Lewis University does not tolerate sexual misconduct of any type. Our Catholic, Lasallian tradition sees each and every human as created in the image of God, full of dignity and worth. Sexual misconduct is a serious affront to one’s dignity as a person. Sexual misconduct includes but is not limited to sexual harassment, non-consensual sexual intercourse, non-consensual sexual contact and sexual exploitation, as defined below.
A. SEXUAL HARASSMENT
Gender-based verbal or physical conduct that is sufficiently severe, pervasive and objectively offensive that it deprives someone of educational or employment
access, benefits and/or opportunities.
B. NON-CONSENSUAL SEXUAL INTERCOURSE:
C. NON-CONSENSUAL SEXUAL CONTACT:
Effective consent is active, not passive. Silence, in and of itself, cannot be interpreted as consent. Effective consent can be given by words or actions, as long as those words or actions create mutually understandable permission regarding the conditions of sexual activity -- who, what, when, where, why and how sexual activity will take place. In order to be effective, consent cannot be procured by use of physical force, compelling threats, intimidating behavior, or coercion. Coercive behavior differs from seductive behavior based on the type of pressure someone uses to get consent from another. When someone makes clear to you that they do not want sex, that they want to stop, or that they do not want to go past a certain point of sexual interaction, continued pressure beyond that point can be coercive. In order to give effective consent, one must be of legal age. If you have sexual activity with someone you know to be - or should know to be - mentally or physically incapacitated (alcohol or other drug use, unconsciousness or blackout), you are in violation of this policy.
Sexual activity includes:
D. SEXUAL EXPLOITATION
Occurs when a student takes non-consensual or abusive sexual advantage of another for his/her own advantage or benefit, or to benefit or advantage anyone other than the one being exploited, and that behavior does not otherwise constitute one of other sexual misconduct offenses. Examples of sexual exploitation include, but are not limited to:
When the University has reason to believe that a violation of the sexual misconduct policy has occurred, the University will take immediate and appropriate action through the Judicial Process. The University’s Judicial Process is not dependent upon the outcome of external criminal or civil procedures, and usually is not stayed by them. The University will take action over offenses by students that occur on University property or at University-sponsored events. The University will also take action over alleged violations between students that occur off campus when that off-campus conduct detrimentally affects the university community.
What to do if you are assaulted
Get to a safe place. Any student who believes sexual misconduct may have occurred is encouraged to report the matter promptly to Campus Security. Reporting any sexual misconduct will help Campus Security to conduct an immediate and complete investigation in a timely manner. It is important that evidence be preserved at the scene of the alleged offense, for the integrity of the investigation. Any pieces of clothing, beverages, weapons, etc. should not be touched until the Romeoville Police Department officials are on scene. Immediately after an assault, the victim should avoid bathing, washing, or going to the bathroom, if possible. It will be the responsibility of Campus Security personnel to place a guard at the scene of the alleged offense to ensure that no one disturbs the scene prior to the arrival of Romeoville Police Department officials.
While prompt reporting is helpful, delays in reporting are common, and Lewis University has no explicit time limit on reporting, as long as the accused student is still enrolled. If an assault is committed on campus by a nonstudent, local police and the Dean of Student Services should be notified. If an assault occurs off-campus, the local police in that jurisdiction should be notified. An on-campus complaint may also be filed for off campus conduct between students.
Campus Security will make the Dean of Student Services or the Dean’s designee aware of any reported sexual misconduct. Resident students should report any violation of this sexual misconduct policy to a member of the Residence Life staff, to Security, or to the Dean of Student Services.
Should a sexual offense occur on campus, the victim will need to decide whether or not to pursue the matter with law enforcement officials. If the student was assaulted by another Lewis University student, disciplinary action may follow should the victim file a University complaint. The University may also decide to take action even if the victim does not press criminal charges or file a complaint with the university.
Lewis University takes immediate steps to investigate all reported allegations of sexual misconduct and ensure the safety of victims. The University may change academic and living arrangements after an alleged sex offense, upon request. Victims have the option to changes in academic and living arrangements by contacting the Director of Residence Life or Dean of Student Services, who will also inform victims of their right to contact the police and pursue criminal charges. Victims have the right of access to campus counseling resources as well.
In a sexual misconduct case, it is the University’s duty to balance privacy for the victim and the “public’s right to know.” In this balance, maintaining the victim’s privacy is paramount. Any release of information about an alleged violation of the sexual misconduct policy will not include personally identifying information about the victim without permission.
Immunity for Victims
Although the University does not condone violations of university policies, it considers reporting assaults to be of paramount importance, and will therefore extend limited immunity to victims in order to foster reporting and adjudication of sexual misconduct. Additionally, the University will extend limited immunity to others who report violations of sexual misconduct or assist victims of sexual misconduct.
The following Campus Victim Support Services will be notified so that they can be available to assist the victim:
The following off-campus victim support services are available to assist the victim:
The Judicial Process
Once the documentation phase of the investigation is complete, at the request of the victim, the alleged offender will be referred to the judicial process. Alleged violations of the sexual misconduct policy will result in a Judicial Board Hearing. These board hearings are arranged promptly with the purpose of providing resolution of the case in a timely manner. Prior to the hearing, all parties will be advised of their rights.
Rights of the Alleged Victim
The Office of Student Services conducts Judicial Board Hearings with the purpose of examining relevant information in order to determine whether the accused student is in violation or not in violation. The hearing is conducted fairly and objectively. Only persons directly involved with the case and their advisors are permitted to attend the hearing.
The sexual history and character of the complainant will not be discussed in the hearing. Both the alleged victim and the alleged offender are entitled to have an advisor present during a conduct hearing. Both the victim and the alleged offender will be informed of the outcome of the hearing and any appeals, in writing, within 48 hours of the conclusion of the hearing. If the Judicial Board determines the alleged offender to be in violation of this sexual misconduct policy, sanctions will be imposed. Hearings may result in sanctions ranging from warning up to and including expulsion, depending on the severity of the misconduct.
This policy has been revised by the National Center for Higher Education Risk Management (www.ncherm.org). Some language used here may be from proprietary NCHERM model policies, and is used with permission. Please seek permission from NCHERM to use or adapt its materials.