Sexual Harassment and Violence Policies

SEXUAL HARASSMENT POLICY

Augsburg College prohibits sexual harassment, intimidation and exploitation. Sexual harassment includes but is not limited to unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature when:

  • submission to such conduct is made either explicitly or implicitly as a term or condition of an individual’s employment; or
  • submission to or rejection of such conduct by an individual is used as the basis for academic and/or employment decisions affecting such individuals; or
  • such conduct has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with an individual’s academic or work performance or creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive environment.

Augsburg College prohibits sexual violence: see also the Sexual Violence Policy

Recognizing Sexual Harassment

A person commits sexual harassment when they:

  • subject a subordinate or student to unwanted sexual attention, or
  • attempt to coerce a co-worker or student into a sexual relationship, or
  • threaten to punish a subordinate or student for refusal to comply with sexual demands, or
  • make sexual favors conditions of participation in a class or work environment, or
  • indicate that sexual favors are a basis for a grade or performance evaluation, or
  • engage in conduct of a sexual nature that creates an intimidating, hostile, or offensive working or learning environment

Examples of Behavior that may be prohibited by this Policy 

(Within the context of academic freedom around teaching and research)

Verbal or Written

  • Use of offensive terms with sexual meaning, including mean-spirited jokes and unwelcome repeated teasing
  • Referring to a person with sexual connotations (i.e. hunk, sexy, babe, doll, etc.)
  • Making sexual comments about a person’s body or clothing
  • Sexual jokes, stories, or history told in person or through an electronic device
  • Sexual innuendoes, language or images made verbally or sent through texts, instant messages, email, social media posts, or by letter

Non-Verbal

  • Stalking or blocking a person’s path
  • Giving unwanted personal gifts
  • Leering, staring, or looking a person up and down in a suggestive fashion
  • Displaying sexually suggestive visual materials
  • Making expressions such as blowing kisses or licking lips or making hand gestures

Physical

  • Giving an unwanted massage to the person or brushing up against them
  • Unwanted touching of a person’s clothing, hair or body
  • Touching and/or rubbing oneself sexually against another person

This policy covers behaviors by third parties that occur on Augsburg College property.

Reporting Process

We encourage employees to speak directly to the perceived offender to draw attention to the behavior and to ask the person to stop. If the behavior stops, employees should report the incident to one of the Investigating Officers and that it is resolved.

If the employee is not comfortable speaking with the perceived offender, or they have done so and have received no adequate response, the employee should immediately report all incidents or situations of harassment or discrimination to an investigating Officer of the College. All reports of harassment or discrimination, including sexual harassment or sexual violence, will be taken seriously and appropriate investigative action will take place.

Students may use confidential counseling services provided by the Campus Pastor and/or the Center for Counseling and Health Promotion. These are confidential sessions and will not be reported to the College and are not part of the complaint and harassment processes.

Students are strongly encouraged to file an official complaint with one of the investigating officers listed below.

Investigating Officers

Every complaint of sexual harassment will be investigated by one of the following individuals, their designee, or an independent investigator hired by the College.

  • Assistant Vice President Human Resources/Chief Diversity Officer and Title IX Coordinator
  • Vice President for Academic Affairs and Dean of the College
  • Vice President of Student Affairs

If you contact one of the above individuals they can:

  • Assist and advise students, staff and faculty who feel they are experiencing sexual harassment
  • Investigate the complaint
  • Take appropriate action to stop the unwelcome behavior

Faculty should also refer to related policies in the Faculty Handbook.

Academic Freedom and Freedom of Expression

The College is committed to protecting and supporting academic freedom. For specific details and the definition of academic freedom, refer to the Faculty Handbook. Academic freedom shall be considered in investigating and reviewing complaints and reports of sexual harassment. However, raising issues of academic freedom will not automatically excuse behavior that constitutes a violation of the law of the College’s Sexual Harassment policy.

Employee Counseling

Faculty and staff may use confidential counseling services provided by the Employee Assistance Program (EAP). However these confidential counseling sessions will not be reported to the College, and are not part of the complaint and investigation process. Employees are still expected to report incidents of harassment or discrimination through the proper channels above.

Confidentiality

The College is sensitive to the desire of complainants for privacy and confidentiality. However, the College’s responsibility and obligation to investigate complaints of harassment and take appropriate action means that the College cannot guarantee anonymity to complainants.   The College will discuss the incident only with persons who have a legitimate need to know in the course of investigating and responding to the incident.

