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Confidentiality, Privacy and Reporting

A-State holds a zero tolerance stance against sexual discrimination in our programs and activities or employment. Individuals who believe they have been subjected to such actions in violation of this policy should report these concerns.

This process involves an immediate inquiry to determine if there is reasonable cause to believe sexual discrimination occurred in violation of policy. If so, A-State will initiate a prompt, thorough and impartial investigation. This investigation is designed to provide a fair and reliable determination. If so, the university will implement a prompt and effective remedy designed to end the discrimination, prevent its recurrence, and address its effects.

Individuals who wish to report a concern or complaint relating to sexual discrimination may do so by reporting as outlined below.

Reporting a Concern or Complaint

Different people on campus have different reporting responsibilities and different abilities to maintain confidentiality, depending on their roles at the university and upon university policy. When consulting campus resources, all parties should be aware of confidentiality, privacy and mandatory reporting requirements in order to make informed choices.

On campus, some resources can offer you confidentiality, sharing options and advice without any obligation to tell anyone unless you want them to. Other resources are expressly there for you to report crimes and policy violations and they will take action when you report your victimization to them. Most resources on campus fall in the middle of these two extremes.

Neither the university nor the law requires them to divulge private information that is shared with them except in certain circumstances, some of which are described below. A victim may seek assistance from these university officials without starting a formal process that is beyond the victim's control, or violates her/his privacy.

Official Notice - Non-confidential reporting options

You are encouraged to speak with the Office of Affirmative Action or to supervisory personnel (deans, vice chancellors, department chairs, university police, student conduct, human resources, etc…) of the institution to make formal reports of incidents. The university considers these people to be "responsible employees." Notice to them is official notice to the institution. You have the right and can expect to have incidents of sexual discrimination to be taken seriously by the institution when formally reported, and to have those incidents investigated and properly resolved through administrative procedures. Formal reporting means that only people who need to know will be told and information will be shared only as necessary with investigators, witnesses, and the accused individual.

Reporting to those who can maintain the privacy of what you share

You can seek advice from certain resources that are not required to tell anyone else your private, personally identifiable information unless there is cause for fear for your safety, or the safety of others. These are individuals who the university has not specifically designated as "responsible employees" for purposes of putting the institution on notice, other than in the stated limited circumstances. These resources include those without supervisory responsibility or remedial authority to address sexual discrimination, such as RAs, most faculty members, advisors to student organizations, career services staff, admissions officers, student activities personnel, support staff, and many others. If you are unsure of someone's duties and ability to maintain your privacy, ask them before you talk to them. They will be able to tell you, and help you make decisions about who can help you best.

Some of these resources, such as RAs and advisors, are instructed to share incident reports with their supervisors, but they will not share any personally identifiable information about your report unless you give permission, except in the rare event that the incident reveals a need to protect you or other members of the community. If your personally identifiable information is shared, it will only be shared as necessary with as few people as possible, and all efforts will be made to protect your privacy.

Reporting Confidentially

If one desires that details of the incident be kept confidential*, they should speak with on- or off-campus mental health counselors, on- or off-campus health service providers, or domestic violence/rape crisis resources who can maintain confidentiality. Campus counselors are available to help you free of charge, and can be seen on an emergency basis. Employees may access their Employee Assistance Program benefit through Human Resources. In addition, you may speak on and off-campus with members of the clergy and chaplains, who will also keep reports made to them confidential.

Visit Counseling services here >> 

Visit the Student Health Center here >>

*Providers may be required to report certain felony incidents to law enforcement.

Right to File a Federal Complaint

Individuals with complaints of this nature also have the right to file a formal complaint with the United States Department Education:

Office for Civil Rights (OCR)
400 Maryland Avenue, SW
Washington, DC 20202-1100
Customer Service Hotline #: (800) 421-3481
Fax: (202) 453-6012
TDD#: (877) 521-2172

Federal Statistical Reporting Obligations

Certain campus officials have a duty to report sexual discrimination for federal statistical reporting purposes (Clery Act). All personally identifiable information is kept confidential, but statistical information must be passed along to campus law enforcement regarding the type of incident and its general location (on or off-campus, in the surrounding area, but no addresses are given) for publication in the annual Campus Security Report. This report helps to provide the community with a clear picture of the extent and nature of campus crime, to ensure greater community safety. Mandated federal reporters include: student/conduct affairs, campus law enforcement, local police, coaches, athletic directors, residence life staff, student activities staff, human resources staff, advisors to student organizations and any other official with significant responsibility for student and campus activities. The information to be shared includes the date, the location of the incident (using Clery location categories) and the Clery crime category. This reporting protects the identity of the victim and may be done anonymously.

Federal Timely Warning Reporting Obligations

Victims of sexual discrimination should also be aware that university administrators must issue immediate timely warnings for incidents reported to them that are confirmed to pose a substantial threat of bodily harm or danger to members of the campus community. The university will make every effort to ensure that a victim's name and other identifying information is not disclosed, while still providing enough information for community members to make safety decisions in light of the danger. The reporters for timely warning purposes are exactly the same as detailed in the above paragraph.