Campus Conduct Hotline

Call 866-943-5787

Campus Conduct Hotline is a confidential, independent, call-in service that provides a simple, anonymous way for you to help preserve the values and reputation of our institution.  Students may confidentially report an incident of sexual harassment or sexual assault.

 

WHAT TO DO IF YOU EXPERIENCE SEXUAL VIOLENCE - PDF

 

Sexual Misconduct / Sexual Violence Policy

LaGrange College
Revised July 1, 2019

 

INTRODUCTION

  1. SCOPE OF POLICY
    1. Persons Covered
    2. Locations Covered
  2. PROHIBITED CONDUCT & DEFINITONS
    1. Sex or Gender-Based Discrimination
    2. Sexual Misconduct
    3. Additional Definitions
  3. CONFIDENTIALITY
    1. Privileged and Confidential Communicators
  4. TITLE IX COORDINATOR, DEPUTY COORDINATORS AND RESPONSIBLE EMPLOYEES
    1. Designated Title IX Coordinator, Deputy Coordinators and Responsible Employees
    2. Responsible Employees & Request for Confidentiality
  5. REPORTING
    1. Emergency & External Reporting Options
    2. Anonymous Reporting
  6. INTERIM MEASURES & REMEDIES
  7. PREVENTION, AWARENESS PROGRAMS AND TRAINING
  8. INVESTIGATION AND RESOLUTION OF GRIEVANCE
    1. Intake Meeting
    2. Initial Fact-Gathering
    3. Informal Resolution
    4. Formal Resolution
      1. Formal Investigation
      2. Notice of Findings and Response
      3. Final Report
      4. Initial Determination and Sanctions
  9. HEARING AND APPEALS

 

Introduction

It is the policy of LaGrange College (“the College”) to maintain an environment for students, faculty, administrators, staff, volunteers, and visitors that is free of all forms of discrimination and harassment, including sexual misconduct. The College has enacted this Sexual Misconduct Policy (the “Policy”) to reflect and maintain its institutional values and community expectations, to provide for fair and equitable procedures for determining when this Policy has been violated, and to provide recourse for individuals and the community in response to violations of this Policy.

This Policy prohibits all forms of sexual or gender-based discrimination, harassment, and misconduct, including sexual assault, non-consensual sexual contact, intimate partner violence, sexual exploitation, and stalking. This Policy also prohibits retaliation against a person who reports, complains about, or who otherwise participates in good faith in any matter related to this Policy. All the foregoing conduct shall be referred to as “Prohibited Conduct.”

LaGrange College does not discriminate on the basis of sex in its educational, extracurricular, athletic, or other programs or in the context of employment. Sex discrimination is prohibited by Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, a federal law that provides:

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 education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.

Sexual harassment is also prohibited under Title IX, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, and other applicable statutes. This Policy prohibits sexual harassment against LaGrange College community members of any sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression in the context of education or employment. This Policy also prohibits gender-based harassment that does not involve conduct of a sexual nature.

Upon receipt of a report, the College will take prompt and equitable action to eliminate the Prohibited Conduct (if any), prevent its recurrence, and remedy its effects. In addition, the College will fulfill its obligations under the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2013 (“VAWA”) amendments to the Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Crime Statistics Act (“Clery Act”) in response to reported Prohibited Conduct. Students or employees who are found to have violated this

Policy may face disciplinary action up to and including expulsion (students) or termination of employment (faculty or staff).

LaGrange College also prohibits other forms of discrimination and harassment addressed in the Statement of Non-Discrimination.

Prior to the articulation of the Policy, it is important to note options for assistance following an incident of sexual violence. Whether or not an individual chooses to formally report an incident, receiving immediate medical attention and/or counseling is vital to the individual’s overall health and wellness. Likewise, seeking immediate medical attention is vital to preserve evidence if an investigation is to follow. More detailed information on resources is also available at the end of this Policy.

I.  SCOPE OF POLICY

This Policy applies to all reports of Prohibited Conduct occurring on or after the effective date of this Policy (July 1, 2019). Where the date of the reported Prohibited Conduct precedes the effective date of this Policy, the definitions of misconduct in existence at the time of the report will be used. The Grievance Process under this Policy, however, will be used to investigate and resolve all reports made on or after the effective date of this Policy, regardless of when the incident(s) occurred.

When used in this Policy, “Complainant” refers to the individual who is identified as the subject of Prohibited Conduct. “Respondent” refers to the individual alleged to have engaged in Prohibited Conduct (the “Parties”). A “Third-Party” refers to any other participant in the process, including a witness or an individual who makes a report on behalf of a Complainant.

  1. Persons Covered
    This Policy applies to all LaGrange College community members, including students, faculty, administrators, staff, volunteers and visitors.

    The College strongly encourages reports of Prohibited Conduct regardless of who engaged in the conduct. Even if the College does not have jurisdiction over the Respondent, the College will take prompt action to provide for the safety and well-being of the Complainant and the broader campus community.

  2. Locations Covered
    This Policy applies to all on-campus conduct and some off-campus conduct, described below. The College strongly encourages reports of Prohibited Conduct regardless of location. Even if the Policy does not apply to the conduct because of its location, the College will take prompt action to provide for the safety and well-being of the Complainant and the broader campus community.

    On-Campus Conduct. This Policy applies to conduct that occurs on-campus, including conduct which occurs on property owned or controlled by the College.

    College Programs. This Policy applies to conduct that occurs in the context of College employment or education programs or activities, including, but not limited to, LaGrange College study abroad or internship programs.

    Off-Campus Conduct. This Policy also applies to conduct that occurs off-campus and has continuing adverse effects on, or creates a hostile environment for, any member of the LaGrange College community on-campus or in any College employment or education program or activity.

II. PROHIBITED CONDUCT & DEFINTIONS

  1. Sex or Gender-Based Discrimination

    Sex or gender-based discrimination refers to the disparate treatment of a person or group because of that person’s or group’s sex, gender identity or gender expression.

