About NCCU Academics Admissions Athletics Campus Life Giving Research

NCCU Title IX Policy Statement

It is the policy of North Carolina Central University to prohibit discrimination and harassment on the basis of age, race, color, gender, national origin, religion, disability, protected veteran status, political affiliation, genetic information, gender identity or gender expression and sexual orientation in regard to the administration of education programs, admission of students, employment actions, athletics or other sponsored activities.

NCCU complies with Title IX of the Educational Amendments Act of 1972, which prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in all programs and activities (including sexual harassment and sexual violence) in the University’s educational programs and activities.

Title IX states: No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity receiving federal financial assistance. Title IX also prohibits retaliation for asserting or otherwise participating in claims sex discrimination.

It is the policy of the University to provide educational, preventative and training programs regarding sexual or gender based harassment and discrimination; to encourage reporting incidents; to prevent incidents of sexual and gender based harassment and discrimination; from denying or limiting an individual’s ability to participate in or benefit from the University’s programs; to make available timely services for those who have been affected by discrimination; and to provide prompt and equitable methods of investigation and resolution to stop discrimination, remedy any harm, and prevent its recurrence. Violations of this Policy may result in the imposition of sanctions up to, and including, termination, dismissal, or expulsion, as determined by the appropriate administrators at the University.

Related Link: NCCU Pol 80.07.1 - Sexual Misconduct Policy

For information or if any individual who believes he or she has been discriminated against in violation of Title IX and other applicable laws, or who has witnessed discrimination against another is encouraged to file a complaint with Ms. Ann Penn, Interim Director of EEO and Employee Relations, who serves as the University’s Title IX Coordinator at 919-530-6681 or email at aepenn@nccu.edu or TitleIX@nccu.edu. Title IX complaints may be submitted electronically using the Title IX Reporting Form.

The Title IX Coordinator has appointed the following Deputy Title IX Coordinators to receive complaints of sexual harassment, sexual assault, sexual violence or other sexual misconduct, against students and employees:

Deputy Title IX Coordinator

Title

Phone Number

Email Address

Ms. Daphine Richardson

EEO and Employee Relations Consultant

919-530-6920

drichardson@nccu.edu

Mr. Jared Pone

Acting Director of Student Conduct and Community Standards

919-530-5287

jpone2@nccu.edu

Ms. Etienne Thomas

Associate Athletic Director, SWA

919-530-7053

ehthomas@nccu.edu

Ms. Joy Hartfield

Assistant Director for Special Operations, Residential Life

919-530-5469

jhardfield@nccu.edu

Dr. Ruth Gilliam Phillips

Executive Director, Student Health and Counseling Services

919-530-7908

ruth.gilliam.phillips@nccu.edu

The Deputy Title IX Coordinators will communicate and consult regularly and work collaboratively with the Title IX Coordinator who has ultimate responsibility for compliance with Title IX of the Education Amendments Act of 1972.

An employee or student may always file a complaint with: U.S. Department of Education for Civil Rights or the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

Title IX Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

NCCU’s Sexual Misconduct Policy applies to all members of the NCCU community, including students, faculty, staff, administrators, volunteers, vendors, independent contractors, and any individuals regularly or temporarily employed, studying, living, visiting, conducting business or having any official capacity with the University. All individuals are covered by this policy, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity.

What is sexual misconduct?
Sexual misconduct includes sexual or gender-based harassment, sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, sexual exploitation, and stalking. Sexual or gender-based harassment may include unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors and other conduct of a sexual nature that creates a hostile, intimidating, or abusive environment. Sexual assault and sexual violence are forms of sexual harassment that involve having or attempting to have sexual contact with another person without consent.

What is consent?
Consent is an affirmative decision to engage in mutually acceptable sexual activity given by clear actions or words. It is an informed decision made freely, willingly, and actively by all parties. Consent is informed, knowing, and voluntary. Consent is active, not passive. Silence or an absence of resistance cannot be interpreted as consent. Consent to engage in sexual activity with one person does not imply consent to engage in sexual activity with another; likewise, consent to engage in one form of sexual activity does not imply consent to other forms of sexual activity. Consent can be given by words or actions, as long as those words or actions create mutually understandable permission regarding the conditions of sexual activity. Consent to sexual activity may be withdrawn at any time. If consent is withdrawn, all sexual activity must immediately cease.
Someone is NOT giving consent if he or she is:

  • saying “no” or “stop”
  • crying
  • moving away or pushing the other(s) away
  • completely still or unengaged
  • intoxicated, drugged, or high
  • asleep or unconscious
  • physically or psychologically pressured or forced
  • mentally or physically impaired
  • beaten, threatened, or confined
  • under the age of 16

What can I do if I believe I have experienced sexual misconduct?

