Complaints of sex-based harassment/discrimination are reviewed by the Title IX Office to confirm if the complaint fits within the Title IX Grievance Policy. Incidents that typically fit within the Grievance Policy are ones that have occurred on-campus or within a campus activity, and/or have occurred after August 14, 2020. Complaints that do not fit within the Title IX Grievance Policy may still be adjudicated through the Code of Student Conduct.
Confidential, Private, and Anonymous Resources
An ANONYMOUS resource is one to whom the student's identity remains unknown. Anonymous reports may limit the extent to which the source is able to investigate and/or address the complaint. In this case, give as much detailed information as possible. On campus, these resources include the BUPD tipline and TIX anonymous reporting form. Off campus, these resources include hotlines and crisis lines.
A CONFIDENTIAL person/office will not disclose what you tell them to anyone else at the University or outside it (unless there is imminent concern for safety). On campus, these resources include health and counseling services and the University Ombudsman. Off campus, these resources typically include healthcare and mental health providers.
A PRIVATE person/office is required to disclose what you tell them to the Title IX Coordinator. However, Binghamton University offices and employees who cannot guarantee confidentiality will maintain your privacy to the greatest extent possible. The information you provide to a non-confidential resource will be relayed only as necessary for the Title IX coordinator to investigate and/or seek a resolution. All reporting individuals will be provided with information including their rights, options, and resources available. Private resources typically include on-campus offices such as University Police, Case Management, the Dean of Students and most other University faculty and staff.
Generally, reports shall be investigated in accordance with institution policy and a reporting individual's identity shall remain private at all times if said reporting individual wishes to maintain privacy. (read here for more on this)
However, if an individual discloses information through a public awareness event such as candlelight vigils, protests, or other public event or forum, the institution is not obligated to begin an investigation based on such information. The institution may use the information provided at such an event to inform its efforts for additional education and prevention efforts.
Andrew R. Baker
Title IX Coordinator
Risk Management and Administrative Compliance
P.O. Box 6000
Binghamton, NY 13902
Couper Administration Building room 217
How Binghamton University will weigh the request and respond:
If you disclose an incident to a Binghamton University employee who is responsible for responding to or reporting sexual violence or sexual harassment, but wish to maintain confidentiality or do not consent to the institution's request to initiate an investigation, the Title IX coordinator must weigh your request against the University's obligation to provide a safe, non-discriminatory environment for all members of the community, including you.
We will assist you with academic, housing, transportation, employment and other reasonable and available accommodations or safety planning regardless of your reporting choices. While reporting individuals may request accommodations, adjustments, and/or protective measures through several college offices, the Dean of Students' office can serve as a primary point of contact to assist with these measures as well as a wide variety of issues affecting students' academic and personal lives.
We also may take proactive steps, such as training or awareness efforts, to combat dating violence, domestic violence, stalking, sexual assault, sexual violence, and/or other forms of sex discrimination in a general way that does not identify you or the situation you disclosed.
We may seek consent from you prior to conducting an investigation. You may decline to consent to an investigation, and that determination will be honored unless the University's failure to act does not adequately mitigate the risk of harm to you or other members of the University community. Honoring your request may limit our ability to meaningfully investigate and pursue conduct action against an accused individual. If we determine that an investigation is required, we will notify you and take immediate action as necessary to protect and assist you.
When you disclose an incident to someone who is responsible for responding to or reporting sexual violence or sexual harassment, but wish to maintain confidentiality, the University will consider many factors to determine whether to proceed despite that request. These factors include, but are not limited to:
- whether the accused has a history of violent behavior or is a repeat offender;
- whether the incident represents escalation, such as a situation that previously involved sustained stalking;
- the increased risk that the accused will commit additional acts of violence;
- whether the accused used a weapon or force;
- whether the reporting individual is a minor; and
- whether we possess other means to obtain evidence such as security footage, and whether the report reveals a pattern of perpetration at a given location or by a particular group.
If the University determines that it must move forward with an investigation, the reporting individual or victim/survivor will be notified and the University will take immediate action as necessary to protect and assist them.
Clery Act Considerations:
Reports of certain crimes occurring in specific geographic locations shall be included in the institution's annual security report pursuant to the Clery Act, 20 U.S.C. 1092(f), in an anonymized manner that identifies neither the specifics of the crime nor the identity of the reporting individual. The institution is obligated to issue timely warnings of crimes enumerated in the Clery Act occurring within relevant geography that represent a serious or continuing threat to students and employees, except in those circumstances where issuing such a warning may compromise current law enforcement efforts or when the warning itself could potentially identify the reporting individual. A reporting individual shall not be identified in a timely warning. The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act, 20 U.S.C. 1232g, allows institutions to share information with parents when: i. there is a health or safety emergency, or ii. when the student is a dependent on either parent's prior year federal income tax return; and that generally, the institution shall not share information about a report of domestic violence, dating violence, stalking, or sexual assault with parents without the permission of the reporting individual.
- What’s Prohibited?
Title IX prohibits discrimination based on sex in educational programs and activities funded by the federal government. This means colleges and universities, but also includes K-12 educational institutions as well.
Title IX protects individuals engaging in, or attempting to engage in, the University’s education program or activities. As defined by the Title IX regulations of 2020, “education program or activity includes locations, events, or circumstances over which the recipient (the University) exercised substantial control over both the respondent and the context in which the sexual harassment occurs, and also includes any building owned or controlled by a student organization that is officially recognized by a postsecondary institution.” It is important to know that the Title IX regulations of 2020 only cover behavior occurring within the United States, and not outside the US.
