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Reporters (Victims) FAQs

As a Reporter, or someone who may have experienced sexual harassment/misconduct, we recognize that you may have some questions about the Office of Title IX & Sexual Misconduct, your rights/resources, and available options.

Below are some answers to questions you may have, but should you have a question that isn’t listed below, please contact the Office of Title IX & Sexual Misconduct and we’d be happy to help however we can.

 


Common FAQs:


What is considered Prohibited Conduct at TCNJ?

The various forms of conduct prohibited under the Sexual Harassment, Misconduct, & Discrimination Policy (“Policy”) are outlined below and those notated by an (*) indicate behaviors to which may also be considered Sexual Harassment as defined by the Title IX Final Rule if alleged conduct occurred within scope/jurisdiction of Title IX.

    • Sexual Harassment*
    • Sexual Assault*
    • Stalking*
    • Dating Violence*
    • Domestic Violence*
    • Sexual Exploitation
    • Gender-Based Discrimination or Harassment
    • Complicity
    • Compliance with Directives
    • Abuse of College Process
    • Retaliation
    • Defamation

Through the Sexual Harassment, Misconduct, & Discrimination Policy the College will be upholding a broad scope of sex and gender related violations. Some forms of College Sexual Misconduct may also be considered violations of Title IX as defined by the Title IX Final Rule depending on the nature, scope, and jurisdiction of the alleged conduct. Collectively these types of violations are referred to as “Prohibited Conduct.” 

Given the College’s dedication to addressing all forms of sex and gender-based harassment, misconduct, and discrimination, the College reserves the right to investigate and adjudicate all forms of Prohibited Conduct under this Policy regardless of any possible Title IX designation(s). More information about this can be found HERE.

Additional behaviors prohibited by the College are outlined in the Student Conduct Code.

It’s important to note that, Prohibited Conduct can be committed by or against individuals of any sex or gender and can occur between individuals of the same sex/gender or different sexes/genders. Further, Prohibited Conduct can occur between strangers or acquaintances, as well as persons involved in intimate, sexual, dating, domestic, or familial relationships.


Who can I speak with at the College about an incident of sexual harassment/misconduct?

You’re encouraged to speak with whomever you feel most comfortable, but it’s helpful to know that there are a variety of different resources on-campus who are available to offer guidance and/or support – some are confidential, some are considered private.

Some individuals/Offices on-campus are considered to be confidential, which means they will not share the information you disclose to them with anyone else without your expressed permission (except in the event that you may be a threat to yourself or others). For example, a professional counselor or therapist.

There are also individuals/Offices who are ‘private’ resources, which means they will only share information with others on a ‘need to know’ basis. Many private resources have the obligation to share information relating to sexual violence with the Office of Title IX & Sexual Misconduct, such as Responsible Employees, but that information will not be shared further. Some examples of private resources are those areas housed with the Dean of Students Office, including the Office of Title IX & Sexual Misconduct, Office of Student Conduct & Off-Campus Services, and our CARE team.

Our available resources page provides descriptions and contact information for those you can connect with on and off-campus, and the flowchart below offers details on what the next steps may look like depending who on-campus you speak with.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Do I need to report to the police in order to report to the College? Do I need to report to the College to be able to report to the police?

You always have the right to report to the police, to the College, to both, or to neither.

You are welcome to report to each of these entities directly:

Campus Police Services (available 24/7) –
Phone: (609) 771-2345 or 9-1-1
Email: tcnjpd@tcnj.edu
https://campuspolice.tcnj.edu/

The Office of Title IX & Sexual Misconduct
Phone: (609) 771-3112
Email: titleix@tcnj.edu
https://titleix.tcnj.edu/

And, the Office of Title IX & Sexual Misconduct can also help connect you with Campus Police, should you wish, and visa versa.

There are limited times when the College will have to notify Campus Police even if the Reporter does not want to make a report (such as in the event that a weapon had been involved in the incident, or a minor has been harmed, etc). However, the criminal process is different from the College process and they are not mutually exclusive. This means there are different procedures, different standards of evidence, and different outcomes, from the College process, but you can choose to pursue either, both, or neither of these options. Fore more information about the various resolution options available, click HERE.


How can someone submit a report of sexual harassment or misconduct to the College? Who is able to do that?

Anyone who has experienced or been impacted by sexual harassment or misconduct, or has information about an incident involving harassment or misconduct, is encouraged to report the information to the Office of Title IX & Sexual Misconduct, so we can conduct outreach to the person who has experienced harm and inform them of their rights/options and get them connected with resources. 

