University Sexual Misconduct Policy

November 2020

Princeton University does not tolerate sexual misconduct, including sexual harassment. Such conduct is harmful to the well-being of our community members, our learning and working environments, and the collegial relationships among students, faculty, and staff that characterize the culture of Princeton. All forms of prohibited conduct under this policy are regarded as serious University offenses, and violations may result in discipline, including the possibility of separation from the University. State and federal laws also address conduct that may meet the University’s definitions of prohibited conduct, and criminal prosecution may take place independently of any disciplinary action instituted by the University. In order to address incidents of sexual misconduct that do not fall within the definition of Title IX Sexual Harassment (which is a definition that is set forth in regulations promulgated by the U.S. Department of Education under Title IX of the Education Amendments Act of 1972 and which, among other things, limits the scope of Title IX Sexual Harassment to conduct that occurs within the United States and conduct that occurs within the University’s education program or activity), the University has two policies that address sexual misconduct: (1) this policy and (2) the Title IX Sexual Harassment policy (https://inclusive.princeton.edu/addressing-concerns/policies/title-ix-sexual-harassment-policy). These policies are inter-related and must be read together. There may be a circumstance when the allegations forming the basis of a formal complaint (defined below), if substantiated, would constitute prohibited conduct under both this University Sexual Misconduct policy and the Title IX Sexual Harassment policy. In that circumstance, the grievance process set forth in the Title IX Sexual Harassment policy will be applied in the investigation and adjudication of all of the allegations.

This University Sexual Misconduct policy applies only to certain conduct defined under this policy. Conduct not falling under the scope of this policy may be addressed under other University policies. Specifically, this policy applies to forms of sexual misconduct that do not fall under the scope of the Title IX Sexual Harassment policy, including Sexual Exploitation, Improper Conduct related to Sex, and University Sexual Harassment. The University Sexual Misconduct Policy also applies to complaints alleging certain conduct that would otherwise be prohibited under the Title IX Sexual Harassment policy (e.g., Quid Pro Quo Sexual Harassment, Sexual Assault, Domestic Violence, Dating Violence, and Stalking under the Title IX Sexual Harassment policy), but which must be dismissed under the Title IX Sexual Harassment policy because they do not meet the jurisdictional requirements.

The University will respond to reports or formal complaints (as defined in section II) of conduct prohibited under this policy with measures designed to stop the prohibited conduct, prevent its recurrence, and remediate any adverse effects of such conduct on campus or in University-related programs or activities.

The University will not deprive an individual of rights guaranteed under federal and state law (or federal and state anti-discrimination provisions; or federal and state law prohibiting discrimination on the basis of sex) when responding to any claim brought under the University Sexual Misconduct policy.

  1. The University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator
  2. Terminology
  3. Prohibited Conduct
  4. Assessment and Dismissal of Formal Complaints
  5. Confidentiality, Privacy, and Related Responsibilities
  6. Options for Complaints, Respondents, and Other Reporting Individuals
  7. Supportive measures for Complaints and Respondents
  8. Informal Resolution Process
  9. Grievance Procedures for University Sexual Misconduct Complaints, In General
  10. Investigation and Adjudication
  11. Appeal
  12. Training
  13. Record Retention
  14. Modification and Review of Policy

Appendix A: Law Enforcement and Confidential Resources

Appendix B: Informal Resolution Process

Appendix C: Range of Sanctions under this Policy


 

 I. The University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator

The Vice Provost for Institutional Equity and Diversity serves as the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator and coordinates the University’s compliance with Title IX and all University conduct policies related to sexual misconduct.

The University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator will be informed of all reports or formal complaints of violations of this policy, and oversees the University’s centralized response to ensure compliance with Title IX and the 2013 Amendments to the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA). The University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator’s responsibilities include (but are not limited to):

  • Communicating with all members of the University community regarding Title IX and VAWA, and providing information about how individuals may access their rights;
  • Reviewing applicable University policies to ensure institutional compliance with Title IX and VAWA;
  • Monitoring the University’s administration of its own applicable policies, including this policy and the Title IS Sexual Harassment policy and all related record keeping, timeframes, and other procedural requirements;
  • Conducting training regarding Title IX, VAWA, and prohibited conduct defined in this policy and related policies; and
  • Responding to any report or formal complaint regarding conduct that violates this policy. For any report of which the University has actual knowledge (and any formal complaint), the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator shall oversee and implement the explanation and provision of any supportive measures. For any formal complaint, the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator oversees the investigation and resolution of such alleged misconduct, directs the provision of any additional supportive measures, and monitors the administration of any related appeal.

The University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator may delegate certain responsibilities under this policy to designated administrators, who will be appropriately trained.

The University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator’s contact information is as follows:

Michele Minter
Vice Provost for Institutional Equity and Diversity
205 Nassau Hall
Princeton, New Jersey 08544
mminter@princeton.edu
609-258-6110

The University provides the contact information of the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator to students, faculty, staff, applicants for admission, applicants for employment, and all labor unions or professional organizations holding collective bargaining or professional agreements with the University.

 II. Terminology

The following definitions clarify key terminology as used in this policy.

Complainant refers to the individual(s) who is alleged to be the victim of conduct that could constitute University Sexual Misconduct.

Formal complaint refers to a document filed by a complainant (meaning a document or electronic submission (such as by electronic mail) that contains the complainant’s physical or digital signature, or otherwise indicates that the complainant is the individual filing the formal complaint) alleging University Sexual Misconduct against a respondent and requesting that the University investigate the allegation of University Sexual Misconduct. A formal complaint may be filed with the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator in person, by mail, or by electronic mail, by using the contact information provided in this policy, and by any additional method identified in this policy.

Formal complaint may also refer to a document signed by the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator alleging University Sexual Misconduct against a respondent. Where the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator signs a formal complaint, the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator is not a complainant or otherwise a party.

Official with Authority refers to administrators in the Office of Gender Equity and Title IX Administration, who have authority to institute corrective measures on behalf of the University.

Party or parties refer to the complainant(s) and the respondent(s).

Report refers to information brought to the attention of an Official with Authority alleging conduct prohibited under this policy; a report is not considered to be a formal complaint. A party may bring a report and then subsequently file a formal complaint.

Respondent refers to the individual(s) who has been alleged to be the perpetrator of conduct that could constitute University Sexual Misconduct.

Third party refers to any individual who is not a University student, a faculty member, or a staff member (e.g., vendors, alumni/ae, or local residents).

Witness refers to any individual who shares information relating to an allegation of prohibited conduct under this policy.

 III. Prohibited Conduct

This policy addresses University Sexual Misconduct. University Sexual Misconduct encompasses all of the prohibited conduct described below that occurs on the basis of sex that does not fall within the definitional or jurisdictional requirements of the federal regulations underlying the Title IX Sexual Harassment policy.

Examples of prohibited conduct under this University Sexual Misconduct policy may include:

  • Conduct that occurs in the local vicinity (e.g., an eating club) but outside of a University program or activity; or
  • Conduct that occurs outside of the United States when the conduct is associated with a University-sponsored program or activity, such as travel, research, or internship programs; or
  • Conduct that involves the use of the University’s computing and network resources from a remote location, including but not limited to accessing email accounts.

In determining whether alleged conduct violates this policy, the University will consider the totality of the facts and circumstances involved in the incident, including the nature of the alleged conduct and the context in which it occurred. Any of the prohibited conduct defined in this policy can be committed by individuals of any gender, and it can occur between individuals of the same gender or different genders. It can occur between strangers or acquaintances, as well as people involved in intimate or sexual relationships.

The prohibited behaviors listed below are serious offenses and will result in University discipline. Prohibited conduct involving force, duress, or inducement of incapacitation, or where the perpetrator has deliberately taken advantage of another individual’s state of incapacitation, will be deemed especially egregious and may result in expulsion or termination of employment. The respondent’s consumption of alcohol or the use of illegal substances does not constitute a mitigating circumstance when it contributes to a violation under this policy.

