[August 2020]: The Office for Civil Rights of the U.S. Department of Education (DOE) has issued amendments to Title IX (see Federal Register). The date that Reed College must be in compliance with these regulations is August 14, 2020, including all updates to related Reed College policies and processes.
We affirm our commitment to equity and fairness in all of our investigative and judicial processes for both those reporting sexual harassment and those accused of it. Supportive measures will continue to be available for those who are involved.
To ensure that our campus policies and processes comply with Title IX, the Clery Act, and Oregon law, we have assembled a working group of students, staff, and faculty to carefully review the amendments and develop recommendations for changes. If you have questions or comments for the Title IX working group, please submit them here. A summary of the June 30 information session is here.
What is Title IX?
Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 protects individuals from sex discrimination in educational programs and activities at institutions that receive federal financial assistance. Title IX states:
"No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance." 20 USC 1681
Reed College is committed to maintaining environments that foster a diverse and inclusive community in which all members can participate free from discrimination on the basis of sex, gender, and gender identity. Reed provides resources to students, faculty, and staff to address concerns relating to discrimination on the basis of sex, sexual orientation, or gender identity, which includes sexual misconduct.
Reed's policy governing discrimination on the basis of sex is the Discriminatory Harassment and Sexual Misconduct Policy (DHSM). This policy details and explicitly prohibits specific forms of harassment and encourages the reporting of these prohibited behaviors. Reed College will work to prevent prohibited behaviors, to take steps to reduce the risk of their recurrence, and to correct any discriminatory effects on a complainant or others.
All members of the community have an obligation to inform themselves about Title IX and the DHSM, in order to recognize and take steps to prevent discrimination, harassment, and sexual misconduct, and to respond effectively if such behavior does occur.
Title IX Coordinator
Christopher Toutain serves as Reed's Title IX Coordinator and in that role oversees and provides leadership for the activities related to Title IX compliance, training, investigations, enforcement, response, and reporting.
Christopher Toutain, Title IX/504 Coordinator
Eliot 108A, 503/517-4842, firstname.lastname@example.org
There are also two Title IX Deputy Coordinators at Reed College:
- Deputy Coordinator for Faculty: Kathy Oleson, Dean of the Faculty
503/777-7257, Psychology 125, email@example.com
- Deputy Coordinator for Staff: Michelle Valintis, Director of Human Resources
503/777-7705, Eliot 305, firstname.lastname@example.org
The Title IX Coordinator and the Deputy Coordinators can answer questions regarding the process for reporting, investigating, and adjudicating complaints of gender discrimination, sexual harassment, sexual assault, or other potential Title IX violations. The Title IX Coordinator and Deputy Coordinators are not confidential resources but can direct community members to on- and off-campus confidential resources, as well as to other resources.
If you are in need of disability-related accommodations or have questions about accessibility at any point in engaging in the Title IX process, please contact the Title IX Coordinator (email@example.com).
Title IX Reporting and Complaint Resolution Procedures
These procedures are designed to address and promptly resolve Title IX reports and complaints. Reports and complaints related to all other forms of discrimination or harassment follow the relevant procedures outlined in the Judicial Board Code (for reports or complaints related to conduct by students), in the Staff Grievance Resolution Process (for reports or complaints related to conduct by staff), and in the Rules of Procedure of the Faculty (for reports or complaints related to conduct by faculty).
For the purposes of these procedures, the following definitions apply:
- Title IX Report: any report made to the Title IX Coordinator, Deputy Coordinator(s) and/or Community Safety alleging behavior that may violate Title IX
- Reporting party: an individual who makes a Title IX report
- Subject of a report: an individual mentioned in a Title IX report, either as the alleged perpetrator of the behavior in question, or the alleged target of said behavior
- Complaint: a report that results in a formal adjudication process by the appropriate Reed adjudicative body
- Complainant: an individual lodging a complaint
- Respondent: an individual alleged to have violated college policy and who has been identified as such in a complaint
- Investigator: the individual appointed by the Title IX Coordinator to conduct an investigation of the Title IX report
- Investigative Summary: a summary that encapsulates all of the pertinent information and facts resulting from the investigation of a Title IX report
The procedures described herein are applicable to the internal governance of Reed College. They are not a replacement for normal staff supervisory authority, nor do they replace the right of the college to initiate an investigation in the absence of a complaint.