  2. Sexual Misconduct:

    Sexual harassment is unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature, including but not limited to unwelcome sexual advances; requests for sexual favors; or other verbal or nonverbal conduct of a sexual nature, including acts of sexual violence. Based on guidance from the Federal government, dating violence, domestic violence, and stalking may, depending on the facts, be forms of sexual harassment. LaGrange College prohibits sexual harassment against community members (e.g., students, faculty, staff, campus visitors) of any sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression in the context of education. Complaints alleging harassment based on a person’s actual or perceived gender identity or expression will be taken seriously and handled in the same manner as other harassment complaints. Sexual harassment may take two forms: (1) quid pro quo, and (2) creating a hostile environment.

    Sexual harassment quid pro quo occurs when a position of authority is used to threaten to impose a penalty or to withhold a benefit for sexual favors, whether or not the attempt is successful. Sexual harassment may involve behavior by a person of either gender against a person of the same or opposite gender. It should be noted that the potential of sexual harassment exists in any of the following relationships: student/student, employee/student, student/employee, and employee/employee. Here and subsequently, “employees” refers to faculty, staff, and administration. Because of the inherent differential in power between College employees and students, sexual relationships between employees and students are prohibited.

    A hostile, demeaning, or intimidating environment exists when sexual harassment is sufficiently serious to deny or limit an individual's full and free participation in the life of the College. A hostile environment can be created by anyone involved in a College’s program or activities (e.g., administrators, faculty members, staff members, campus visitors).

    Explicit behaviors constituting sexual harassment include but are not limited to requests for sexual favors, physical assaults of a sexual nature, sexually offensive remarks, and rubbing, touching or brushing against another’s body. More subtle behaviors may be experienced as intimidating or offensive, particularly when they recur, or one person has authority over another. Such behaviors may include but are not limited to unwelcome hugs or touching, inappropriate staring, veiled suggestions of sexual activity, requests for meetings in non-academic settings, and risqué jokes, stories or images.

    These behaviors may range from the most egregious forms, such as sexual violence, to more subtle forms. The College defines acts of sexual violence as physical sexual acts perpetrated against a person’s will or where a person is incapable of giving consent (e.g., due to the individual’s age or use of drugs or alcohol, or because an intellectual or other disability prevents the individual from having the capacity to give consent; For full definition of consent, please refer to Section II. C).

    Sexual violence includes rape, sexual assault (both non-consensual sexual contact and non-consensual sexual intercourse), sexual abuse, sexual coercion, and sexual exploitation. Other than “rape, definitions of the proceeding terms will be the State of Georgia definition governing at the time of the incident. By Federal dictate, the College will use the FBI definition of “rape” included in the most current version of the Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Summary Reporting System, which encompasses the categories of rape, sodomy, and sexual assault with an object; the current definition used therein is as follows,

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

    As noted above, Federal guidance has confirmed that, depending on the facts, dating violence, domestic/family violence, and stalking may also be forms of sexual harassment. While definitions of the proceeding terms are included in the definition section of this Policy, the College will use the most current definition used by the State of Georgia governing on the date of the alleged incident.

  3. Additional Definitions:

    Coercion. Coercion is inappropriate pressure for sexual activity. Coercive behavior differs from seductive behavior based on the type of pressure someone uses to get consent from another. When a person makes clear that they do not want sex, wants to stop, or that going past a certain point of sexual interaction is unwanted, continued pressure beyond that point can be coercive.

    Consent. Consent is a clear, unambiguous, and voluntary agreement between participants to engage in specific sexual activity. Consent is active, not passive, and is given by clear actions or words. Consent may not be inferred from silence, passivity, or lack of active resistance alone. Instead, consent is affirmatively given. A current or previous dating or sexual relationship is not sufficient to constitute consent, and consent to one form of sexual activity does not imply consent to other forms of sexual activity. Being intoxicated does not diminish one’s responsibility to obtain consent. In some situations, an individual may be deemed incapable of consenting to sexual activity. Examples of such situations include, but are not limited to, incompetence, impairment from alcohol and/or other drugs, fear, unconsciousness, intimidation, coercion, confinement, isolation, or mental or physical impairment. In Georgia, minors under the age of 16 years of are generally unable to provide consent, with narrow exceptions. See Georgia Code Ann. Section 16-6-3, Statutory Rape. The College recognizes the following aspects regarding consent:

    (a)consent is a voluntary agreement to engage in sexual activity, (b) someone who is incapacitated cannot consent; (c) past consent does not imply future consent, (d) silence or an absence of resistance does not imply consent, (e) consent to engage in one form of sexual activity does not imply consent to engage in other forms of sexual activity; (f) consent to engage in sexual activity with one person does not imply consent to engage in sexual activity with another; (g) consent can be withdrawn at any time, and (h) coercion, force, or threat of either invalidates 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. A felony or misdemeanor crime of violence committed by: a current or former spouse or intimate partner of the victim, a person with whom the victim shares a child in common, a person who is cohabiting with or has cohabitated with the victim as a spouse or intimate partner, a person similarly situated to a spouse of the victim under the domestic or family violence laws of the state of Georgia, or any other person against an adult or youth victim who is protected from that person’s acts under the domestic or family violence laws of the state of Georgia.

    Gender identity: A person’s deeply felt internal sense of being male or female, regardless of their sex assigned at birth.

    Gender expression: The manner in which a person represents or expresses gender to others, often through behavior, clothing, hairstyles, activities, voice or mannerisms.

    Incapacitation. Incapacity can result from mental disability, sleep, involuntary physical restraint, or from intentional or unintentional taking of alcohol and/or other drugs. An incapacitated person does not have the ability to give knowing consent. Sexual activity with a person who one should know to be – or based on the circumstances should reasonably have known to be – mentally or physically incapacitated, constitutes a violation of this Policy. The perspective of a reasonable person will be the basis for determining whether one should have known about the impact of the use of alcohol and/or drugs on another’s ability to give consent.