The following prohibited behaviors fall under the University Sexual Misconduct policy only if they fall outside the jurisdictional requirements of the Title IX Sexual Harassment policy (as described in section III of the Title IX Sexual Harassment policy):

  • Quid Pro Quo Sexual Harassment: An employee of the University conditioning the provision of an aid, benefit, or service of the University on an individual’s participation in unwelcome sexual conduct;
  • Sexual Assault: Any sexual act directed against another person, without the consent of the victim, including instances where the victim is incapable of giving consent. Sexual assault can occur between individuals of the same or different sexes and/or genders. This includes the following:
    • Rape: The carnal knowledge of a person, without the consent of the victim, including instances where the victim is incapable of giving consent because of their age or because of their temporary or permanent mental or physical incapacity;
    • Sodomy: Oral or anal sexual intercourse with another person, without the consent of the victim, including instances where the victim is incapable of giving consent because of their age or because of their temporary or permanent mental or physical incapacity;
    • Sexual Assault with an Object: To use an object or instrument to unlawfully penetrate, however slightly, the genital or anal opening of the body of another person, without the consent of the victim, including instances where the victim is incapable of giving consent because of their age or because of their temporary or permanent mental or physical incapacity;
    • Fondling: The touching of the private body parts of another person for the purpose of sexual gratification, without the consent of the victim, including instances where the victim is incapable of giving consent because of their age or because of their temporary or permanent mental or physical incapacity;
    • Incest: Sexual intercourse between persons who are related to each other within the degrees wherein marriage is prohibited by law; or
    • Statutory Rape: Sexual intercourse with a person who is under the statutory age of consent.
  • Domestic Violence: A felony or misdemeanor crime of violence committed: (a) by a current or former spouse or intimate partner of the victim; (b) by an individual with whom the victim shares a child in common; (c) by an individual who is cohabitating with, or has cohabitated with, the victim as a spouse or intimate partner; (d) by an individual similarly situated to a spouse of the victim under the domestic or family violence laws of the jurisdiction in which the felony or misdemeanor crime of violence occurred; (e) by any other individual against an adult or youth victim who is protected from that individual’s acts under the domestic or family violence laws of the jurisdiction in which the felony or misdemeanor crime of violence occurred. For purposes of this policy, an intimate partner is defined as an individual with whom one has or had a short- or long-term relationship that provides romantic and/or physical intimacy or emotional dependence. Intimate relationships can occur between individuals of the same gender or different genders and may include (but are not limited to) marriages, civil unions, dating relationships, “hook-up” relationships, relationships in which partners are characterized as “girlfriends” or “boyfriends,” and relationships between individuals with a child in common.
  • Dating Violence: Violence committed by an individual who is or has been in a social relationship of a romantic or intimate nature with the victim. The existence of such a relationship shall be determined based on the reporting individual’s statement and with consideration of the length of the relationship, the type of relationship, and the frequency of interaction between the individuals involved in the relationship. This includes, but is not limited to, sexual or physical abuse or the threat of such abuse. Dating violence does not include acts covered under the definition of domestic violence.
  • Stalking: Engaging in a course of conduct directed at a specific individual that would cause a reasonable person to: (a) fear for the individual’s safety or the safety of others; or (b) suffer substantial emotional distress. For the purposes of the Stalking definition: Course of conduct means two or more acts, including 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 an individual, or interferes with an individual’s property. Reasonable person means a reasonable person under similar circumstances and with similar identities to the victim. Substantial emotional distress means significant mental suffering or anguish that may, but does not necessarily, require medical or other professional treatment or counseling.
  • University Retaliation. The University expressly prohibits any form of retaliatory action against any member of the University community who in good faith: (1) files a report, complaint or grievance under this policy (or with an external entity); (2) opposes in a reasonable manner an action or policy believed to constitute a violation of this policy; or (3) participates in University investigations, compliance reviews, or discipline proceedings under this policy.

Depending on the circumstances referenced above, retaliatory acts may include (but are not limited to):

  • Adverse employment action;
  • Adverse action relating to participation in an educational or working program;
  • Unreasonably interfering with the academic or professional career of another individual;
  • Engaging in conduct which constitutes stalking, harassment, or assault;
  • Engaging in efforts to have others engage in retaliatory behavior on one’s behalf.

The University retains the right to charge an individual for making a materially false statement in bad faith during the course of an investigation, proceeding, or hearing under this policy, but will not conclude that any individual has made a materially false statement in bad faith solely based on the determination regarding responsibility.


Complaints alleging retaliation under this policy, including for the exercise of rights under this policy, must be filed in accordance with this policy and will be addressed promptly and equitably. Where the individual allegedly retaliating is not affiliated with the University and not otherwise subject to its policies, the University will process the complaint and take appropriate measures.


Notwithstanding the above, the exercise of rights protected under the First Amendment does not constitute retaliation prohibited under this policy; and charging an individual with a violation for making a materially false statement in bad faith in the course of a grievance proceeding under this policy does not constitute retaliation, provided, however, that a determination regarding responsibility, alone, is not sufficient to conclude that any party made a materially false statement in bad faith.

The jurisdictional requirements of the Title IX Sexual Harassment policy do not apply to the following prohibited behaviors, that is, the following prohibited behaviors do not fall under the Title IX Sexual Harassment policy regardless of where or under what circumstances they occur:

  • University Sexual Harassment: Unwelcome verbal or physical behavior which is directed at an individual based on sex, when these behaviors are sufficiently severe or pervasive to have the effect of unreasonably interfering with an individual’s educational experience, working conditions, or living conditions by creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive environment. Examples of conduct that can constitute sexual harassment if based on an individual’s sex include but are not limited to:
    • Unwelcome jokes or comments (e.g., sexist jokes);
    • Disparaging remarks about sex, gender identity, or gender expression (e.g., negative or offensive remarks or jokes about an individual’s self-presentation);
    • Displaying negative or offensive posters or pictures about sex;
    • Electronic communications, such as e-mail, text messaging, and Internet use, that violate this policy.
  • Sexual Exploitation. Any act whereby one individual violates the sexual privacy of another or takes unjust or abusive sexual advantage of another who has not provided consent, and that does not constitute non-consensual sexual penetration or non-consensual sexual contact. Examples may include: recording, photographing, transmitting, viewing, or distributing intimate or sexual images or sexual information without the knowledge and consent of all parties involved; voyeurism (i.e., spying on others who are in intimate or sexual situations).
  • Improper Conduct Related to Sex. Unprofessional or inappropriate conduct that does not fall under other forms of Title IX Sexual Harassment or University Sexual Misconduct, but that is sexual and/or sex based in nature and has the effect of unreasonably interfering with an individual’s educational experience, working conditions, or living conditions.

For purposes of this policy, consent is defined as follows:

  • Consent and Incapacitation. The University considers consent as a voluntary, informed, un-coerced agreement through words or actions freely given, which could be reasonably interpreted as a willingness to participate in mutually agreed-upon sexual acts. Consensual sexual activity happens when each partner willingly and affirmatively chooses to participate.

    Indications that consent is not present include: when physical force is used or there is a reasonable belief of the threat of physical force; when duress is present; when one individual overcomes the physical limitations of another individual; and when an individual is incapable of making an intentional decision to participate in a sexual act, which could include instances in which the individual is in a state of incapacitation.

    Important points regarding consent include:
    • Consent to one act does not constitute consent to another act.
    • Consent on a prior occasion does not constitute consent on a subsequent occasion.
    • The existence of a prior or current relationship does not, in itself, constitute consent.
    • Consent can be withdrawn or modified at any time.
    • Consent is not implicit in an individual’s manner of dress.
    • Accepting a meal, a gift, or an invitation for a date does not imply or constitute consent.
    • Silence, passivity, or lack of resistance does not necessarily constitute consent.
    • Initiation by someone who a reasonable person knows or should have known to be deemed incapacitated is not consent.

​​​​​For purposes of this policy, incapacitation (or incapacity) is the state in which an individual’s perception or judgment is so impaired that the individual lacks the cognitive capacity to make or act on conscious decisions. The use of drugs or alcohol can cause incapacitation. An individual who is incapacitated is unable to consent to a sexual activity. Engaging in sexual activity with an individual who is incapacitated (and therefore unable to consent), where an individual knows or ought reasonably to have understood that the individual is incapacitated, constitutes University Sexual Misconduct as defined by this policy.

 IV. Assessment and Dismissal of Formal Complaints

Upon receipt of a formal complaint, the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator will respond to any immediate health or safety concerns raised. The University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator will then conduct an initial assessment for the sole purpose of determining whether the alleged conduct, if substantiated, would constitute prohibited conduct under this policy. The University will seek to complete the initial assessment within ten (10) business days of receipt of the formal complaint. Following the initial assessment, the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator may take any of the following actions:

  • If the allegations forming the basis of the formal complaint would, if substantiated, constitute prohibited conduct as defined in this policy, the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator shall implement appropriate supportive measures. In addition, the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator may initiate an investigation of the allegations under this policy in a formal complaint, as described in section IV. However, if the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator deems the formal complaint appropriate for the informal resolution process, upon the consent of both parties, the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator may instead refer the matter to the informal resolution process as described in section IV.
  • If the allegations forming the basis of the formal complaint would not, if substantiated, constitute prohibited conduct as defined in this policy, the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator may dismiss the formal complaint from the University Sexual Misconduct grievance process (and either party may appeal this dismissal, as discussed below). However, if appropriate, the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator may refer the matter to the Title IX Sexual Harassment process or to another office for review; or, if the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator deems the formal complaint appropriate for the informal resolution process, upon the consent of both parties, the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator may instead refer the matter to the informal resolution process as described in section IV.

