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TITLE IX EDUCATION AMENDMENTS OF 1972 (Title IX) Background, Policy, and Procedures

The Law

Under Title IX of the Educational Amendments of 1972:  "No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any educational program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.”

Purpose of the CCBC Title IX Background, Policy, and Procedures:

Community College of Beaver County (the College) is proactive in its efforts to address and prevent instances of sexual discrimination, sexual harassment and sexual violence. Below, students, employees, and third parties will find information about Title IX and the College’s policies and procedures regarding sexual misconduct, as well as additional related information. 

CCBC Sexual Violence, Harassment, and Discrimination Policy Summary

CCBC is committed to providing an environment that is free from all forms of discrimination and conduct that can be considered harassing, coercive, or disruptive, including sexual harassment.

This policy applies to all individuals (employees, students, and visitors) while on College premises, and/or at a College sponsored event and/or activity.

Actions, words, jokes, or comments based on an individual's sex, race, color, national origin, age, religion, disability, sexual orientation, or any other legally protected characteristic will not be tolerated.

The CCBC campus community is committed to preventing sexual violence and all members have a valuable role to play.  With our commitment to a primary prevention approach to curtail sexual violence, the College intends to help create environments that promote respect, equality, civility, and healthy relationships.

Title IX Background:

In an effort to promote an environment free from sexual harassment, sexual misconduct, and sexual violence, the College complies with Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, which prohibits discrimination (including sexual harassment, sexual misconduct and sexual violence) in any program or activity based on sex or gender.  Title IX also prohibits retaliation for asserting such claims of discrimination. The College is committed to providing an environment free from sex and gender-based discrimination or harassment. Sexual harassment is a serious matter. A charge of sexual harassment is not to be taken lightly by a complainant, respondent, or any other member of the College community. Individuals proven to be violators of this policy will be subject to disciplinary actions, including but not limited to, reprimand, suspension, termination of employment, or expulsion from the College.

Sex Discrimination-Related Definitions:

Coercion is the improper use of pressure to compel another individual to initiate or continue sexual activity against the individual’s will. Coercion can include a wide range of behaviors, including intimidation, manipulation, threats and blackmail. A person’s words or conduct are sufficient to constitute coercion if they wrongfully impair another individual’s freedom of will and ability to choose whether or not to engage in sexual activity. Examples of coercion include threatening to disclose another individual’s private sexual information (sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression) and threatening to harm oneself if the other party does not engage in the sexual activity.

Complainant is defined as an individual who reports being the victim of sexual misconduct.

Confidentiality means that information will not be shared by professionals without the express consent of an individual. The only professionals who have the ability to offer confidentiality related to Title IX are:  mental health providers, ordained clergy, rape crisis counselors and attorneys, all of whom have legally protected confidentiality. These individuals are prohibited from breaking confidentiality unless there is an imminent threat of harm to self or others or a suspicion of child abuse. 

Effective Consent is defined as willingly, freely and knowledgably agreeing to engage in sexual conduct. Consensual sexual conduct is a mutual decision reached by all parties involved without any indication of force, threat, coercion, manipulation, intimidation, or reasonable fear of injury. Consent cannot be given if an individual is mentally or physically incapacitated (e.g., due to excessive use of alcohol 

or drugs or a mental or physical condition). Silence, passivity, lack of active resistance or lack of active response does not indicate consent. In addition, previous participation in sexual activity does not indicate current consent. Consent to one form of sexual activity does not imply consent to other forms of sexual activity. 

Force is the use or threat of physical violence or intimidation to overcome an individual’s freedom of will to choose whether or not to participate in sexual activity. Force may also include moral, intellectual, psychological or emotional force. For the use of force to be demonstrated, there is no requirement that a Complainant resists the sexual advance or request. However, resistance by the Complainant will be viewed as a clear demonstration of non-consent.

Incapacitation is a state where an individual cannot make an informed and rational decision to engage in sexual activity because the individual lacks conscious knowledge of the nature of the act (e.g., to understand the who, what, when, where, why or how of the sexual interaction) and/or is physically helpless. An individual is incapacitated, and therefore unable to give consent, if s/he is asleep, unconscious, or otherwise unaware that sexual activity is occurring. 