A report can be submitted in any of the following ways – 

  • Submitting a report online – You can do so here: File A Report
    • This is the preferred method
  • Contacting the Office of Title IX & Sexual Misconduct directly
    • Director of Title IX Compliance & Sexual Misconduct | Title IX Coordinator, Dr. Chelsea Jacoby, via:
    • Assistant Director for Sexual Misconduct & Student Conduct Investigator, Caitlin Babcock, via:
    • Meet with the staff in person in BSC 202 to make the report 

While everyone is encouraged to report incidents of sexual harassment/misconduct, there are some individuals at the College who have an obligation to report information they receive about these types of incidents to the Office of Title IX & Sexual Misconduct. An example would be those identified as Responsible Employees or Officials with Authority. You can find more information about who typically serves in these roles, what their reporting obligations are, HERE.


Is there a time limit for individuals to make a report?

No – The College encourages reporting an incident as soon as possible in order to maximize our ability to respond promptly and effectively. If the Respondent has never been or is no longer a student or employee of the College, the College may not be able to take action against the Respondent, but it will still seek to meet its obligation under Title IX by taking steps to end the harassment, prevent its recurrence, and address its effects, when appropriate.


What are some supportive measures available to me through the Office of Title IX & Sexual Misconduct?

In all cases, the College will take appropriate steps designed to mitigate the effects of the alleged prohibited conduct, prevent its recurrence, and make accommodations for the student(s) involved. Even if the party is not interested in participating in a College or criminal process supportive measures can still be applied. Such supportive measures may include, but are not limited to:

  • Moving a student’s campus residence
  • Adjusting a work schedule for employment
  • Changing a student or faculty’s academic schedule
  • Changing a student, faculty, or staff’s transportation arrangements
  • Allowing a student to withdraw from or retake a class without penalty
  • Providing access to tutoring or other academic support
  • Issuing a ban letter from campus
  • Issuing a “no contact” directive

See our Supportive Measures page for more information.


If I speak with someone about possible sex discrimination or sexual violence, do I have to pursue a resolution process?

No. Speaking with someone, even the Title IX Coordinator or someone who is responsible for notifying the Office of Title IX & Sexual Misconduct of these types of incidents, does not mean that you will need to participate in any resolution process or file a Formal Complaint. The College encourages all persons who believe they may have been the subject of sexual or gender-based harassment to speak with an appropriate College official about the incident because, even if no Formal Complaint is filed/resolution process is used, that information can help the College identify any concerns about harassment and work to address them and the safety of the campus community. Speaking to a College Official will allow any party affected to be supported by the College, and also will allow College Officials to consider whether there are broader issues for the community that need to be addressed.


Do I need to bring anything with me to meet with the Office of Title IX & Sexual Misconduct?

You do not need to bring anything with you to meet with the Title IX & Sexual Misconduct Staff unless there is specific information that you would like to share with them, such as text messages, photos, etc.

If you are meeting with College Staff for the purposes of a formal investigation, see the FAQ section of the Formal Grievance Process page for some helpful tips.

You are welcome to bring an advisor or support person of your choice with you to meeting or proceeding through the Office of Title IX & Sexual Misconduct. With the exception of conducting cross-examination during a formal hearing (if applicable), the Advisor is limited to a non-participatory role; see Use of Advisor page for more information.


What rights do I have in a Prohibited Conduct (College resolution) proceeding?

  • To have access to applicable College policies and procedures and to be informed of the nature of all charges connected with the allegations of the Reporter.
  • To be treated with due respect by College officials.
  • To have an Advisor present during any proceeding, investigation meeting, or related meeting. With the exception of conducting cross-examination during a formal hearing (if applicable), the Advisor is limited to a non-participatory role; see Use of Advisor page for more information.
  • Adequate, reliable, and impartial investigation and appropriate resolution of all reports of Prohibited Conduct.
  • To be informed by the College of options to notify Campus Police Services and/or local law enforcement, and the option to be assisted by Campus Police Services in notifying other law enforcement, if the individual chooses.
  • To be notified of available counseling, mental health, academic, and other support services, both at the College and in the community.
  • To have allegations investigated by individuals who are properly trained to investigate and resolve allegations of Prohibited Conduct.
  • Equitable participation in the investigation process, including the opportunity to identify witnesses and other appropriate evidence.
  • The right to appeal as set forth in the procedures outlined in the Sexual Harassment, Misconduct, & Discrimination Policy.

Will my parents or anyone else outside of a ‘need to know capacity’ find out about me submitting a report?

No. Information received by the Office of Title IX & Sexual Misconduct is considered part of students’ educational records and is protected by the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). FEPRA is a federal law that governs the rights of students and institutional responsibilities with respect to student records. FERPA prohibits the College from sharing information regarding your educational record (including reports or resolution processes within the Office of Title IX & Sexual Misconduct) with anyone else, including your parents, without your explicit and expressed permission. However, if a College resolution process is being used, both parties involved and their respective Advisors will receive equal access to information/evidence obtained throughout the process.


