Employee Questions (Student Misconduct)
All Responsible Employees who receive a report of Sexual Misconduct must share that information with the Title IX Coordinator and cannot maintain confidentiality. The only exceptions are staff of a counseling or health center or individuals who are associated with the University in the role of a pastoral counselor or confidential advisor.
Academic Advisors, Resident Advisors, Members of Student Government Associations, student organization advisors and individuals serving as responsible persons for University-affiliated activities (including students and volunteers) must also report to the Title IX Coordinator.
- If you have a present safety crisis or emergency, contact 911.
- Disclose to the person reporting to you that you are not confidential and will have to share their information with the Title IX Coordinator. Explain that you do not have access to all the relevant services and resources, and the Title IX Coordinator will provide them with more information.
- Offer to connect them with confidential resources if they prefer to speak to someone who is not required to report to Title IX (UHV Counseling Center).
- Explain that you are there to help by listening, documenting their concerns and connecting them with additional resources.
- If you are not sure what issue to address, try asking some of the suggested questions in the next section below.
- Avoid making the person feel like you do not want to talk to them. Avoid victim-blaming by asking questions about their judgment or decision-making or making comments. To encourage them to share their concern, avoid expressions of doubt about the contents of their report. Once you have the basic facts of a situation, allow trained professionals to gather additional information. Detailed fact-finding should be conducted only by trauma-informed investigators.
- Thank the person for coming forward and refer them to relevant resources (such as Title IX Office, Counseling and/or campus security).
Are you physically injured?
Call 911 in an emergency or seek appropriate medical attention. If a student needs a sexual assault exam, there is no deadline to receive treatment for injuries or infections. However, they must have an exam at a hospital within 96 hours for evidence collection for possible DNA evidence. Elena Torres, UHV's Confidential Advisor at the Counseling Center is certified to accompany individuals to exams.
If there has been a neck injury or choking incident, loss of consciousness and fatality can occur hours or more than a day later. All possible neck injuries should receive medical evaluation.
If it is not an emergency and the student is reluctant for you to call anyone, encourage the student to follow up. Provide information about local medical services.
2. Do you feel safe?
Call 911 in an emergency. Your definition of unsafe may not match the reporting person’s definition. Their version is the one that matters (they know the most information about their personal situation). If the person has continuing safety concerns, contact campus security or the Title IX Coordinator for a campus safety plan. A campus safety plan can include security escorts, housing changes, No Contact Orders, trespass warnings and more services.
3. Would you like to speak to a confidential counselor or police?
If so, refer them to the Counseling Center or to UH Police & Security. The Title IX Office can also connect the student to these resources. You may ask the student if they would prefer you to reach out to the Title IX Office while speaking to them to see if the Coordinator is immediately available or to set up an appointment. If available, the Title IX Coordinator may be able to conduct an impromptu meeting.
4. What else would you like help with?
Your response to their answer will vary case-by-case. Keep the following points in mind:
- Call 911 if there is an emergency.
- You do not need every detail of what happened to offer support. Thank them for the information and do not act as an investigator or interrogator.
- Be patient and let them speak in their own words. Allow them to share their full concern.
- Try to suggest available resources that may help.
- It is alright if you do not know all of the next steps. Let them know the Coordinator will share more information about resources.
- Do not make promises that you cannot control.
- Collect their information and make an immediate report to the Title IX Coordinator. You can do this most quickly by the online report form, phone (361-570-4835) or email at email@example.com.
Listen to that employee and follow the steps above. Remind them that you are required to report to the Title IX Coordinator. Encourage the employee to speak with the Title IX Coordinator and to seek help through the UT Employee Assistance Program if they need counseling or legal referral services by calling (713) 500-3327 or toll free (800) 346-3549.