Title IX is a federal regulation that prohibits discrimination based on sex in all university programs and activities, including recruiting, admissions, financial aid, academic programs, employment at the university, treatment of pregnant or parenting students or employees, counseling and guidance, discipline, grading, recreation, athletics, housing, and study abroad programs.
The Office for Civil Rights (OCR) of the U.S. Department of Education enforces Title IX and has the authority to develop policy on the regulations it enforces. Please visit the OCR’s website for more information.
Sex discrimination is any act that substantially interferes with a person’s work or education and is based on their biological sex, sexual orientation, pregnancy, and/or gender identity and expression. JCU policies that address sex discrimination include the: Sexual Harassment and Interpersonal Violence Policy, Nondiscrimination Policy, and the policies of the Student Accessibility Services.
Does it only apply to women?
You can be of any gender and be impacted by sex discrimination. Title IX requires that males and females receive fair and equitable treatment.
Any member of the campus community, guest or visitor, who believes there is a violation of the Sexual Harassment and Interpersonal Violence Policy can contact the Title IX Coordinator, the Deputy Title IX Coordinators, file an online report or contact JCUPD (for 24/7 assistance).
The Title IX Coordinator is responsible for the oversight of campus-wide education and prevention efforts, policies and procedures, and training of other employees who serve as Title IX Officers.
Who can help?
The University is committed to ensuring a community that is safe for all who study, live, work and visit here. Immediate notification to one of the options listed below is critical to fulfilling our commitment to you.
We understand discrimination may be difficult to disclose. However, immediate reporting allows the University to support those involved and to bring resolution to conduct that may be out of alignment with our institution’s mission.
CONFIDENTIAL resources are those that you can disclose what occurred and they do not have a duty to report the details of the matter save for extreme circumstances.
- Student Health & Wellness Center (doctors only)
- Cleveland Clinic Hillcrest (24 hour Sexual Assault Nurse Examiners)
- University Counseling Center (licensed counselors only)
- Campus Ministry (ordained clergy only)
- Cleveland Rape Crisis Center
- The Journey Center for Safety & Healing
- LGBT Community Center
NOT CONFIDENTIAL resources are those that may have a duty to disclose to other university employees or law enforcement what occurred on a very limited basis. Every effort will be made to keep the information private and limited to those on a need-to-know basis. If you just want to know more about the process, you can ask questions of the non-confidential resources without disclosing what occurred.
Government agencies for reporting compliance concerns
No individual will be forced to file a claim or otherwise participate in the University’s process.
Students, staff and faculty who have experienced sex discrimination are encouraged to talk to a Title IX Coordinator or Deputy Title IX Coordinator regarding questions about the process. You may wish to withhold the name of the parties and/or details of where the assault occurred. This allows the Title IX officer to provide feedback and/or a suggested road map about what an investigation would look like.
The University’s ability to remedy the discrimination may be limited if you do not wish to provide names or otherwise participate in the process.
For staff and faculty who receive information about or witness alleged sex discrimination, please consult the Mandatory Reporting Policy for your reporting obligations.
There are many reasons people may not want to report including:
I Was Drunk (students only) Drinking alcohol can impair a person’s judgment or memory. Simply because a person was drunk does not mean he or she will not be believed. JCU will not pursue disciplinary action against any student for possession or consumption of alcohol or drugs when that possession or consumption is revealed in the course of a good faith report of sexual misconduct or other good faith statements made in connection with an investigation. Please see the Good Samaritan & Amnesty Policy for details.
There Were No Witnesses Most cases of interpersonal violence and sexual harassment occur in settings where there are no witnesses. Investigators are trained to assess the credibility of both parties involved.
Retaliation Any adverse action taken against a person for engaging in the Title IX process is a serious and separate violation of the Sexual Harassment & Interpersonal Violence Policy and will be promptly investigated. The University will take all appropriate steps to help protect individuals subjected to retaliation.
Here are some things that can help:
Accommodations There are many measures that can be taken almost immediately after misconduct is reported to limit contact of the parties involved and all of these measures can be put in place very soon after a complaint is filed:
- parties can be separated;
- no contact orders can be issued requiring no further communication – in person or otherwise;
- changes to class and/or work schedules can be made;
- emotional support can be provided.
Anonymous / Confidential Report Many people are concerned about confidentiality and do not wish to have their identity disclosed. In order to effectively respond to a report of sexual violence and/or discrimination, staff and faculty to whom the matter is disclosed may not be able to keep a reporter’s identity or other information about the alleged conduct confidential. The Title IX Coordinator will determine if a person’s anonymity can be maintained after consultation with the party requesting it.
Most University employees are required to report to the University’s Title IX Coordinator all information (e.g., the names of the reporting student, the parties, any witnesses, and any other relevant information, including the date, time and specific location of the alleged incident) disclosed to him or her about an incident that falls within the Sexual Harassment & Interpersonal Violence Policy.
It’s ok to be unsure about whether to report a concern. One of the duties of the Title IX Coordinator is helping people understand what incident or concerns fall under non-discrimination policies at the university so please contact the Title IX Office with any questions.
You can also see the Mandatory Reporting Policy for full details of the duty to report.
Once a report is filed, the Title IX Coordinator will engage in an initial assessment of the complaint.
The assessment is a determination about:
- what risk the reported respondent poses to the individual complainant as well as to the JCU community;
- how to investigate;
- what interim measures are needed (i.e., class changes, residence hall/living/roommate changes, referrals to on/off campus support, suspending a respondent pending the outcome of an investigation, and others) and
- other factors specific to the information alleged.
The Title IX Coordinator will work with appropriate offices to ensure that all complainants, respondents and witnesses are treated equitably throughout the process and that respectful and timely communication occurs.
Click here for more information about the process.
Most cases are reviewed, investigated and resolved within 6 to 12 weeks of receiving a complaint.
Often matters can be resolved more quickly than that, but there are also times when there are complicating factors that require more time in order to conduct a thorough investigation.
If a community member experienced sex discrimination by another JCU student, staff or faculty member either off campus, online, or abroad, the accused person is still subject to JCU’s Sexual Harassment & Interpersonal Violence policy and procedures if the actions affect a “substantial University interest.”
For example, if the actions:
- Constitute a crime;
- Are a danger or threat to the health and safety of others;
- Cause a substantial on campus disruption; and/or
- Are detrimental to the University’s educational interests or mission.
Discrimination that could also constitute a crime will be reported to JCUPD and/or other local law enforcement agencies by the Title IX Coordinator or the Deputy Title IX Coordinators.
Limited information will be provided, and the parties may choose what information to disclose in response to police inquiries.
Outcomes can include:
- educational programs
- verbal or written reprimand
- termination and
- other remedies as appropriate to end and/or prevent further discrimination