Sexual Misconduct and Relationship Violence
Office of Equity and Diversity/Title IX


Sexual Misconduct and Relationship Violence Policy PDF icon

Introduction

The University of Tennessee Health Science Center is committed to creating and maintaining a learning, living, and working environment free from Sexual Misconduct, Relationship Violence, Stalking, and Retaliation. Those prohibited types of conduct will not be tolerated and will be grounds for disciplinary action up to, and including, permanent dismissal from the University and termination of employment.

Sexual Misconduct, Relationship Violence, Stalking, and Retaliation are collectively referred to in this policy as Prohibited Conduct. This policy: describes Prohibited Conduct; explains multiple options for reporting Prohibited Conduct; sets forth the procedures the University will follow for promptly, thoroughly, and equitably investigating and resolving reports of Prohibited Conduct in order to eliminate Prohibited Conduct, prevent their recurrence, and address their effects on Complainants or the University community; identifies resources for Complainants; describes the University's prevention and awareness programs relating to Prohibited Conduct; and implements the requirements of Title IX, Title VII, and the Clery Act with respect to Prohibited Conduct.

Scope and Applicability & Jurisdiction

This policy applies to the conduct of and protects:

  • students of the University of Tennessee Health Science Center campuses (Memphis, Chattanooga, Knoxville, and Nashville);
  • employees of the University of Tennessee Health Science Center campuses (Memphis, Chattanooga, Knoxville, and Nashville); and
  • University volunteers, University contractors, and third parties participating in a University program or activity.

This policy applies regardless of the Complainant’s or the Respondent’s sex, sexual orientation, or gender identity.  Sexual Misconduct and Relationship Violence can be committed by anyone (regardless of sex, sexual orientation, or gender identity), can occur between strangers or acquaintances, and can occur between people of the same or of different sexes, gender identities, and/or sexual orientations.

The University’s jurisdiction concerning off-campus misconduct by students is outlined in the CenterScope.  With respect to employees and other non-students, this policy applies to conduct which: (i) occurs on University-controlled property; (ii) occurs in the context of a University employment or education program or activity; and/or (iii) occurs outside the context of a University employment or education program or activity, but has continuing adverse effects on University-controlled property or in any University employment or education program or activity.

Care and Support for Complainants

UTHSC students in Knoxville, Chattanooga and Nashville also have access to health services and mental health/counseling services.  There are campus resources and measures in Knoxville (http://sexualassault.utk.edu/on-campus-support/) and Chattanooga (http://www.utc.edu/womens-center/transformation-project/resources.php) for UTHSC students as well. In addition to the information provided in this section, information concerning options for Complainants following a Sexual Assault can be found at: https://rainn.org/get-information/sexual-assault-recovery.

Title IX Coordinators

The University is a recipient of federal financial assistance for education activities, and in accordance with the provisions of Title IX, all of its education programs and activities are subject to the prohibition against Sex Discrimination. The University's Non-Discrimination Statement prohibits Sex Discrimination in any University education program or activity, including employment and admissions. Title IX applies to all students, employees, applicants for admission or employment, volunteers and visitors at the University and prohibits unequal treatment on the basis of sex including Sexual Harassment, Sexual Assault, and Sexual Exploitation, which are all types of Sex Discrimination.

Reports or complaints of Sex Discrimination, Sexual Misconduct, or Relationship Violence, or questions about the University’s policies, procedures, resources, or programs concerning any of those issues, may be directed to the University’s Title IX Coordinator or one of the University’s Deputy Title IX Coordinators.  The responsibilities of the Title IX Coordinator and the Deputy Title IX Coordinators are summarized below and are described in more detail in other sections of this policy.  The Title IX Coordinator and the Deputy Title IX Coordinators generally are available Monday – Friday on University business days from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.  

