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Prohibited Conduct

Sexual Assault 

The following behaviors constitute sexual assault:

Non-Consensual Sexual Activity Any act of vaginal or anal penetration, however slight, by a person's penis, finger, other body part, or an object, or oral-genital contact, without consent.

Non-Consensual Sexual Contact Any intentional touching of a person’s breasts, buttocks, groin, genitals, or other intimate parts without consent. Touching may be over or under clothing and may include the respondent touching the complainant, the respondent making the complainant touch the respondent or another person, or the respondent making the complainant touch the complainant’s own body.

Sexual and Gender-Based Harassment

Sexual Harassment Sexual harassment is any unwelcome sexual advance, requests for sexual favor, and/or other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature when one of the conditions outlined in (1), (2), or (3), below, is present.

Gender-Based Harassment Gender-based harassment includes harassment based on gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression, which may include acts of aggression, intimidation, or hostility, whether verbal or non-verbal, graphic, physical, or otherwise, even if the acts do not involve contact of a sexual nature, when one of the conditions outlined in (1), (2), or (3), below, is present.

  1.  Submission to, or rejection of, such conduct is made implicitly or explicitly a term or condition of a person’s instruction, academic standing, employment, or participation in any University program, activity, or benefit.
  2.  Submission to, or rejection of, such conduct by an individual is used as a basis for evaluation in making academic or personnel decisions.
  3.  Such conduct creates a hostile environment. A hostile environment exists when the conduct is sufficiently severe, persistent, or pervasive that it unreasonably interferes with, limits, or deprives an individual from participating in or benefiting from the University’s educational, employment, and/or campus-residential experience when viewed through both a subjective and objective standard.

Sexual Exploitation Any act where one person violates the sexual privacy of another or takes unjust or abusive sexual advantage of another without their consent. Sexual exploitation may include:

  • surreptitiously observing another individual's nudity or sexual activity or allowing another to observe consensual sexual activity without the knowledge and consent of all parties involved;
  • recording, photographing, transmitting, showing, viewing, streaming, or distributing intimate or sexual images, audio recordings, or sexual information without the knowledge and consent of all parties involved; or
  • exposing one's genitals or inducing another to expose their own genitals in non-consensual circumstances.

Intimate Relationship Violence Any act of violence or threatened act of violence that occurs between individuals who are involved or have been involved in a sexual, dating, spousal, domestic, or other intimate relationship. Intimate relationship violence may include any form of prohibited conduct under this policy, including sexual assault, stalking, and physical abuse (as defined below).

Physical abuse consists of threatening or causing physical harm to another, or engaging in other conduct that threatens or endangers the health or safety of any person. Physical abuse will be addressed under this policy if it involves sexual or gender-based harassment, intimate partner violence, or is part of a course of conduct under the stalking definition.
As used in this policy, the definition of intimate relationship violence is consistent with the definitions of dating violence and domestic violence set forth in the Clery Act (as amended by VAWA). When determining whether the reported conduct meets the Clery definition, whether there has been a domestic or dating relationship will be determined by a review of its length, type, and frequency of interaction.

Stalking A course of conduct (i.e., more than one act) directed at a specific person which would cause a reasonable person (under similar circumstances and with similar identities to the complainant) to feel fear, to experience substantial emotional distress, or to fear for their safety or the safety of a third person. Acts that together constitute stalking may be direct actions or may be communicated by a third party, and can include, but are not limited to, threats of harm to self, others, or property; pursuing or following; non-consensual (unwanted) communication by any means; unwanted gifts; trespassing; and surveillance or other related types of observation. Stalking also includes cyber-stalking through electronic media, like the internet, social networks, blogs, cell phones, or text messages.

Retaliation This policy prohibits acts or words taken against an individual or group of individuals involved in a protected activity. Protected activity includes making a good faith report under this policy; filing an external complaint; opposing in a reasonable manner and consistent with University policy an action reasonably believed to constitute a violation of this policy. Retaliation may also include acts or words taken against an individual or group of individuals because they have participated in proceedings under this policy. Retaliation can take many forms, including, but not limited to, adverse action or violence, threats, and intimidation that would discourage a reasonable person (under similar circumstances and with similar identities to the complainant) from engaging in protected activity. Actions in response to a good faith report or response under this policy are considered retaliatory if they have a materially adverse effect on the working, academic, or University-controlled living environment of an individual or if they hinder or prevent the individual from effectively carrying out their University responsibilities. All individuals and groups of individuals are prohibited from engaging in retaliation and will be held accountable under this policy.

Complicity Any act that knowingly aids, facilitates, promotes, or encourages the commission of prohibited conduct by another person.