Discrimination, Sexual Misconduct and Retaliation Policy

Policy Number: #

Responsible Executive(s):

  • Associate Vice President of Human Resources

Responsible Office(s):

  • Equal Opportunity and Title IX, Human Resources

Date Adopted: 08-13-2020

Date Revised: 08-14-2020

  1. Purpose. Regis University (“Regis”) is committed to providing equal access to a learning and work environment free from unlawful discrimination, harassment, and retaliation. Regis Policy prohibits University community members from engaging in unlawful discrimination and harassment on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex (including sexual harassment, sexual violence, sexual assault, sexual exploitation, intimate partner violence, or stalking) gender, disability, age, religion, veteran status, marital status, pregnancy, parental status, gender identity, gender expression, sexual orientation, genetic information or any other legally protected status [“protected class”] in any of its policies, programs, admissions or activities. In addition, it prohibits retaliation against any individual involved in Regis process to report, investigate, or ameliorate an allegation discrimination, harassment, or retaliation (“prohibited conduct”). Regis will endeavor to take immediate and appropriate corrective action necessary to prevent, end, or ameliorate the effects of prohibited conduct. Regis has designated a Title IX Coordinator who is responsible for coordinating the response to allegations:

    Carole Goddard (she, her, hers)
    Equal Opportunity & Title IX Coordinator

  2. Scope

    1. This Policy is applicable with respect to University employment, delivery of and participation in education, programming, benefits, and admission. It applies to programs or activities, in the United States, whether such programs or activities occur on-campus or off-campus. This includes locations, events, or circumstances wherein Regis exercises substantial control over the individuals involved in the allegations, and the context in which the conduct occurs.

    2. Regis University may address conduct that falls outside the above geographic jurisdiction through other relevant policies or codes of conduct.

  3. Policy. It is the policy of Regis to comply with relevant laws regarding reporting, investigating, and ending prohibited conduct occurring in its educational programs. Regis will follow its investigative and grievance procedures applicable to the reported allegation and, if necessary, discipline those who violate policy as necessary, up to and including separation from the institution.

    1. Community Responsibilities

      1. All Community Members. It is the responsibility of every member of the University community to foster an environment free from Discrimination, Harassment, Sexual Misconduct, and Retaliation.

      2. Employees. All Regis University Employees (except for Privileged and Confidential Resources) are considered Responsible Employees and are required to promptly report any knowledge of prohibited conduct based on the above listed protected classes.

      3. Student Employees. Student employees, including graduate assistants and teaching assistants, are required to promptly report allegations of prohibited conduct that is discovered within the course and scope of their University employment.

      4. Students. Students are encouraged to report knowledge of prohibited conduct.

    2. Reporting Options

      1. Choice. An alleged victim of discrimination, harassment, sexual misconduct, or retaliation has the right to choose whether to report to the University themselves.

      2. Amnesty. Sometimes, complainants or witnesses are hesitant to report to University officials or participate in resolution processes because they fear that they themselves may be accused of policy violations, such as underage drinking at the time of the incident. To encourage good faith reporting, Regis University pursues a policy of offering reporting parties and witnesses amnesty from minor policy violations related to the incident, such as personal consumption of drugs or alcohol. While a complainant can choose not to report allegations of prohibited conduct, please be aware that the University cannot take action to address situations if not notified or otherwise made aware of an incident(s). Voluntary use of drugs or alcohol is never a valid defense to a violation of this policy.

      3. Reporting to Regis. Any person may report prohibited conduct. Reporting parties are encouraged to provide as much detail as is available. The University’s ability to respond to anonymous or insufficient reports may be limited. Reports can be made in the following ways:

        1. Online reporting: Reports can be made on the Equal Opportunity and Title IX Website 

        2. Anonymous reporting: Anonymous reporting can be made through the Bias Incident Report Form with the omission of identifying information. Responsible Employees may not file anonymously.