Approved by the Board of Regents January 27, 2012

SEXUAL VIOLENCE POLICY

Sexual violence exceeds the bounds of acceptable behavior at Augsburg College and is prohibited. The College is committed to maintaining an academic environment free from any form of sexual coercion or violence. While recognizing the wide diversity of backgrounds, cultures, religious beliefs and experiences of the campus community, the College holds community members responsible for their actions in accordance with this policy.

Under this policy, sexual violence is any unwelcome sexual contact (actual or threatened) or penetration to which there has been no consent at the time of the activity. Lack of consent means that the person who has alleged the occurrence of sexual violence has not said “yes” to the sexual activity, including instances when she/he is unable to give informed consent because of sleep, being under the influence of alcohol, or for any other reason she/he is not able to give consent due to a physical or emotional condition.

Sexual contact can include but is not limited to unwelcome sexual behavior, including kissing and/or intentional touching of another person’s intimate parts (breasts, buttocks, genital area, groin or inner thigh, or the clothing covering these intimate parts), and unwelcome sexual penetration. Sexual violence also includes threats of violence with or without weapons.

Sexual penetration includes any sexually intended intrusion, however slight, into any opening of a person’s body by parts of another person’s body or any object.

Approved by Executive Committee of the Board of Regents July 20, 1992

Taking Action in Cases of Sexual Violence

In most situations, you choose whether to involve the College in responding to an incident of sexual violence. You may resolve it on your own outside the College process with an off-campus therapist, pastor, police, private attorney, or sexual violence center.

Students may use the confidential services of the Augsburg Campus Pastor or the Center for Counseling and Health Promotions. Students may also contact The Aurora Center at the University of Minnesota (24 hour help line: 612-296-9111). Augsburg has a contract with the Aurora Center.  However, consulting with these persons is not a substitute for officially reporting to the College Investigating Offices. We strongly encourage students to report the assault to one of the Investigating Offices.

Faculty and staff may use confidential counseling services provided by the Employee Assistance Program (EAP). However these confidential counseling sessions will not be reported to the College, and are not part of the complaint and investigation process. Employees are still expected to report incidents of harassment or discrimination through the proper channels below.

Reporting Process

To take official College action you must file a report with one of the Investigating Offices. You should report if the incident occurred on Augsburg property, at an Augsburg event, or with a member of the Augsburg community or a third party.

You can report incidents of sexual violence to any of the Investigating Offices listed below or to any Augsburg faculty or staff member. All staff and faculty are required to report incidents of sexual violence that are brought to their attention to one of the Investigating Offices. The Investigating Offices are trained to assist and advise students, staff and faculty who have experienced a violation of the sexual violence policy.

The Investigator will determine and implement appropriate action to assist in maintaining the safety of both the complainant and the campus community. She or he will also discuss options with the victim/survivor and take any official action which is appropriate.

Investigating Offices

Every complaint of sexual violence will be investigated by one of the following individuals, their designee, or an independent investigator hired by the College.

  • Director and Chief Human Resources Officer
  • Vice President for Academic Affairs and Dean of the College
  • Vice President of Student Affairs

Sexual Violence Immediate Action

Seek Safety

Go to a safe place

Take care of yourself first

Call for help

For Safety/Assistance:

From office/campus phone: From off-campus phone:
Dept. of Public Safety x1717 Dept. of Public Safety 612-330-1717
Police 9-911 Police 911

 

If you contact the Department of Public Safety first, they may contact the police if there is a need to protect the crime scene or there is a threat to the campus community.   Usually, you will be asked if you want to report the incident to the police. However, you do not need to press charges at this time. If you live on campus, the Department of Public Safety will contact on-call residence staff to assist you.

Do NOT Disturb the Evidence.

Until a report is filed:

  • Do not shower
  • Do not douche
  • Do not change or wash clothes
  • Do not comb hair
  • Leave the scene untouched

Remember, it is not your fault. Assault can be committed by a stranger, lover, acquaintance, and/or family member.

Contact the Aurora Center: 24 hour help line: 612-626-9111.

Go to the Hospital for Medical Care: Call the Department of Public Safety (x1717) to assist you in arranging transportation to the hospital.