These procedures also do not preclude external remedies for acts that may constitute violations of Title IX. Students, staff, faculty, alumni, families, and other legitimate users of Reed College's facilities or programs have the option at all times to file a criminal complaint with law enforcement and/or to seek a civil remedy, in addition to or in place of using these procedures. In addition, individuals always have the right to file a formal complaint with the United States Department of Education Office of Civil Rights:
United States Department of Education Office of Civil Rights
400 Maryland Avenue SW
Washington, DC 20202-1100
Customer Service Hotline: 800/421-3481
The college has both principled reasons and a legal obligation to investigate possible violations of Title IX. All Reed community members (students, staff, and faculty) should help ensure that violations of Title IX are promptly reported. Normally, this means reporting any witnessed violations, or violations learned about through the disclosure of others. Reporting will not necessarily result in a complaint, but all complaints will be considered de facto Title IX reports.
Who may initiate a Title IX Report?
Any Reed community member, parent or family member, or legitimate user of Reed College facilities or programs, not just the target(s) of the alleged Title IX violation, may initiate a Title IX report.
Reed College encourages all members of the community to report violations or possible violations of Title IX. However, certain employees and students must report. The college has designated the categories of employees listed below as obligated reporters under the DHSM. When an employee in one of these categories has reason to believe that a violation of Title IX may have occurred, that employee must report this possible violation, and should do so within 24 hours.
College-designated Obligated Reporters:
- Members of the faculty
- President and Vice Presidents
- Supervisors of Reed staff
- Most employees in Student Life, except student workers, Health and Counseling Services staff, and the Program Director for Sexual Health, Advocacy, & Relationship Education
- Members of the Adjudicating Boards
- House Advisers
Where to file a Title IX Report
Reports may be made to the Title IX Coordinator, the Title IX Deputy Coordinators, or Community Safety. These reports can be made verbally (either in person or by phone) or in writing (either in hard copy or electronically).
In the case of a report against a vice president, the Dean of Faculty, or the Director of Human Resources, the report may be made to the President.
In the case of a report against the President, the report may be made to the Chairman of the Board of Trustees.
Basic Elements of a Title IX Report
There is no formally required content to make a Title IX report. However, the following elements are important to facilitate the investigation process and whenever possible should be included when filing a Title IX report:
- Name and Reed affiliation (e.g. student, faculty, staff) of the person making the report;
- Name and Reed affiliation of the subjects of the report, i.e. the alleged target of prohibited behavior and the alleged perpetrator of prohibited behavior;
- A brief statement of the event or events which are the cause of the report, including relevant date and location;
- If the report is in writing, the signature of the person making the report and the date of the filing of the report.
Confidential and Anonymous Reporting
The college's goal is to balance our duty to investigate with the privacy rights of subjects of Title IX reports and potential complainants. As such, we provide several options for confidential reporting:
Any community member wishing to make a report of a violation of Title IX may do so by completing a secure online form, and may choose to do so anonymously if they wish. While it is inherently difficult to gather the full facts in response to anonymous reports, the college will nonetheless conduct an investigation. The investigation will be as thorough as is practicable and will be appropriate to the specific report.
Staff and faculty may undertake confidential discussions with a counselor through the Employee Assistance Program.
Students who are unsure about whether they wish to initiate a complaint may undertake confidential discussions of possible violations with a counselor in the Health & Counseling Center. When providing or directly overseeing medical or mental health care, the staff of the Health & Counseling Center are normally exempt from reporting obligations related to that care.
More information on reporting options for students can be found on the Sexual Health, Advocacy & Relationship Education website.
Notification to the Alleged Perpetrator
The alleged perpetrator of the behavior described in the report will normally be notified of the report within five (5) business days of receipt of the report by the Title IX Coordinator or Deputy Coordinator or as quickly as is practicable. Notification will in most cases be the responsibility of the investigator.