The University’s Title IX Coordinator is:

Michael Alston, EdD
Title IX Coordinator
Assistant Vice Chancellor for Equity, Diversity and Student Rights, Office of Equity and Diversity
910 Madison, Suite 826
Memphis, TN 38163

(901) 448-2112 (main) or (901) 448-2133 (direct)
(901) 448-1120 (fax)
mialston@uthsc.edu

The Title IX Coordinator’s responsibilities include, without limitation:

  • coordinating and maintaining ultimate oversight responsibility with respect to the University’s compliance with Title IX;
  • receiving, tracking, and monitoring reports of Sex Discrimination, including Sexual Misconduct and Relationship Violence, and maintaining records of such reports;
  • interacting with the Victim’s Advocate in University Health Services;
  • ensuring prompt, thorough, and equitable investigations and resolutions of reports of Sex Discrimination, including Sexual Misconduct and Relationship Violence, which are usually conducted by the Office of Equity and Diversity;
  • identifying and addressing patterns or systemic problems concerning Sexual Misconduct and Relationship Violence;
  • coordinating training, prevention, and awareness efforts concerning Sexual Misconduct and Relationship Violence;
  • supporting the Deputy Title IX Coordinators;
  • providing information to students, employees, and third parties concerning this policy;
  • coordinating the provision of Interim Measures to students and employees;
  • making appropriate reports (that do not personally identify Complainants) for purposes of including incidents in the University’s annual Clery Act crime statistics, if applicable; and
  • being available to meet with students, employees, and others, including, without limitation, Complainants, Respondents, and Reporters of violations of this policy.

The Title IX Coordinator is assisted by three trained Deputy Title IX Coordinators who also are accessible to members of the University community for consultation and assistance.

The University’s Deputy IX Coordinators for Students, Trainees and Staff are:

Dustin Fulton
Sr. Equity Assurance Administrator, Office of Equity and Diversity
910 Madison, Suite 826
Memphis, TN 38163
(901) 448-2112 (main) or (901) 448-2110 (direct)
dfulton2@uthsc.edu

The Deputy Title IX Coordinators for Students assist with Title IX compliance for certain matters involving students, including, without limitation:

  • coordinating with University Health Services and UTHSC's Victim's Advocate;
  • receiving, tracking, and monitoring reports of Sexual Misconduct and Relationship Violence involving students;
  • identifying and addressing patterns or systemic problems concerning Sexual Misconduct and Relationship Violence involving students, in coordination with the Title IX Coordinator;
  • coordinating training, prevention, and awareness efforts for students concerning Sexual Misconduct and Relationship Violence;
  • assisting the Title IX Coordinator;
  • providing information to students about this policy;
  • coordinating the provision of Interim Measures to students; and
  • being available to meet with students, including, without limitation, Complainants, Respondents, and Reporters of violations of this policy.

Deputy Title IX Coordinator for Faculty, Staff and Trainees

Ashleigh Brock, JD
Equity Assurance Administrator, Office of Equity and Diversity
910 Madison, Suite 826
Memphis, TN 38163
(901) 448-2112 (main) or (901) 448-2106 (direct)
abrock6@uthsc.edu

Deputy Title IX Coordinator for Staff and Trainees

Marian Harris, MBA
Employee Relations Counselor, Human Resources
910 Madison, Suite 722
Memphis, TN 38163
mharri26@uthsc.edu
(901) 448-5600 (main) or (901) 448-1916 (direct)

Deputy Title IX Intake Coordinator for Students, Staff, Faculty and Trainees

Jenna Fielding
Associate Equity Assurance Specialist, Equity and Diversity
910 Madison, Suite 826
Memphis, TN 38163
jfielding@uthsc.edu
(901) 448-2112 (main) or (901) 448-2194 (direct)

 

Inquiries or complaints concerning Title IX also may be referred to the United States Department of Education:

United States Department of Education
Office for Civil Rights
61 Forsyth Street, S.W., Suite 19T10
Atlanta, GA 30303-8927 (404) 974-9406 (phone)
(404) 974-9471 (fax)
OCR.Atlanta@ed.gov

Prohibited Conduct

This policy prohibits the following conduct defined below:

  • Sexual Misconduct
    • Sexual Assault
    • Sexual Harassment
    • Sexual Exploitation
  • Relationship Violence
    • Dating Violence
    • Domestic Violence
  • Stalking
  • Retaliation

Reporting Prohibited Conduct & Mandatory Reporters

 

The University encourages Complainants of Prohibited Conduct, and others who are aware of Prohibited Conduct, to promptly report the incident to the University and/or to law enforcement.

