The University encourages all individuals to report Prohibited Conduct of the Title IX/Sexual and Interpersonal Conduct Policy (SIM) or a potential violation of Title IX/SIM to the Title IX Coordinator, the East Texas Baptist University Security Department, and/or to local law enforcement. A complainant has the right to report, or decline to report, potential criminal conduct to law enforcement, and/or to be assisted by the University in reporting potential criminal conduct to law enforcement at any time. Under limited circumstances deemed by the University to pose a threat to the health or safety of any University community member, the University may independently notify law enforcement.
An individual may make a report of Prohibited Conduct or potential criminal conduct to the University, to law enforcement, to neither, or to both. Campus investigations of Prohibited Conduct and law enforcement investigations operate independently of one another, although the University will coordinate as appropriate. Anyone can make a report as follows:
- Make a report to the Title IX Coordinator in person, by telephone at 903.923.2119, by email at firstname.lastname@example.org, or online at www.etbu.edu/titleix.
- If on campus, contact the East Texas Baptist University Security Department for assistance in filing a criminal complaint and preserving physical evidence at 903.923.2323.
- If off campus, contact local law enforcement to file a criminal complaint at 903.935.4575 or 911.
Anyone can make an anonymous report by submitting information on the East Texas Baptist University Title IX website: www.etbu.edu/titleix. Based on the nature of the information submitted, the University’s ability to respond to an anonymous report may be limited.
Except for Confidential Resources, all University Employees are designated Responsible Employees and thereby mandatory reporters of potential Title IX violations. Responsible Employees include all staff (hourly and salary), faculty, instructors, teaching assistants, and student workers who have supervisory responsibility or responsibility for the welfare of other students and learn of potential violations of this policy in the scope of their employment. Student workers who are Responsible Employees include but are not limited to Resident Assistants and Graduate Assistant Coaches.
Responsible Employees must report immediately any information about suspected sexual or gender-based harassment, sexual assault, sexual exploitation, stalking, intimate partner violence, or retaliation for reporting regardless of when or where the alleged misconduct occurred. Responsible Employees must report retaliation when they are aware of acts consistent with the policy definition of retaliation, and they have reason to believe it is occurring because of a party's participation in a Title IX process, or in order to prevent either making a report to Title IX or participation in a Title IX process.
Texas law requires any employee of a college or university in Texas to report to the Title IX Coordinator any information regarding an alleged incident of sexual harassment, sexual assault, dating violence, or stalking, committed by or against a person enrolled at or employed by the institution at the time of the incident. The law requires colleges or universities to terminate employment for employees who fail to report such matters and imposes criminal penalties of up to a year in jail.
The University has designated limited categories of employees as Confidential Resources with whom students may speak confidentially concerning Prohibited Conduct.
A Confidential Resources is any employee who is a licensed medical, clinical, or mental-health professional (e.g., physicians, nurse practitioners, nurses, physician's assistants, psychologists, psychiatrists, professional counselors, and social workers, and those performing services under their supervision), when acting in that professional role in the provision of services to a patient; and any employee providing administrative, operational, and/or related support for such healthcare providers in their performance of such services. The Dean of Spiritual Life is also a Confidential Resource when acting within a ministerial or pastoral role in the provision of services to a student.
Unless given permission to disclose more information by the complainant, Confidential Resources will only disclose the type of incident, date, and location if known, but will not disclose the individual's name or other identifying details to the Title IX Coordinator. Confidential Resources also submit non-personally-identifying information about Clery Act-reportable crimes to the East Texas Baptist University Security Department for purposes of the anonymous statistical reporting under the Clery Act. When individuals who otherwise may be Confidential Resources receive information outside of the provision of services to a patient or client, or the Dean of Spiritual Life’s ministerial relationship, the Confidential Resource is required to share that information with the Title IX Office.
Confidentiality refers to the protections provided to information disclosed in legally-protected or privileged relationships under Texas state law, including licensed professional mental health counselors, licensed medical professionals, and ordained clergy. These Confidential Resources can engage in confidential communications under Texas law when the information is disclosed within the scope of the provision of professional services. When an individual shares information with a Confidential Resource (on campus or in the community) as a confidential communication in the course of a protected relationship, the Confidential Resource cannot disclose the information (including information about whether an individual has received services) to any third party without the individual's written permission or unless required by ethical or legal obligations which compel the professional to reveal such information. For example, information may be disclosed when the individual gives written consent for its disclosure, there is an imminent concern that the individual will likely cause serious physical harm to self or others, or the information concerns conduct involving suspected abuse or neglect of a minor under the age of 18. A person’s medical and counseling records are privileged and confidential documents.
May 2020 Title IX regulations contemplate that certain information will generally be treated confidentially, except as qualified by statements in those regulations. For example, the regulations provide that ETBU must maintain as confidential any supportive measures provided to the complainant or respondent, to the extent that maintaining such confidentiality would not impair the ability of the institution to provide the supportive measures.
The regulations also provide that ETBU must keep confidential the identity of any individual who has made a report or complaint of sex discrimination, including any individual who has made a report or filed a formal complaint of sexual harassment, any complainant, any individual who has been reported to be the perpetrator of sex discrimination, any respondent, and any witness, except as may be permitted by the Family Educational Rights and Privacy (FERPA) statute referenced below, 20 U.S.C. 1232g, or FERPA regulations, 34 CFR part 99, or as required by law, or to carry out the purposes of the Title IX regulations, including the conduct of any investigation, hearing, or judicial proceeding arising under those regulations.
This means that discretion will be exercised by the University in the course of any investigation or other processes under this policy. Information related to a report of Prohibited Conduct will be shared with a limited circle of University employees who need to know in order to assist in the assessment, investigation, and resolution of the report and related issues. University employees receive training in how to safeguard private information.
The University will make reasonable efforts to investigate and address reports of Prohibited Conduct under this policy, and information may be disclosed to participants in an investigation as necessary to facilitate the thoroughness and integrity of the investigation.
The privacy of student education records is governed by the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act(FERPA). The privacy of an individual’s medical and related records generally is protected by the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) and Title 2, Chapter 81 and Title 4, Chapter 241, Subchapter G, of the Texas Health & Safety Code, and Chapter 144 of the Texas Civil Practice and Remedies Code, excepting health records protected by FERPA. Access to an employee’s personnel records in Texas is governed by Chapter 103 of the Texas Labor Code.