SEXUAL MISCONDUCT POLICY

VII. PRIVACY, CONFIDENTIALITY AND EMPLOYEE REPORTING RESPONSIBILITIES

The Colleges are committed to protecting the privacy of all individuals involved in the resolution of a report of Prohibited Conduct. HWS employees who are involved in the Colleges’ Title IX response, including the Title IX Coordinator, investigators, and adjudicators, receive specific training about safeguarding private information. Throughout the reporting, investigation and resolution of a complaint, including the implementation of remedial and protective measures, the Colleges will make reasonable efforts to protect the privacy interests of all involved individuals in accordance with federal and state law while also conducting a thorough review and response to eliminate, prevent and address Sexual Misconduct.

HWS Employees are designated as either a Responsible Employee or a Confidential Employee. Responsible Employees have reporting obligations under this Policy, but will maintain the privacy of an individual’s information. Confidential Employees do not have a reporting obligation under Title IX and will keep information confidential (except as required or permitted to by law). In understanding the difference between speaking to a Responsible Employee or Confidential Employee, it may be helpful to understand the difference between privacy and confidentiality, as they each have distinct meanings under this Policy.

A. Privacy

Privacy means that information related to a report of Sexual Misconduct will only be shared with a limited circle of HWS employees who “need to know” in order to assist in the active review, investigation and resolution of the complaint and implementation of remedial and protective measures.

B. Confidentiality

Certain campus and community professionals, including mental health providers, ordained clergy, rape crisis counselors, and health care providers, are legally required to keep information shared by an individual confidential and cannot reveal information to a third party. On campus, Confidential Employees are generally prohibited from sharing information unless there is written consent, imminent threat of harm to self or others, or reasonable suspicion of abuse of a minor (someone under the age of 18).

C. Confidential Employees

A Confidential Employee is licensed medical, clinical or mental health professional, or ordained clergy or staff member in the offices of a licensed medical, clinical or mental health professional, or ordained clergy. A Confidential Employee will not make a report to the Colleges unless there is written consent to do so from the patient/client, there is the risk of imminent threat of harm to self or others, or there is reasonable suspicion of abuse of a minor (someone under the age of 18). HWS Confidential Employees are:

  • All employees in the Counseling Center
  • All employees in the Office for Spiritual Engagement;
  • All employees in Hubbs Health Center; and
  • Any other professional with a legally recognized privilege.

Consistent with the Clery Act, any data collected from Confidential Employees about the disclosures of Prohibited Conduct will be done in an aggregate manner and in a way that does not reveal personally identifying information of the parties to include in annual crime statistics, address any systemic concerns, and inform training and education programs.

D. Responsible Employees

Unless designated as an HWS Confidential Employee, all HWS employees are Responsible Employees and are required to make an immediate report to the Title IX Coordinator upon receiving information about an incident of Prohibited Conduct. Responsible Employees include Resident Assistants, Teaching Assistants, and all other student employees, when disclosures are made to any of them in their capacities as employees. Responsible Employees will keep information private, but cannot maintain confidentiality. Responsible Employees are required to share all known details about an incident with the Title IX Coordinator, including dates, times, locations, names of involved individuals and the nature of the incident. HWS offices and employees who cannot guarantee confidentiality will maintain privacy to the greatest extent possible.

E. Public Awareness Events

Responsible Employees are generally not required to report information reported during public awareness events. Public awareness events including candlelight vigils such as Take Back the Night or other public events or forums at which individuals disclose experiences of sexual violence or other forms of Prohibited Conduct are not considered notice to the school for the purpose of triggering an individual investigation unless initiated by the Complainant. The Colleges may use any information provided at such events to review policy, inform ongoing education and prevention efforts, and assess climate to learn more about the prevalence of Sexual Misconduct at the Colleges.

F. Clery Act Reporting

Under the Clery Act, the Colleges are required to issue timely warnings to the HWS community where certain reported crimes (including some forms of Sexual Misconduct) pose a serious or continuing threat to the Colleges’ community. The Clery Act also requires the Colleges to maintain, make available to the public, and provide to the United States Department of Education statistics about certain reported crimes in a daily crime log and annual security report. Timely warnings and the Colleges’ crime statistics do not include personally identifying information of Complainants.

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Geneva, NY 14456
(315) 781-3000

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