    Responsible Employee: The College has Responsible Employees who are required to share reports of allegations of Prohibited Conduct with the Title IX Coordinator or a Title IX Deputy Coordinator. A “Responsible Employee” includes any employee who

    • Has the authority to take action to redress the harassment
    • Has the duty of report to appropriate school official sexual harassment or any other misconduct by students or employees
    • An individual could reasonably believe has the authority or responsibility to take action. All College employees who do not have legally protected confidentiality are considered Responsible

    A responsible employee, excluding confidential resources, must report to the Title IX Coordinator all relevant details about the alleged sexual harassment or sexual violence shared by the individual and that the College will need to determine what happened – including the names of the victim and alleged perpetrator(s), any witnesses, and any other relevant facts, including the date, time and specific location of the alleged incident.

    Sexual abuse occurs when a person employs, uses, persuades, induces, entices, or coerces a minor who is not that person's spouse to engage in any act that involves: (a) Sexual intercourse, including genital- genital, oral-genital, anal-genital, or oral-anal, whether between persons of the same or opposite sex; (b) Bestiality or masturbation; (c) Lewd exhibition of the genitals or pubic area of any person; (d) Flagellation or torture by or upon a person who is nude; (e) Condition of being fettered, bound, or otherwise physically restrained on the part of a person who is nude; (f) Physical contact in an act of apparent sexual stimulation or gratification with any person's clothed or unclothed genitals, pubic area, or buttocks or with a female's clothed or unclothed breasts; (g) Defecation or urination for the purpose of sexual stimulation; or (h) Penetration of the vagina or rectum by any object except when done as part of a recognized medical procedure.

    Sexual Assault is a broad term and is used in Georgia to encompass any of the thirty-one (31) individual offenses listed in Title 16 (Crimes and Offenses) Chapter 6 (Sexual Offences) of the Georgia Code. The Federal Government defines sexual assault as an offense classified as a forcible or nonforcible sex offence under the FBI’s UCR program.

    Sexual Exploitation occurs when an individual 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 the following:

    • Invasion of sexual privacy
    • Intrusive beyond what would be considered reasonable and appropriate into personal matters of another individual
    • Prostituting another individual
    • Non-consensual video or audio-recording of sexual activity or circulation of such video and video or audio recording
    • Going beyond the boundaries of consent
    • Observing unsuspecting individuals who are partly undressed, naked, or engaged in sexual acts
    • Knowingly transmitting an STI or HIV to another individual
    • Exposing one’s breasts, buttocks, groin, or genitals, in non-consensual circumstances; inducing another to expose their breasts, buttocks, groin, or genitals
    • Sexually based stalking and/or bullying may constitute a form of sexual exploitation, as well as a form of sexual harassment, as discussed above

    Sexual Harassment is unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature, including but not limited to unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, or other verbal or nonverbal conduct of a sexual nature, including acts of sexual violence. Based on guidance from the Federal government, dating violence, domestic violence, and stalking may, depending on the facts, be forms of sexual harassment. Sexual harassment may take two forms: (1) quid pro quo, and (2) creating a hostile environment.

    Harassing conduct can take many forms. The determination of whether an environment is hostile is based on the totality of the circumstances, including but not limited to: (1) the frequency of the conduct; (2) the nature and severity of the conduct; (3) whether the conduct was physically threatening; (4) the effect of

    the conduct on the Complainant’s mental or emotional state, with consideration of whether the conduct unreasonably interfered with the Complainant’s educational or work performance and/or College programs or activities; (5) whether the conduct was directed at more than one person; (6) whether the conduct arose in the context of other discriminatory conduct; and (7) whether the conduct implicates concerns related to academic freedom or protected speech.

    A single isolated incident may create a hostile environment if the incident is sufficiently severe, particularly if the conduct is physical. A single incident of Sexual Assault, for example, may be sufficiently severe to constitute a hostile environment. In contrast, the perceived offensiveness of a single verbal or written expression is typically not sufficient to constitute a hostile environment.

    Stalking. Behavior where a person follows, places under surveillance, or contacts another person without the consent of that person for the purpose of harassing and intimidating him or her. The term “contact” means to make or attempt to make any communication, including, but not limited to, communication in person, by telephone, by mail, by broadcast, by computer or computer network, or by any other

    electronic device. “Harassing and intimidating” refers to a course of conduct or communications directed at a person that causes the person to suffer emotional distress that would cause a reasonable person to fear for personal safety or the safety of others, and which serves no legitimate purpose. It does not require that an overt threat of death or bodily injury be made.

    Student. The term student means any person pursuing academic studies at the College; this includes: (a) a person not currently enrolled but who was enrolled in the fall, spring, or summer terms preceding the alleged violation; (b) a person who, while not currently enrolled, was previously enrolled at LaGrange College and who is reasonably anticipated to seek enrollment at a future date; (c) a person who has applied to or been accepted for admission to LaGrange College and has accepted an offer of admission or may reasonably be expected to enroll; or (d) a person enrolled in a LaGrange College program on a credit or non-credit basis.

III. CONFIDENTIALITY

The College encourages individuals who have experienced what they believe could constitute sexual harassment or sexual violence to speak with someone about what happened so that support can be offered, and the College can respond appropriately. Different individuals associated with the College have different abilities to maintain confidentiality in this area.

  • Some are required to maintain near complete confidentiality; talking to them is sometimes called a “privileged communication.”
  • Some employees are required to report all the details of an incident (including the identities of both the survivor and alleged perpetrator) to the Title IX Coordinator. A report to these employees (called “responsible employees”) constitutes a report to the College and generally obligates the College to investigate the incident and take appropriate steps to address the situation.
  • It is also possible to report to a third-party counselor or advocate off campus who may maintain confidentiality and only inform the school that an incident has occurred. As reporting requirements vary, it is important to discuss confidentiality with the third party prior to speaking with that individual.

