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Title IX for Students

Title IX

It is against The College of Idaho policy and prohibited by Title IX to discriminate based on sex in education programs and activities. Title IX protects students, employees, applicants for admissions and employment, and other persons from all forms of sex discrimination. Included in the definition of sex discrimination: sexual misconduct, including sexual harassment, sexual assault, sexual battery, and rape; relationship and dating violence; stalking; bullying; hazing; and bias (hate) crimes. Students, as well as other persons, are protected by Title IX regardless of their sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, part or full-time status, disability, race or national origin in all aspects of the College’s educational programs and activities.

The Title IX Coordinator for The College of Idaho is Reagan Rossi, (208)459-5855.  Any inquiries regarding Title IX compliance should be directed to the Title IX Coordinator and/or the Office for Civil Rights.

In accordance with the Title IX federal regulations, the College will initiate a formal grievance process upon receipt of a formal complaint.  The grievance process may also be initiated by the Title IX Coordinator when deemed appropriate and necessary as it pertains to the safety of our campus community.  The formal grievance process will consist of an investigation by two trained investigators, an in-person hearing with three trained hearing officers, one of which will communicate the decision of the group and the right of either complainant or respondent to appeal the decision to the Title IX Coordinator and either the Dean of Students, Dean of the Faculty or Vice President for Finance and Administration.  All conversations associated with a formal complaint and grievance process will be recorded by the College.  Undisclosed private audio recordings of any meeting or proceeding as part of an official College investigation are prohibited. 

For the purposes of Title IX, the following terminology will be used throughout the grievance process:

Complainant – An individual who is alleged to be the victim of conduct that could constitute sexual harassment.

Respondent – An individual who has been reported to be the perpetrator of conduct that could constitute sexual harassment.

Formal Complaint – A document filed by a complainant or signed by the Title IX Coordinator alleging sexual harassment against a respondent and requesting that the school investigate the allegation of sexual harassment.

Supportive Measures – Individualized services reasonably available that are non-punitive, non-disciplinary, and not unreasonably burdensome to the other party while designed to ensure equal educational access, protect safety, or deter sexual harassment.   These support measures are provided regardless of whether a formal complaint is filed.

Retaliation – No person shall intimidate, threaten, coerce, or discriminate against any individual who has made a complaint, testified, assisted, or participated in any manner for the purposes of interfering with a right or privilege secured by Title IX.  Retaliation against a person who has filed a complaint or who assists enforcement agencies in discharging their investigative duties violates Title IX.

The exercise of rights protected under the First Amendment does not constitute retaliation.

Report an Incident

If you have been a victim of or a witness to a Title IX safety or security incident, you may report it online directly to Campus Safety.  All employees are “responsible employees”.  A responsible employee has the duty to report to an official with authority (Campus Safety, Human Resources, Residence Life, Student Affairs, etc.) Title IX incidents as soon as they become aware of them. Reporting does not necessarily initiate the Title IX process.  The process is initiated by filing an official complaint with the Title IX Coordinator, which can also be filed through Campus Safety.  Only licensed professional counselors, the Campus Minister and trained student advocates are exempt from this provision and may keep reports confidential.

Definitions

Unequivocal Consent - Consent that is informed, freely and actively given, via mutually understandable words or actions which indicate a willingness to engage in an activity at the same time, in the same manner with another individual or individuals. It is the responsibility of the sexual initiator to make sure that he or she obtains unequivocal consent from his or her partner before engaging in any sexual activity. Consent to one form of sexual activity does not necessarily imply consent to other forms of sexual activity. Mutually understandable consent must be obtained by the initiator at every stage of sexual interaction. Consent which is obtained through the use of force, actual or implied, whether that force is exerted physically or through threats, intimidation or coercion, does not constitute unequivocal consent. If a person is mentally or physically incapacitated or impaired so that such person cannot understand the fact, nature, or extent of the sexual situation, there is no consent; this includes impairment or incapacitation due to alcohol or drug consumption that meets this standard, or being asleep or unconscious.

