The University of Michigan is reminding faculty, staff and students on the Ann Arbor campus to share information about sexual or gender-based misconduct with the university’s Equity, Civil Rights, and Title IX Office.
In addition, faculty and staff are being encouraged to complete annual training on the topic of misconduct to help identify whether they are required under university policy to report information to ECRT, how to report and how to respond appropriately.
“Sharing information is one way we can support our community by ensuring that people impacted by sexual or gender-based misconduct receive accurate information about available resources and options,” Title IX Coordinator Elizabeth Seney said in an email message.
The U-M sexual and gender-based misconduct policy applies to all students, faculty, staff and third parties on the Ann Arbor, Dearborn and Flint campuses, including Michigan Medicine.
While reporting is encouraged for all U-M community members, employees designated as individuals with reporting obligations are required under the university’s sexual and gender-based misconduct policy to report information on misconduct to ECRT.
Designated individuals with reporting obligations include university administrators, including regents, executive officers, deans, department heads and supervisors, and employees in certain designated positions, units or departments, including Student Life, Human Resources, Athletics and the Division of Public Safety and Security.
There is no time limit for reporting an incident. However, Seney said information about any misconduct should be shared with ECRT as soon as possible so the office can respond quickly, equitably and appropriately.
Seney noted that reports may be submitted anonymously, but that ECRT’s ability to investigate and respond to anonymous reports is limited.
A separate U-M policy prohibits retaliation against any member of the university community who in good faith reports or participates in an inquiry or investigation into misconduct.
In addition, a new Michigan misdemeanor law prohibits a person from intentionally using their position of authority to prevent or attempt to prevent another person from reporting to the Title IX coordinator, punishable by imprisonment, fines or both.
Once a report is received, individuals can choose from several possible resolution pathways, including investigative resolution, adaptable resolution, mediation and other responsive actions.
Seney also noted that ECRT seeks to support those affected by misconduct and offers resources and supportive measures even if an individual chooses not to file a report or participate in a formal resolution process.
Available support includes academic support and accommodations, university employment modifications, university housing modifications, counseling or medical services, security measures, contact restrictions, advocacy and assistance with legal or other external processes such as seeking a personal protection order.
Confidential resources also are available for students, faculty and staff.