Incapacitation may result from the use of alcohol and/or drugs. Consumption of alcohol or other drugs alone is insufficient to establish incapacitation as it is a state beyond drunkenness or intoxication. The impact of alcohol and drugs varies from person to person; however, warning signs that a person may be approaching incapacitation may include but not be limited to slurred speech, unsteady step or movement, odor of alcohol, vomiting, combativeness, or emotional instability. 

Evaluating incapacitation also requires an assessment of whether a Respondent knew or should have known that the Complainant was incapacitated based on objectively and reasonably apparent indications of impairment when viewed from the perspective of a sober, reasonable person in the respondent’s position. 

Intimate Partner Violence is not defined for the purposes of this policy as a distinct form of sexual misconduct. Rather, intimate partner violence shall include any act or threatened act of violence against a person who is, or has been involved in, a sexual, dating, domestic, or other intimate relationship with the Respondent. This may encompass behavior including, but not limited to, physical, sexual, and emotional violence. It may involve one act or an ongoing pattern of behavior. This may take the form of threats, assault, property damage, violence or threat of violence to one’s self, one’s sexual or romantic partner or to the family members or friends of the sexual or romantic partner. Intimate partner violence affects individuals of all genders, gender identities, gender expressions, and sexual orientations and does not discriminate by racial, social, or economic background. The College will not tolerate intimate partner violence of any form. The College recognizes that sexual harassment, sexual assault, sexual exploitation, harm to others, stalking, and retaliation all may be forms of intimate partner violence when committed by a person who is or has been involved in a sexual, dating, or other social relationship of a romantic or intimate nature with the Complainant. Under The Clery Act, the College will record and report all relevant incidents of intimate partner violence. 

Non-consensual Sexual Contact is any intentional sexual touching, however slight, with any object, by one person upon another person that is without consent and/or by force.

Non-consensual Sexual Intercourse is any sexual intercourse, however slight, with any object, by one person upon another person that is without consent and/or by force.

Privacy generally means that information related to a report of misconduct will only be shared with a limited circle of individuals on a “need to know” basis for legitimate complaint investigation and processing purposes. 

Respondent is defined as an individual alleged to have committed sexual misconduct.

Retaliation is intimidating, threatening, coercing, or in any way discrimination against an individual because of the individual’s informal or formal report or participation in a College investigation or proceeding related to Title IX.

Sexual Contact is intentional contact with the breasts, buttocks, groin, or genitals, or touching another with any of these body parts, or making another touch you or themselves with or on any of these body parts, or any other intentional bodily contact of a sexual manner.

Sexual Exploitation occurs when a person takes non-consensual or abusive sexual advantage of another for his/her own benefit, or to benefit anyone other than the one being exploited. Some examples of sexual exploitation include, but are not limited to:  (1) Invasion of sexual privacy; (2) Prostituting another person; (3) Non-consensual recording or broadcasting of sexual activity; (4) Engaging in voyeurism; (5) Knowingly exposing someone to an STD or HIV; (6) Exposing one’s genitals in non-consensual circumstances; (7) Sexually-based stalking, bullying and cyber-bullying.

Sexual harassment is any unwelcome sexual advance, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature when:  (1) Submission to such conduct is an explicit or implicit condition of employment or academic success; (2) Submission to or rejection of such conduct is used as the basis for an employment or academic decision; or (3) Such conduct has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with an individual’s work or academic performance, or creating an intimidating, hostile or offensive work or academic environment.

Examples of what constitutes sexual harassment include, but are not limited to, the following:

Sexual Intercourse is vaginal or anal penetration by a penis, object, tongue or finger, and oral copulation (mouth to genital contact or genital to mouth contact), no matter how slight the penetration or contact.

 

Stalking is any course of harassing, threatening, or intimidating conduct that an individual has willfully and repeatedly (more than once) engaged in that reasonably and seriously alarms, torments, or terrorizes another individual or group of individuals. Stalking behaviors may include, but are not limited to, repeated abusive and excessive contact and/or monitoring using telephone calls, voice mails, emails, instant messaging, text messages, and/or social media to one’s home or work; installing spyware on a person’s computer or phone without consent; trespassing; following and/or threatening an individual or a person’s friends and relatives; driving/walking by a person’s home, school, and/or work; or vandalizing property.

