All faculty and staff, aside from our Counseling and Health and Wellness Centers, are responsible employees. They have the responsibility to disclose to the Title IX Coordinator any incident of sexual assault, dating violence, domestic violence, stalking, and sexual harassment. This includes incidents that they know or reasonably should know so the University can take action. Please see our policy for further information.
Because our communities are small, we often find that students have positive, trusting relationships with employees. This can make it hard when we want to help a student, but also need to ensure they know that we are required to report their disclosure to the appropriate people. Here are some tips and guidelines for when talking with a student:
- If you believe a student is going to disclose an incident to you, politely interrupt the conversation and explain your role as a responsible employee. Do not assure them that their disclosure will remain confidential. Rather, you will maintain their privacy, but you do have to inform the Title IX Coordinator. Encourage the student to make the choice that is best for them. Do not try to sway their decision nor tell them what to do.
- If they decide not to disclose to you because of this information, please direct them to our confidential services. Offer to walk them to the Counseling Center or Nurse Kelly.
- If the student decides to share their experience: (supporting survivors)
- Find a private place
- Active listening
- Take the complaint seriously
- Don’t judge
- Don’t probe for details
- Let the student take the lead
- Remain neutral yet supportive
- Encourage the student to seek help. Do not pressure them to do this.
- Again, tell them that you will have to inform the Title IX Coordinator and that the Title IX Coordinator will be in touch, but this does not mean that a formal complaint has been started. The University wants to ensure that the student has all the resources and accommodations necessary to continue their year.
- Ask the student if they have any immediate needs.
- After the student leaves, call or email the Title IX Coordinator, Laura Northup (402.826.6773).
- Do not try to resolve the issue on your own.
- Take care of yourself. Hearing a student’s story may be difficult for some. Remember, to take care.
This project is supported by Grant No. 2016-WA-AX-0013 awarded by the Office on Violence Against Women, US Department of Justice. The Opinions, findings, conclusions, and recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Department of Justice, Office on Violence Against Women.