This Policy is intended to make individuals aware of the various reporting and confidential disclosure options available to them so they can make informed choices about where to turn if an incident occurs. The College encourages individuals to talk to someone identified in one or more of these groups. The options include:

  1. Privileged and Confidential Communications

    Professional, licensed counselors and pastoral counselors who provide mental-health counseling to members of the school community (and including those who act in that role under the supervision of a licensed counselor) are not required to report any information about an incident to the Title IX Coordinator without a Complainant’s permission. Following is the contact information for these individuals:

    1. Pamela Tremblay, Ed.S., LPC - Director of the Counseling Center (706-880-8313; ptremblay@lagrange.edu)
    2. Brandi Cameron, Ed.S., LPCS – Counselor, Counseling Center (706-880-8177; bncameron@lagrange.edu)
    3. Rev. Adam Roberts – Chaplain and Director of Spiritual Life (706-880-8004; aroberts@lagrange.edu)

    While these professional and non-professional counselors and advocates may maintain a Complainant’s confidentiality vis-à-vis the College, they may have reporting or other obligations under state law. Such as mandatory reporting to law enforcement in case of minors; imminent harm to self or others; requirement to testify if subpoenaed in a criminal case.

    If the College determines that the alleged perpetrator(s) pose a serious and immediate threat to the College community, Campus Security, the President, or Dean of Students may be called upon to issue a timely warning to the community. Any such warning should not include any information that identifies the Complainant.

  2. Requesting Confidentiality from the College: How the College Will Weigh the Request and Respond.

    If an individual discloses an incident to a responsible employee but wishes to maintain confidentiality or requests that no investigation into a particular incident be conducted or disciplinary action taken, the College must weigh that request against the College’s obligation to provide a safe, non-discriminatory environment for all LaGrange College community members, including the reporting individual.

    If the College honors the request for confidentiality, an individual must understand that the College’s ability to meaningfully investigate the incident and pursue disciplinary action against the alleged perpetrator(s) may be limited.

    Although rare, there are times when the College may not be able to honor an individual’s request in order to provide a safe, non-discriminatory environment for all LaGrange College community members.

    The College has designated the following individual to evaluate requests for confidentiality once a responsible employee is on notice of alleged sexual harassment or sexual violence:

    • Dawn Coker, Vice President for Human Resources & Title IX Coordinator (706-880-8267; dcoker@lagrange.edu)

    When weighing an individual’s request for confidentiality or that no investigation or discipline be pursued, The Title IX Coordinator will consider a range of factors, including the following:

    • The increased risk that the alleged perpetrator will commit additional acts of sexual or other violence, such as:
      • Whether there have been other sexual harassment or sexual violence complaints about the same alleged perpetrator;
      • Whether the alleged perpetrator has a history of arrests or records from a prior school indicating a history of violence;
      • Whether the alleged perpetrator threatened further sexual violence or other violence against the Complainant or others;
      • Whether the sexual harassment or sexual violence was committed by multiple perpetrators;
    • Whether the sexual harassment or sexual violence was perpetrated with a weapon;
    • Whether the Complainant is a minor;
    • Whether the College possesses other means to obtain relevant evidence of the sexual harassment or sexual violence (e.g., security cameras or personnel, physical evidence);
    • Whether the Complainant’s report reveals a pattern of perpetration (e.g., via illicit use of drugs or alcohol) at a given location or by a particular group.

    The presence of one or more of these factors could lead the College to investigate and, if appropriate, pursue disciplinary action. If none of these factors is present, the College will likely respect the Complainant’s request for confidentiality.

    If the College determines that it cannot maintain a Complainant’s confidentiality, the College will inform the individual prior to starting an investigation and will, to the extent possible, only share information with people responsible for handling the College’s response.

    The College will remain ever mindful of the individual’s well-being and will take ongoing steps to protect the individual from retaliation or harm and work with the Complainant to create a safety plan. Retaliation against the reporting individual, whether by students or College employees, will not be tolerated. The College will also:

    • Assist the individual in accessing other available Complainant advocacy, academic support, counseling, disability, health or mental health services;
    • Provide other security and support, which could include issuing a no-contact order, helping arrange a change of living or working arrangements or course schedules (including for the alleged perpetrator pending the outcome of an investigation) or adjustments for assignments or tests; and
    • Inform the individual of the right to report a crime to local law enforcement – and provide the Complainant with assistance if the Complainant wishes to do so.

    Because the College is under a continuing obligation to address the issue of sexual harassment and sexual violence campus-wide, reports of sexual harassment and sexual violence (including non-identifying reports) will also prompt the College to consider broader remedial action – such as increased monitoring, supervision or security at locations where the reported sexual violence occurred; increasing education and prevention efforts, including to targeted population groups; conducting climate assessments/victimization surveys; and/or revisiting its policies and practices.

    If the College determines that it can respect an individual’s request for confidentiality, the College will also take immediate action as necessary to protect and assist the individual.

IV. TITLE IX COORDINATOR, DEPUTY COORDINATORS, & RESPONSIBLE EMPLOYEES

LaGrange College has designated the following Title IX Coordinator and Deputy Coordinators:

LaGrange College’s Title IX Coordinator oversees college compliance regarding all Title IX related matters, including the investigation of complaints. Responsibilities include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Ensuring Title IX compliance
  • Overseeing Deputy Coordinators
  • Assessing initial intake reports
  • Understanding college policies and procedures
  • Providing information about resources available to both the Complainant and Respondent
  • Assigning appropriate investigators to individual cases
  • Identifying the appropriate college Policy to resolve the complaint in a prompt and equitable manner
  • Tracking and monitoring incidents of sex discrimination and sexual misconduct
  • Providing information on options for complaint resolution
  • Coordinating education and prevention efforts

LaGrange College’s Deputy Coordinators are trained to receive initial intake and, if designated by the Title IX Coordinator, investigate complaints. Deputy Coordinator responsibilities include the following:

  • Supporting and assisting the Title IX Coordinator
  • Understanding college policies and procedures
  • Providing information about resources available to both the Complainant and Respondent
  • Hearing and/or receiving initial intake (fact-gathering)
  • Reporting intake reports to Title IX Coordinator for assessment
  • Investigating complaints (if designated by the Titles IX Coordinator)

V. REPORTING

The College strongly encourages all individuals to seek assistance from a medical provider and/or law enforcement immediately after an incident of sexual violence. This is the best option to ensure preservation of evidence and to begin a timely investigative and remedial response.