        3. By mail or in person:
          3333 Regis Boulevard B-4
          Main Hall 204
          Denver, CO 80221-1099

        4. By phone: 303-964-6435

        5. By E-mail: cgoddard001@regis.edu

        6. Reporting to Campus Safety. All crimes and safety issues that occur on campus can also be reported to Campus Safety:
          Regis Square Suite 28
          5115 Federal Blvd.
          303.458.4122
          safety@regis.edu 

      4. Reporting to Law Enforcement. Complainants and witnesses have the option to report or decline to report all incidents of sexual misconduct and other incidents of discrimination and harassment to law enforcement. An investigation conducted by the University is distinct from any investigation conducted by law enforcement. An investigation conducted by the University flows from the University’s obligation under Title VI, VII, IX and related federal and state laws to ensure that it is providing a safe environment for all community members. Therefore, if an individual wish to pursue options in the criminal justice system, a report should be made to law enforcement in the location where the crime occurred. A student or employee may be assisted with making a police report by the EO & Title IX Coordinator, a Deputy EO & Title IX Coordinator, the Asst. Director of Victim Advocacy & Violence Prevention or Campus Safety

      5. Privileged or Confidential Resources. There are confidential resources on campus who are not required to report prohibited conduct to the TIX Coordinator or law enforcement unless there is a statutory duty to do so, such as instances of child abuse and neglect or threats of homicide or suicide. The employees who are not required to report incidents of prohibited conduct to Regis include:

        1. Office of Counseling and Personal Development Counselors and Staff

        2. Jesuits and those studying to become a Jesuit (when acting in the capacity as a Jesuit)

        3. University Ministry Staff (excluding peer ministers)

        4. Assistant Director of Victim Advocacy & Violence Prevention

        5. Student Health Services Providers and Staff

      6. Accommodations. All parties to a Regis process who require a reasonable accommodation due to disability have the right to request such accommodation through:

        For Employees:
        Human Resources
        3333 Regis Blvd., West Hall, Denver, CO 80221-1099
        Phone: 303-458-4161
        hrinfo@regis.edu 

        For Students:
        Student Disability Services
        3333 Regis Blvd., G- 18, Clarke Hall, Denver, CO 80221-1099
        Phone: 303-458- 941
        disability@regis.edu 

      7. Definitions

        1. Actual Knowledge. Actual knowledge means notice of sexual harassment or allegations of sexual harassment to Regis’s Title IX Coordinator or any official of the recipient who has authority to institute corrective measures on behalf of Regis. 

        2. Formal Complaint. A document filed by a Complainant or signed by the Title IX Coordinator alleging prohibited conduct against a Respondent and requesting that Regis investigate the allegation. A Formal Complaint can be submitted to the EO & Title IX Coordinator through any means listed in this policy.

        3. Complainant. A Complainant is an individual who is alleged to be the victim of conduct that could constitute discrimination, harassment, sexual misconduct, or retaliation.

        4. Respondent. A Respondent is an individual who has been reported to be the perpetrator of conduct that could constitute discrimination, harassment, sexual misconduct, or retaliation.

        5. Discrimination is any distinction, preference, advantage for or detriment to an individual compared to others that is based upon an individual’s actual or perceived protected class. The conduct must be so objectively offensive as to alter the conditions of the individual’s employment or educational experience. 

        6. Harassment is unwelcome conduct based on an actual or perceived protected class and the conduct is severe, persistent, or pervasive enough to create either a hostile environment or denies or limits a person’s ability to participate in or benefit from University programs or activities. Harassment may occur in the following ways:

          1. Quid pro Quo: When offensive conduct becomes a condition of the continued employment, advancement, or an education environment;

          2. Hostile Environment: The determination of whether an environment is “hostile” includes whether it is based on a protected class and the totality of the circumstances.