This policy describes three options for informing someone about Prohibited Conduct:

  1. Report Prohibited Conduct to a University "Mandatory Reporter" (described in Section III.A);
  2. Report Prohibited Conduct to UTHSC-PD or local law enforcement (described in Section III.B); and/or
  3. Confide in a University "Confidential Employee" and/or a confidential resource external to the University (described in Section IV.A).

Those options are not mutually exclusive; in other words, a Complainant may pursue one, two, or all three of those options. This policy describes all three options in detail so that members of the University community can make informed choices about whether and how to inform someone about Prohibited Conduct.

Mandatory Reporters are required to report information they receive about Prohibited Conduct. The University strongly encourages employees and students who are not Mandatory Reporters to report any information about Prohibited Conduct to one of the reporting options described in Section III.A

Complainants are not required to report Prohibited Conduct to the University if they do not want the University to respond to the incident or assist with Interim Measures. However, reporting a violation of this policy to the University empowers Complainants to obtain the support they need and enables the University to respond appropriately, including conducting a prompt, thorough, and equitable investigation and, if warranted, taking disciplinary action against a Respondent. If a person reports an incident of Prohibited Conduct to the University, there is no requirement that the Complainant pursue criminal prosecution or University discipline against a Respondent. The University recognizes that a Complainant's decision on how to proceed after a report is filed is a process that may unfold over time; thus, at the time a report is made to the University, a Complainant does not have to decide whether to request any particular course of action.

This policy requires certain University employees, called Mandatory Reporters, to report information they receive concerning Prohibited Conduct to the University in accordance with Section VI. Not all University employees are Mandatory Reporters. Some University employees are encouraged but are not obligated to disclose Prohibited Conduct to the University. Other University employees, called Confidential Employees (Section IV.A.1), are legally or ethically prohibited from disclosing Prohibited Conduct to the University.

The only way for a Complainant (or any other person) to provide notice to the University of an incident of Prohibited Conduct is to report the incident to a Mandatory Reporter. A Complainant may opt to report an incident of Prohibited Conduct to a Mandatory Reporter but decline to disclose the identity of the Respondent; in that case, the University will offer Complainant Interim Measures, but the University's ability to investigate the incident and pursue disciplinary action against the Respondent or take other remedial action will be limited. If an incident is not reported to a Mandatory Reporter, then the University will not be able to take steps to: identify resources for the Complainant, such as Interim Measures; or promptly, thoroughly, and equitably investigate the incident and/or resolve the situation in order to eliminate the Prohibited Conduct, prevent its recurrence, and address its effects on the Complainant or the University community.

Because Mandatory Reporters have an obligation to report information they receive about Prohibited Conduct (and take other responsive actions), one of the purposes of this Section III.A is to inform students, employees and other persons about which University employees are Mandatory Reporters so that students, employees and other persons can make informed decisions about whether to disclose information to those University employees. Whether an employee is a Mandatory Reporter will vary based on factors such as the status of the Complainant and the Respondent (i.e., whether they are students, employees, and/or persons who are neither students nor employees) and the employee's authority to address violations of this policy. Appendix B identifies the University's Mandatory Reporters. Questions concerning whether a particular employee is a Mandatory Reporter should be directed to the Title IX Coordinator.

Mandatory Reporters are not confidential University resources like the Confidential Employees identified in Section IV.A.1. However, subject to a Complainant's request for confidentiality (Section III.A.5) and applicable legal disclosure obligations (Section III.E), information communicated to a Mandatory Reporter will initially be shared only within the limited circle of those University employees whom the University reasonably needs to involve in the University's response to an incident of Prohibited Conduct. Subsequently, information about the report will be shared only as reasonably necessary with investigators, witnesses, and the Respondent, subject to a Complainant's request for confidentiality and applicable legal disclosure obligations. Mandatory Reporters who are not employees of UTHSC-PD will not share information with UTHSC-PD or any other law enforcement agency without a Complainant's written consent, in accordance with FERPA.

The reporting options in this section also are available to a Reporter who is not a Complainant

A report of Prohibited Conduct that alleges Sex Discrimination generally must be filed within 300 days of the alleged discriminatory action. In certain circumstances, however, at the discretion of the Title IX Coordinator, such as when the Complainant is a student, a report communicated to the University outside of that time limit may be investigated. The University does not limit the time frame for reporting an incident of Prohibited Conduct committed by a Respondent who is not an employee, although a delay in reporting may impact the University's ability to: obtain evidence; conduct a prompt, thorough, and equitable investigation; and/or otherwise respond and take appropriate action.