Can my name & information I share be kept confidential if…

  • I speak with someone who is responsible for notifying the Title IX Coordinator about possible sexual harassment, misconduct, or discrimination?
    • The College respects the privacy concerns of those who may be the subject of or witness to incidents of harassment, but the College also has an obligation to keep the community safe and to address incidents of alleged harassment that it knows about or reasonably should know about. College employees who have an obligation to report, known as Responsible Employees or Officials with Authority will need to provide the Title IX Coordinator relevant information about the allegation, including the identities of the individuals involved (if they know) and the nature of the conduct. This does not mean that a resolution process must be pursued or a Formal Complaint must be filed. Moreover, even when someone has an obligation to report to the Title IX Coordinator, College officials will protect and respect privacy of those disclosing the sensitive information. Similarly, the College and Office of Title IX & Sexual Misconduct respect the sensitivity of this information and share it with others only on a need-to-know basis.

However, there are individuals who are considered Confidential Resources, who do not have an obligation to report information and can only share information with others upon your consent. For more information about who would fall into this category, check out our Resources page.

  • I provide information as part of a resolution process?
    • The College, including the Office of Title IX & Sexual Misconduct and the Office of Student Conduct & Off-Campus Services, does not accept anonymous reports. This is because the party(ies) involved have the right to know where information is coming from so they can defend, confirm, and/or question the relevance and credibility of the information if need be. This helps ensure adequate due process. 

With that said, the College will protect the privacy of the information received and it will only be shared with those on a ‘need to know’ capacity. Additionally, the College Policy prohibits retaliation against persons who are cooperating with the investigatory process in any way, including yourself. Retaliation can take many forms, including the dissemination of information in a manner intended to pressure or shame participants and witnesses in connection with the Title IX process (such as, through social media) or to discourage participants or witnesses from assisting with that process. Should you believe you or someone else participating in the process is experiencing retaliation, we strongly encourage you report it to the Office of Title IX & Sexual Misconduct immediately so the matter can be addressed appropriately.


Who should I contact if I need reasonable accommodations to participate in a College resolution process?

Should you believe you may require and/or benefit from any Reasonable Accommodation(s) to effectively meet with Title IX & Sexual Misconduct staff and/or participate in the College’s resolution options, you are encouraged to contact the Accessibility Resource Center (“ARC”) directly at 609-771-3199. Reasonable Accommodation(s) are individualized and accord with Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1992 (as amended). All requests must be made in advance and the Title IX & Sexual Misconduct staff will consider any Reasonable Accommodation(s) recommended by the ARC for persons who are both registered with the ARC and are participating in any meeting or proceeding through the Office of Title IX & Sexual Misconduct.


Can I go through the legal system and the College resolution process at the same time?

Yes, you can choose to go through the legal system and the College resolution process at the same time. These processes are separate and different from each other and have different standards of evidence. The outcomes of each process are also different from each other. However, there are MOUs (Memorandum of Understanding) between TCNJ’s Campus Police Services, the Office of Title IX & Sexual Misconduct, Ewing Police, and Mercer County Prosecutor’s Office. These agreements state that the College will make every effort to prioritize the criminal process (barring extenuating circumstances), however, the Office of Title IX & Sexual Misconduct reserves the right to formally commence the College resolution process at their discretion and to comply with federal law.

For more information about the similarities/differences between the College and Criminal processes and details regarding each, check out our Resolution Options page.


The College Policy prohibits retaliation – what does that mean?

The College Policy defines Retaliation as:

Any adverse action, intimidation, threat, coercion or discrimination against an individual (including Students, employees, and Third Parties) for the purpose of interfering with any right or privilege secured by Title IX or its Final Rule, or because the individual has made a report or Formal Complaint of Prohibited Conduct, been accused of Prohibited Conduct, testified, assisted, or participated or refused to participate in any manner in any investigation, proceeding, hearing, or other resolution process under this Policy. Retaliation also includes such conduct through associates or agents of a Reporter, Respondent, Third Party, or participant in any investigation, proceeding, or resolution process related to this Policy.

Retaliation can take many forms, including the dissemination of information in a manner intended to pressure or shame participants and witnesses in connection with the College’s resolution process (such as, through social media) or to discourage participants or witnesses from assisting with that process. Should you believe you or someone else participating in the process is experiencing retaliation, we strongly encourage you to document the concerns the best you can and report it to the Office of Title IX & Sexual Misconduct immediately so the matter can be addressed appropriately and in a timely manner.