        7. Sexual Misconduct. Sexual Misconduct is an umbrella term that includes (but is not limited to) Sexual Harassment, Nonconsensual Sexual Contact, Nonconsensual Sexual Penetration, Sexual Exploitation, Intimate Partner Violence, and Stalking, and any sexual conduct that takes place without consent of the parties involved.

        8. Consent. The state of Colorado defines consent as cooperation in act or attitude pursuant to an exercise of free will and with knowledge of the nature of the act. A current or previous relationship shall not be sufficient to constitute consent. Submission under the influence of fear shall not constitute consent. Regis uses an affirmative consent standard when determining if there was consent to engage in sexual activity of any kind. Consent is defined as the affirmative, actively given, unambiguous and voluntary agreement to engage in a specific sexual activity during a sexual encounter. To obtain consent, a clear "yes," verbal or otherwise, is necessary. Consent cannot be inferred from the absence of a "no." A current or previous relationship is not sufficient to constitute consent. A person under the influence of fear cannot give consent. Consent may never be given by a minor under the age of 15, or by a minor under the age of 18 in certain situations depending on the ages of both parties and in instances where the adult is in a position of trust. Consent cannot be given by an individual who is asleep, or by and individual who is mentally or physically incapacitated either through the effect of drugs or alcohol or for any other reason. Consent may also not be given by an individual who was under duress, threat, coercion, or force.

          1. Coercion. Coercion occurs when an individual is pressured, psychologically or emotionally manipulated, tricked, threatened, or forced in a nonphysical way, to engage in unwanted sexual activity. Coercion occurs when an individual is caused to believe that sex is owed to another person because of that person’s position of authority or based on the parties’ relationship. Coercion can involve persistent attempts to have sexual contact after an individual has already refused to engage in sexual activity.

          2. Incapacitation. Incapacitation is a state where a person lacks the ability to make rational reasonable decisions including an inability to understand the who, what, when, where, why or how of sexual activity, or an inability to fully understand the details of sexual interaction. Incapacity can result from alcohol or drug consumption, illness, unconsciousness, blackout, sleep, mental disability, and other circumstances. Sexual activity with someone who one should know to be - or based on the circumstances should reasonably have known to be - mentally or physically incapacitated.

          3. Force. Force includes the use of physical violence, abuse of power, threats, intimidation, and/or coercion in order to engage in sexual activity without a person’s consent and against a person’s will.

        9. Sexual Harassment. Conduct on the basis of sex that satisfies one or more of the following:

          1. An employee of Regis conditioning the provision of an aid, benefit, or service of the recipient on an individual’s participation in unwanted sexual conduct;

          2. Unwelcome conduct determined by a reasonable person to be so severe, pervasive, and objectively offensive that it effectively denies a person equal access to the educational program or activity; or

          3. Sexual assault, dating violence, domestic violence, or stalking.

        10. Nonconsensual Sexual Contact. An intentional act of sexual touching, however slight, with any body part or object by a person upon a person that is without consent and/or by force, or during a period of incapacitation that can be reasonably construed as being for the purposes of sexual arousal, gratification, or abuse.

        11. Nonconsensual Sexual Penetration. An act of sexual penetration (anal, oral, or genital), however slight with any body part or object, or, sexual intercourse by a person upon a person that is without consent and/or by force.

        12. Sexual Exploitation. Refers to a situation in which a person takes nonconsensual or abusive sexual advantage of another, and that behavior does not otherwise fall within the definitions of Sexual Harassment, Nonconsensual Sexual Penetration or Nonconsensual Sexual Contact. Sexual exploitation includes, but is not limited to, sexual voyeurism invasion of sexual privacy, taking and/or distributing pictures, video, or audio recording of a sexual act, or any other private activity without the consent of all involved in the activity, prostitution, exposing one’s genitals in non-consensual circumstances, administering alcohol or drugs to another person without his or her knowledge or consent.