Anyone who has experienced sexual misconduct is encouraged to seek help immediately, including medical assistance, confidential counseling, and legal assistance.

  • NCCU provides 24-hour assistance to those who have been affected by any form of sexual misconduct through the NCCU University Police Department (Dial Ext. 6106 from a campus phone or 919-530-6106 from a non-campus phone). University Police will provide a safe place, arrange medical assistance, and offer information regarding on and off-campus resources.
  • The Durham Crisis Response Center Crisis Line (919-403-6562 for English, 919-519-3735 for Spanish) also offers 24-hour assistance and support for survivors of domestic and sexual violence.
  • Talk to a University employee about what happened so you can get the support you need, and so the University can respond appropriately. NCCU’s Student Health and Counseling Center can provide medical care and confidential counseling. Other campus resources for support include the Women’s Center, the LGBTA Resource Center, and the Office of Student Conduct and Community Standards. For employees, the Employee Assistance Program can provide support. Additional information on resources that are available on and off-campus can be found in NCCU’s Sexual Misconduct Policy.
  • File a complaint with the Title IX Coordinator, or talk with a “responsible employee” about what happened (a NCCU employee who has a duty to report sexual misconduct to the Title IX Coordinator). An individual who is employed at the University as a professional, licensed counselor and who provides mental health counseling to members of the University community in that role, is not required to report any information about an incident to the Title IX Coordinator without a Complainant’s permission. All other University employees are required to report all details to the Title IX Coordinator.  

How do I file a sexual misconduct complaint?
Anyone (including a third-party or bystander) may make a report of sexual misconduct to the Title IX Coordinator or to a responsible employee. Reports can be made in person, by telephone, in writing, by email, or using NCCU’s Title IX reporting form. Anonymous reports may be submitted via the Title IX reporting form. Anonymous reports will be investigated in the same manner as those reported directly to the Title IX Coordinator or a responsible employee.   

What happens after a complaint is filed?
The Title IX Coordinator will contact the Complainant to schedule a meeting to initiate the investigation process. The alleged perpetrator (Respondent) also will be notified of the pending investigation. In general, the University will complete the investigation of the complaint and issue a Notice of Outcome within sixty (60) calendar days of opening the complaint.

What are the steps in the investigation process?

  • Initial meeting with the Complainant. Within ten (10) working days of receiving a complaint, the Title IX Coordinator (or assigned Deputy Title IX Coordinator) will contact the Complainant to schedule an initial meeting. During this meeting, the Complainant will be given an overview of the investigation process, an explanation of rights and options, and information on support resources. The Complainant may bring an advisor or support person to the meeting. A summary statement from the Complainant regarding the allegations that resulted in the complaint will be generated at the end of the meeting. 
  • Initial meeting with the Respondent. The Respondent will have ten (10) working days to reply after being notified of the complaint. The Respondent also has the right to attend an initial meeting with the Title IX coordinator to receive an overview of the investigation process and an explanation of rights and options. The Respondent may be accompanied by an attorney or advisor during the initial meeting and throughout the course of the investigation process.
  • Gathering Information. The investigator will interview all parties and witnesses, compile statements, verify statements, gather/obtain documentation and evidence, and draft the final report. The investigator will work with the parties to obtain originals or copies of documents, videos, pictures, etc. that will be maintained in the case file. Both the Complainant and Respondent will be given periodic status updates, as available, throughout the investigation.
  • Outcome. The investigator will review the evidence and make a determination by a “preponderance of the evidence” (more likely than not) whether the allegations violate the Sexual Misconduct Policy. Both parties will receive a Notice of Outcome within ten (10) business days of completion of the Title IX investigation. The Notice of Outcome will indicate whether the Title IX Coordinator will refer the case for disciplinary action.
  • Discipline and Appeals. If the Respondent is a student, the case will be referred to the Office of Student Conduct and Community Standards to follow the process in the Student Code of Conduct for hearings and appeals. If the Respondent is an employee, the case will be referred to the appropriate administrative or academic department. Employees may grieve the outcome of the Title IX investigation following NCCU’s established grievance procedures. Mediation will not be used to resolve any sexual misconduct complaints (including at any stage in the administrative investigation or subsequent hearing, grievance, or appeal).