The Title IX regulations of 2020 define covered sexual harassment as:
“conduct on the basis of sex that satisfies one or more of the following:
(1) An employee of the recipient conditioning the provision of an aid, benefit, or service of the recipient on an individual’s participation in unwelcome sexual conduct;
(2) Unwelcome conduct determined by a reasonable person to be so severe, pervasive, and objectively offensive that it effectively denies a person equal access to the recipient’s education program or activity; or
(3) ‘Sexual assault’ as defined in 20 U.S.C. 1092(f)(6)(A)(v), ‘dating violence’ as defined in 34 U.S.C. 12291(a)(10), ‘domestic violence’ as defined in 34 U.S.C. 12291(a)(8), or ‘stalking’ as defined in 34 U.S.C. 12291(a)(30).” These definitions can also be found in the BU Code of Student Conduct.
(language above adapted from the Title IX Final rule)
Additional conduct may be covered by either the Violence Against Women Act, or NYS-129B (Enough is Enough) law. This may include other kinds of sexual harassment from spoken words or pictures to violent actions and everything in between, whether they occur on campus or off. The University's consideration of these matters occurs without regard to, belief of, perception of, or actual sexual orientation, gender, gender identity or expression.
Many of these behaviors are clearly defined in the Code of Student Conduct (see pages 6-8) and include:
Understanding Affirmative Consent is critical to understanding what is prohibited. The full version is found in the Code of Student Conduct under definitions.
Andrew R. Baker
Title IX Coordinator
Risk Management and Administrative Compliance
P.O. Box 6000
Binghamton, NY 13902
Couper Administration Building room 217
- Drug and Alcohol Amnesty Policy
Drug/Alcohol Amnesty and Title IX
The health and safety of every student at Binghamton University is of utmost importance. The University recognizes that students who have been drinking and/or using drugs (whether such use is voluntary or involuntary) at the time that violence, including but not limited to domestic violence, dating violence, stalking or sexual assault occurs, may be hesitant to report such incidents due to fear of potential consequences for their own conduct. The University strongly encourages students to report domestic violence, dating violence, stalking or sexual assault to institution officials. A bystander acting in good faith or a reporting individual acting in good faith that discloses any incident of domestic violence, dating violence, stalking or sexual assault to Binghamton University officials or law enforcement will not be subject to Binghamton University Student Code of Conduct action for violations of alcohol and/or drug use policies occurring at or near the time of the commission of the domestic violence, dating violence, stalking or sexual assault. This information is available in 100+ languages by clicking HERE. (NYS Education Law, Title 7, Article 129-B § 6442)
Students reporting Title IX violations are protected from retaliation by federal and state laws, and University policy. These include:
The Violence Against Women Act which states:
"An institution, or an officer, employee, or agent of an institution, may not retaliate, intimidate, threaten, coerce, or otherwise discriminate against any individual for exercising their rights or responsibilities under any provision in this section [of VAWA]."
New York State Education Law which states:
"You have the right to make a report to university Police or campus security, local law enforcement, and/or state police or choose not to report; to report the incident to your institution; to be protected by the institution from retaliation for reporting an incident; and to receive assistance and resources from your institution." (NYS Education Law, Title 7, Article 129-B § 6444-2)
Binghamton University Procedures which state:
"Retaliation against members of the University community who make good faith reports regarding potential University-related violations of laws, regulations or University policies is prohibited. (Policy #632)
- Advisor Resource Guide for Title IX Investigations and Hearings
Advisors are central to Title IX proceedings, helping students maneuver a technically complicated and emotionally challenging process. This guide will help advisors for both respondents and complainants and their advisees move through the process in an informed way. It covers each stage of the process, from the filing of the complaint to the investigation, hearing, and appeal.
- Process Steps
- Nondiscrimination Notice
POLICY STATEMENT ON DISCRIMINATION AND HARASSMENT, INCLUDING SEXUAL HARASSMENT
It is the policy of Binghamton University to provide an educational and employment environment free from all forms of intimidation, hostility, offensive behavior and discrimination, including sexual harassment. Such discrimination or harassment may take the form of unwarranted/offensive verbal or physical conduct or verbal or written derogatory or discriminatory statements that may result in decisions affecting status, promotions, raises, favorable work assignments, recommendations, class assignments or grades. Such behavior, or tolerance of such behavior, on the part of an administrator, supervisor, or faculty or staff member violates the policy of the University and may result in disciplinary action including termination. The conduct herein described is contrary to University policy and may be illegal under both state and federal law.
The United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has defined sexual harassment as unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature when:
- submission to such conduct is made either explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of an individual’s employment;
- submission to or rejection of such conduct by an individual is used as the basis for employment decisions affecting such individual; or
- such conduct has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with an individual’s work performance or creating an intimidating, hostile or offensive working environment.
The state of New York has defined sexual harassment as unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct or communication of a sexual nature when:
- submission to such conduct or communication is made a term or condition either explicitly or implicitly to obtain employment, public accommodations, or public services, education or housing;
- submission to or rejection of such conduct or communication by an individual is used as a factor in decisions affecting such individual’ s employment, public accommodations or public services, education or housing;
- such conduct or communication has the purpose or effect of substantially interfering with an individual’s employment, public accommodations or public services, education or housing or creating an intimidating, hostile or offensive employment, public accommodations, public services, educational or housing environment.
An employee and or student who believes he or she has been subject to illegal discrimination or harassment should report the conduct to his or her immediate supervisor, and in the event the supervisor is the aggrieving party, to the next higher responsible party. If necessary, the discrimination complaint grievance procedure should be utilized. Complaints should be reported to the chief diversity officer in the Division of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion. The Division of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion can be reached at 607-777-4775 and is located in the Library South Ground Floor, Room 548.