Sexual Harassment Policy
Prescott College is committed to maintaining a learning and working environment free of sexual harassment. The College will not tolerate behavior of a sexual nature that unlawfully interferes with an individual’s work, educational performance, or creates an intimidating, hostile, or offensive working or learning environment. By law, Prescott College must respond to any sexual harassment complaint, formal or informal, issued by an employee or student.
What is Sexual Harassment?
Sexual harassment is defined as unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or non-verbal 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, study, performance or academic evaluation, or participation in College-sponsored activities.
- Submission to or rejection of such conduct by an individual is used as the basis for decisions affecting such individual’s study, academic evaluation, employment, or participation in College-sponsored activities.
- Such conduct has the effect of substantially interfering with an individual’s academic or work performance, or creating an intimidating, hostile, offensive, or demeaning academic or working environment.
Offensive sexual flirtations, advances or propositions, continued or repeated commentaries about an individual’s body, sexually offensive language, and the display of sexually suggestive pictures or objects constitute forms of sexual harassment.
A student may contact any trusted College faculty or staff member to discuss a sexual harassment issue. However, the persons identified below are the designated sexual harassment officers at Prescott College.
Human Resources Director: (928) 350-4201
Vice President of Student Life: (928) 350-1001
How To File a Sexual Harassment Complaint
An informal complaint is verbal in nature. The alleged victim contacts the appropriate officer above named and verbally reports the nature of the harassment. A student may bring a trusted friend, faculty or staff member when talking with the sexual harassment officer. The College official taking the complaint will ask questions for clarification and may take notes. No formal written documentation is completed at this level. Together the sexual harassment officer and the student will explore options as to the best course of action for alerting the alleged offender regarding the harassing behavior. It is the responsibility of the college official to notify the offender of the alleged complaint and to ask that the harassing behavior end immediately. A student may choose to carry out this notification function, but is not obligated to do so. The College stands by the student issuing the complaint and will ensure that no reprisals are lodged against the student.
A formal complaint is a formal, documented and signed complaint identifying the harasser and the alleged behavior. The alleged victim will be required to be specific and clear regarding times and dates of occurrences and will be asked to identify witnesses who may have heard and/or seen the incident(s). The alleged victim and any witnesses will be given an opportunity to read their recorded documentation and sign it to verify the accuracy of their testimony. At this point, the sexual harassment officer, together with other appropriate authorities will notify the alleged harasser of the complaint and hear the opposing point of view. If the offender is an employee, the Human Resource Director and the immediate supervisor will be involved in reviewing the report. The College places the burden of proof on the harasser and will ensure that the complainant is not further compromised in his/her employment or study activities.
The officer investigating a complaint will attempt to complete the collection of information within a two week period. If student witnesses are in the field this may not be possible. A decision as to whether the incident was harassment will be issued within forty-eight hours of the completion and submission of the report. If the alleged harasser is a school employee, the report is submitted to Human Resources for review and sanction if appropriate. The sanction against the employee can range from placing the employee on probationary status to termination. If the alleged harasser is a student, the sanctions can range from probation to expulsion and may require mandatory counseling and/or other behavioral changes as a condition of continued enrollment.
All sexual harassment complaints, formal and informal, are kept confidential. Only appropriate college officials, (an immediate supervisor, Dean, or Human Resource Director) will be granted access to sexual harassment information.
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