The College also strongly encourages all individuals or third-party witnesses to report any incident to the College and to local law enforcement, although neither is required. These reporting options are not mutually exclusive. Both internal and criminal reports may be made simultaneously.

Making a report means telling a Responsible Employee what happened—in person, by telephone, in writing, or by email. At the time a report is made, a Complainant does not have to request any particular course of action, nor does a Complainant need to know how to label what happened. Choosing to make a report, and deciding how to proceed after making the report, can be a process that unfolds over time.

The College provides support that can assist each individual in making these important decisions and will respect an individual’s autonomy in deciding how to proceed to the extent possible. In this process, the College will balance the individual’s interest with its obligation to provide a safe and non-discriminatory environment for all members of the College community.

The College will investigate and resolve all reports of Prohibited Conduct in a fair and impartial manner. The Parties will be treated with dignity and respect. In response to all reports of Prohibited Conduct, the College will make an immediate assessment of any risk of harm to the Parties, or the broader campus community and will take steps necessary to address those risks. These steps may include interim measures to provide for the safety of the individual and the campus community.

  1. Emergency and External Reporting Options

    Complainants have the right to notify or decline to notify law enforcement. The College strongly encourages all individuals to seek assistance from law enforcement immediately after an incident of Sexual Misconduct. The College will help any LaGrange College community member to get to a safe place and will arrange transportation to the hospital, coordination with law enforcement, and information about on- and off-campus resources and options for resolution.

    The College has Campus Security (Securitas) on duty twenty-four (24) hours a day. You may report crimes or other emergencies by calling:

    Emergency Assistance: 911
    LaGrange Police: 706-883-2603
    Campus Security (Securitas): 706-880-8911

    If you do not wish to make a report to the police, you are still encouraged to seek professional medical advice. Additional assistance is available through the following:

    Confidential Report – LaGrange College Counseling Center 706-880-8013
    Confidential Report – LaGrange College Chaplain & Director of Spiritual Life 706-880-8004
    Harmony House (LaGrange, GA): 24/7 hotline 706-885-1525 / General 706-882-4173
    Sexual Assault Support Center, Inc. (Columbus, GA): Crisis line 706-572-6010 / General 706-221- 1033
    West GA Rape Crisis Center (Carrollton, GA): Crisis line 770-834-7273 / General 770-834-8905 National Domestic Violence Hotline: 1-800-799-7233 (SAFE)
    Domestic Abuse Helpline for Men & Women: 888-7HELPLINE (888-743-5754)
  2. Campus Reporting Options

    The College recommends that individuals report Prohibited Conduct to a Responsible Employee or any of the following offices or individuals:

    Campus Security
    (Securitas) Ext 8911,
    Turner Hall
    security@lagrange.edu

    Dawn Coker, Vice President for Human Resources, Title IX
    Coordinator Ext 8267
    dcoker@lagrange.edu

    Brain Carlisle, Vice President and Dean of Students,
    Title IX Deputy Coordinator Ext 8976
    bcarlisl@lagrange.edu

    Ryan Cook, Associate Dean of Campus Life,
    Title IX Deputy Coordinator Ext 8112
    rcook2@lagrange.edu

    Karen Pruett, Associate Dean of Student Development,
    Title IX Deputy Coordinator Ext 8997
    kpruett@lagrange.edu

    Jennifer Claybrook, Athletic Director,
    Title IX Compliance and Appeal Officer Ext 8262
    jclaybrook@lagrange.edu

    The College reserves the right to grant amnesty from drug, alcohol, or other violations of the social code for parties reporting allegations under this Policy (i.e., if alcohol was involved in the incident, the reporting party would not then be charged with an alcohol infraction). Decisions regarding amnesty under the Policy will be made by the Dean of Students in conjunction with the Title IX Coordinator.

    Complaints or allegations of student-to-student sexual discrimination, sexual harassment, or sexual violence will be handled by the Dean of Students. Students may also contact the U.S. Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights to complain of sexual discrimination, sexual harassment, or sexual violence; see: http://www2.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ocr/complaintintro.html.

    Cases of sexual violence may also be reported to the LaGrange Police Department; the College’s Title IX Coordinator can assist individuals with contacting the Police Department. If an incident is criminal in nature, The College may be mandated to share certain information with law enforcement.

    Complaints of sexual discrimination, sexual harassment, or sexual violence involving non-students will be handled by the Vice President for Human Resources.

  3. Anonymous Reporting

    Although the College encourages victims to talk to someone, the College provides an alternative option for anonymous reporting. Campus Conduct Hotline , 866-943-5787, is a confidential, independent call-in service that provides all college community members a simple and anonymous way to report any incident.

VI. INTERIM MEASURES & REMEDIES

Upon receipt of a report, the College will provide reasonable and appropriate interim measures designed to eliminate any existing hostile environment and protect all Parties involved. The College will make reasonable efforts to communicate with the Parties to ensure that all safety, emotional and physical well- being concerns are being addressed. Interim measures may be imposed regardless of whether formal disciplinary action is sought by the Complainant or the College, and regardless of whether a crime is reported to Campus Security or local law enforcement. Interim measures may include no- contact directives, changes in class or work schedules, changes in College-owned living arrangements, interim suspension, College-imposed leave, or any other measures that the College deems appropriate. Likewise, the College may work with a reporting student to provide additional academic support or even withdrawal from class (or classes) without penalty.