 

 
 
 

Mandatory Reporters for Student Complainants

A Complainant who is a student is encouraged to report Prohibited Conduct to one of the following University employees, who are Mandatory Reporters:

  • Title IX Coordinator or the Office of Equity & Diversity
  • Deputy Title IX Coordinators

A Complainant who is a student may also report Prohibited Conduct to one of the University's other non-law enforcement Mandatory Reporters:

  • Office of Equity and Diversity
  • Office of Student Affairs
  • Office of Student Life
  • Chancellors, Vice Chancellors, Associate Vice Chancellors, or Assistant Vice Chancellors
  • Deans, Associate Deans, Assistant Deans, Executive Directors, Directors, Associate Directors, Assistant Directors, or Department Heads
  • Faculty members
  • Academic advisors
  • Faculty and staff advisors to registered student organizations
  • Residency Coordinators
  • The Complainant's University employment supervisor (only if the Complainant is a University student employee or trainee)
  • The Respondent's University employment supervisor (only if the Respondent is a University employee, including a University student employee and trainee)
  • The Employee Relations Team Leader or the Employment Team Leader in Human Resources (only if the Respondent is a University employee, including a student employee)
  • A University employee designated as a Campus Security Authority for Clery Act compliance

Mandatory Reporters for Employee Complainants

Respondent is not a University Student

A Complainant who is a University employee has four non-law enforcement options to report Prohibited Conduct to the University when the Respondent is not a University student (e.g., the Respondent is a University non-student employee):

  • Title IX Coordinator or the Office of Equity & Diversity
  • The Complainant's supervisor
  • The Respondent's supervisor (if the Respondent is a University employee)
  • The Employee Relations Team Leader or the Employment Team Leader in Human Resources

Respondent is a University Student

A Complainant who is a University employee has eight non-law enforcement options to report Prohibited Conduct to the University when the Respondent is a University student:

  • Title IX Coordinator or the Office of Equity & Diversity
  • The Complainant's supervisor
  • The Respondent's supervisor (if the Respondent is a University employee)
  • The Associate Vice Chancellor of Human Resources or Employee Relations Team Leader
  • Deputy Title IX Coordinators
  • Office of Student Affairs
  • Office of Student Life

Reporting Options for Other Complainants

The Title IX Coordinator (or the Office of Equity & Diversity) is the only non-law enforcement option for a Complainant who is neither a University student nor a University employee to report a violation of this policy to the University.

What to Expect after Reporting Prohibited Conduct to a Mandatory Reporter

After receiving a report of Prohibited Conduct (either directly from a Reporter or indirectly from a Mandatory Reporter), the Title IX Coordinator, a Deputy Title IX Coordinator, or Deputy Title IX Intake Coordinator will initiate immediate and appropriate steps by the University to: have an appropriate University employee offer to meet with, or otherwise communicate with, the Complainant; in cases of Sexual Assault, Relationship Violence, and Stalking, provide a Complainant with a copy of this policy and/or another written publication approved by the Title IX Coordinator to inform the Complainant of the Complainant's rights under this policy (if that has not already been done by a Mandatory Reporter); evaluate whether Interim Measures need to be implemented and assist with the implementation of Interim Measures; and, subject to a Complainant's request for confidentiality (Section III.A.5), initiate the investigation and resolution procedures outlined in Section V of this policy if, based on an initial assessment, the alleged conduct meets the definition of Prohibited Conduct. The Title IX Coordinator, a Deputy Title IX Coordinator, or Deputy Title IX Intake Coordinator also can assist a Complainant in reporting the incident to law enforcement.

Confidential Community Resources – Memphis

Memphis/Shelby County-area resources available 24 hour/7 days a week

You may choose to consult a private physician or go to an emergency department of your choice.  As a result, a report to a private physician or emergency department does not put the University of Tennessee on notice of Sexual Misconduct or Relationship Violence.