 

Alcohol and Other Drugs:

In general, sexual contact while under the influence of alcohol or other drugs poses a risk to all parties. Alcohol and drugs impair a person’s decision-making capacity, awareness of the consequences, and ability to make informed judgments. It is especially important, therefore, that anyone engaging in sexual activity be aware of the other person’s level of intoxication. If there is any doubt as to the level or extent of the other individual’s intoxication or impairment, the prudent course of action is to forgo or cease any sexual contact or activity. 

 

Being intoxicated or impaired by drugs or alcohol is never an excuse for sexual harassment, sexual violence, stalking, or intimate partner violence and does not diminish one’s responsibility to obtain consent.

Procedures and Responsibilities:

Students, employees, or third parties who have an inquiry or complaint of sexual harassment, sexual misconduct, stalking, dating violence, domestic violence, retaliation, or any form of discrimination should contact the Title IX Coordinator, Vice President for Human Resources, or a Title IX Deputy Coordinator listed in the contact information below.  

Complaints must:

While there is no time limit for reporting, complaints should be brought forward as soon as possible; all incidents should be reported even if significant time has elapsed but prompt reporting will better enable the College to respond, investigate, and provide an appropriate remedy, if warranted. 

A Title IX investigation will be conducted by the Title IX Coordinator and/or Deputy Coordinator(s), as appropriate.  Following the investigation, a written determination as to the validity of the complaint and description of the next steps, if any, will be issued to the complainant and respondent within five working days.

Inquiries will be kept confidential, when in compliance with the law.

Complaints filed with the College will be treated with privacy; however, they are not able to be confidential.  An individual who seeks completely confidential assistance may do so by speaking with professionals who have a legally protected confidentiality. Employees may access confidential assistance through the Employee Assistance Program. Information shared with these resources will remain confidential and will not be shared with the College or anyone else without express permission of the individual seeking services unless maintaining such confidentiality would result in harm to self or others. When a report involves suspected abuse of a minor under the age of 18, these confidential resources are required by Pennsylvania law to notify child protective services and/or local law enforcement. They are also required to notify the Title IX Coordinator that such a report has been made.

Sexual Assaults should be reported immediately by calling the emergency telephone number 724-480-3555 or visiting the Campus Security Office in the Student Services Center on the Main Campus. (1) The Security Officer will meet with the complainant in a private setting. (2) A statement will be taken regarding what occurred. (3) The complainant will be asked to identify his or her assailant(s) or describe them if they are not known. (4) Questions may be asked about the scene of the crime, potential witnesses, as well as what happened before and after the incident. These inquiries are a standard part of investigation. If desired, the complainant may have a support person with him or her during the interview.

In cases involving felonies or violent crimes (which encompasses most types of sexual assault), the College is obligated to notify the local police that a crime has been reported. Victims are encouraged to cooperate with law enforcement in such cases. Depending on the complainant’s preference, it may be possible for him or her to make a statement to College Security and the local police at the same time. However, reporting an incident is a separate step from choosing to prosecute. When a complainant files a report, he or she is not obligated to continue with legal proceedings or college disciplinary action. As an alleged victim, he or she controls whether or not the case is adjudicated through the college system, the criminal justice system or both.

Due to the violent and extremely serious nature of sexual assault, the College strongly encourages individuals who have been sexually assaulted to contact the police. Reporting the assault to the police soon after the incident occurs may greatly increase the possibility of successful prosecution, should the victim decide to pursue criminal charges. It is extremely important to preserve all evidence of a sexual assault if criminal prosecution is to be considered.  Describing an assault is difficult but it is not something a victim must go through alone. Sexual assault victims may choose to have a support person with them during investigative interviews.

Campus Security will supply the investigating police agency with a written copy of its report. If the victim is considering filing a criminal complaint, a police officer will be a part of the interview process. This does not mean he or she is obligated to proceed with criminal charges. Also, he or she may request that his or her identity be kept confidential until/unless he or she makes a commitment to proceed with criminal or college prosecution.

