1445 Title IX Sexual Harassment

Original Date: 9/28/2021 * Last Revision Effective: 9/28/2021 (temporary approval granted by President’s Cabinet – expires 03/28/22)

Policy Contact: Vice President, Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

Policy

Bellevue College complies with U.S. Office of Civil Rights, Department of Education, 34 CFR Part 106 Title IX regulations. This policy applies to the specific definition of sexual harassment as amended in the regulations, effective August 14, 2020. This policy does not prevent the college from pursuing action under other college policies, employment contracts or handbooks, or related federal or state law.

This policy applies to sexual harassment, described below in the prohibited conduct section, that has occurred:

  • In the United States; and
  • During a college educational program or activity

This policy does not alter or modify laws, regulations, or college policies applicable to the legitimate exercise of academic freedom or constitutionally protected rights. General complaints unrelated to discrimination or harassment based on membership in a protected class or retaliation are addressed in BC Policy 1450.

Prohibited Conduct

This policy prohibits act(s) of sexual harassment including attempts to commit, or aid, abet, incite, encourage, or assist another person to commit said act(s).

For purposes of this policy, sexual harassment encompasses the following conduct:

  1. Quid pro quo harassment. A college employee conditioning the provision of an aid, benefit, or service of the college on an individual’s participation in unwelcome sexual conduct.
  2. Hostile environment. Unwelcome conduct that a reasonable person would find to be so severe, pervasive, and objectively offensive that it effectively denies a person equal access to the college’s educational programs or activities, or employment.
  3. Sexual assault. Sexual assault includes the following conduct:
    1. Rape – (Includes attempted rape, excludes statutory rape) The carnal knowledge of a person, without the consent of the victim, including instances where the victim is incapable of giving consent because of their age or because of their temporary or permanent mental or physical incapacity.
    2. Sodomy – Oral or anal sexual intercourse with another person, without the consent of the victim, including instances where the victim is incapable of giving consent because of their age or because of their temporary or permanent mental or physical incapacity.
    3. Sexual Assault with an Object – To use an object or instrument to unlawfully penetrate, however slightly, the genital or anal opening of the body of another person, without the consent of the victim, including instances where the victim is incapable of giving consent because of their age or because of their temporary or permanent mental or physical incapacity.
    4. Fondling – The touching of the private body parts of another person for the purpose of sexual gratification without the consent of the victim, including instances where the victim is incapable of giving consent because of their age or because of their temporary or permanent mental or physical incapacity.
    5. Incest – Nonforcible sexual intercourse between persons who are related to each other within the degrees wherein marriage is prohibited by law.
    6. Statutory Rape – Nonforcible sexual intercourse with a person who is under the statutory age of consent.
  4. Domestic violence. Felony or misdemeanor crimes of violence committed by a current or former spouse or intimate partner of the complainant, by a person with whom the complainant shares a child in common, by a person who is cohabitating with or has cohabitated with the complainant as a spouse or intimate partner, by a person similarly situated to a spouse of the complainant under the domestic or family violence laws of the jurisdiction receiving grant monies, or by any other person against an adult or youth complainant who is protected from that person’s acts under the domestic or family violence laws of the State of Washington, or by any other person against an adult or youth victim who is protected from that person’s acts under the domestic or family violence laws of the State of Washington, RCW 26.50.010.
  5. Dating violence. Violence committed by a person:
    1.  who is or has been in a social relationship of a romantic or intimate nature with the complainant
    2. where the existence of such a relationship shall be determined based on a consideration of the following factors:
      1. The length of the relationship.
      2. The type of relationship.
      3. The frequency of interaction between the persons involved in the relationship.
  6. Stalking. Engaging in a course of conduct directed at a specific person that would cause a reasonable person to:
    1. fear for their safety or the safety of others; or
    2. suffer substantial emotional distress.

Retaliation. Retaliation includes harming, threatening, intimidating, coercing, or taking adverse action of any kind against a person because such person reported a violation of this code or college policy, provided information about a reported violation, or participated as a witness or in other capacity in a college investigation or disciplinary proceeding. Retaliation by, for or against any participant (including but not limited to complainant, respondent, witness, Title IX officer or designee, or investigator) is expressly prohibited. Retaliatory action of any kind taken against an individual seeking redress under the applicable procedures or against any participant in subsequent processes is conduct subject to discipline.

Policy Violations

Reports of violations of this policy by employees, students, or visitors will be reviewed according to the procedures described in 1445P to determine what interim measures, investigations, remediation, or other actions are required or recommended.

Students and employees found to have violated this policy may be subject to corrective or disciplinary action, up to and including dismissal from the college or dismissal from employment. Reports against students will be referred to the student conduct manager for disciplinary proceedings pursuant to the student conduct code (WAC 132H-126, Policy 2050). Reports against employee will be referred for disciplinary proceedings pursuant to the Title IX employee discipline procedures.

Responsibilities

All employees and students are responsible for:

  • Refraining from conduct that is discriminatory, harassing, or retaliatory;
  • Taking discrimination, harassment, and retaliation concerns seriously;
  • Reporting suspected discriminatory, harassing, or retaliatory conduct to the appropriate authorities in accordance with procedures 1440P and 1445P; and
  • Cooperating with any resulting investigation and/or disciplinary proceeding.

Administrators, supervisors, and faculty members are responsible for:

  • Providing a working and learning environment free from discrimination, harassment, and retaliation;
  • Monitoring the work and learning environment for potential discrimination, harassment, and retaliation;
  • Collaborating, when appropriate, with the human resources and Title IX offices to follow-up on situations that have been addressed through the reporting procedures; and
  • Monitoring for potential recurrences of discrimination, harassment, or retaliation.

Relevant Laws and Other Resources

  • BC procedures 1440P/1440P2
  • BC Policy 1450
  • Title IX of the Educational Amendments of 1972
  • U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights
  • Bellevue College Association of Higher Education Collective Bargaining Agreement
  • Washington Public Employees Association Higher Education Collective Bargaining Agreement
  • Washington Federation of State Employees Higher Education Community College Coalition Collective Bargaining Agreement

Revision History

Original 09/28/2021 (temporary approval granted by President’s Cabinet – expires 03/28/22)

Approved By

President’s Cabinet

Last Updated October 19, 2021