In addition, at any time prior to the hearing, the University may dismiss a formal complaint if:

  • The complainant notifies the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator in writing that the complainant wishes to withdraw the formal complaint or any allegations therein;
  • The respondent is no longer enrolled or employed by the University; or
  • Specific circumstances prevent the University from gathering sufficient evidence to reach a determination as to the formal complaint or the allegations therein.

Upon dismissal, the University shall promptly send written notice of the dismissal and reason(s) therefor simultaneously to the parties via electronic format. Both parties will have equal right to appeal the dismissal through the appeal process described in section XI.

The determination regarding dismissal becomes final either on the date that the parties are provided with the written determination of the result of an appeal, if an appeal is filed, or if an appeal is not filed, the date on which an appeal would no longer be considered timely. Once final, a complainant cannot file a formal complaint under this policy concerning the same alleged conduct.

 V. Confidentiality, Privacy, and Related Responsibilities

Issues of privacy and confidentiality play important roles in this policy, and may affect individuals differently. Privacy and confidentiality are related but distinct terms that are defined below.

In some circumstances, the reporting responsibilities of University employees, or the University’s responsibility to investigate, may conflict with the preferences of the complainant and/or respondent with regard to privacy and confidentiality. Therefore, all individuals are encouraged to familiarize themselves with their options and responsibilities, and make use of Confidential Resources, if applicable, in determining their preferred course of action.

Requests for confidentiality or use of anonymous reporting (e.g., through the University’s EthicsPoint hotline) may limit the University’s ability to conduct an investigation.

1. Confidentiality and Confidential Resources

The term “confidentiality” refers to the circumstances under which information will or will not be disclosed to others.

Several campus professionals are designated Confidential Resources, to whom confidentiality attaches. Confidential Resources are not obligated to report information that is provided to them. This allows individuals to explore their options in a non-pressured environment while they make informed decisions. There may be exceptions in cases involving child abuse, imminent risk of serious harm, emergent hospitalization, or a court order. In addition, non-identifying information about violations of the University Sexual Misconduct policy may be submitted to the Department of Public Safety for purposes of the anonymous statistical reporting under the Clery Act.

An individual who is not prepared to make a report or formal complaint, or who may be unsure how to label what happened, but still seeks information and support, is strongly encouraged to contact a Confidential Resource. See Appendix A for a complete list of Confidential Resources on campus.

In particular, any individual who may have been subjected to a violation of this policy, or who is considering making a report or formal complaint under this policy, is encouraged to contact the University's Sexual Harassment/Assault Advising, Resources, and Education (SHARE) office. SHARE is a Confidential Resource that offers support and advocacy services, and provides information about the roles and reporting obligations of other offices at the University in order to empower individuals to make informed decisions about their options.

In light of the University’s obligation to respond promptly and effectively to individuals alleged to be victimized by University Sexual Misconduct, University employees who are not designated Confidential Resources are required to notify the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator of suspected violations of this policy, and cannot guarantee the confidentiality of a report under this policy. See section VI(1).

2. Confidentiality Rights of Complainants and Respondents

While complainants, respondents, and witnesses involved in the grievance process under this policy are strongly encouraged to exercise discretion in sharing information in order to safeguard the integrity of the process and to avoid the appearance of retaliation, complainants and respondents are not restricted from discussing the allegations under investigation.

Medical, psychological, and similar treatment records are privileged and confidential documents that cannot be accessed or used for a grievance process under this policy without the relevant party’s voluntary, written consent.

3. Privacy

The term “privacy” refers to the discretion that will be exercised by the University in the course of any investigation or grievance processes under this policy.

In all proceedings under this policy, the University will take into consideration the privacy of the parties to the extent possible.

In cases involving students, the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator may notify residential college staff, Graduate School staff, and/or other University employees of the existence of the report and/or formal complaint for the purpose of overseeing compliance with this policy and addressing any concerns related to educational and residential life. While not bound by confidentiality, these individuals will be discreet and will respect the privacy of those involved in the process.

In accordance with federal regulations, the University will keep confidential the identity of any individual who has made a report or formal complaint under this policy, including any complainant, any individual who has been reported to be the perpetrator, any respondent, and any witness, except as may be permitted by Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), or as required by law, or to carry out the purposes of conducting any investigation or hearing under this policy.

Any additional disclosure by the University of information related to the report or formal complaint may be made if consistent with FERPA or the Title IX requirements. In addition, governmental agencies, such as National Science Foundation, may mandate certain reporting related to prohibited conduct under this policy involving University employees or students.

4. Release of Information

If the Department of Public Safety becomes aware of a serious and continuing threat to the campus community, the Department of Public Safety may issue a timely warning in accordance with federal regulation to protect the health or safety of the community. The Department of Public Safety may also publish a reported incident in the daily crime log or annual security report. In addition, the University may also share non-identifying information, including data about outcomes and sanctions, in aggregate form. The University will not disclose the name or other personally identifiable information of the complainant unless it has received the express consent of the complainant or unless the release of such information is consistent with legal requirements or mandated by law.

 VI. Options for Complainants, Respondents, and Other Reporting Individuals

A complainant, respondent, or witness has many options, including counseling and support services. Information regarding contact information for local law enforcement as well as contact information for Confidential Resources that are available to provide support to parties and witnesses are described in further detail in Appendix A.

After consulting a Confidential Resource as appropriate, a complainant may:

  • Request supportive measures from the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator (see section VII);
  • File a formal complaint with the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator, thereby invoking the University’s internal grievance process (see section II);
  • Contact the Department of Public Safety for assistance in filing a criminal complaint and preserving physical evidence (see Appendix A); and/or
  • Contact local law enforcement to file a criminal complaint (see Appendix A). At the complainant’s request, the University will assist the complainant in contacting local law enforcement and will cooperate with law enforcement agencies if a complainant decides to pursue a criminal process.

An individual may pursue some or all of these steps at the same time. When initiating any of the above, an individual does not need to know whether they wish to request any particular course of action, nor how to label what happened. Before or during this decision-making process, complainants and other reporting individuals are encouraged to consult a Confidential Resource (see Appendix A).

1. Employees’ Responsibility to Report

In emergency situations, if there is a suspected crime in progress or imminent or serious threats to the safety of anyone, employees must immediately contact the Department of Public Safety by dialing 911.

In non-emergency situations, employees (other than those formally designated as Confidential Resources under this policy (see section V(1)), must promptly report suspected violations of this policy to the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator. Some students with special responsibilities, including Residential College Advisers, must promptly report alleged violations of this policy to their Directors of Student Life, who will then consult with the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator.

Students are encouraged to report any suspected violation of this policy (after consulting a Confidential Resource as appropriate).

2. Anonymous Reporting

If a reporting individual makes an anonymous report, the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator will consider how to proceed, taking into account the individual’s articulated concerns; the best interests of the University community; fair treatment of all individuals involved; and the University’s obligations under Title IX.

A complainant cannot file a formal complaint anonymously.

Any individual may make an anonymous report concerning a violation of this policy through the University’s EthicsPoint hotline, an independent third-party reporting service (however, such anonymous reporting does not satisfy employees’ reporting obligation as described in section VI(1)). An EthicsPoint report can be made without disclosing the reporting individual’s own name, identifying the respondent, or requesting any action. However, if the reporter provides limited information, the University may be limited in its ability to take action. EthicsPoint is not a Confidential Resource and making a report to EthicsPoint may result in a University review or investigation.

EthicsPoint Hotline 866-478-9804 https://secure.ethicspoint.com/domain/media/en/gui/27291/index.html

3. Timeliness of Report

Complainants and other reporting individuals are encouraged to report any violation of this policy as soon as possible in order to maximize the University’s ability to respond promptly and effectively. Reports and formal complaints may be made at any time without regard to how much time has elapsed since the incident(s) in question. If the respondent is no longer a student or employee at the time of the report or formal complaint, the University may not be in a position to gather evidence sufficient to reach a determination as to the formal complaint and/or the University may not be able to take disciplinary action against the respondent. However, the University will still seek to provide support for the complainant and seek to take steps to end the prohibited behavior, prevent its recurrence, and address its effects.

4. Amnesty

In order to encourage reports of conduct that is prohibited under this policy, the University may offer leniency with respect to other violations which may come to light as a result of such reports, depending on the circumstances involved.

 VII. Supportive Measures for Complainants and Respondents

Upon receipt of a report or formal complaint of a violation of this policy, the University, through the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator, will promptly contact the complainant to discuss the availability of supportive measures, consider the complainant’s wishes with respect to supportive measures, inform the complainant of the availability of supportive measures with or without the filing of a formal complaint, and explain to the complainant the process for filing a formal complaint. The University will also consider supportive measures, as appropriate and reasonably available, for the respondent.

