- Sexual Misconduct Policy
Sexual Misconduct Policy (Title IX)
Stevenson University believes that members of the Stevenson University community have the right to be free from acts of sexual misconduct. Sexual misconduct includes, but is not limited to, sexual harassment, sexual exploitation, non-consensual sexual contact, non-consensual sexual intercourse, dating violence, domestic violence, and stalking. Accordingly, by this Policy, all members of the Stevenson community and visitors, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity, are advised that any sexual misconduct is prohibited. Stevenson is committed to providing for the prompt and equitable resolution of all complaints of sexual misconduct.
This Policy applies to all complaints of sexual misconduct in Stevenson’s education programs and activities filed by students, employees and third parties. Stevenson also prohibits sexual misconduct by visitors to Stevenson and all third parties on Stevenson’s campuses and during Stevenson activities. The Policy and Procedures also apply to student-on-student sexual misconduct occurring off campus. Violations of this policy may result in disciplinary action up to and including removal from the University for students and termination of employment for faculty and staff.
Therefore, students are expected to review, understand, and comply with the Sexual Misconduct Policy.
- Sexual Assault Prevention
Sexual Assault Prevention
While you can never completely protect yourself from sexual assault, there are some things you can do to help reduce your risk of being assaulted in social situations.
In a Social Situation
- When you go to a social gathering, go with a group of friends. Arrive together, check in with each other throughout the evening, and leave together. Knowing where you are and who is around you may help you to find a way out of a bad situation.
- Trust your instincts. If you feel unsafe in any situation, go with your gut. If you see something suspicious, contact law enforcement immediately (local authorities can be reached by calling 911).
- Don't leave your drink unattended while talking, dancing, using the restroom, or making a phone call. If you’ve left your drink alone, just get a new one.
- Don't accept drinks from people you don't know or trust. If you choose to accept a drink, go with the person to the bar to order it, watch it being poured, and carry it yourself. At parties, don’t drink from the punch bowls or other large, common open containers.
- Watch out for your friends, and vice versa. If a friend seems out of it, is way too intoxicated for the amount of alcohol they’ve had, or is acting out of character, get him or her to a safe place immediately.
- If you suspect you or a friend has been drugged, contact law enforcement immediately (local authorities can be reached by calling 911). Be explicit with doctors so they can give you the correct tests (you will need a urine test and possibly others).
Avoiding Dangerous Situations
- Be aware of your surroundings. Knowing where you are and who is around you may help you to find a way to get out of a bad situation.
- Try to avoid isolated areas. It is more difficult to get help if no one is around.
- Walk with purpose. Even if you don’t know where you are going, act like you do.
- Trust your instincts. If a situation or location feels unsafe or uncomfortable, it probably isn’t the best place to be.
- Try not to load yourself down with packages or bags as this can make you appear more vulnerable.
- Make sure your cell phone is with you and charged and that you have cab money.
- Don't allow yourself to be isolated with someone you don’t trust or someone you don’t know.
- Avoid putting music headphones in both ears so that you can be more aware of your surroundings, especially if you are walking alone.
Safety Planning on a College Campus
Traveling around campus
- Make sure your cell phone is easily accessible and fully charged
- Be familiar with where emergency phones are installed on the campus
- Be aware of open buildings where you can use a phone
- Keep some change accessible just in case you need to use a pay phone
- Take major, public paths rather than less populated shortcuts
- Avoid dimly lit places and talk to campus services if lights need to be installed in an area
- Avoid putting music headphones in both ears so that you can be more aware of your surroundings, especially if you are walking alone.
- Walking back from the library very late at night is sometimes unavoidable, so try to walk with a friend
- Carry a noisemaker (like a whistle) on your keychain
- Carry a small flashlight on your keychain
- If walking feels unsafe, call campus safe escort 443-352-4500.
- Keep your doors locked
- Have extra car necessities (oil, jumper cables, etc.)
- Try not to wait until the last minute to fill your gas tank; always keep it at least half full if you can
- Have your keys ready when you go to unlock your car
Taking the bus
- Be alert at bus stops when waiting for the bus to arrive
- Use the bus schedule to avoid waiting for a long time at a stop
- Plan your route to use the busiest, best-lighted stop possible
- If someone is bothering you on the bus, tell the driver
- If you feel uneasy about getting off at your usual stop, stay on the bus until the next stop or wait until the bus goes around to your usual stop the second time
- Lock your door when you go to sleep and when you are not in the room
- Keep your window locked (especially if it is easy to enter from the ground)
- If people constantly prop open the main resident door, talk to an authority about it
- If you are riding the residential elevator, try to stay near the button dashboard so that you have easy access to the emergency button. Also, if you feel threatened, you can push the button for the next floor and leave immediately instead of waiting for the elevator to reach the floor where you live
- Avoid isolated areas (stairways, laundry rooms, basement, etc.) when you are alone
If Someone is Pressuring You
- Remember that being in this situation is not your fault. You did not do anything wrong, it is the person who is making you uncomfortable that is to blame.
- Be true to yourself. Don't feel obligated to do anything you don't want to do. "I don't want to" is always a good enough reason. Do what feels right to you and what you are comfortable with.
- Have a code word with your friends or family so that if you don’t feel comfortable you can call them and communicate your discomfort without the person you are with knowing. Your friends or family can then come to get you or make up an excuse for you to leave.
- Lie. If you don’t want to hurt the person’s feelings it is better to lie and make up a reason to leave than to stay and be uncomfortable, scared, or worse. Some excuses you could use are: needing to take care of a friend or family member, not feeling well, having somewhere else that you need to be, etc.
- Try to think of an escape route. How would you try to get out of the room? Where are the doors? Windows? Are there people around who might be able to help you? Is there an emergency phone nearby?
- If you and/or the other person have been drinking, you can say that you would rather wait until you both have your full judgment before doing anything you may regret later.
What Can You Do as a Bystander?
While individuals of both genders are perpetrators of sexual assault, the majority of those who commit sexual assaults are men. Even so, it is important to remember that the vast majority of men are not rapists. There are many things men (and women) can do to help prevent sexual violence.
If you see someone in danger of being assaulted:
- Step in and offer assistance. Ask if the person needs help. NOTE: Before stepping in, make sure to evaluate the risk. If it means putting yourself in danger, call 911 instead.
- Don’t leave. If you remain at the scene and are a witness, the perpetrator is less likely to do anything.
- If you know the perpetrator, tell him or her that you do not approve of what s/he is doing. Ask him or her to leave the potential victim alone.
Be an ally:
- When you go to a party, go with a group of friends. Arrive together, check in with each other frequently and leave together.
- Have a buddy system. Don’t be afraid to let a friend know if you are worried about her/his safety.
- If you see someone who is intoxicated, offer to call him or her a cab.
If someone you know has been assaulted:
- Listen. Be there. Don’t be judgmental.
- Be patient. Remember, it will take your friend some time to deal with the crime.
- Help to empower your friend or family member. Sexual assault is a crime that takes away an individual’s power, it is important not to compound this experience by putting pressure on your friend or family member to do things that he or she is not ready to do yet.
- Encourage your friend to call campus security at 443-352-4500.
- Let your friend know that confidential professional help is available through the Wellness Center at 443-352-4200.
- Encourage your friend to report the assault to law enforcement (call 911). If your friend has questions about the criminal justice process, talking with someone on the National Sexual Assault Hotline, 1-800-656-HOPE can help.
- Encourage your friend to call TurnAround, Inc., a Baltimore County sexual assault and domestic violence service. They can reach their 24-hour hotline at 410-828-6390.
If your friend is willing to seek medical attention or report the assault, offer to accompany them wherever they need to go (hospital, police station, campus security, etc.)
- Encourage him or her to contact one of the hotlines, but realize that only your friend can make the decision to get help.
- Find a Safe Computer - Please take a moment to think about whether your computer is safe. This is particularly important if the person abusing you may have access to your computer.
- Edit Privacy Settings on Facebook - Review steps you can take to manage your personal information on Facebook.
- Edit Privacy Settings on Twitter - Review steps you can take to manage your personal information on Twitter.
- Clear History/Cache on Mobile Devices - Quick steps to clear your browsing history on iPhone and Blackberry mobile devices.
- Clear History/Cache on Firefox for PC - Quick steps to clear your browsing history on Firefox (for PC).
- Clear History/Cache on Firefox for Mac - Quick steps to clear your browsing history on Firefox (for Mac).
- Clear History/Cache on Internet Explorer - Quick steps to clear your browsing history on Internet Explorer.
- Clear History/Cache on Safari - Quick steps to clear your browsing history on Safari
- What to do After a Sexual Assault
What to do After a Sexual Assault
Immediately after an assault, the victim is strongly encouraged to do the following:
Get out of physical dangerThe victim should go to a safe place, such as a friend’s room, the room of the Resident Assistant, or the Wellness Center if during weekday business hours. Call a friend, family member or other sources of support described in this policy. The victim also may choose to call 911.
Report the assault to Campus SecurityCampus Security contact information is as follows:
Owings Mills Campus: Ratcliffe Community Center, Front Entrance (100 Campus Circle, Owings Mills, MD 21117); phone number: 443-352-4500.
Greenspring Campus: phone numbers: 443-352-4500; 410-486-7000 (this number is for the University receptionist; simply ask for Security when you call).
The victim also will be advised of her/his right to file a complaint with the police and to seek a Peace Order from the local court. The Director of Security or the Security Shift Supervisor can assist in contacting the police or pursuing a Peace Order. Filing a report with Stevenson does not preclude filing a police report or seeking a Peace Order.
Preserve physical evidence
If there has been a sexual assault, removal of clothes or bathing or cleaning up in any way may destroy essential evidence. Therefore, to preserve evidence, the victim should not shower, bathe, go to the bathroom, douche, smoke, eat, drink or brush teeth or hair, or change clothes or bedding before going to the hospital or medical facility. Save all clothing worn at the time of the assault; if the victim has changed clothes, do not wash them and bring them to the hospital or medical facility. Do not disturb anything in the area where the assault occurred.
Preserve important information
Write down as much as can be remembered about the circumstances of the assault, including a physical description of the assailant. If the alleged perpetrator was unknown to the victim, try to remember any helpful details that may lead to his or her identification, such as scars or other marks, jewelry, dress, language, approximate height and weight in comparison to that of the victim, vehicle description, tag number. Write these down as soon as possible, and include the date and time of writing.
Obtain medical attention and forensic examinations
Victims may receive care at a local hospital, urgent care facility or through their personal physician, and can obtain free exam to preserve forensic evidence.
1. Medical Care. Students may seek medical care—and make confidential reports—at the Stevenson University Wellness Center (443-352-4200). The Wellness Center is open Monday through Friday, 9:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m. with extended hours until 7:00 p.m. on Tuesday and Wednesday. A nurse practitioner or physician will conduct an examination for physical injuries, discuss emergency contraception, and test for STIs. No fees will be charged by the Wellness Center. The Wellness Center will not perform a forensic examination or evidence collection. When you make a report to the Wellness Center of a sexual assault, your report is kept confidential and will not be disclosed unless you direct otherwise.
2. Sexual Assault Forensic Exam. If there has been a sexual assault, the victim is strongly encouraged to immediately get a free Sexual Assault Forensic Exam (S.A.F.E.) at the Greater Baltimore Medical Center in Towson (6701 North Charles Street, Towson, Maryland 21204, 443-849-3323 or after business hours call 443-849-2226) or another similar facility, no later than five (5) days after the assault. Campus Security will provide transportation to the hospital for the S.A.F.E. examination. For more information about the S.A.F.E. examination, contact a Residence Life Staff Member or call TurnAround’s 24 hour hotline at 443-279-0379. Even if the victim is undecided whether to make a police report, evidence may still be collected in a S.A.F.E. examination, and it will be held under an anonymous name for 90 days, giving the victim an opportunity to decide.
Obtain counseling and/or other advocacy services
Mental Health Counselors and Health Care Professionals located in the Stevenson University Wellness Center (443-352-4200) are available to provide confidential counseling and support to student victims of sexual misconduct and can assist victims in evaluating the options available. After normal business hours, students wishing to speak to a professional in the Wellness Center may do so by simply contacting Campus Security and requesting that a counselor from the Wellness Center contact them. Employees should contact Business Health Services, the University’s Employee Assistance Program, at 1-800-327-2251.
Crisis counseling is also available from the TurnAround, Inc., which provides counseling and support services to victims of domestic violence and sexual assault. Legal assistance and victim advocacy services may also be accessed by contacting the Sexual Assault Legal Institute (SALI) which is a program of the Maryland Coalition Against Sexual Assault (MCASA). Contact information for each organization is provided below.
24-hour crisis hotline
Sexual Assault Legal Institute
877-496-7254 or 301-565-2277
A person who believes she or he is a victim of sexual violence may also file and pursue a criminal complaint with law enforcement authorities. Campus Security can assist a victim in making contact with law enforcement authorities if the victim so requests. Stevenson may temporarily delay its investigation while law enforcement authorities gather evidence. However, Stevenson will not wait until the outcome of a criminal proceeding to undertake an investigation and make a decision on the complaint. Stevenson will take appropriate interim steps during the law enforcement agency’s investigation period to provide for the safety of the victim(s) and the school community and for the avoidance of retaliation.
On Campus Resources
Stevenson’s Mental Health Counselors and Health Care Professionals in the Wellness Center are able to provide care and support. Call 443-352-4200 to make an appointment.
Off Campus Resources
TurnAround provides a 24-hour sexual violence hotline (443-279-0379). Their mission is to provide counseling and support services to victims of rape, incest, and domestic violence.
Title IX Coordinator
Pamela L.A. Barkett
Vice President, Student Affairs
Have a Question?
10949 Boulevard Circle
Owings Mills, MD 21117