Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 prohibits sexual discrimination in educational institutions that receive federal funding. Recent developments create new regulations for the University and its employees, with which we are obligated to comply. To meet the reporting obligations for allegations of sexual misconduct and/or harassment, the following internal reporting procedures have been developed.

Your Reporting Obligations Under Title IX

Any employee not already designated as a confidential employee is considered to be a “responsible employee” and is required to report any allegation of sexual misconduct or harassment that is reported to you, or that you learn about, to one of several administrators who are responsible for addressing allegations of these types of misconduct.

Within 24 hours of learning about an allegationof sexual misconduct or harassment, you must notify the Vice President for Student Engagement and Success / Dean of Students / Title IX Coordinator, Dwayne Todd.

The notification must provide the following:

  • the name of the alleged victim
  • the name of the alleged perpetrator
  • the name of the person providing the information (if different from the alleged victim)
  • the names of witnesses
  • basic facts of the incident, and
  • the date, time and location of the incident

Informing the Individual of Your Reporting Obligation

When an employee or student approaches you about an allegation of sexual misconduct or harassment, first make sure that the individual is safe and provide information about where he or she can get assistance. Before an employee or student reveals any information about the incident, you must inform him or her that you are obligated to notify a Title IX Coordinator or Designee about your meeting and share the information that you receive. Assure the individual that the University takes allegations of sexual misconduct and harassment seriously, will take immediate and appropriate steps to investigate, and will resolve the matter promptly and fairly. Inform the individual that the Title IX Coordinator or Designee will contact him or her after receiving notification.

Requests for Confidentiality

If the individual seeks to maintain confidentiality and does not want their identity revealed to the Title IX Coordinator or Designees, stop the conversation and direct the individual to employees who can maintain confidentiality. On campus, these include:

  1. Psychological counselors at University Counseling Services 740-368-3145 (or 3145 from a campus phone)
  2. Pastoral counselors at the Office of the University Chaplain 740-368-3082 (or 3082 from a campus phone)
  3. Student Health Services 740-368-3160 (or 3160 from a campus phone)

Employees and volunteers in these offices will provide basic information about the incident to Title IX Coordinators so that the University can maintain a record of reported sexual misconduct and harassment cases and identify any patterns that might exist. However, these offices will not provide information that will reveal the individual's identity.

If the individual would like to tell you what happened, but also wants to maintain confidentiality:

  1. Remind the individual that you must report any information that is revealed about the incident to the Title IX Coordinator or Designees.
  2. Tell the individual that you will include notice in your report that they request confidentiality.
  3. Inform the individual that once the Title IX Coordinator or Designees are notified, the University will consider a request for confidentiality, but cannot guarantee that it will be honored.
  4. Inform the individual that if the University is able to assure confidentiality, its capacity to respond fully to an allegation may be limited by honoring the individual’s request to remain anonymous.

The University must balance the complainant’s privacy request with our obligation to provide a safe and nondiscriminatory environment. Maintaining confidentiality may limit our ability to pursue disciplinary action against the person who is identified as the responding person and whose rights must be protected as well. However, if the University is able to honor the request for anonymity and confidentiality, it sometimes can take steps to respond to complaints in ways other than confronting the accused.

Assure the individual that OWU will respect their privacy and other interests, to the extent possible, and will work with them to resolve the matter in a prompt and fair manner. OWU will not require an individual to participate in any investigation or disciplinary proceeding against their will.

Protective Measures

Assure the individual that whatever they decide to do, University policy provides protective measures against retaliation; that academic, living and working accommodations are available; and that activity restrictions and interim suspensions can be used for limiting contact between the individual and the alleged perpetrator. Also, assure the individual that if they file a report, their privacy will be protected by limiting the number of people who will be informed of the incident to those who are directly involved in resolving it and that all records will be kept confidential with limited access to them.

Types of Sexual Misconduct

  1. Domestic Violence/Intimate Partner Violence
  2. Gender-based bullying/cyberbullying
  3. Non-consensual Sexual Touching
  4. Non-consensual Sexual Penetration
  5. Sexual Exploitation
  6. Sexual Harassment
  7. Gender-based Stalking

Your Cooperation is Key

When you are not sure if a particular form of conduct is covered by these policies, err on the side of reporting. Recognize that these reporting requirements can put you in an awkward position. An individual who undoubtedly trusts and respects you seeks your assistance following a traumatic event, but before the individual can say anything, you must inform them that you are obligated to report whatever they tell you.

Reporting requirements are designed to balance two sometimes competing goals:

  1. The first is to assure that colleges address allegations of sexual misconduct and harassment. To achieve this, Title IX requires colleges to designate officials responsible for addressing allegations of misconduct and to put in place a process for getting information to them in a systematic and timely way.
  2. The second goal is based on the understanding that sexual misconduct and harassment are traumatic events and that victims often need time and space to consider their options. Having someone to speak to in confidence is often critical to these considerations.

You are the front line in striking a balance between these two important goals.

For more information, see the Sexual Misconduct Policy in the Student Handbook and the OWU Harassment Policy. Links are provided below: