Sexual Misconduct Policy: Student and Student Organization Rights and Expectations
Confidentiality; Respect for Privacy.
Information regarding Sexual Assault, Sexual Harassment, Domestic Violence, Dating Violence, or Stalking reports, and any investigation or review or those reports, including sanctioning determinations, will be shared among Morehouse officials with a legitimate educational interest or with external individuals or entities only on a need-to-know basis and only as permitted by Morehouse policy and applicable law.
When a Complainant Requests Confidentiality and Elects Not to Proceed With an Investigation
If the Complainant does not wish to proceed with an investigation and/or requests to remain confidential, Title IX still requires the College to investigate and take reasonable corrective action in response to the Complainant’s information. In such case, College’s ability to respond may be limited.
The Title IX Coordinator will weigh the Complainant’s request(s) for confidentiality and/or wish not to proceed with an investigation against the College’s obligation to provide a safe, non- discriminatory environment for all students.
Specifically, the Title IX Coordinator will consider the following factors:
- The seriousness of the alleged misconduct;
- Whether there have been other complaints of Sexual Misconduct or Sex Discrimination against the accused at the College or any other school or in the nature of prior criminal charges;
- Whether the accused threatened further misconduct or violence against the Complainant or others;
- Whether the Sexual Misconduct or Sex Discrimination was committed by multiple persons;
- Whether the Sexual Misconduct involved use of a Weapon;
- The age of the Complainant;
- Whether the University possesses other means to obtain relevant evidence of the misc onduct;
- Whether the Complaint reveals a pattern of conduct at a particular location or by a particular individual and or student group or organization;
- The accused's right to receive information about the allegations if the information is maintained by the College as an "education record" under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (“FERPA”); and
- Any other information that is relevant under the circumstances.
The Title IX Coordinator or designee will inform the Complainant if the College cannot ensure confidentiality. In an instance where the College must disclose a Complainant’s identity, the Title IX Coordinator or designee will inform the Complainant prior to making the disclosure.
Responsible employees are those who have the authority to address and remedy sexual misconduct and gender-based discrimination or those who a student or another employee would reasonably believe to have such authority or obligation. All supervisors are responsible employees but not all responsible employees are supervisors. Responsible employees must report known details of the incident as well as the names of the Complainant and Respondent.
- Examples of responsible employees are Directors, Faculty, Department Heads, Deans, Vice Presidents, Managers, Supervisors, Police Officers, Residential Deans, Coaches, Advisors, Office of General Counsel, Human Resources, and Office of Student Conduct.
Confidential employees are those individuals who have a confidentiality privilege to protect the personal identification of a Complainant.
These confidential employees (i.e. health care professional, licensed counselors, etc.) can fulfill their reporting requirements by making general reports for statistical purposes and pattern tracking but do not divulge personally identifiable information without client consent.
- Employees who do not have a confidentiality privilege should not promise confidentiality to the Complainant. An employee can tell the Complainant that he/she will only tell the individuals that must know and will do his/her best to protect the Complainant’s identify but cannot promise confidentiality. If the Complainant wants confidentiality, then he/she must be referred to a confidential employee (i.e. health care provider or licensed counselor).
Protection from Retaliation.
Morehouse will take appropriate steps to ensure that a person who in good faith reports or participates in a Sexual Assault, Sexual Harassment, Domestic Violence, Dating Violence, or Stalking investigation will not be subjected to Retaliation by the Responding Persons or others.
Anyone who believes that they are experiencing Retaliation is strongly encouraged to report that concern using the procedure for the reporting of Sexual Assault, Sexual Harassment, Domestic Violence, Dating Violence, or Stalking under this Sexual Misconduct Policy.
Coordination with Concurrent Legal Proceedings. Students may report to law enforcement in connection with the same behavior that forms the basis of Prohibited Conduct under this Sexual Misconduct Policy.
Where a Complainant or another person with knowledge of possible Prohibited Conduct has reported to law enforcement, Morehouse will fulfill its responsibility under Title IX to take prompt and appropriate action to provide protection and resources to the Complainant to the extent permitted by law or policy.
A report to law enforcement will not change the College’s obligation to potentially investigate the matter but it may briefly delay the timing of the investigation if a law enforcement agency requests that the College delay its process for a reasonable amount of time to allow it to gather evidence of criminal conduct.
Advisor of Choice. Both Complainant and Respondent are entitled to have a single advisor and/or observer of their choice accompany them at any meeting related to the Title IX process. This advisor or observer may be an attorney. The advisor may not interrupt or interfere with the proceedings and, to the extent they do, Morehouse retains the right to stop the process and remove the advisor.
Conflict of Interest. Any persons exercising authority under this Sexual Misconduct Policy who believe they may be unable to exercise that authority impartially in any case shall excuse themselves from the matter and will be replaced with another person.
If the Complainant or Respondent believes a person exercising authority under this Sexual Misconduct Policy has a personal, professional, or financial involvement with the Complainant or Respondent that would prevent the person from exercising their authority impartially, they may make a prompt objection to the Title IX Coordinator.
If the Title IX Coordinator determines that the objection is reasonable, the challenged person will be replaced with another person.
Because Morehouse is a small community, knowledge of or acquaintance with the student(s) and/or witness in a matter, awareness of a matter, participating as a consequence of one’s official role in events surrounding a matter, and/or participation in the process prior to the formal disciplinary process, shall not automatic ally be grounds for disqualification. The decision of the Title IX Coordinator regarding a challenge is final.