During the investigation and subsequent resolution process, the College will take reasonable steps to protect and support the target of the alleged behavior. In the event there are reasonable grounds to conclude that an individual poses a threat to members of the community, the Vice President for Student Life (or designee) may bar that individual from access to campus, or may take other action deemed appropriate.
In the event that an investigation yields evidence that a student represents a threat to campus, the Vice President for Student Life may take emergency action, which may include excluding that student from campus. In such a case, the Vice President for Student Life (or designee) will generally forward a complaint to the Title IX Board within six (6) working days, counting only days while the college is in session, or be required to withdraw such action. The Vice President's (or designee's) emergency action shall remain in force until the conclusion of the judicial process.
This provision in no way limits a supervisor's right to discipline or discharge a staff employee.
Every report implicating Reed College's compliance with Title IX will be investigated. The Title IX Coordinator will assign an investigator to each report. Investigations will normally be conducted by the Director of Community Safety when the alleged perpetrator is a student, by the Director of Human Resources when the alleged perpetrator is a staff member, and the Dean of the Faculty when the alleged perpetrator is a faculty member in accordance with the Rules of Procedure.
The investigation will be appropriate to the circumstances of the report and will normally consist of interviews with the subjects of the report, with witnesses and others who may have relevant knowledge, and a review of pertinent documentation or other evidence.
Interfering or failing to cooperate with an investigation may result in discipline up to and including discharge for staff and faculty.
In accordance with the college's established judicial board process, students are not required to participate in Title IX investigations or resulting adjudication proceedings.
Confidentiality during the Investigation
The College will make every reasonable effort to preserve an individual's privacy and protect the confidentiality of information when requested. Reports will be treated confidentially to the extent permitted by the College's Title IX reporting requirements and need to investigate and resolve the reported problem. Whenever possible, the complainant's identity will not be disclosed without the consent of the complainant. However, without consent to disclose the complainant or alleged target's identity, the College may be limited in pursuing disciplinary action.
At the conclusion of the investigation, the investigator or other designated person will prepare an investigative summary that encapsulates all of the pertinent information and facts.
The investigative summary will be given to the Title IX Coordinator and to the subjects of the Title IX report. In addition, the investigative summary will be given to the Vice President for Student Life when the alleged perpetrator is a student; the appropriate vice president and supervisor when the alleged perpetrator is an employee; the president when the alleged perpetrator is a vice president, the Dean of the Faculty or Director of Human Resources; and to the Chairman of the Board of Trustees when the alleged perpetrator is the President.
Response to the Investigative Summary
Upon receiving the investigative summary the involved parties may consider the issue resolved, or may wish to resolve the issue through an informal resolution process (except in cases involving a report of sexual assault or dating and domestic violence, which cannot be resolved by an informal resolution process). If the issue is not resolved, or there is no informal resolution process, then the resulting complaint shall be handled as follows:
- When the alleged perpetrator is a student: the alleged perpetrator, or target of the behavior, or the Vice President for Student Life (or designee), may refer the complaint to the Judicial Board process.
- When the alleged perpetrator is a staff member: the appropriate vice president, the President, or Chairman of the Board of Trustees will determine whether additional action, including discipline up to and including discharge is required. A letter from the appropriate vice president, the President or Chairman will be given to the alleged perpetrator stating any action to be taken.
- When the alleged perpetrator is a faculty member: the response and any further proceedings will be in accordance with the Rules of Procedure of the Faculty.
- When the alleged perpetrator is someone other than a student, staff or faculty member, such as a contractor, an alumnus or an alumna, the Title IX Coordinator will take appropriate action.
Any attempt to retaliate or any actual retaliation in response to a Title IX report is strictly prohibited and may result in discipline up to and including discharge for employees and suspension or expulsion for students, in accordance with the college's established judicial procedures.