Sexual Misconduct - Any sexual act directed against another person forcibly and/or against the person's will; or not forcibly or against the person's will where the victim is incapable of giving unequivocal consent.

Non-Consensual Sex - Penetration, no matter how slight, of the vagina or the anus with any body part or object, or oral penetration by a sex organ of another person, without the unequivocal consent of the victim.

Forcible Fondling -Touching of the private body parts of another person for the purpose of sexual gratification, forcibly and/or against that person's will; or not forcibly or against the person's will where the victim is incapable of giving unequivocal consent because of their youth or because of their mental incapacity.

Statutory Rape - Under Idaho law, statutory rape occurs when there is penetration between:

  • A child who is under the age of 16 and a defendant who is 18 years of age or older, or
  • A child who is age 16 or 17 and a defendant who is three or more years older than the child.

This means if the complainant is 16 years old, the respondent is 19 years old or more; if the complainant is 17 years old, the respondent is 20 years old or more.

Sexual Exploitation - Purposely or knowingly doing any of the following:

  • Causing the incapacitation of another person (through alcohol, drugs, or any other means) for the purpose of compromising that person’s ability to give unequivocal consent to sexual activity;
  • Allowing third parties to observe private sexual activity from a hidden location (e.g., closet) or through electronic means (e.g., Skype or live-streaming of images);
  • Engaging in voyeurism (e.g., watching private sexual activity without the consent of the participants or viewing another person’s intimate parts (including genitalia, groin, breasts or buttocks) in a place where that person would have a reasonable expectation of privacy);
  • Recording or photographing private sexual activity and/or a person’s intimate parts (including genitalia, groin, breasts or buttocks) without consent;
  • Dissemination or posting images of private sexual activity and/or a person’s intimate parts (including genitalia, groin, breasts or buttocks) without consent;
  • Prostituting another person; or
  • Exposing another person to a sexually transmitted infection or virus without the other’s knowledge.

Sexual Harassment – Any of three types of misconduct on the basis of sex, all of which jeopardize the equal access to education that Title IX is designed to protect:

  1. Any instance of quid pro quo harassment by a College employee (when employment, pay, benefits, title, position or other opportunities for advancement or training including educational opportunities and evaluation are conditioned on the submission to unwelcome sexual advances. Whether the harassment is explicit or implicit, it is illegal.);
  2. Any unwelcome conduct that a reasonable person would find so severe, pervasive, and objectively offensive that it denies a person equal educational access;
  3. Any instance of:
  • Sexual Assault – Any nonconsensual sexual act proscribed by Federal, tribal, or State law, including when the victim lacks capacity to consent.
  • Dating Violence –Violence committed by a person who is or has been in a social relationship of a romantic or intimate nature with the victim and where the existence of such a relationship shall be determined based on a consideration of the following factors:  the length of the relationship; the type of relationship; and the frequency of interaction between the persons involved in the relationship.
  • Domestic Violence –Includes felony or misdemeanor crimes of violence committed by a current or former spouse or intimate partner of the victim, by a person with whom the victim shares a child in common, by a person who is cohabitation with or has cohabitated with the victim as a spouse or intimate partner, by a person similarly situated to a spouse of the victim under the domestic or family violence laws of the jurisdiction receiving grant monies, or by any other person against an adult or youth victim who is protected from that personals acts under the domestic or family violence laws of the jurisdiction.
  • Stalking – Engaging in a course of conduct directed at a specific person that would cause a reasonable person to fear for his or her safety or the safety of others or suffer substantial emotional distress.

Other actions that are gender-based violations such as hazing, bullying, cyberbullying, or bias crimes could be adjudicated through the Title IX grievance process. 

