2017-2018 Student Handbook

Page 86 of 107 Updated 1.25.17 When used in this policy, the term Complainant refers to the person who believes that he/she has been the subject of sexual misconduct, regardless of whether that person makes a complaint or requests an investigation. The term Respondent refers to the person(s) who has been accused of sexual misconduct. The term third party refers to an individual who is not a University student or employee. The term witness refers to any individual who may have information pertinent to the complaint or investigation. All Hardin-Simmons employees are designated as Responsible Employees which means they must report all disclosures of sexual misconduct to the Title IX Office. A Confidential Resource refers to designated employees at Hardin-Simmons who are not required to report disclosures of sexual misconduct to the Title IX Office. The Office of Counseling Services (Moody Center 2 nd floor, 325-670-2272) is a designated Confidential Resource. Students who are not ready to disclose sexual misconduct to responsible employees or the Title IX Office are encouraged to talk with HSU’s Office of Counseling Services. All forms of prohibited conduct described in this policy are regarded as serious offenses. Any member of the HSU community found in violation of this policy will be subject to disciplinary action, up to and including expulsion or termination of employment. 22.4 Prohibited Sexual Misconduct Consent is knowing, voluntary, and permission by word or action to engage in mutually agreed upon sexual activity or contact. Consent is active and not passive. Silence, in and of itself, should not be interpreted as consent. • Consent to one act does not constitute consent to another act. • Consent on a previous occasion does not constitute consent on a later occasion. • Consent to an act with one person does not constitute consent to an act with any other person. • The existence of a prior or current relationship does not, in itself, constitute consent; even in the context of a relationship, there must be mutual consent. • Consent can be withdrawn or modified at any time, and sexual contact must stop immediately once consent is withdrawn. • Consent cannot be inferred from silence, passivity, or lack of resistance, and relying on nonverbal communication alone may result in a violation of this policy. Per Texas State Law, an individual is unable to provide consent to engage in sexual activity when the individual: 1) is under age 17 and the sexual contact involves an adult (someone 18 years of age or older) who is 3 or more years older and of the opposite sex; 2) has a mental disorder or developmental or physical disability that renders her or him incapable of giving knowing consent; 3) is unconscious; or 4) is incapacitated from alcohol or other drugs, and this condition was known, or reasonably should have been known by the accused. “Incapacitated” means intoxicated to the point that the person is incapable of exercising the judgment required to decide whether to consent. 22.5 Prohibited Sexual Misconduct 22.5.1 Sexual Harassment Sexual harassment is unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature. It includes unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal, nonverbal, or physical conduct of a sexual nature that interferes with or limits a student’s ability to participate in or benefit from the university’s educational programs and activities or their living environment. Sexual harassment also includes gender-based harassment, which may include acts of verbal, nonverbal, or physical aggression, intimidation, or hostility based on gender or gender-stereotyping, even if those acts do not involve conduct of a sexual nature. This definition will be interpreted and applied in a manner consistent with the accepted standards of mature behavior, academic freedom, and the mission of the university. Harassment includes the following definitions: • Harassment can occur in person, by phone, text message, email or any other electronic medium