These supportive measures are designed to restore or preserve equal access to the University’s educational and working programs or activities without unreasonably burdening the other party, including measures designed to protect the safety of all parties and the broader University community, or deter sexual harassment. While a supportive measure may impose some restrictions on a party, it will not unreasonably burden them. The University may provide supportive measures to the complainant or respondent, as appropriate, as reasonably available, and will do so without fee or charge, regardless of whether the complainant seeks formal disciplinary action. Once supportive measures are approved, the parties or affected individuals will be notified in writing of the supportive measures. The University will maintain any supportive measures provided to the complainant or respondent as confidential to the extent possible.

Supportive measures may include:

  • counseling;
  • extensions of deadlines or other course-related adjustments;
  • modifications of work or class schedules;
  • campus escort services;
  • mutual restrictions on contact between the parties;
  • changes in work or housing locations;
  • leaves of absence;
  • increased security and monitoring of certain areas of the campus; and/or
  • any other measure that can be used to achieve the goals of this policy.

Requests for supportive measures may be made by or on behalf of the complainant or respondent to any University official, including the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator. The University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator is responsible for ensuring the implementation of supportive measures and coordinating the University’s response with the appropriate offices on campus.

All individuals are encouraged to report concerns about the failure of another to abide by any restrictions imposed by a supportive measure. The University will take immediate action to enforce a previously implemented measure and disciplinary sanctions can be imposed for failing to abide by a University-imposed measure.

 VIII. Informal Resolution Process

Subject to the consent of the parties and the approval of the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator, the University permits informal resolution processes in cases in which a formal complaint has been filed with the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator. Subject to approval by the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator, the informal resolution process is available in matters involving a student complainant and a student respondent, as well as in matters involving a faculty/staff complainant and a faculty/staff respondent; the informal resolution process is not available in matters involving a student and an employee.

The informal resolution process is a voluntary, remedies-based process designed to provide parties with an option to resolve disputes with other students in a forum that is separate and distinct from the University’s formal grievance processes under the University Sexual Misconduct policy. The purpose of the informal resolution process is to address the conduct which has been reported by the complainant, and place the parties in a position to pursue their academic and non-academic interests in a safe, respectful, and productive educational and working environment. Under this process, there will be no disciplinary action taken against a respondent, and the resolution will not appear on the respondent’s disciplinary record.

The University may facilitate the informal resolution process prior to conducting a hearing. Before the informal resolution process is used, both parties must provide voluntary, written consent to the informal resolution process and must receive written notice disclosing: the allegations, the requirements of the informal resolution process (including the circumstances under which it precludes the parties from resuming a formal complaint arising from the same allegations), and any outcomes resulting from participating in the informal resolution process (including the records that will be maintained or could be shared). At any time prior to agreeing to a resolution, any party has the right to withdraw from the informal resolution process and resume the University Sexual Misconduct grievance process with respect to the formal complaint.

The University will not require as a condition of enrollment or continuing enrollment, or employment or continuing employment, or enjoyment of any other right, waiver of the right to an investigation and adjudication of formal complaints of University Sexual Misconduct. Similarly, the University will not require, encourage, or discourage the parties from participating in the informal resolution process The University will not offer the informal resolution process unless a formal complaint is filed.

See Appendix B for additional information regarding the informal resolution process.

 IX. Grievance Procedures for University Sexual Misconduct Complaints, In General

The University is committed to providing a prompt and impartial investigation and adjudication of all formal complaints alleging violations of this policy. During the grievance process, both parties (complainant and respondent) have equal rights to participate.

1. Conflict of Interest

All individuals who have responsibilities in administering the grievance process under this policy must be free of any conflict of interest or bias for or against complainants or respondents generally or an individual complainant or respondent and will be trained as provided by federal regulations. Parties will be notified at the appropriate junctures of the identities of the individuals serving as investigators, Hearing Panel members, Sanction Officers, and Appeal Panel members. A party who has concerns that one or more of the individuals performing one of the aforementioned roles has conflicting interest or is biased must report those concerns to the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator within 48 hours of being notified of their identities and include a brief explanation of the basis for the conflict or bias concern. The University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator will assess the allegations of conflict or bias to determine whether or not the identified individual(s) can fulfill their duties in an impartial way. If the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator concludes that the facts and circumstances support the claim of conflict or bias, the pertinent individual(s) will not participate in the case.

2. Responsibility to Review Reports and Formal Complaints

In order to protect the safety of the campus community, the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator may review reports of violations of this policy even absent the filing of a formal complaint, or under certain circumstances (see section IX(2)), even if a formal complaint has been withdrawn. The University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator may need to themselves file a formal complaint and proceed with an investigation even if a complainant specifically requests that the matter not be pursued. In such a circumstance, the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator will take into account the complainant’s articulated concerns, the best interests of the University community, fair treatment of all individuals involved, and the University’s obligations under Title IX.

This policy differs from New Jersey criminal law. Proceedings under this policy may be carried out prior to, simultaneously with, or following civil or criminal proceedings off campus. Neither a decision by law enforcement regarding prosecution nor the outcome of any criminal proceeding will be considered determinative of whether a violation of this policy has occurred.

3. Presumption of Good Faith Reporting

The University presumes that reports of prohibited conduct are made in good faith. A finding that the alleged behavior does not constitute a violation of this policy or that there is insufficient evidence to establish that the alleged conduct occurred as reported does not mean that the report was made in bad faith.

4. Presumption of Non-Responsibility

The respondent is presumed to be not responsible for the alleged conduct unless and until a determination regarding responsibility is made at the conclusion of the grievance process.

5. Honesty and Cooperation during Grievance Process

The University expects all members of the University community to be honest and cooperative in their official dealings with the University under this policy. In this regard, individuals are expected to acknowledge requests from University officials for information in a timely fashion and to make themselves available for meetings with University officials or any officials acting on behalf of the University; any student or member of the faculty or staff who fails to do so may be subject to discipline.

6. Advisers

Throughout the grievance process, each party may have an adviser of their choice; parties may change their adviser at any time during the grievance process. An adviser is an individual chosen by a complainant or a respondent to provide guidance during the grievance process. An adviser may be a member or non-member of the University community, and may be an attorney. If a party who is a current member of the University community seeks to engage an attorney to serve as an adviser, the University will provide certain pre-determined financial resources to assist in that engagement; however, such resources will only be provided in matters that proceed to an investigation (as described in section IX(6)).

The role of the adviser is narrow in scope: the adviser may attend any interview or meeting connected with the grievance process that the party whom they are advising is invited to attend, but the adviser may not actively participate in interviews and may not serve as a proxy for the party. The adviser may attend the hearing, but the adviser may not actively participate in the hearing.

Any individual who serves as an adviser is expected to make themselves available for meetings and interviews throughout the investigation process, as well as the hearing, as scheduled by the University. The University (including any official acting on behalf of the University such as an investigator or a hearing panelist) has the right at all times to determine what constitutes appropriate behavior on the part of an adviser and to take appropriate steps to ensure compliance with this policy.

7. Prior Sexual Behavior

The complainant’s predisposition or prior sexual behavior are not relevant and will not be used during the grievance process, unless offered to prove that someone other than the respondent committed the conduct alleged by the complainant, or if the questions and evidence concern specific incidents of the complainant’s prior sexual behavior with respect to the respondent and are offered to prove consent.

8. Consolidation

The University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator has the discretion to consolidate multiple formal complaints as to allegations of University Sexual Misconduct against more than one respondent, or by more than one complainant against one or more respondents, or by one party against the other party, where the allegations of University Sexual Misconduct arise out of the same facts or circumstances.

9. Investigation of Allegations of Violations of Other University Policies

a. Allegations under the Title IX Sexual Harassment Policy

When an initial assessment or investigation under this policy identifies additional related possible violations of the Title IX Sexual Harassment policy by the same party(ies), the grievance process set forth in the Title IX Sexual Harassment policy and procedures will apply to all allegations. Under such circumstances, the parties will be provided with written notice containing the following information: (a) the alleged prohibited conduct, and (b) the policy(ies) under which alleged prohibited conduct falls.

b. Allegations under Other University Policies

When an initial assessment or investigation under this policy identifies additional related possible violations of University policies (other than the Title IX Sexual Harassment policy, as described above) by the same party(ies) that would normally be handled by another responsible office, the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator, with the approval of that responsible office, may direct investigators under this policy to investigate such other possible violations at the same time that they investigate the allegations covered by this policy. Under such circumstances, the records from the investigation of the non-University Sexual Misconduct matter shall be provided to the office responsible for adjudicating the non-University Sexual Misconduct matter in accordance with applicable University policies and procedures.

10. Procedures Where One Party Is a Member of the University Community and the Other Party Is a Non-Member of the University Community

When a third party, (i.e., a non-member of our University community, which could include, for example, alumni) is a party under this policy, the University will use disciplinary procedures that are generally consistent with the disciplinary procedures described in this policy, appropriately modified based on the particular circumstances of the case and taking into account privacy requirements and the like. In no case will a member of our community (i.e., current student, faculty member, or staff member) be afforded lesser rights or lesser opportunities to participate in the disciplinary proceeding than the non-member of the University community.

