Appendix.

 

Informal resolutions

An informal resolution may be an option in cases in which the respondent is a university employee. The purpose of an informal resolution is to stop the unwelcome behavior from recurring. Resolution may take many forms, including direct communication with the responding party, changes to the work or education environment, or group education of the whole work unit. The reporting party’s wishes concerning notifying the responding party are taken into account. Informal resolutions are facilitated by the senior human resources representative or associate dean of the department where the behavior occurred, or by the Office of Equal Opportunity and Diversity.

 

Investigations

Complaints involving student respondents are investigated by the Office of the Dean of Students, and complaints involving employee respondents are investigated by the Office of Equal Opportunity and Diversity. OSMRC is not an investigating office. Interim sanctions may be imposed on the respondent during the investigation if there is a concern related to safety or an ongoing threat of disruption to the academic process. The Anti-Retaliation Policy applies in both student conduct and employee conduct investigations.

The purpose of an investigation is to determine whether it is more likely than not that a university policy was violated. University administrative investigations are separate from law enforcement investigations, which may be pursued concurrently or not at all.

 

Additional information about investigation outcomes can be found in the Appendix.

 

2016: All reports received (click to enlarge)

 

2016: All reports by incident type

Process Total Sexual assault Sexual harassment Dating/domestic violence Stalking Sexual exploitation/intimidation
Reports not moving forward:            
-Report dismissed 4 1 1 0 0 2
-Reporting party unknown to the UI 14 6 1 5 2 2
-Respondent not affiliated 104 31 5 46 33 5
-Respondent unknown to the UI 116 49 42 11 14 4
-Reporting party didn't respond 23 4 4 10 6 1
-Reporting party requested no investigation 72 11 21 19 31 1
Addressed under other policy/procedure 14 9 2 0 3 1
Informal resolution 46 0 42 0 0 5
Investigation 31 12 6 16 5 1

Some reports have more than one incident type.

 


Sanctions imposed

Campus actions resulting from adjudication of complaints can include sanctions against the person(s) found responsible, remedies for the individual(s) harmed, one-on-one or targeted group education, and/or implementation of specific security measures.

There are protocols in place to ensure that intentional and appropriate outcomes, including sanctions, are imposed. When a policy violation has been determined, in either student conduct or employee conduct cases, the decision maker (the Dean of Students, the respondent’s supervisor, or the Provost) must receive sanctioning input from the investigator and the Sexual Misconduct Response Coordinator.  The Student Judicial Procedure allows for a victim impact statement to be provided to the decision maker before sanctions are imposed.  Ongoing professional development is provided to decision makers.  Outcomes are tracked to ensure fair and consistent institutional response and to decrease the effect of implicit bias. 

The Anti-Violence Coalition continues to engage the campus community in conversation about appropriate sanctions which assists in our ongoing review of the sexual assault sanctioning guidelines established in 2014. We must ensure that there are no unintended side effects, such as hindrance to reporting or judicial administrators wanting to adjust a finding of responsibility in order to issue or avoid a specific sanction.

 

Outcomes from 3 sexual assault policy violations:

  • 6 disciplinary/safety measures
  • 2 educational/counseling requirements
  • 2 separations
  • 1 suspension

 

Outcomes from 4 sexual harassment policy violations:

  • 10 disciplinary/safety measures
  • 2 educational/counseling requirements
  • 1 withdrew before resolution – registration hold placed

 

Outcomes from 8 dating/domestic violence policy violations:

  • 14 disciplinary/safety measures
  • 7 educational/counseling requirements
  • 2 separations
  • 1 suspension

 

Outcomes from 1 stalking policy violation:

  • 1 disciplinary/safety measure
  • 1 withdrew before resolution – registration hold placed

 

Outcomes from 1 sexual intimidation policy violation

  • 3 disciplinary/safety measures
  • 2 educational/counseling requirements

 

Definitions of sanctions can be found in the Appendix.

 


Discussion
 

Close to 25% of the overall reports received involved a respondent who was not affiliated with the university. We are grateful to have received information about these cases so that we could link the reporting parties with a confidential resource, offer accommodations, and clarify reporting options to law enforcement, even if an administrative complaint was not an option.

 

Close to 28% of the overall reports received involved a respondent whose affiliation was unknown to us. These include cases in which the respondent was known to the reporting party, but the reporting party chose not to share information about the respondent’s identity with OSMRC.

 

There is always the potential that publishing information about reports not moving forward may lead to the unintended consequence of blame being directed at the reporting party. It is always the choice of the reporting party to participate in an investigation or not. Research has repeatedly found that victims/survivors of sexual assault choose not to report out of feelings of self-blame, not wanting other involved, and minimizing the seriousness of the assault. When explaining administrative complaint options, OSMRC regularly describes interim sanctions and the Anti-Retaliation Policy.