Confidential Community Resources – Knoxville

Knoxville area resources available 24 hour/7 days a week

In order to better serve its students, the University has entered into a Memorandum of Understanding with the Sexual Assault Center of East Tennessee (SACETN). The primary mission of the SACETN is to provide excellent and compassionate services for survivors of sexual assault and to empower communities through education and social change. The SACETN is a service of the Helen Ross McNabb Center. A Complainant does not have to report a sexual assault to law enforcement in order to receive services from the SACETN.
SACETN has four program areas: Sexual Assault Nurse Examinations; Advocacy; Therapy; and Education and Outreach. Three of those program areas are described in more detail below.

Sexual Assault Nurse Examinations

A Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner (SANE) is available 24/7, 365 days a year to provide forensic nursing to sexual assault crime victims ages 13 and older. SANE exams can be performed at a local hospital or at SACETN. All services provided by the SACETN are free, including no-cost SANE exams, pregnancy prevention, and testing and preventative treatment for sexually transmitted infections.

Advocacy

The advocacy program of the SACETN provides victims of sexual assault with the support, information, and resources needed throughout the recovery process. Advocates work to ensure that Complainants' legal rights are protected, while also empowering Complainants to make their own decisions. Advocacy assistance includes: accompaniment during SANE exams, police interviews, legal appointments, and University and court proceedings; and assistance filing victim's compensation applications and petitions for orders of protection.

Therapy

Therapy services are available to Complainants in crisis, Complainants who are victims of a recent sexual assault, and Complainants who were victims of a sexual assault or sexual abuse that happened months or years ago. The goal of the SACETN is to work collaboratively to address the many concerns and issues associated with sexual violence in order to promote healing. Therapists at the SACETN specialize in treating female, male, and LGBTQ Complainants and offer services to individuals of all ages.

 

You may choose to consult a private physician or go to an emergency department of your choice.  As a result, a report to a private physician or emergency department does not put the University of Tennessee on notice of Sexual Misconduct or Relationship Violence.

Confidential Community Resources – Chattanooga

Family Violence & Sexual Assault Hotline: 755-2700
Provides 24 hour referrals, crisis intervention, shelter services, counseling.

Partnership for Families, Children & Adults: 755-2822

Legal Aid of East Tennessee: 756-4013

Southeast Tennessee Legal Services: 756-0128
Both of these offices can assist with orders of protection and legal issues surrounding violence for free or low cost.

The Coalition Against Domestic and Community Violence of Greater Chattanooga, Inc.
One Cherokee Boulevard
First Tennessee Bank Building
Chattanooga, Tennessee  37405
(423) 875-0120
help@dvcchatt.org

Partnership for Families, Children and Adults
300 E. 8th Street
Chattanooga, TN 37403
Phone: (423) 755-2701
Fax: (423) 755-2778

You may choose to consult a private physician or go to an emergency department of your choice.  As a result, a report to a private physician or emergency department does not put the University of Tennessee on notice of Sexual Misconduct or Relationship Violence.

Confidential Community Resources – Nashville

Nashville Crisis Hotline (615) 244-7444

Suicide Prevention Lifeline800-SUICIDE (784-2433)
This hotline is a network of 161 crisis centers in 50 states and will connect you with the crisis center nearest to your location.

Davidson County Mobile Crisis Team (615) 726-0125

VU Psychiatric Hospital(615) 327-7000

Specialized Services in the Community

Sexual Assault
Sexual Assault Center (800) 879-1999/(615) 256-8526
National Sexual Assault Hotline (800) 656-HOPE (4673)

Drugs and Alcohol
Alcoholics Anonymous Referral Service and Treatment Program 24-Hour Helpline (800) 711-6375
Narcotics Anonymous Helpline (800) 677-1462/(615) 251-7462
Drug Helpline (800) 662-HELP (4357)

Intimate Partner Violence
YWCA Domestic Violence Hotline (800) 334-4628/(615) 242-1199
Tennessee Helpline Domestic Violence Hotline (800) 356-6767
National Domestic Violence Hotline (800) 799-SAFE (7233)
TN Coalition to End Domestic and Sexual Violence

You may choose to consult a private physician or go to an emergency department of your choice.  As a result, a report to a private physician or emergency department does not put the University of Tennessee on notice of Sexual Misconduct or Relationship Violence.