 X. Investigation and Adjudication

1. Timing

The University will seek to complete the investigation and adjudication within ninety (90) business days after the investigators’ first interview of the complainant. Investigations will proceed according to the aforementioned timeframe during the summer and at other times when the University is not in session. Timeframes for all phases of the grievance process, including the investigation, the hearing, and any related appeal, apply equally to both parties.

There may be circumstances that require the extension of time frames for good cause. Time frames may be extended to ensure the integrity and completeness of the investigation or adjudication, comply with a request by external law enforcement, accommodate the absence of a party, adviser, or witness, or for other legitimate reasons, including the complexity of the investigation and the severity and extent of the alleged misconduct. The University will notify the parties in writing of any extension of the time frames for good cause, and the reason for the extension.

In accordance with University policy, the University will review requests for language assistance and accommodation of disabilities throughout the investigation and adjudication process.

Although cooperation with law enforcement may require the University to temporarily suspend the fact-finding aspect of an investigation, under such circumstances, the University will promptly resume its investigation as soon as it is notified by the law enforcement agency that the agency has completed the evidence gathering process. The University will not, however, wait for the conclusion of a criminal proceeding to begin its own investigation and, if needed, will take immediate steps to provide supportive measures for the complainant or respondent. Neither a decision by law enforcement regarding prosecution nor the outcome of any criminal proceeding will be considered determinative of whether a violation of this policy has occurred.

2. Investigation

If the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator has determined, following an initial assessment, that an investigation is appropriate, the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator will refer the matter for investigation to a panel of investigators, typically comprised of two or three individuals.

a. Notice of Allegations

Following the receipt and review of the formal complaint by the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator, and it being determined that the matter properly falls under this University Sexual Misconduct policy the parties will be provided with a written Notice of Allegations, shall include:

  • The identities of the parties, if known.
     
  • A concise summary of the alleged conduct at issue (including when and where it occurred, if known).
     
  • Notice of the allegations potentially constituting University Sexual Misconduct.
     
  • A statement that the respondent is presumed not responsible and that a determination regarding responsibility is made at the conclusion of the grievance process.
     
  • A statement informing the parties that they may have an adviser of their choice, who may be, but is not required to be, an attorney.
     
  • A statement informing the parties that they may request to inspect and review evidence.
     
  • A statement informing the parties that knowingly making false statements or knowingly submitting false information during the grievance process may constitute a violation of University policy.
     
  • Information regarding the applicable grievance procedures, including the informal resolution process.

If, during the investigation, additional information is disclosed that may also constitute prohibited conduct under this policy, the respondent and complainant will be informed in writing that such additional information will be included in the grievance process.

b. Collection of Evidence

The investigators will collect information from each party. While the complainant and the respondent are not restricted from gathering and presenting relevant evidence, the investigators are responsible for gathering relevant evidence to the extent reasonably possible. However, each party will be given an equal opportunity to suggest witnesses; provide other relevant information, such as documents, communications, photographs, and other evidence; and suggest questions to be posed to the other party or witnesses. Parties and witnesses are expected to provide all available relevant evidence to the investigators during the investigation. While parties are not restricted from presenting information attesting to the parties’ character, such evidence generally is not considered relevant.

The investigators will provide to a party written notice of the date, time, location, participants, and purpose of all investigative interviews to which they are invited or expected, with sufficient time (generally no less than three (3) business days, absent exigent circumstances) for the party to prepare to participate.

Parties will be interviewed separately and will be interviewed by the panel of investigators. The investigators will interview witnesses as necessary and may, at their discretion, delegate witness interviews to two investigators. The investigators will record all interviews, or notes of the interviews will be taken by the investigators. Any other recording of interviews is prohibited and violations may result in discipline.

In general, a party’s medical and counseling records are confidential. The investigators will not access, consider, disclose, or otherwise use a party’s records that are made or maintained by a physician, psychiatrist, psychologist, or other recognized professional or paraprofessional acting in the professional’s or paraprofessional’s capacity, or assisting in that capacity, and which are made and maintained in connection with the provision of treatment to the party, unless the investigators obtain that party’s voluntary, written consent to do so.

The investigators will not require, allow, rely upon, or otherwise use questions or evidence that constitute, or seek disclosure of, information protected under a legally recognized privilege (e.g., attorney-client, doctor-patient), unless the individual holding such privilege has waived the privilege.

c. Case File

After each party has been interviewed and had the opportunity to identify witnesses and other potentially relevant information and evidence, and the investigators have completed any witness interviews and any gathering of evidence, the investigators will prepare a case file. The case file will include all collected evidence that is directly related to the allegations raised in the formal complaint, including the evidence upon which the University does not intend to rely in reaching a determination regarding responsibility and any inculpatory or exculpatory evidence, whether obtained from a party or other source as part of the investigation. The case file may include, as applicable, transcripts or summaries of party and witness interviews and other collected documents and evidence. The investigators will provide the case file (or, when deemed appropriate, a written summary of relevant information contained in the case file), redacted of personally identifiable information in accordance with privacy regulations, to each party and their adviser in electronic form or hard copy. In all cases, any information relied on in adjudicating the matter will be provided to the parties and their advisers. The investigators will also provide an updated Notice of the Allegations, as appropriate.

Within ten (10) business days of receiving the case file (or written summary, as applicable), each party may respond in writing, which may include a request that the investigators collect additional evidence. If the investigators believe that further information is needed following receipt of any responses from the parties, the investigators will pursue any additional investigative steps as needed. The parties and their advisers will be provided with each party’s written responses to the case file, if any, as well as any additional information collected by the investigators (or a written summary of same, as applicable), in electronic format or hard copy.

d. Investigative Report

Following their review of the parties’ responses (if any) to the case file (or written summary, as applicable), the investigators will create a written investigative report that summarizes all relevant evidence; the report will not contain irrelevant information.

At least ten (10) business days prior to the hearing, the investigative report (or a written summary of same, as applicable) will be provided to the parties and their advisers via electronic format.

The parties may choose to provide a written response to the investigative report, which must be submitted at least five (5) business days prior to the start of the hearing. The response may consist of a written statement not to exceed 2500 words. At least 48 hours prior to the hearing, the parties and their advisers will be provided with the other party’s written response to the investigative report, if any, in electronic format.

3. Hearing

A panel of three individuals (“Hearing Panel”) will hear every case. One of the individuals on the Hearing Panel will be external (e.g., a former judge or an attorney) and shall serve as the Presiding Hearing Panelist (“Presiding Hearing Panelist”), and two of the individuals on the Hearing Panel will be members of the University community. While the Hearing Panel will generally conduct a live hearing during which it assembles (in person or virtually) all of the parties together at the same time, it reserves the right to conduct a hearing without assembling all of the parties together at the same time.

The Presiding Hearing Panelist will have absolute discretion with respect to administering the hearing. The Presiding Hearing Panelist will decide whether evidence and witnesses are relevant or irrelevant, with the understanding that the introduction of relevant evidence and witnesses will always be permitted. The Presiding Hearing Panelist will be responsible for maintaining an orderly, fair, and respectful hearing and will have broad authority to respond to disruptive or harassing behaviors, including adjourning the hearing or excluding the offending individual, including a party, witness, or adviser.

Prior to the hearing, the Hearing Panel will be provided with the case file (and written summaries, as applicable), investigative report, and any responses to the investigative report. All members of the Hearing Panel shall review the case file (including the parties’ responses), ask questions during the hearing as they deem appropriate, and participate in the deliberations leading to the Presiding Hearing Panelist’s adjudication of responsibility (as described in section X(3)(e)).

At least five (5) business days prior to the hearing, the parties and their advisers will be notified of the hearing date, time, and location (or relevant electronic information, if the hearing will be conducted remotely).

In advance of the hearing, parties will be given the opportunity to request that certain witnesses be called at the hearing. The Presiding Hearing Panelist has the discretion to exclude from the hearing evidence/witnesses/questions deemed irrelevant.

At the Presiding Hearing Panelist’s discretion, pre-hearing meetings may be scheduled with each of the parties and their advisers to explain the hearing protocol.

a. Standard of Proof

The standard of proof under this policy is preponderance of the evidence. A finding of responsibility by a preponderance of the evidence means that it is more likely than not, based on all the relevant evidence and reasonable inferences from the evidence, that the respondent violated this policy.

b. Expectation regarding the Complainant, the Respondent, and the Witnesses regarding the Hearing

In all proceedings under this policy, including at the hearing, the complainant, the respondent, and the witnesses and other individuals sharing information are expected to provide truthful information.


If the complainant, the respondent, or a witness informs the University that they will not attend the hearing, the hearing may proceed, as determined by the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator.