Supportive measures

Sexual misconduct will not be tolerated on campus. Students or employees who have experienced sexual misconduct may suffer from one or more common, but highly stressful, reactions. These include depression, self-blame, intense anxiety, confusion, a feeling of loss of control and recurrent nightmares. These reactions may continue long after the assault. Discussing the experience with a trained professional can be very helpful. The following College and community resources are available:

Campus resources - students

  • Campus Safety: (208) 459-5151 (available 24 hours, 7 days per week)
  • Title IX Coordinator:  Reagan Rossi - [email protected]  (208) 459-5855
  • Dean of Students: Paul Bennion – [email protected] (208) 459-5841
  • Residence Life: (208) 459-5121

Campus confidential resources - students

  • Advocates: (208) 459-5555 (available 24 hours, 7 days per week)
  • Counseling Center: (208) 459-5561
  • Campus Minister: (208) 459-5282

Campus resources – employees

  • Campus Safety: (208) 459-5151 (available 24 hours, 7 days per week)
  • Title IX Coordinator:  Reagan Rossi - [email protected]  (208) 459-5855
  • Director of Human Resources: Nancy Johnson-Cassulo – [email protected] (208) 459-5680

Campus confidential resources – employees

  • IBH Employees Assistance Program (800) 395-1616 (available 24 hours, 7 days per week)

Community resources - 

  • WCA Rape Crisis Center: (208) 345-7273
  • Caldwell City Victim Witness Coordinator: (208)455-3112
  • Canyon County Victim Witness Unit: (208)454-7391
  • Idaho Coalition Against Sexual and Domestic Violence: (208) 384-0419
  • Idaho Council on Domestic Violence and Victim Assistance: (208) 332-1540

What should I do?

Students or employees who experience sexual misconduct are often unsure what to do. If you believe you or someone you know has experienced sexual misconduct, the following should serve as a guide:

  • Go to a safe place.
  • Call an advocate, counselor, friend, relative, or someone you trust to come and be with you.
  • Preserve evidence. Do not shower, douche, bathe, change clothing, or remove anything from the scene of the assault.
  • Get medical attention. In order to protect your health and attend to any injuries or infections that may arise from the assault, medical treatment is necessary. Even if you don't think you want to report the assault or press charges, it is important to be examined by a physician as soon as possible after the assault. Emergency room personnel are trained in the collection of physical evidence which will help you if you should later choose to use legal avenues.
  • Report the incident to campus authorities to receive supportive measures and be given the option to file a formal complaint.
  • Report the incident to appropriate law enforcement authorities.

The importance of reporting

The College strongly urges students or employees who have experienced sexual misconduct to come forward and report in order to receive supportive measures and be given the option of filing a formal complaint (the report can be confidential – please see “confidential resources” above) of their experiences to campus officials and/or appropriate law enforcement.  Not only do the reports help identify potential predators, but more importantly, they connect students and employees to invaluable resources that may help them deal with the inevitable repercussions that follow such a traumatic event.

Reporting sexual misconduct

Filing a formal complaint with the College does not commit a student or employee to pressing charges with local law enforcement, but the information provided about an incident or individual may be critical to preventing further violence. Where there is reason to believe that an incident of sexual violence has occurred, the person who has been violated has the following reporting options:

  • File a report with the College and/or with local law enforcement authorities.  Once a report has been filed, a Campus Safety officer or Title IX Coordinator will be reaching out to provide supportive measures and the option to file a formal complaint.
  • Notify any College personnel (note: every employee is a responsible employee, who has an obligation to notify campus authorities, except: licensed professional counselors, campus ministers, and trained student advocates). The report provides the College and the community with the obligation to identify the person responsible and take reasonable action to address the factors that might prevent such an occurrence in the future.