Victims of sexual assault will be offered the opportunity to make a formal complaint through the College’s appropriate complaint/judicial system against the offender under the College’s Code of Conduct or Title IX Policy, if the offender is a member of the CCBC community. The College may pursue code of conduct charges regardless of whether any criminal charges are filed. However, the College’s judicial process is not intended to serve as a substitute for the criminal justice system. The College will initiate internal judicial proceedings in incidents of sexual assault when a student, employee, or third party requests it and/or when subsequent investigation produces substantial evidence of a violation of College policy.

If the victim is a student and at the victim’s request, the Vice President of Student Affairs and Enrollment may be able to make special provisions for an alternate class schedule during the period of investigation. Other special support can also be provided upon request.

In addition to potential criminal court proceedings, perpetrators of sexual assault face significant potential sanctions under the College’s judicial/disciplinary system. If an individual has been assaulted and is considering whether or not to pursue campus disciplinary action, he or she is encouraged to discuss the matter with the Title IX Coordinator. This will enable him or her to review procedures should he or she decide to file formal charges through the College’s disciplinary system. This discussion does not obligate the alleged victim to pursue official action. If he or she decides to pursue the disciplinary process, charges may be filed directly by the victim or by the College on the basis of his or her written statement. Such charges would be handled in accordance with the procedures relating to violations of the College’s Student Code of Conduct or Title IX Policy.

To recap, an individual who is the victim of a rape or sexual assault has several options with regard to how the case is handled. The individual may choose to: (1) Press charges through the local police; (2) Press charges through the College disciplinary system; (3) Press charges through both systems concurrently; (4) Press no charges but request a College facilitated meeting with the alleged assailant to discuss the incident.

If an individual who reports a sexual assault is harassed by anyone in connection with the incident, the harassment should be reported immediately to Campus Security and/or the Title IX Coordinator. Reporting such harassment will enable the College to investigate the allegations. Individuals have the option to have a victim’s advocate and/or any other advisor with them at all times throughout such procedures. Both the accuser and the accused shall be informed of the outcome of any institutional disciplinary proceeding alleging a sexual offense. This includes the College’s final determination as well as any sanctions against the accused.

 

Respondents to allegations of violations of the Title IX Policy will be afforded equal resources as complainants.  Respondents will have the option to request an advocate and/or advisor throughout the procedures. 

Responsible Employees:

Under Title IX, a College is required to take immediate and corrective action if a “responsible employee” knew or, in the exercise of reasonable care, should have known about sexual or gender-based harassment that creates a hostile environment. At CCBC, employees with supervisory and leadership responsibilities on campus are considered “responsible employees.” This includes all faculty, coaches, administrators, confidential employees, and student employees/volunteers with a significant responsibility for student welfare. 

 

Accordingly, with the exception of individuals who have legally protected confidentiality, all “responsible employees” of the College are required to inform the Title IX Coordinator of any report of sexual harassment, sexual violence, stalking, or intimate partner violence they receive or of which they become aware immediately. This allows the Title IX Coordinator, working with the Title IX team, to conduct an initial assessment of the reported behavior, ensure that a Complainant is familiar with the options for resolution, both on and off campus, and address the necessity for any interim remedies or accommodations to protect the safety of the Complainant or the community. The Title IX team will seek the Complainant’s expressed preferences, if any, as to course of action.

Appeal Processes:

Appeals

1. Any respondent or complainant shall have the right to appeal the result of a discrimination investigation or formal hearing. Appeals must be made, in writing, to the Vice President of Human Resources (the Affirmative Action Officer and Title IX Coordinator for the College), Administrative Services Center, room 5106, ext. 3379 or the Vice President for Student Affairs and Enrollment within five calendar days after notification of a decision for the hearing.

2. The Appeals Board will be appointed by the College President and consist of two students, two members of the faculty, and one administrator.  In the case of employees, the panel will consist of two administrators, two staff, and one faculty member.

3. An appeal shall be limited to a review of the verbatim record of the initial hearing and supporting documents for one or more of the following criteria, except as required to explain the basis of new evidence:

a. New evidence comes to light that was not addressed at the hearing;

b. Due process was not provided in accordance with College guidelines;

c. Proof of false testimony at the hearing exists;

d. An unreasonable or arbitrary sanction was given; or

e. Other substantial irregularities occurred that played a role in the outcome of the hearing.