Each party may make requests related to the format or the nature of their participation in the hearing. The Presiding Hearing Panelist will accommodate requests by either party for the hearing to occur with the parties located in separate locations with technology enabling the Hearing Panel and the parties to simultaneously see and hear the party answering questions. As appropriate and/or at the discretion of the Presiding Hearing Panelist, hearings may be conducted in person or by video conference or any other means of communications by which all individuals participating are able to see and hear each other.

c. Case Presentation

A typical hearing may include brief opening remarks by the Presiding Hearing Panelist; questions posed by the Hearing Panel to one or both of the parties; questions posed by the Hearing Panel to any relevant witnesses; and the opportunity for the parties to propose written cross-examination questions to be posed to the other party and relevant witnesses. The Hearing Panel will consider all relevant evidence.

The parties will have the opportunity to cross examine the other party (and relevant witnesses, if any) by submitting written cross examination questions to the Presiding Panelist for consideration. Only relevant cross examination questions may be asked of a party or witness. The Presiding Panelist has the sole discretion to determine what questions are relevant.

Other University administrators may attend the hearing at the request of or with the prior approval of the Presiding Hearing Panelist, but the parties will be notified in advance of anyone else who will be in attendance.

d. Record of Hearing

The University shall create an official record in the form of a recording or transcript of any live (or remote) hearing and make it available to the parties for inspection and review. Any other record of the hearing or any other recording is prohibited and violations may result in discipline.

e. Written Determination

Following the hearing, the Hearing Panel will consider all of the relevant evidence and deliberate regarding responsibility. The Presiding Hearing Panelist shall make a determination, by a preponderance of the evidence, whether the respondent has violated the policy. The Presiding Hearing Panelist shall write a written determination, which will contain: (1) the allegations potentially constituting University Sexual Misconduct; (2) a description of the procedural steps taken from the receipt of the formal complaint through the determination (including any notifications to the parties, interviews with parties and witnesses, site visits (if any), methods used to gather other information, and the hearing); (3) findings of fact supporting the determination; (4) conclusions regarding the application of this policy to the facts; (5) a statement of, and rationale for, the result as to each allegation, including a determination regarding responsibility (i.e., whether a policy violation occurred), any disciplinary sanctions imposed by the Sanction Officer if there has been a finding of responsibility (as described in section X(4)), and whether any remedies designed to restore or preserve equal access to the University’s education program or activity or working environment will be implemented; and (6) relevant appeal information for the parties. Disciplinary sanctions and remedies will be determined in accordance with the procedures listed below, and the information will be provided to the Presiding Hearing Panelist for inclusion in the written determination.

The parties and their advisers will simultaneously be provided with the written determination (or, when deemed appropriate, a written summary of the written determination) via electronic format.

4. Disciplinary Sanctions and Remedies (to be included in the Written Determination)

If a party is found to have violated this policy, before finalizing the written determination, the Presiding Hearing Panelist will refer the matter to the appropriate University official(s) to determine sanctions and remedies. Sanctions being imposed will be included in the written determination.

Sanctions will take into account the seriousness of the misconduct as compared to like cases in the past, the respondent’s previous disciplinary history (if any), and institutional principles. Remedies, which may include supportive measures, will be designed to restore or preserve equal access to the University’s education program or activity. Specifically, sanctions will be set by the following Sanction Officers:

  • If an undergraduate student is found responsible for violating the policy, the case record (consisting of the case file and responses, investigative report and responses, hearing recording, and written determination relating to the finding of responsibility) will be provided to the dean of undergraduate students, who will determine sanctions and remedies in consultation with appropriate University administrators. In the event that the dean of undergraduate students is unavailable, an appropriately trained University official will serve as the substitute. Any sanctions and remedies will be included in the Presiding Hearing Panelist’s written determination, and sanctions will be subject to appeal under this policy.
  • If a graduate student is found responsible for violating the policy, the case record (consisting of the case file and responses, investigative report and responses, hearing recording, and written determination relating to the finding of responsibility) will be provided to the deputy dean of the Graduate School, who will determine sanctions and remedies in consultation with appropriate University administrators. In the event that the deputy dean of the Graduate School is unavailable, an appropriately trained University official will serve as the substitute. Any sanctions and remedies will be included in the Presiding Hearing Panelist’s written determination, and sanctions will be subject to appeal under this policy.
  • If a faculty member or other individual appointed through the Office of the Dean of the Faculty is found responsible, the case record (consisting of the case file and responses, investigative report and responses, hearing recording, and written determination relating to the finding of responsibility) will be forwarded to the dean of the faculty, who will determine sanctions and remedies in consultation with appropriate University administrators. In the event that the dean of the faculty is unavailable, an appropriately trained University official will serve as the substitute. Should the dean of the faculty propose a sanction of suspension or dismissal, the dean will issue a recommendation, in accordance with applicable University policy. Any sanctions (and/or recommendation of sanctions) and remedies will be included in the Presiding Hearing Panelist’s written determination, and sanctions (and/or recommended sanctions) will be subject to appeal under this policy.
  • If a staff member is found responsible, the case record (consisting of the case file and responses, investigative report and responses, hearing recording, and written determination relating to the finding of responsibility) will be forwarded to the vice president for human resources, who will determine sanctions and remedies in consultation with appropriate University administrators. In the event that the vice president for human resources is unavailable, an appropriately trained University official will serve as the substitute. Any sanctions and remedies will be included in the Presiding Hearing Panelist’s written determination, and sanctions will be subject to appeal under this policy.

See Appendix C for the range of sanctions under this policy.

 XI. Appeal

Appeals under this policy will be heard by an appeal panel (“Appeal Panel”) comprised of three individuals. At least one of the individuals on the Appeal Panel will be external (e.g., a former judge or an attorney) and shall serve as the chair of the Appeal Panel (“Appeal Panel Chair”), and two of the individuals shall be University administrators or faculty members. The Appeal Panel shall decide appeals by majority vote.

Both parties have equal rights to an impartial appeal at the following junctures:

  1. Upon the dismissal of a formal complaint or any allegations therein.
  2. Upon receiving the Presiding Hearing Panelist’s written determination regarding responsibility and, when applicable, sanction and remedies.

Appeals may be submitted on the following bases: (1) procedural irregularity that affected the outcome of the matter; (2) new evidence that was not reasonably available at the time the determination regarding responsibility or dismissal was made which could affect the outcome of the matter; (3) the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator or their staff, investigator(s), any member of the Hearing Panel, or Sanction Officer had a conflict of interest or bias for or against complainants or respondents generally or the individual complainant or respondent that affected the outcome of the matter; and/or (4) the sanctions (or recommended sanctions) are not commensurate with the violation.

To appeal, a party must electronically submit a written appeal statement to the associate secretary of the University within five (5) business days of receipt of the written determination or dismissal. The Appeal Panel Chair may deem a late submission reasonable only under extenuating circumstances, and the Appeal Panel Chair may decide in their sole discretion what constitutes valid extenuating circumstances. The appeal shall consist of a written statement not to exceed 2500 words, outlining the basis for appeal and the relevant information to substantiate the appeal. The non-appealing party will be provided with a copy of the appealing party’s written statement and may submit a written response, not to exceed 2500 words, to the associate secretary of the University within five (5) business days of receipt of the appealing party’s written statement. The non-appealing party’s statement will be provided to the appealing party. No further appeal submissions from the parties shall be permitted.

An appeal is limited in scope. The purpose of an appeal is not to initiate a review of substantive issues of fact or a new determination of whether a violation of University rules has occurred.

In deciding an appeal, the Appeal Panel may consider the case file and any responses, investigative report and any responses, the hearing record, the written determination, and any written appeal(s) or statements by the parties. The Appeal Panel also may consider any other materials the University deems relevant and that have been shared with the parties.

The parties and their advisers will simultaneously be provided (via electronic format) with the written decision describing the result of the appeal and the rationale for the result.

  • If the Appeal Panel finds that the earlier decision should stand, the parties will be so informed and the University Sexual Misconduct process is concluded.
  • If the Appeal Panel finds that there was procedural irregularity that affected the outcome of the matter, the matter will be remanded to the Presiding Hearing Panelist to determine appropriate further action.
  • If the Appeal Panel finds that new evidence is available which was not reasonably available at the time of the determination regarding responsibility or dismissal, and such evidence could alter the outcome of the matter, the matter will be remanded to the Presiding Hearing Panelist for appropriate further action.
  • If the Appeal Panel finds that the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator or their staff, investigator(s), member of the Hearing Panel, or Sanction Officer had a conflict of interest or bias for or against complainants or respondents generally or the individual complainant or respondent that affected the outcome of the matter, the Appeal Panel will take appropriate measures to address and remediate the impact of the bias or conflict consistent with the general procedures of this policy.
  • If the Appeal Panel finds that the sanctions (or recommended sanctions) are not commensurate with the violation, the matter will be remanded to the Sanction Officer for reconsideration.

The Appeal Panel will seek to complete the appeal review within twenty (20) business days of receipt of the appealing party’s written statement.