Reports to the College may be made to any of the following:

Campus resources - students

    • Campus Safety: (208) 459-5151 (available 24 hours, 7 days per week)
    • Title IX Coordinator: Reagan Rossi – [email protected] - (208) 459-5855
    • Dean of Students: Paul Bennion – [email protected] (208) 459-5841
    • Residence Life: (208) 459-5121

Campus resources - employees

    • Campus Safety: (208) 459-5151 (available 24 hours, 7 days per week)
    • Title IX Coordinator: Reagan Rossi – [email protected] - (208) 459-5855
    • Director of Human Resources: Nancy Johnson-Cassulo – [email protected] – (208) 459-5680
  • File a confidential report with a College licensed mental health counselor, campus minister or student advocate, acting in their official capacity, who guarantees that no name shall be attached to the report unless permission is given to do so. This report will be used by the College administration to track trends, to plan educational awareness programming, and to address other community safety concerns, but the student's or employee’s name will not be disclosed and no official actions will be taken without the student's or employee’s permission (as allowed under law).

Confidential reports to the College may be made to any of the following:

Students:

    • Advocates: (208) 459-5555 (available 24 hours, 7 days per week)
    • Counseling Center: (208) 459-5561
    • Campus Minister: (208) 459-5282

Employees:

  • IBH Employees Assistance Program (800) 395-1616 (available 24 hours, 7 days per week)

Reports to local law enforcement authorities may be made to any of the following:

  • 911
  • Caldwell Police Department non-emergency dispatch:(208) 454-7531

Campus Safety is also available to help facilitate reporting to local law enforcement

Learning Support & Disability Services - Students

Students with disabilities may request reasonable accommodations at any point throughout the reporting and grievance process. Students are responsible for notifying investigators and hearing officers of their disability, and may request reasonable postponement of the grievance process in order to obtain accommodations. Students should immediately contact the Learning Support & Disability Services Department to arrange for accommodations. Information received or provided as part of the grievance process prior to the official notification of accommodations is considered valid, as is the integrity of the grievance process up to that point, and will not be considered as grounds for appeal.

College response to sexual misconduct

The College of Idaho will promptly investigate all allegations of sexual misconduct, and take appropriate measures to ensure the safety of our campus community. The College may pursue enforcement of its own policies whether or not legal proceedings are underway or in prospect and may use information from third party sources, such as law enforcement agencies and the court, to determine whether College policies have been violated. The College makes no attempt to shield members of the College community from the law, nor does it intervene in legal proceedings against a member of the community.  All conversations associated with a formal complaint and grievance process will be recorded by the College.  Undisclosed private audio recordings of any meeting or proceeding as part of an official College investigation are prohibited. 

Title IX grievance process

  1. Incident is reported to Campus Safety.  Supportive measures will be offered.
  2. The complainant has the right to file a formal complaint.  In lieu of that, Campus Safety and the Title IX Coordinator will determine if a formal complaint will be filed on behalf of the College.
  3. Interim Actions:

Students - The Dean of Students (or designee) has the discretion to take actions, up to and including temporarily removing a respondent from the College’s education program or activity on an emergency basis, provided that the College:

    • Undertakes an individualized safety and risk analysis,
    • Determines that an immediate threat to the physical health or safety of students justifies removal, and
    • Provides the responding party with notice and an opportunity to challenge the decision immediately following the removal.

Employees -   The Vice President of Academic Affairs, if the employee is a faculty member, or the Vice President of Finance and Administration, if the employee is a staff member, has the discretion to take actions, up to and including, temporarily placing a respondent employee on an administrative leave of absence from the College or restricting the respondent employee from specific facilities on an emergency basis, provided that the College:

