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Definitions

The following definitions are intended to supplement those set out in the JSU’s Title IX policy and are not in substitution thereof. Definitions of conduct prohibited by University policy should be read liberally so as to accomplish JSU’s goal of protecting members of the University community from sexual and discriminatory abuse by others.

Sexual Harassment is:  Unwelcome verbal, non-verbal, or physical conduct of a sexual nature that denies or limits, on the basis of sex, someone’s ability to participate in or benefit from the University’s educational program or activities. Sexual harassment can take two forms: quid pro quo harassment and hostile environment harassment.  Quid pro quo harassment occurs if a teacher or other University employee conditions an educational decision or benefit on the student’s submission to unwelcome sexual conduct., Hostile environment harassment is sexually-harassing conduct by a University employee, another student or a third-party that is sufficiently serious to deny or limit a student’s ability to participate in or benefit from the University’s educational program or activities. Teachers and other University employees can participate engage in either type of harassment. Students and third parties generally can engage in only hostile environment harassment, unless they have been given responsibility over a student.  

Examples include, but are not limited to: an attempt to coerce an unwilling person into a romantic or sexual relationship; to repeatedly subject a person to unwanted sexual attention or ogling (lustful, flirtatious staring); to subject a person to egregious; unwanted sexual attention to punish a refusal to comply; to condition a benefit on submitting to sexual advances; sexual violence; intimate partner violence, stalking; gender-based bullying or harassment.

Discrimination is:  Different treatment of an individual based upon his or her protected status, for which the actor does not have a nondiscriminatory reason for the difference in treatment.  Discrimination may be based upon an individual’s actual or perceived gender, race, color, age, creed, national or ethnic origin, physical or mental disability, veteran status, marital or pregnancy status, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, or other protected status.

Discriminatory Harassment is:  Detrimental action based on an individual’s actual or perceived gender, race, color, age, creed, national or ethnic origin, physical or mental disability, veteran status, marital or pregnancy status, religion, sexual orientation, sexual identity or other protected status that is sufficiently serious to limits or deny a student’s ability to participate in or benefit from the University’s educational program or related services or activities.

Retaliatory Harassment is:  Intentional action taken by an accused individual or allied third party, absent legitimate non-discriminatory purposes, that harms an individual as reprisal for making a complaint or participating in a grievance proceeding.

Sexual Harassment of Student by Another Student is:  Any unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature by a student toward another student that is so severe, persistent or pervasive that it unreasonably interferes with or limits a student’s ability to participate in or benefit from the University’s educational program or related services or activities.

Sexual Harassment of a Faculty/Staff Member by a Student:  Any unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature directed toward a faculty/staff member by a student that is so severe, persistent or pervasive that it unreasonably interferes with employment or creates a hostile work environment.

Sexual Harassment of a Student by a Faculty/Staff Member is: Unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature by a faculty or staff member toward a student are considered to constitute sexual harassment when (1) submission to such sexual conduct is made either explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of rating an individual’s educational development or performance, or (2) such conduct is so severe, persistent or pervasive that it unreasonably interferes with or limits a student’s ability to participate in or benefit from the University’s educational programs or related services or activities.

Importance of Circumspection By Those in Authoritative Positions: While a particular interaction must be sufficiently offensive to both a reasonable person and to the victim to be defined as misconduct, faculty and staff members and other persons of authority should be sensitive to questions about mutuality of consent that may be raised due to the conflict of interests that are inherent in personal relationships that result from professional and educational interactions.  Harassment is particularly damaging when it exploits the educational dependence and trust between students and faculty/staff.  When the authority and power inherent in faculty/staff relationships with students, whether overtly, implicitly, or through misinterpretation, is abused in any way, there is potentially great damage to the individual student, to the accused individual, and to the climate of the institution.

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