Unless further proceedings are necessary (as set forth in the Rules and Procedures of the Faculty), the determination regarding responsibility becomes final either on the date that the parties are provided with the written determination of the result of an appeal if an appeal is filed (at which point the University Sexual Misconduct grievance process is concluded), or if an appeal is not filed, the date on which an appeal would no longer be considered timely (at which point the University Sexual Misconduct grievance process is concluded).

 XII. Training

The University will provide appropriate training, including related to intersectionality, to University officials with responsibilities under this policy, including the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator, employees in the Office of Gender Equity and Title IX Administration, investigators, Hearing Panel members, Sanction Officers, Appeal Panel members, and any individual who facilitates the informal resolution process.

 XIII. Record Retention

The University will maintain for a period of seven years records of the following:

  • Each University Sexual Misconduct grievance process conducted under this policy, including any determination regarding responsibility and any audio or audiovisual recording or transcript from a hearing, any disciplinary sanction imposed on the respondent, and remedies provided to the complainant designed to restore or preserve access to the University’s education program or activity;
  • Any appeal and the result therefrom;
  • Any informal resolution and the result therefrom; and
  • Records of any actions, including any supportive measures, taken in response to a report or formal complaint of University Sexual Misconduct. In each instance, the University will document the basis for its conclusion that its response was not deliberately indifferent, and document that it has taken measures designed to restore or preserve equal access to the University’s educational and working program or activity. If the University does not provide a complainant with supportive measures, then the University will document the reasons why such a response was not clearly unreasonable in light of the known circumstances.

 XIV. Modification and Review of Policy

Princeton University reserves the right to modify this policy to take into account applicable legal requirements or extraordinary circumstances.

At regular intervals, the University will review this policy to determine whether modifications should be made.

 Appendix A: Law Enforcement and Confidential Resources

1. Emergency Resources and Law Enforcement

Emergency medical assistance and campus safety/law enforcement assistance are available both on and off campus. Individuals are encouraged (but not required) to contact law enforcement and seek medical treatment as soon as possible following an incident that poses a threat to safety or physical well-being or following a potential criminal offense. For more information about filing a criminal complaint with law enforcement, please contact:

Princeton Municipal Police
911 or 609-921-2100

Princeton University Department of Public Safety
911 (emergency)
609-258-1000 (non-emergency)


2. Confidential Resources

Information shared with Confidential Resources (including information about whether an individual has received services) will be disclosed to the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator or any other individual only with the individual’s express written permission, unless there is an imminent threat of serious harm to the individual or to others, or a legal obligation to reveal such information (e.g., if there is suspected abuse or neglect of a minor). For more information about confidentiality and Confidential Resources, see section V.

The University’s Sexual Harassment/Assault Advising, Resources, and Education (SHARE) office is a Confidential Resource offering support and advocacy services. Individuals are encouraged to access support services and learn about their options by contacting SHARE. The SHARE office can provide information about the roles and reporting obligations of other offices at the University in order to empower individuals to make informed decisions about their options.

Campus Confidential Resources include:

SHARE Office
McCosh Health Center
Washington Road, Princeton, NJ 08544
609-258-3310
share@princeton.edu
https://share.princeton.edu


Counseling and Psychological Services (CPS)
McCosh Health Center
609-258-3141
https://uhs.princeton.edu/counseling-psychological-services

Medical Services at University Health Services (UHS)
McCosh Health Center
609-258-3141
https://uhs.princeton.edu

Ombuds Office
179 Nassau Street - Suite D
Princeton, NJ 08544
609-258-1775
ombuds@princeton.edu
https://ombuds.princeton.edu

Office of Religious Life chaplains
Murray-Dodge Hall
Princeton, NJ 08544
609-258-3047
orl@princeton.edu
https://religiouslife.princeton.edu

Carebridge (Faculty, Staff, and Graduate Student Assistance Program)
On initial visit to the site, please enter the Princeton client code TW8AE to access the Carebridge Library.
800-437-0911
clientservice@carebridge.com
https://hr.princeton.edu/thrive/well-being-resources/employee-assistance-program-eap

Other Available Resources

Any individual may also access resources located in the local community. These organizations can provide crisis intervention services, counseling, medical attention and assistance in dealing with the criminal justice system. If accessing these resources, individuals are encouraged to clarify whether the resources are confidential.

Mercer County Sexual Assault Response Team (SART)
Evidence collection and preventative medicine
Can be activated by contacting:

  • Womanspace: 609-394-9000
  • Princeton Police: 609-921-2100 (calls will likely result in police involvement)
  • Department of Public Safety: 609-258-3333 (calls will likely result in police involvement)

Or going to an emergency room:

  • Princeton Medical Center
  • Capital Health Medical Center in Hopewell
  • Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital

Womanspace, Inc.
Services for domestic and sexual violence victims/survivors (of all genders)
609-394-9000 (24-hour hotline) /609-394-0136 (office)
1530 Brunswick Avenue, Lawrenceville, New Jersey 08648
Monday-Friday, 9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. (walk-in hours)

 Appendix B: Informal Resolution Process

The informal resolution process is a voluntary, remedies-based process designed to provide members of the Princeton University community with an option to resolve certain disputes with other members of the Princeton University community in a forum that is separate and distinct from the University’s formal grievance processes under the Title IX Sexual Harassment Policy or the University Sexual Misconduct Policy. Subject to approval by the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator (see below), the informal resolution process is available in matters involving a student complainant and a student respondent as well as in matters involving a faculty/staff complainant and a faculty/staff respondent; the informal resolution process is not available in matters involving a student and an employee. The purpose of the informal resolution process is to eliminate the conduct which has been reported by the complainant (and prevent its recurrence), and place both individuals in a position to pursue their academic, working, and non-academic interests in a safe, respectful, and productive educational and working environment. Under this process, there will be no disciplinary action taken against a respondent, and the resolution will not appear on the respondent’s disciplinary record.

Prior to participating in the informal resolution process, parties will be notified in writing of the information contained in this Appendix B.

The following are features of the informal resolution process:

  • Participation in the informal resolution process is completely voluntary.
    • No party will be required to participate in the informal resolution process and the University will not require, encourage, or discourage the parties from participating in the informal resolution process.
    • All parties must consent in writing to participation in the informal resolution process.
  • The University may offer the informal resolution process only under the following circumstances:
    • A formal complaint (as defined in section II) has been filed by the complainant;
    • The University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator has determined, through an initial assessment (see section IV), that the alleged conduct, if substantiated, would constitute Title IX Sexual Harassment or University Sexual Misconduct;
    • The University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator has determined that the informal resolution process is appropriate for this matter.
  • All parties will be provided with a written notice disclosing the allegations, the requirements of the informal resolution process, and any outcomes resulting from participating in the informal resolution process.
  • At any time prior to signing an informal resolution agreement, any party has the right to withdraw from the informal resolution process and resume the formal grievance process.
  • Under the informal resolution process, there will be no disciplinary action taken against a respondent, and the resolution will not appear on the respondent’s disciplinary record. If a formal complaint is filed against the respondent in as subsequent matter under the Title IX Sexual Harassment policy or the University Sexual Misconduct policy, the respondent’s participation in a prior informal resolution process will not be considered relevant and will not be taken into account in the resolution of the subsequent complaint.
  • Parties may be accompanied by a member of the University community who will serve as a support person to any meeting related to the informal resolution process. However, the University support person may not actively participate in meetings and may not serve as a proxy for the party. Any individual who serves as a University support person is expected to make themselves available for meetings as scheduled by the University. The University (including any official acting on behalf of the University) has the right at all times to determine what constitutes appropriate behavior on the part of a University support person and to take appropriate steps to ensure compliance with this policy.
  • Any agreements reached as part of the informal resolution process must be approved by the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator in order to ensure consistency with the University’s federal obligations. If the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator determines at any time prior to the signing of the informal resolution agreement that the informal resolution process is no longer appropriate, the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator may terminate the process.
  • Upon signing the informal resolution agreement, the parties are bound by its terms and cannot opt for a formal grievance process based on the conduct alleged in the formal complaint.
  • Failure to comply with the signed agreement may result in disciplinary action for either party.
  • If the parties’ circumstances change significantly, they may request a supplemental agreement; the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator will determine whether it is appropriate to proceed. For example, if both parties joined the same eating club subsequent to signing the agreement or participated in the same study abroad program, either party could request a supplemental agreement to address the changed circumstances, provided that both parties agreed to any such revisions. Under such circumstances, the above conditions would apply.

Initiation of the Informal Resolution Process

If the complainant files a formal complaint and requests to engage in the informal resolution process, the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator will consider whether the informal resolution process is appropriate in the particular matter. In making this determination, the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator will consider the following factors:

  • The disciplinary record (or past conduct) of the respondent relating to sexual misconduct, physical violence, failure to comply with a No Contact Order, and/or other relevant conduct;
  • The nature of the alleged conduct, whether allegations involve multiple victims and/or a pattern of conduct, or other evidence-informed factors indicative of increased risk to campus safety;
  • Whether the circumstances warrant the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator filing a formal complaint (e.g., if there is sufficient evidence to proceed with an investigation/adjudication even absent participation by the complainant);
  • Whether proceeding with the informal resolution process is in accordance with the principles and objectives of the University’s Title IX Sexual Harassment policy/University Sexual Misconduct policy, as determined by the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator; and/or
  • Whether proceeding with the informal resolution process in matters involving faculty and staff members is in accordance with University employment practices.