Retaliation includes intimidation, threats, coercion, or adverse employment or educational actions taken against an individual because of the individual's participation in the reporting, investigation, or resolution of a complaint. Retaliation can be committed by complainants, respondents, or any other individual or group of individuals. Attempted or actual acts of retaliation should be reported to the Title IX Coordinator, Deputy Coordinators, or Community Safety.
Both subjects of the Title IX report, i.e. the alleged target and alleged perpetrator, have the right to file an appeal if there is disagreement with the results and conclusion of the resolution of the issue (as described below). An appeal must be filed in writing.
When the alleged perpetrator is a student:
If either party has access to new information that they believe would have a material impact on the outcome of the completed Title IX investigation, they may appeal by notifying the Title IX Coordinator in writing within ten (10) working days of receiving this notice. The Title IX Coordinator will consider the new information, engage additional investigative steps as appropriate, and inform the students as soon as practicable of any change(s) in the outcome, which shall stand as the final outcome of the Title IX investigation. Should either student wish to pursue the matter further, they may choose to do so through the college’s established judicial process.
The college does its best to minimize any undue disruption to students' educational experience when providing interim measures to parties in Title IX cases. That said, either student may appeal if they feel the interim measures that accompany a Title IX process are excessively disruptive. The student must submit such an appeal to the Title IX Coordinator in writing within ten (10) days of receiving this notice, and include any suggestions for reducing the burden of interim measures. The Title IX Coordinator will consider the appeal, consult with colleagues as necessary to explore potential alternative interim measures that may be appropriate given the circumstances, and notify the students of any change(s). The resulting interim measures cannot be appealed in the context of this investigation.
When the alleged perpetrator is a staff member:
The appeal must be filed with the President within seven (7) working days of the date of the letter of response to the alleged perpetrator, stating why the alleged target or alleged respondent seeking appeal believes the results and conclusion are unsatisfactory. The President shall review the record and investigate further if deemed necessary. The President shall make a decision and the decision will be final and binding on all parties.
When the alleged perpetrator is a faculty member:
The appeal process will be conducted in accordance with the Rules of Procedure of the Faculty.
When the alleged perpetrator is a vice president, the Director of Human Resources or the Dean of the Faculty:
The appeal must be filed with the Chairman of the Board of Trustees within seven (7) working days of the letter of response to the alleged perpetrator, stating why the alleged perpetrator or alleged target seeking appeal believes the results and conclusion are unsatisfactory. The Chairman shall review the record and investigate further if deemed necessary. The Chairman shall make a decision and the decision will be final and binding on all parties.
When the alleged perpetrator is the President:
The appeal must be filed with the executive committee of the Board of Trustees within seven (7) working days of the letter of response to the alleged perpetrator, stating why the alleged perpetrator or alleged target seeking appeal believes the results and conclusion are unsatisfactory. The executive committee shall review the record and investigate further if deemed necessary. The executive committee shall make a decision and the decision will be final and binding on all parties.
Questions and Inquiries
Questions concerning the application of Title IX may be referred to the Title IX Coordinator, Deputy Coordinators and/or to the U.S. Department of Education's Office for Civil Rights.
The Health & Counseling Center
The HCC (5380 SE 28th Avenue), 503/517-7349
Christopher Toutain, Title IX/504 Coordinator
Eliot 108A, 503/517-4842, firstname.lastname@example.org
Rowan Frost, Program Director for Sexual Health, Advocacy, & Relationship Education
Gray Campus Center 104, 503/517-7966, email@example.com
Gary Granger, Director of Community Safety
28 West, 503/777-7379, firstname.lastname@example.org
Judicial Board & Title IX Board
Sexual assault prevention and response information and resources
For staff and faculty:
Employee Assistance Program (EAP)
Cascade Center, 1-800-433-2320
Christopher Toutain, Title IX/504 Coordinator
Eliot 108A, 503/517-4842, email@example.com
Michelle Valintis, Director of Human Resources
& Deputy Title IX Coordinator for Staff
Eliot 305, 503/777-7705, firstname.lastname@example.org
Kathy Oleson, Dean of the Faculty
& Deputy Title IX Coordinator for Faculty
Psychology 125, 503/777-7257, email@example.com