What happens during a forensic medical exam?

Please visit our Preserving Evidence Page for a comprehensive overview of what occurs during a medical exam.


How can one go about making a compliant to the Office for Civil Rights (OCR) or the Department of Education when a community member believes that TCNJ has not upheld their responsibilities under Title IX?

For more information on your rights to submit a Title IX Discrimination Complaint, please review the information provided by OCR.

 

 

Helpful Resources:


ON-CAMPUS

Office of Title IX & Sexual Misconduct

As a member of the TCNJ community, you have the right to be protected from sex & gender- based discrimination under Title IX and other College policies, including sexual assault, dating/domestic violence, stalking, sexual harassment, sexual exploitation, and other forms of Prohibited Conduct. The Office of Title IX & Sexual Misconduct at TCNJ is committed to creating and maintaining an educational and work environment free from all forms of sexual violence, and to provide fair and equitable support and processes in which all students, faculty, and staff can learn, work, thrive and succeed. Whether you have experienced harm, have been accused of perpetrating harm, or are simply looking for information on how to support a friend who may have been impacted by sexual violence in some way, the Office of Title IX & Sexual Misconduct and our partners across campus are here for you.

Location: Brower Student Center, Suite 202
Phone: (609) 771-3112
Hours: Monday – Friday: 8:30 am – 4:30 pm
File a Report

 

Dean of Students Coordination of Advocacy Resources for Empowerment & Support (CARES) Program

The Dean of Student’s Office CARES Program connects students to resources that foster personal, academic and professional development through collaboration, coordination, facilitation, and execution of resources and support services. The CARE program also provides complex post-vention services for students experiencing personal, family, medical, and/or financial crisis.

Location: Brower Student Center, Suite 220
Phone: 609-771-CARE (2273)
Hours: Monday – Friday: 8:30 am – 4:30 pm

 

Anti-Violence Initiatives (AVI)*

Offers confidential clinical counseling services to those who have experienced or have been impacted by sexual violence.

Location: Forcina Hall, Room 308
Hours: Monday-Friday: 8:30AM-4:30 PM or by appointment
Phone: (609) 771-2272
Website: oavi.tcnj.edu
Click HERE to schedule appointment

 

Mental Health Services (MHS)*

Mental Health Services (Formally known as CAPS) offers group counseling, brief individual counseling and referral services to TCNJ undergraduate and graduate students. These services are provided free of charge.

Location: Eickhoff Hall, Room 107
Phone: 609-771-2247
Hours: Monday – Friday: 8:30 am – 4:30 pm
Click HERE to request services

AFTER HOURS: Contact TCNJ Police at 911 from any campus phone or 609-771-2345 from a cell phone or Capital Health Emergency Mental Health Services & Mobile Outreach (24/7) 609-396-HELP (4357)

 

Center for Integrated Wellness*

The Center for Integrated Wellness (TCNJ Clinic) is an outpatient facility that offers professionally supervised, low-fee, couples & family therapy and individual counseling to Mercer County and TCNJ residents, as well as the surrounding communities.

Location: Forcina Hall, Room 124
Phone: (609) 771-2700
Hours: Monday 9 am- 4:30 pm, Tuesday-Thursday 9 am- 9 pm, and Friday 9 am- 4 pm

 

Community Counseling Collaborative*

Is a group of outside clinicians that provide services to TCNJ students either on-campus or at an off-campus location, whichever is preferred by the student.The clinicians accept various forms of insurance, and many will accept payments on a sliding scale, which means students who do not have insurance or cannot afford typical payments, would only be expected to pay what they can manage.

Location: Forcina Hall, Room 413-415 & off-campus locations available
Services & Contact Information: mhs.tcnj.edu/counseling-services/community-counseling-collaborative

OFF-CAMPUS

Womanspace*

Womanspace is a nonprofit agency in Mercer County, New Jersey, that provides a comprehensive array of services to individuals and families impacted by domestic and sexual violence and dedicated to improving the quality of life for adults and their families. Programs include crisis intervention, emergency shelter, counseling, court advocacy and housing services.

24-Hour Crisis Line: (609) 394-9000
Location: 1530 Brunswick Ave, Lawrenceville, NJ 08648
Website: http://www.womanspace.org/

Note – Womanspace serves those of all gender identities

 

* = Denotes they are a confidential resource

 

For additional information about available services, please see our Resources page.

For any questions or concerns, please contact the Title IX Coordinator, Chelsea Jacoby, directly at jacobyc@tcnj.edu or (609) 771-3112.

ATTENTION: For questions/concerns or if you or someone you know has experienced any form of sexual violence, be sure toContact Us
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