The College will maintain the privacy of any interim measures provided under this Policy to the extent practicable and will promptly address any violation of the interim measures. All individuals are encouraged to report concerns about failure of another individual to abide by any restrictions imposed by an interim measure. The College will take immediate and responsive action to enforce a previously implemented restriction if such restriction was violated.

VII. PREVENTION, AWARENESS PROGRAMS AND TRAINING

LaGrange College is committed to preventing sexual harassment. To that end, this Policy and these procedures will be printed in appropriate College publications. In addition, educational programs will be conducted annually by the College to (1) inform students, faculty, staff and administration about identifying sexual harassment and the problems it causes; (2) advise members of the College community about their rights and responsibilities under this Policy; (3) train personnel in the administration of this Policy. The Sexual Misconduct Policy and Procedures will be issued to all incoming students and personnel.

VIII. RESOLUTION OF GRIEVANCE

The Title IX Team (Coordinator and/or Deputies) will coordinate resolution of all allegations of Prohibited Conduct defined in the Sexual Misconduct Policy using the procedures in this section. Prohibited Conduct (e.g., discrimination, harassment, retaliation) based on protected status other than sex (e.g., race, color, age, disability, other classification protected by federal or state law) is prohibited by other College policies. In the event of such complaints, the College will identify, based upon the allegation, the appropriate office to coordinate resolution of the report.

The following process in its entirety will be observed in response to policy violations involving students. The process to address a violation of the Sexual Misconduct Policy involving faculty and staff will not follow the appeal hearing process.

    1. Intake Meeting

      Upon receipt of a report or notice of an incident, the Title IX Team will conduct an Intake Meeting with the Complainant as soon as possible. At that meeting, the Coordinator or Deputy Coordinator will address the following topics, as appropriate:

      • Address immediate physical safety and emotional well-being needs
      • Notify the Complainant of the right to contact law enforcement and seek medical treatment (and the right to decline to do so), and the importance of preservation of evidence
      • Notify the Complainant of confidential and non-confidential reporting options on and off campus
      • Provide the Complainant with information about:
        • On and off campus resources, including counseling, health, mental health, victim advocacy, and legal assistance
        • The range of interim measures and remedies, including changes to academic, living, transportation, and/or working situations, or other protective measures, which are available to the Complainant regardless of whether the Complainant files a formal complaint with the College, Campus Security or local law enforcement
      • Provide an overview of the procedural options and process, including Informal Resolution and Formal Resolution
      • Explain the right to object to the assignment of the Title IX Coordinator, Deputy Coordinator or Investigators based on bias or conflict of interest within 2 business days of a decision to proceed through the process
      • Explain that the Complainant has a right to an advisor of their choice during the process
      • Explain the College’s policy on prohibiting retaliation

      Following the Intake Meeting, the Coordinator or Deputy Coordinator will provide the Complainant with the above-listed information in writing. If the initial Intake Meeting is conducted by a Deputy Coordinator, the meeting report will be submitted to the Coordinator for consideration. As described in the Sexual Misconduct Policy, the Complainant has the right to request that the Title IX office not share the Complainant’s name (or other identifiable information) with the Respondent, or that the Title IX office take no formal action in response to the report. If the Complainant makes such a request, the Coordinator will balance the request with the dual obligation to provide a safe and nondiscriminatory environment for all College community members, and to remain true to principles of fundamental fairness that require the College to provide the Respondent with notice of the allegations and an opportunity to respond before action is taken against the Respondent.

      The Coordinator will make this determination consistent with the following considerations, namely:

      • The seriousness of the conduct;
      • The respective ages and roles of the Complainant and the Respondent:
      • whether there have been other complaints or reports of Prohibited Conduct against the Respondent
      • The right of the Respondent to receive notice and relevant information before disciplinary action is sought. Should the Coordinator determine that, in response to the Complainant’s request, the College can satisfy its obligations to the Complainant, the College community members, and the Respondent without proceeding through the Process described herein, the Coordinator has the discretion to do so.

      Absent a request for confidentiality as described above, the Coordinator or Deputy Coordinator will ask the Complainant questions to get a basic understanding of the reported Prohibited Conduct. The interview will include, but is not limited to, questions to understand the key facts upon which the Complainant bases the report (i.e., the who, what, where, and when) to appropriately assess how to proceed. At the conclusion of the Intake Meeting, and if the individual wishes to move forward with a complaint, the Coordinator and Deputies will decide:

      • Does the Complainant’s report state facts that, if true, could constitute a violation of the College’s Sexual Misconduct Policy?
      • If yes, an initial investigation will be conducted to determine if the College should proceed through Formal or Informal Resolution

      The Title IX Coordinator or Deputy will select a trained internal or external investigator or a two-person investigative team to conduct a reasonable, impartial, and prompt investigation of the complaint (“Investigation”). The Coordinator will select an Investigator based on several factors, including the Parties involved, the complexity of the complaint, the need to avoid any potential conflict of interest, and who may best conduct a fair and equitable investigation for all Parties involved. The Coordinator will notify the Complainant, in writing, of the name of the designated Investigator(s). The Complainant will have 2 business days to object to the Investigator’s selection on the basis of bias or conflict of interest. If the Complainant objects, the Coordinator will evaluate whether the objection is substantiated. The Coordinator will remove and replace any Investigator the Coordinator finds to have a bias or conflict of interest against either party.

      The Complainant and the Respondent are each permitted to select an Advisor to accompany his/her during any investigative meeting, pre-hearing conference and/or at any time following the filing of a complaint. The Advisor may be a mentor, family member, friend, attorney or any other supporter so long as they are not in any way involved in the resolution process, such as serving as a witness. Their role is to support the Complainant or the Respondent and as such are not permitted to speak in investigative meetings or hearings, question witnesses, or disrupt any proceedings. The College cannot guarantee equal advisory rights, meaning that if one party selects an advisor who is an attorney, but the other does not, or cannot afford an attorney, the College is not obligated to provide one.