    • Undertakes an individualized safety and risk analysis,
    • Determines that an immediate threat to the physical health or safety of employees justifies removal, and
    • Provides the responding party with notice and an opportunity to challenge the decision immediately following the removal.
  1. Investigation – Two Campus Safety or other Title IX designated investigators will conduct an investigation and a notice of investigation will be sent to the complainant and the respondent. The complainant and the respondent have the right to have an advocate (for students, an advocate will be offered through the Advocate Center) or one person of their choice (excluding any material witnesses) accompany them throughout the entire process. This person does not play an active role in the process and is present only as support.  An advisor will be assigned by the College.  Complainant and/or respondent can also opt to use their own personal advisor who will work with the College-appointed advisor who will be familiar with our process.  Protocol on the role of the advisor will be provided to each party.
  2. Informal Resolution – At the College’s discretion, under limited circumstances, and only with the willing cooperation of the complainant and respondent, the College may facilitate an informal resolution utilizing licensed College counselors.  Should either complainant or respondent change their mind and not want to engage in this process at any time before or during the process, they have the right to do so.  In that event, the College will resume the Grievance Process.  However, if the Informal Resolution process is completed, then the matter is considered closed by the College.
  3. Investigative Summary – Summary is provided to complainant, respondent, hearing officers, and Title IX Coordinator for final review and clarification. If the investigative summary indicates the allegation is unsubstantiated or there is insufficient evidence, the hearing officers will notify the complainant and respondent of such and the process will conclude (the complainant or respondent may still appeal).
  4. Live Hearing Process– In accordance with Federal requirements, this will be a live hearing with cross-examination by each party’s advisor, including cross-examination of relevant witnesses.
  5. Notice of Conclusion – Hearing officers will reach a conclusion based on the investigative summary, the live hearing, and communication with involved parties.  Hearing officers notify complainant and respondent in writing (and in person when feasible) of the College’s decision. The College uses a preponderance of evidence (more likely than not) standard for determining conclusions.
  6. Appeal – Both complainant and respondent have the right to appeal the hearing officers’ decision. (see Appeals section below)
  7. Sanctions – Student or employee complete any sanctions articulated in the Notice of Conclusion.
  8. Petition – Students only - Suspended students may petition to return to good standing and re-enroll at the College (see Petition Process section below).

The College of Idaho makes reasonable efforts to complete the grievance process within a timely manner.

Failure to appear and conclusion without response

Students and employees are to appear for campus grievance proceedings when requested to do so by an investigator or hearing officer. Should a student or employee fail to appear or respond during the grievance process, the hearing process will move forward without the participation of that individual.  If a student or employee fails to appear for the hearing process, or is unable to attend as a result of criminal proceedings, the hearing officer may move forward with reviewing the available evidence to make a determination.

Appeals – Students

The complainant or respondent may appeal any decision made in the event of

  1. Procedural irregularity that affected the outcome of the matter, or
  2. Newly discovered evidence that was not available at the time of the investigation that could affect the outcome of the matter, and/or
  3. Title IX personnel had a conflict of interest or bias that affected the outcome of the matter
  4. The sanction is not appropriate for the finding

A written letter outlining the basis for the appeal and including all relevant information in support of the appeal must be filed with the Dean of Students Office within five (5) working days of the decision (note: appeals received after five working days will be permitted if relevant information not available at the time of the investigation is provided by a government or law enforcement agency).

The Dean of Students, in collaboration with the Title IX Coordinator, will review the written appeal and decide if there are reasonable grounds to move forward with the appeal process. If it is decided there are not sufficient grounds for the appeal, the hearing officers’ conclusion will stand and is final. If it is decided that there are sufficient grounds for the appeal, those appeals involving a procedural error or Title IX personnel conflict of interest will be jointly considered by the Dean of Students and Title IX Coordinator, and their conclusion is final; those appeals involving new information will be referred back to the investigators and hearing officers for reconsideration.

The hearing officers will make a recommendation for a final conclusion to both the Dean of Students and Title IX Coordinator, who will then render the final decision.

Appeals – Employees

The complainant or respondent may appeal any decision made in the event of

  1. Procedural irregularity that affected the outcome of the matter, or
  2. Newly discovered evidence that was not available at the time of the investigation that could affect the outcome of the matter, and/or
  3. Title IX personnel had a conflict of interest or bias that affected the outcome of the matter

The College may offer an appeal equally to both parties on additional bases.

A written letter outlining the basis for the appeal and including all relevant information in support of the appeal must be filed with the Human Resources Office within five (5) working days of the decision (note: appeals received after five working days will be permitted if relevant information not available at the time of the investigation is provided by a government or law enforcement agency).