        13. Intimate Partner Violence. Intimate Partner Violence (IPV), often referred to as relationship violence, domestic, and dating violence includes any act of violence or threatened act of violence when used as a method of coercion, control, punishment, intimidation or revenge against a person with whom the individual was previously or is currently involved in a sexual, romantic, parenting or dating relationship. This includes relationships between spouses, former spouses, past or present unmarried couples, dating relationships and sexual partners. IPV includes, but is not limited to, physical violence, emotional abuse, financial abuse and other forms of sexual misconduct (stalking, nonconsensual sexual contact, nonconsensual sexual penetration and sexual exploitation). IPV includes threats, assault, property damage, violence or threat of violence to one’s self, or to family, friends, coworkers or pets of the sexual or romantic partner. IPV may consist of one act of misconduct or an ongoing pattern of behavior.

        14. Stalking. Engaging in a course of conduct directed at a specific person that is unwelcome and would cause a reasonable person to feel fear or suffer emotional distress.

          1. Course of Conduct: Two or more acts, including, but not limited to, acts in which the stalker directly, indirectly, or through third parties, by any action, method, device, or means, follows, monitors, observes, surveils, threatens, or communicates to or about a person, or interferes with a person's property.

          2. Emotional distress: mental suffering or anguish that may, but does not necessarily, require medical or other professional treatment or counseling.

          3. Reasonable person: A reasonable person under similar circumstances and with similar identities to the complainant

        15. Retaliation. Any intentional action taken by any party to a complaint or report or allied third party that harms an individual as reprisal for being party to a complaint or report under this policy or participating in a civil rights complaint proceeding.

      8. Training: The Title IX Coordinator will oversee ongoing training programs on the campus community specifically designed to increase awareness of the issues with the ultimate goal of preventing discrimination, harassment, sexual misconduct, interpersonal violence and retaliation within the Regis community. The trainings will be comprehensive and specifically designed for the diverse audience of employees and students. Training will include definitions of prohibited conduct, bystander intervention strategies, reporting options and obligations, and resources available on campus.

      9. External Agency Filing. Persons who believe that they have been subjected to discrimination, harassment, sexual misconduct or retaliation may be able to file an external complaint with the following agencies:

        Colorado Civil Rights Division
        303.894.2997
        1.800.886.7675
        DORA_CCRD@state.co.us
        https://www.colorado.gov/pacific/dora/civil-rights

        United Stated Office of Civil Rights
        Department of Health & Human Services
        200 Independence Ave S.W.
        Washington D.C. 20201
        1.800.368.1019
        TTD 1.800.537.7697
        https://www.hhs.gov/ocr/complaints/index.html

        United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
        303 E. 17th Ave. Suite 410
        Denver, CO. 80203
        1.800.669.4000
        TTY: 1.800.669.6820
        info@eeoc.gov
        https://www.eeoc.gov/field-office/denver/location

      10. Promulgation: This Policy is promulgated under Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 (Title IX), 20 U.S.C. §§ 1681, et seq., and its implementing regulations; 2. 34 C.F.R. Part 106; Title IV of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (42 U.S.C. § 2000c); 3. The Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act (“VAWA”); 4. The Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Crime Statistics Act (“Clery Act; Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (“Title VII”); 6. Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, 42 U.S.C. §§ 2000d, et seq. and its implementing regulations at 34 C.F.R. Part 100; and 7. Colo. Rev. Stat. § 24-34-402.

      11. Amendments, Interpretation, or Termination of this Policy. This policy does not constitute a contract and should not be construed to create any contractual rights. Regis University reserves the right to modify, amend, or terminate this policy at any time. This policy was last revised on August 13, 2020. It supersedes all previous policies of the University, its colleges, schools or departments with respect to Title IX and other discrimination matters. The University will make reasonable efforts to adhere to this policy as faithfully as possible, however, this policy is not a contract.

      12. Related Policies Procedures, Forms and Other Resources

        Sexual Misconduct Process Procedure
        Student Code of Conduct
        Employee Handbook