Confidential Resources – UTHSC

If a Complainant does not desire action by the University and would like the details of the incident to be kept confidential, but desires to confide in someone, the Complainant may speak with the following persons, who are called "Confidential Employees" for purposes of this policy:

  • University Health Services (UHS) can be of service by calling 901-448-5630 (day time) or 901-541-5654 (evening/weekends).
  • Student Behavioral Health at (901-448-5064): Student Behavioral Health Services can provide emotional support for the victim as well as maintain confidentiality. A counselor is available at all times. Medical and psychological follow-up is available as long as needed.
  • Student Assistance Program (SAP) 800-327-2255, option 3: The Student Assistance Program (SAP) is a confidential program that motivates students experiencing difficult personal situations to seek or accept professional assistance thus preventing personal concerns from undermining their well-being and academic performance.
  • A counselor with the Employee Assistance Program managed by Magellan Health Services (855-Here4TN 855-437-3486) (resource option for employees only).

A physician, psychologist, psychiatrist, or social worker identified in this section is a Confidential Employee only if the student or employee is communicating with that person as a patient or client. The designation of "Confidential Employee" can also include non-professional employees (i.e., staff; students) or advocates who work or volunteer in on-campus health centers or a student support services area under the supervision of a person with a professional license. Professional employees are traditional professionals with confidentiality and privilege obligations in addition to duties that encompass counseling.
Confidential Employees may periodically report non-personally identifiable information about Prohibited Conduct to the Title IX Coordinator to keep the Title IX Coordinator informed about the general extent and nature of Prohibited Conduct on and off campus.

Non-Confidential Resources – UTHSC

The University employees/units identified below are trained to support Complainants. While not bound by confidentiality (i.e., they are Mandatory Reporters who are required to report knowledge of incidents of Prohibited Conduct to the University and/or take other responsive action), these University employees/units will maintain the privacy of information shared by Complainants within the limited circle of those University employees involved in the University's response to an incident of Prohibited Conduct. When speaking with one of the resources below, Complainants are free to limit the details they share while they decide whether to report an incident to the University.

The following University employees/units are generally available Monday-Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. on University business days unless otherwise specified below:

  • Title IX Coordinator - (901) 448-2112
  • Deputy Title IX Coordinators for Students - (901) 448-2112
  • Deputy Title IX Coordinator for Employees, Medical Residents, and Postdocs - (901) 448-2112
  • Deputy Title IX Intake Coordinator for Employees, Students & Trainees (901) 448-2112
  • Employee Relations Counselor in HR - (901) 448-5600
  • UTHSC Campus Police Department - (901) 448-4444 (24 hours/day, seven days/week)

Please contact UTHSC Campus Police if you would like a UTHSC police officer to take you either to a local hospital or the University Health Services (UHS) for medical treatment, including a sexual assault nurse examination.

File a Complaint

Staff, faculty, students, medical residents, post docs, applicants for employment or patients may raise complaints of discrimination, harassment, and violations of policy with the Office of Equity and Diversity (OED). Individuals who feel they are being treated unfairly because of a protected status or in retaliation for engaging in a protected activity, or individuals who believe they are subjected to behavior that rises to the level of violating UT policy are encouraged to contact OED to arrange a confidential appointment with an appropriate staff member to discuss their concerns.

Information about UTHSC’s complaint procedure and more is also accessible on our File a Complaint page.

The Line

The Line is a 24 minute documentary about a young woman – the filmmaker- who is raped, but her story isn’t cut and dry.  Not a “perfect victim,” the filmmaker confronts her attacker, recording the conversation with a hidden camera.  The Line was released in September 2009, and is a top selling film with educational distributor, the Media Education Foundation. 

UTHSC has acquired streaming access through April 2, 2016 for The LineVideo icon

 
 

Know Your IX

Founded in 2013, Know Your IX external link icon is a national survivor-run, student-driven campaign to end campus sexual violence.  Running on grassroots energy, we educate students across the country about their civil right to education free from sexual violence and harassment while also pushing policy and legislative change on the national level for better federal enforcement of that same right. 

To increase your understanding of Title IX there is a YouTube video KNOW YOUR IX Video icon that will enhance your knowledge and understanding of this landmark federal civil rights law.