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Bias-Related Violence, Intimidation and Harassment
It is the goal of Concordia College as an academic and Christian community to maintain an environment free of violence, intimidation and harassment. Bias-related behavior based on race, religion, gender, age, ethnicity, national origin, physical appearance, disability or sexual orientation assaults the dignity and worth of the individual and will not be tolerated. Indeed, victimization will be actively opposed.
We expect that all members of this community will treat each other with dignity and respect, and that all members of the community will assume the responsibility of appropriately confronting acts of bias-related violence, intimidation and harassment which may occur. This policy statement identifies a non-exhaustive list of examples of behavior that are unacceptable and outlines the procedures for handling violations.
Bias-related violence, intimidation and harassment is defined as verbal, written or physical conduct which is based on race, religion, gender, age, ethnicity, national origin, physical appearance, disability or sexual orientation. In addition, such conduct inevitably has the effect of unreasonably interfering with an individual's academic, co-curricular, social or work-related participation in the college community. Bias-related violence, intimidation and harassment exists, for example, when:
1. behavior is intended to intimidate, insult or stigmatize an individual or group;
2. use is made of provocative words or nonverbal symbols which, by virtue of their form, are commonly understood to convey direct and visceral hatred or contempt for human beings; or
3. an act of violence is committed in connection with a bias.
Nothing in this definition should be construed as an abrogation of freedom of expression as established in the The Student Rights, Freedoms, and Responsibilities. However, protected freedom of expression ends when prohibited bias-related violence, intimidation or harassment begins.
Persons experiencing bias-related violence, intimidation or harassment are strongly encouraged to seek assistance from one of the advisers especially selected and trained for the purpose of supporting them. Such persons include Multi-cultural Affairs staff, counseling staff, a Student Affairs dean, designated faculty and staff advisers, peer advocates and designated community volunteers. These advisers/counselors can provide a sympathetic listening ear, explain available options and assist the person throughout any formal or informal option pursued.
Informal options include:
1. When appropriate, bias-related intimidation or harassment can be properly confronted by the affected person(s) and by other members of the community.
2. If conflicts or problems arise in which the person experiencing bias-related harassment or intimidation does not wish to file a formal complaint, the person can request mediation services in an effort to informally resolve the matter. An individual or a panel of one student, one faculty member and one staff member can be named to mediate the matter.
Formal options include:
1. If informal resolutions fail or are inappropriate, formal complaints to college officials can be filed as follows:
- A student complaint involving a faculty member shall be brought to the academic dean or assistant/associate dean.
- A student complaint involving another student or a staff member shall be filed with the dean of students or an assistant/associate dean.
- Student employees and support staff members shall submit complaints to the director of human resources or the vice president for business affairs.
- Administrative staff members shall submit complaints to the director of human resources or the vice president for business affairs.
- A faculty complaint shall be filed with the academic dean or an assistant/associate dean.
2. Bias-related violence should be reported immediately to college and to civil authorities.
Established disciplinary procedures for handling complaints against students or faculty or staff will be followed in cases involving bias-related violence, intimidation or harassment. The appropriate college official named above will explain those procedures to the complainant and keep him/her informed as to the status of those proceedings.
(This policy statement does not stand alone, for it also needs to be considered in relation to other college policies such as The Student Rights, Freedoms, and Responsibilities Document and other policy statements covering harassment and discrimination.)