    2. Initial Fact-Gathering:

      The Investigator will interview both Parties and relevant witnesses and gather documentary evidence provided by the Parties and any identified witnesses. The Investigator will prepare a summary of each interview (“Interview Summary”).

      Using the findings from this preliminary investigation, the Title IX Coordinator, and Deputy Coordinators will determine and notify the Complainant in writing as to whether the College should proceed through Formal or Informal Resolution using the following guidelines:

      1. Any complaint that alleges sexual misconduct, including sexual assault and nonconsensual sexual contact, or other forms of physical violence must proceed through the formal investigation process. (Under the present state of law, cases involving violence may go through the informal process so long as both of the Parties agree.)
      2. Some complaints that allege harassment (without facts suggesting violence) may be appropriate for informal resolution. If the Coordinator determines that the complaint may appropriately be resolved through Informal Resolution, the Coordinator will ask the Complainant and Respondent, separately, whether they would agree to pursue resolution of the complaint informally. Any resolution reached through an informal process will be confirmed in writing and provided to the parties as soon as possible after reaching a resolution. If either party does not agree to pursue Informal Resolution, or if the Complainant, Respondent, or Coordinator, at any time, determines that Informal Resolution is no longer appropriate, the Coordinator will promptly inform the Complainant and Respondent in writing that the complaint will proceed through Formal Resolution.

  1. Informal Resolution

    If the Coordinator determines that it is appropriate, the Parties may choose to resolve complaints through Informal Resolution. Informal Resolution must be mutually agreed upon by both parties in cases of allegations of assault or violence. The Informal Resolution process may recommend the following types of outcomes, where appropriate: facilitating an agreement between the parties, separating the parties, referring the parties to counseling programs, conducting targeted educational and training programs, and mediation.

    If the parties involved in the Informal Resolution process fail to reach a mutually agreeable outcome for the alleged conduct, the allegation will be resolved via the formal investigation process. In that event, the Title IX Coordinator will so notify the Parties in writing and will describe next steps and timeframes for the Formal Resolution.

    Agreements reached via the informal resolution process shall be final following three (3) business days and cannot be appealed absent the discovery of new and material information or other similar circumstances, in which case a new investigation may be initiated.

    Any Party (including the Title IX Coordinator) may terminate the Informal Resolution process at any time.

  2. Formal Resolution

    If the Coordinator determines that the Complainant’s report must proceed through Formal Resolution, the Coordinator will make every attempt to notify both Parties, in writing, of the decision as soon as possible following the initial investigation. The Coordinator’s written notification to the Respondent will state facts sufficient to apprise the Respondent of the nature of the allegations, including, specifically:

    • Complainant’s name
    • Nature of the report
      • Specific policy violation(s) alleged (e.g., sexual assault, sexual harassment, retaliation)
      • Date(s) of alleged policy violation(s)
      • Location(s) of alleged policy violation(s)
      • Brief description of allegation(s)

    The notice of the complaint shall be accompanied with a request for a meeting with the Coordinator or Deputy Coordinator within 3 business days. If the Respondent does not respond to the meeting request or is unable to meet within 3 business days, the Coordinator shall provide the following information in writing:

    • On and off campus resources, including counseling, health, mental health, victim advocacy and legal assistance
    • The range of interim measures and remedies, including changes to academic, living, transportation, and/or working situations, or other protective measures.
    • An overview of the procedural options and process, including Informal Resolution and Formal Resolution
    • Explain that the student has a right to an advisor of their choice during the process
    • The College’s stance on alcohol and drug amnesty
    • The College’s policy prohibiting retaliation

    The Investigator will continue the investigation once the 3 business days has expired, or sooner if both Parties respond. The Investigator, in consultation with the Coordinator, will establish an expected, reasonable timeframe for the Formal Investigation process and notify the Parties of any delays.

    1. Formal Investigation

      The Investigator will review the documentation from the preliminary investigation and will prepare a Preliminary Report. The Preliminary Report is a written summary of the evidence gathered in the course of the Preliminary Investigation. The Investigator will state specific factual findings in the Preliminary Report (e.g., “Complainant was incapacitated” or “Respondent believed that Complainant was not incapacitated”). The standard for determining each factual finding is the “preponderance of the evidence,” (i.e., that it is more likely than not that the factual finding is true). The Investigator will not state ultimate findings as to whether the Respondent has, or has not, violated one or more of the College’s policies. The Investigator will attach as exhibits to the Preliminary Report all Interview Summaries and any documentary evidence gathered and relied upon in the Preliminary Investigation. When the Investigator determines that the Preliminary Investigation is complete, the Investigator will submit the Preliminary Report to the Coordinator. The Coordinator may require the Investigator to conduct additional investigation; if so, the Investigator will conduct additional investigation consistent with the following procedures:

      • The Investigator may conduct follow-up interviews with both Parties and witnesses based upon testimonial and documentary evidence gathered during the Preliminary Investigation. The Parties and witnesses can expect that, in these follow-up interviews, the Investigator will seek responses to specific allegations or evidence. To the extent additional material, witnesses or evidence are identified during Rebuttal Fact-Gathering, the Investigator will conduct additional interviews and gather additional evidence. Rebuttal Fact-Gathering may be repeated as necessary to ensure a complete gathering of evidence.
    2. Notice of Findings and Response

      Once the Coordinator has agreed that the Investigation is complete, the Coordinator will provide the Preliminary Report to the Parties for review, as soon as possible after receipt of the Preliminary Report from the Investigator. Neither the Complainant nor the Respondent (or their Advisors, including but not limited to family members and/or legal counsel) may copy, remove, photograph, print, image, videotape, record, or in any manner otherwise duplicate or remove the information provided.