The Vice President of Academic Affairs, if the employee is a faculty member, or the Vice President of Finance and Administration, if the employee is a staff member, in collaboration with the Title IX Coordinator, will review the written appeal and decide if there are reasonable grounds to move forward with the appeal process. If it is decided there are not sufficient grounds for the appeal, the hearing officers’ conclusion will stand and is final. If it is decided that there are sufficient grounds for the appeal, those appeals involving a procedural error or Title IX personnel conflict of interest will be jointly considered by the applicable Vice President and Title IX Coordinator, and their conclusion is final; those appeals involving new information will be referred back to the investigators and hearing officers for reconsideration.

The hearing officers will make a recommendation for a final conclusion to both the applicable Vice President and Title IX Coordinator, who will then render the final decision.

Sanctions

Misconduct, and thus the College's response to misconduct, varies widely. Sanctions depend upon the severity of the misconduct, previous conduct violations, the attitude of the individual(s) involved, and the impact upon the College and greater community. Sanctions may include, but are not limited to:

  • Written warning
  • Disciplinary fines – students only
  • Educational projects
  • Community service
  • Referral for substance abuse evaluation, education, and/or treatment
  • Referral for personal counseling
  • Restitution for damages
  • Special restriction or loss of privilege
  • Disciplinary probation
  • Imposed room reassignment – students only
  • Suspension from residence halls – students only
  • Restricted campus access
  • Suspension from the College – students only
  • Placement on unpaid leave of absence – employees only
  • Expulsion from the College – students only
  • Termination of employment – employees, could apply to student employees
  • Referral to public law enforcement agencies

Students who fail to complete or fulfill assigned sanctions within the time allowed are subject to additional disciplinary actions including fines, increased sanctions, academic holds, notation on transcripts and/or in some cases, suspension from the College. Suspension and/or expulsion from the College must be approved through the Dean of Students.

Employees who fail to complete or fulfill assigned sanctions within the time allowed are subject to additional disciplinary actions including increased sanctions, placement on an unpaid leave of absence, and/or in some cases, termination of employment.

Compliance with these policies and procedures does not constitute a violation of section 444 of the General Education Provisions Act (20 U.S.C. 1232g), commonly known as the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA).

Petitions process - Students

  1. Suspended student must provide a written statement (no later than one month prior to the desired start term) to the Dean of Students and Title IX Coordinator requesting to return to the College (no sooner than the sanction permits). The statement should minimally include:
    • Reasons for returning, and any other relevant information supporting the petition to return.
    • Documentation of the completion of all assigned sanctions (pending expiration of the suspension).
    • A transcript from any higher education institution attended during the suspension from the College, as well as a letter indicating good academic standing at that institution.
  2. The College will notify the complainant of the petition.
  3. The Dean of Students and Title IX Coordinator will review the petition and consult relevant College personnel, as deemed necessary. The College reserves the right to request additional information (in writing or in person) from the suspended student before making a decision.
  4. The Dean of Students and Title IX Coordinator will notify the respondent and complainant in writing of the decision. The College reserves the right to approve a petition contingent on certain conditions.

Training & education of Title IX personnel

Title IX personnel training materials are available through the Title IX Coordinator, Campus Safety or the Human Resources office.

Investigators and/or hearing officers

Allan Laird – Director of Campus Safety
Ben Mosley – Assistant Director of Campus Safety
Shawn Crawford – Campus Safety Officer
Daryl Flennoy – Campus Safety Officer
Jen Nelson – Director of Residence Life Associate Dean of Students
Adan De La Paz – International Student Services Coordinator
Nancy Johnson-Cassulo – Director of Human Resources
Sarah Crenshaw – Assistant Director of Human Resources
Paul Bennion – Vice President of Student Affairs/Dean of Students
David Douglass – Vice President of Academic Affairs/Dean of the Faculty
Richard Erne – Vice President for Finance and Administration