If the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator determines that a case is not appropriate for the informal resolution process, the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator will inform the complainant that the informal resolution process is unavailable.

If the formal grievance process has already begun, either party may seek to initiate the informal resolution process up until five business days prior to the hearing. If both parties agree to participate in the informal resolution process and the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator approves of the informal resolution process, the formal grievance process will be adjourned while the informal resolution process is pending; if an agreement is not reached, the formal grievance process will be resumed.

Upon initiation of the informal resolution process, the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator will refer the matter to a trained informal resolution facilitator (“facilitator”). The facilitator will consult (separately) with each party in an effort to reach a resolution that best meets the interests and needs of the parties. Unless they mutually choose to do so as part of an agreement, the parties will not meet together in person as part of the process.

Potential Outcomes of the Informal Resolution Process

Depending on the nature and circumstances of the particular situation, parties may agree to outcomes such as:

  • Long-term extension of a mutual No Contact Order or No Communication Order;
  • Imposition of a “skewed” No Contact Order, placing the burden on the respondent to limit the respondent’s physical proximity to the complainant;
  • Restrictions on the respondent from participation in particular organizations or events;
  • Changes to on-campus housing, subject to availability;
  • Participation by the respondent in the University-provided Community Integrity Program (CIP), a time-limited, individualized psychoeducational curriculum administered by a licensed clinician that serves to assist individuals in exploring harmful attitudes and behaviors, with an aim to empower individuals to actively contribute to a healthier and safer campus community.
  • Participation by the respondent in the University-provided alcohol education program (BASICS) designed to reduce the harmful problems associated with alcohol misuse;
  • Provision to the respondent of an “impact statement” written by the complainant (describing the impact(s) that the respondent’s conduct had on the complainant);
  • Conversation between the parties facilitated by a trained individual appointed by the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator;
  • Other measures deemed appropriate by the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator.

Failure to Comply with the Informal Resolution Agreement

Failure to comply with the signed agreement may result in disciplinary action for either party, consistent with the disciplinary procedures described in section 2.5 of Rights, Rules, Responsibilities (for students) or in applicable policy manuals (for faculty and staff members).

Records Relating to the Informal Resolution Process

The records relating to the informal resolution process will be maintained in accordance with section XIII.

Prior to participating in the informal resolution process, parties will be notified in writing that any information gathered in the informal resolution process may be used in the Title IX Sexual Harassment or University Sexual Misconduct formal grievance processes described in section IX if the informal resolution process ends prior to a written agreement being signed by the parties. However, the University will not draw any adverse inference based on a respondent’s participation in the informal resolution process, nor will such participation be considered an admission by the respondent.

Even if the parties enter into a written informal resolution agreement, if information related to the violation of other University policies (i.e., policies other than the Title IX Sexual Harassment policy or the University Sexual Misconduct policy) comes to light through the informal resolution process, such information may be used in other University disciplinary processes, subject to the Amnesty policy described in section VI(4).

Retaliation

The protections against Retaliation described in section III apply to individuals participating in the informal resolution process. Disciplinary consequences may result for those found responsible for Retaliation.

Time Frame for the Informal Resolution Process

The time frame for completion of the informal resolution process may vary, but the University will seek to complete the informal resolution process within thirty (30) business days of the University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Coordinator notifying both parties that the informal resolution process is appropriate for that matter. Should the time period extend beyond this time frame, the parties will be notified.

 Appendix C: Range of Sanctions under this Policy

Members of the University community may be subject to disciplinary sanctions for violating this policy.

Sanctions Applicable to Students

The sanctions for students are listed below.

  1. Dean’s Warning. An admonition that does not become part of a student’s permanent record, but that may be taken into account in judging the seriousness of any future violation.
  2. Reprimand. Reprimand is a stronger admonition than a dean’s warning, intended to signal that the student has committed a minor infraction, conveying that the student must be vigilant against future infractions, and providing a disincentive against future infractions in that a reprimand will not become part of the student’s permanent record unless there is a subsequent infraction, at which point the reprimand will be formally recorded on the student’s permanent record.

Both a dean’s warning and a reprimand may be taken into account in judging the seriousness of any future violation.

More serious violations may be met with the following formal responses which are recorded on the student’s permanent record.

  1. Disciplinary Probation. A more serious admonition assigned for a definite amount of time. It implies that any future violation, of whatever kind, during that time, may be grounds for suspension, suspension with conditions, or in especially serious cases, expulsion from the University. Disciplinary probation will be taken into account in judging the seriousness of any subsequent infraction even if the probationary period has expired.

    Disciplinary probation appears on a student’s permanent record at the University (but not on the transcript) and may be disclosed by the Office of the Dean of Undergraduate Students or the Office of the Dean of the Graduate School in response to requests for which the student has given permission or as otherwise legally required.
     
  2. Withholding of Degree. In cases involving seniors or graduate students in their final semester, the University may withhold a student’s Princeton degree for a specified period of time. This sanction is imposed instead of suspension at the end of a student’s senior year or final year of graduate study when all other degree requirements have been met. A withheld degree is recorded on a student's transcript. Relevant information remains on the student’s permanent record at the University and may be disclosed by the Office of the Dean of Undergraduate Students or the Office of the Dean of the Graduate School in response to requests for which the student has given permission or as otherwise legally required.
     
  3. Suspension. Removal from membership in the University for a specified period of time. A suspension is recorded on a student’s transcript. Relevant information remains on the student’s permanent record at the University and may be disclosed by the Office of the Dean of Undergraduate Students or the Office of the Dean of the Graduate School in response to requests for which the student has given permission or as otherwise legally required.
     
  4. Suspension with Conditions. Removal from membership in the University for at least the period of time specified by the suspension, with the suspension to continue until certain conditions, stipulated by the appropriate body applying this sanction, have been fulfilled. These conditions may include, but are not limited to, restitution of damages, formal apology, or counseling. A suspension with conditions is recorded on a student's transcript. Relevant information remains on the student’s permanent record at the University and may be disclosed by the Office of the Dean of Undergraduate Students or the Office of the Dean of the Graduate School in response to requests for which the student has given permission or as otherwise legally required.
     
  5. Expulsion. Permanent removal from membership in the University, without any opportunity for readmission to the community. Expulsion is recorded on a student’s transcript. Relevant information remains on the student’s permanent record at the University and may be disclosed by the Office of the Dean of Undergraduate Students or the Office of the Dean of the Graduate School in response to requests for which the student has given permission or as otherwise legally required.

The following may accompany the preceding sanctions, as appropriate:

Censure. University censure can be added to any of the other sanctions listed above, except dean’s warning and reprimand. Censure indicates the University’s desire to underscore the seriousness of the violation and the absence of mitigating circumstances, and to convey that seriousness in response to future authorized inquiries about the given individual's conduct.

Campus Service. Campus service up to 10 hours per week may be added to a reprimand or disciplinary probation. This sanction may be particularly appropriate in cases involving vandalism, disorderly conduct, and alcohol-related infractions.

University Housing. When appropriate to the infraction, particularly in instances involving antisocial behavior having a serious impact on the residential community, removal from University housing or relocation within University housing may be added to any of the other sanctions listed above, except warning and reprimand. In the case of a first-year undergraduate or sophomore, removal from housing is not an option as all underclass students must reside in a residential college. Relocation within residential colleges will be imposed only after consultation with the head of the student’s residential college.

Restriction of Access to Space, Resources, and Activities. When appropriate in cases involving behavioral misconduct between members of the community, restrictions may be placed on access to space and/or resources or on participation in activities so as to limit opportunities for contact among the parties.

Educational Refresher Programs. In addition to any of the sanctions listed above, a student may be required to participate in educational refresher programs appropriate to the infraction.

Restitution. The sanction for willful or reckless damage or vandalism will ordinarily include restitution for replacement or repair.

Sanctions Applicable to Faculty and Staff Members

For violations of this policy by faculty or staff members, disciplinary sanctions may include (in accordance with the employment policies governing the employee in question) counseling or training, written warning, financial penalty, unpaid leave of absence, suspension (or recommendation for suspension), demotion, termination (or recommendation for termination) in accordance with applicable policies. The University may place a faculty or staff member on administrative leave during the pendency of a grievance process, provided that such action shall not modify any rights under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 or the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Sanctions Applicable to Non-Members of the University Community

For violations of this policy by non-members of the University community, including alumni, disciplinary sanctions may include being temporarily or permanently barred from the University or subject to other restrictions.