      The Parties may respond to the Preliminary Report; the Parties will submit any response within 3 business day of being notified of their opportunity to review the report. The Parties may respond in one or both of the following ways:

      • The Parties may provide a written response to the Preliminary Report, or any portion of it, including each Interview Summary. The Investigator will consider any written response provided by the Parties in preparing the Final Report.
      • The Parties may submit a written request for additional investigation. Such requests may include, but are not limited to, the following:
        1. Request(s) for follow-up interview(s) with existing witnesses to clarify or provide additional information, including offering questions to the investigator to pose to witnesses
        2. Request(s) to consider new evidence. Any request for additional investigation shall explain the reason for the request (e.g., new witnesses).

      If neither of the Parties requests additional investigation, the Investigator will prepare the Final Report. If either (or both) Parties request additional investigation, the Investigator will review the request(s) in consultation with the Coordinator. The Investigator will conduct the requested additional investigation if the Coordinator determines that the request(s) will assist the Investigator in completing the investigation.

      If the Investigator conducts additional investigation, the Investigator will prepare an Addendum to the Preliminary Report (“Addendum”). The Investigator will submit the Addendum to the Coordinator. The Coordinator may require the Investigator to conduct additional investigation before the Addendum is complete. Once the Coordinator has agreed that the Addendum is complete, the Coordinator will provide the Addendum to the Parties.

    3. Final Report

      Once the investigation is complete, the Investigator will prepare a Final Report. The Final Report, if different from the Preliminary Report, will have attached as exhibits the testimonial and documentary evidence from the Preliminary Investigation, the Preliminary Report, the Addendum (if applicable), and all of the Parties’ responses throughout the Formal Resolution proceeding. Once the Investigator is satisfied that the Final Report is complete, the Investigator will submit the Final Report to the Coordinator. Based on the Final Report, the Title IX Coordinator will make the initial determination of responsible or not responsible and recommend appropriate actions and sanctions.

    4. Initial Determination and Sanctions

      Based on the Final Report, the Title IX Coordinator will make the initial determination and recommend appropriate sanctions. If the Parties agree, there is no need for a hearing.

      Possible sanctions which may be assigned after a finding of Responsibility are those articulated in the Social Code of the LaGrange College Student Handbook. This list is not exhaustive and may be modified to meet the particular circumstances of any given case:

      1. Expulsion - Permanent severance of the student's relationship with the College. This severance includes being barred from campus.
      2. Disciplinary Suspension - Temporary severance of the student's relationship with the College for a specified period of time.
      3. Limited Suspension - A student may be denied certain privileges for a specified period of time. These privileges may include, but are not limited to, class attendance, housing, parking on campus, participation in extracurricular activities, ID card privileges, access to institutional facilities, and access to the campus.
      4. Disciplinary Probation - Notice to the student that any further, major disciplinary violation may result in suspension. Disciplinary probation might also include one or both of the following: the setting of restrictions or the issuing of a reprimand.
      5. Reprimand (either oral or written.)
      6. Counseling - The committee may request that a student meet a specified number of counseling sessions with the campus counselor for issues including, but not limited to, anger management, substance abuse, and extenuating personal circumstances.
      7. Community Service - A specified number of hours of work to be performed by the student. The work will be determined and supervised by the Vice President and Dean of Students or a designee.

      IX. HEARING AND APPEALS

      1. Hearing (Hearing Panel)

        If the Parties do not agree to the Initial Determination and Sanctions, the Coordinator will set the date and time of the hearing, appoint a hearing panel consisting of four (4) trained hearing panelists and notify the Parties of the hearing date and option to call witnesses to the proceeding. Three (3) panelists will serve on the panel and will ultimately make the determination by majority opinion as to whether or not, by the preponderance of the evidence the Respondent is responsible for the alleged Sexual Misconduct Policy violation. The fourth panelist will serve as the panel chair and is responsible for maintaining order during the hearing panel proceeding.

        The hearing will not be conducted as a court proceeding. The Parties have the right to present testimony, present witnesses, and cross-examine witnesses and the other Party. However, the Parties may not cross- examine each other; all questions will be directed through the Chair of the hearing panel. It will also be an opportunity for the Panel to question the Parties and witnesses presented to determine whether the alleged policy violation occurred and impose the appropriate sanction(s).

        If the Respondent is found responsible for a violation of the College’s Sexual Misconduct Policy, the Respondent may appeal the decision by submitting a written appeal statement within 3 business days of the date the hearing report is sent to the parties. If the Respondent does not choose to appeal, the Formal Resolution process concludes with Sanctions. Both Parties may appeal the Sanctions determined. If the Respondent is found not to have violated the College’s Sexual Misconduct Policy, the Complainant may appeal the decision. If the Complainant does not choose to appeal, then the Formal Resolution has concluded.

      2. Appeal (Appeal Officer)

        If the Respondent or the Complainant chooses to appeal either the Sanctions or the hearing panel’s decision, they may do so by submitting a written appeal statement to the Title IX Coordinator within 2 business days of the date the hearing report is sent to the parties. The Title IX Compliance Officer serves as the Appeal Officer. The three grounds for appeal are:

        • To present new information not reasonably available at the time of the hearing that is material to the hearing panel’s decision;
        • To allege a procedural error(s) that materially impacted the hearing panel’s decision; or
        • To allege that the sanction was inconsistent with previous cases.

        The appeal statement must identify the ground(s) for appeal. Note that an appeal is not a re-hearing of the case.

        If the Appeal Officer determines that a ground of appeal is substantiated, the Appeal Officer will return the case to the Coordinator. When a case is returned to the Coordinator, the Coordinator may decide to drop the case (e.g., based on insufficient information to believe that a policy violation may have occurred), send the case to the original hearing panel for reconsideration, send the case to a new hearing panel with the same or different charges, and/or (re)implement any aspect of the disciplinary process. A different decision (i.e., the decision of responsibility and/or sanctions) may subsequently result. If the appeal officer finds the appeal is not substantiated, the decision of the hearing panel stands.