4. Of primary importance to the Appeals Board is the written statement.  The written statement should be as complete as possible in setting forth the basis for appeal as listed above. Clear and convincing reasons are necessary for a successful appeal.

 

5. The Appeals Committee shall make its recommendation to the College President within 10 calendar days after an appeal has been referred to it.

Sexual Violence Education and Support:

Sexual Violence Education and Support – The College’s website contains information and resources at www.ccbc.edu/policiesandprocedures.

Sexual Harassment and Title IX training is provided to all first-year students and employees and is required to be completed.

Campus Sexual Assault Victim’s Bill of Rights

The College will make available to students a “Campus Sexual Assault Victim’s Bill of Rights”, consistent with the Federal Campus Sexual Assault Victim’s Bill of Rights under section 485(f)(8) of the Higher Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. ~1092(f)(8)).

The Community College of Beaver County will act swiftly to protect the rights of all its members. Students who have been sexually assaulted have a variety of campus and area resources that are available to them. The College supports the victim’s right to choose which avenues of assistance are most appropriate. These resources include: Campus Security, to whom all crimes (including sexual assaults) should be reported, Title IX Coordinator, Title IX Deputy Coordinator, Counseling Services, the local police agency with jurisdiction, and the emergency department of the local hospital. Individuals who have been sexually assaulted have the following rights:

Principal CCBC Sexual Misconduct Policies

2.01.002 Civility

2.01.002.003 Sexual and Other Unlawful Harassment

 

2.01.002.002 Sexual Violence Awareness Education

IMPORTANT CONTACT INFORMATION:

Emergency- Campus Security, Community College of Beaver County
724-480-3555
Incident Reporting (Choose any of the following):

Title IX Coordinator – Employees and Students
Sally Mercer, Vice President for Human Resources
Administrative Services Center
724-480-3379
sally.mercer@ccbc.edu

 

Title IX Deputy Coordinator - Students

Jan Kaminski, Vice President for Student Affairs & Enrollment
Library, Room 205
724-480-3423

jan.kaminski@ccbc.edu

Title IX Deputy Coordinator - Athletics

Patrick Phillips, Assistant to the Athletic Director   

Athletics and Events Center

724-480-3362

patrick.phillips@ccbc.edu

 

Title IX Deputy Coordinator – Employees and Students

Vicki Suehr, HR Generalist

Administrative Services

724-480-3358

vicki.suehr@ccbc.edu

 

Title IX Team Member - Students

Liz Marshall, Director of Student Support Services

Library, Room 200

724-480-3410

liz.marshall@ccbc.edu

 

Medical Treatment

 

Heritage Valley Beaver
1000 Dutch Ridge Road
Beaver, PA 15009

Phone Numbers:  724.728.7000, 724.846.5400 (toll-free line for Beaver Falls/Ellwood City area) 724.764.7646 (toll-free line for East Liverpool, Ohio area)

 

Personal Support

 

CCBC, Main Campus

Counseling Office

Student Services Center

724-480-3421

Daily (Monday-Friday, 8 am-4:30pm)

Evenings (Monday-Thursday, 4:30-7pm)

 

Women’s Center of Beaver County

HELPLINE at (724) 775-0131, 24 hours a day, seven days a week

Network of Victim Assistance (NOVA)
Hotline: 1-800-675-6900
Web site: www.novabucks.org

 Police and legal Information

 

Police Emergencies – Dial 911

 

Center Township Police

224 Center Grange Rd, Aliquippa, PA 15001-1421

Non-Emergency: 724-774-0271

Emergency services are available 24/7 by calling 911

 

Monaca Police Department

928 Pennsylvania Ave, Room 111, Monaca, PA 15061-1800

Non-Emergency:  724-775-9614

Emergency services are available 24/7 by calling 911

 

State Police

1400 Brighton Road

Beaver, PA 15009-2226

Non-Emergency 724-773-7400

Emergency services are available 24/7 by calling 911

 

District Attorney’s Office
Phone: 724-773-8550

 

Department of Education Contact Information

 

United States Department of Education

Office of Civil Rights

Lyndon Baines Johnson Department of Education Building

400 Maryland Ave., SW

Washington DC 20202-1100

Telephone:  800-421-3481

Fax:  202-453-6012

TDD:  800-877-8339

Email:  OCR@ed.gov