Is sexual misconduct only experienced by women?
No. Both females and males can experience sexual misconduct. In addition, sexual misconduct can occur between individuals of the same gender. If you believe you have experienced any type of conduct that is prohibited by NCCU’s Sexual Misconduct Policy, your gender and the gender of the alleged perpetrator are irrelevant.

Should I file a complaint if the sexual misconduct offense occurred off-campus?
Yes. In situations in which both the Complainant and Respondent are members of the University community (faculty, staff or students), NCCU’s Sexual Misconduct Policy will apply regardless of the location of the incident. Sexual misconduct offenses may be reported whether the alleged offense happened on NCCU’s property or at University-sanctioned events or programs that take place off campus, including study abroad and internship programs.

If I am underage and have been drinking, should I still file a complaint, or help someone who may have experienced sexual misconduct?
Yes. A student who has experienced sexual misconduct is encouraged to come forward under any circumstances so he or she can get support, and to allow the University to take steps to investigate and address the situation. The University also encourages students to offer help and assistance to others in need. Complainants and students who offer help to others in need may receive immunity for an alcohol offense under NCCU’s Alcohol Medical Amnesty Regulation.

I am an employee of the University. Does the Sexual Misconduct Policy apply to me?
NCCU’s Sexual Misconduct Policy applies to all members of the University community, including all students, faculty, staff, administrators, contractors and volunteers. If an employee believes that he or she has experienced sexual misconduct committed by another University student or employee, the employee should report the incident to the Title IX coordinator.

Is there a time limit for filing a complaint? 
No, there is no time limit for making a report. The University encourages reporting of an incident as soon as possible to maximize the University’s ability to respond to the situation. If the Respondent is no longer a student or employee at the University when a complaint is filed, the University may not be able to take action against the Respondent. However, NCCU will investigate the complaint to the best of the University’s ability and take steps to comply with its obligations under Title IX and to provide a safe environment for the University community. 

What if I change my mind about following through with my sexual misconduct complaint, or do not want the alleged perpetrator to know that I filed a complaint?
If you do not wish to proceed with the complaint and/or request the complaint remain confidential, Title IX still requires the University to investigate and take reasonable action in response to the Complainant's information. However, the University’s ability to respond may be limited if you insist on complete confidentiality.
There are times when the University may not be able to honor a Complainant’s request for confidentiality in order to provide a safe environment for the University community. The Title IX Coordinator will weigh the Complainant’s request(s) against factors such as the seriousness of the alleged sexual misconduct and whether there have been other complaints of sexual misconduct against the same Respondent. If it is determined that the University cannot maintain the Complainant’s confidentiality, the University will inform the Complainant prior to starting an investigation and, to the greatest extent possible, only share information with people responsible for handling the University’s response.

If I feel unsafe after filing a complaint, can the University take any action prior to completing the investigation?
The University will take ongoing steps to protect you from retaliation or harm. Pending the final outcome of an investigation, NCCU’s Sexual Assault Response Team (SART) may implement interim protective measures to ensure a safe environment for all parties. These measures may include a change in housing or work assignments; altering academic schedules; issuing no contact orders; or giving special consideration for absences related to the incident(s). If necessary to prevent continuing or future acts of sexual misconduct, a student who is an alleged perpetrator also may be subject to an interim suspension pursuant to the Student Code of Conduct.

What should I do if I am accused of sexual misconduct?
A sexual misconduct complaint may be filed against any member of the University community (student, faculty, staff, administrator, etc.) If you have any questions regarding the sexual misconduct complaint, contact NCCU’s Title IX Coordinator. The Title IX Coordinator can provide you with information and assist you through the investigation process. As a Respondent, you have the right to utilize an attorney or advisor throughout the course of the investigation. If a no contact order has been issued, you must refrain from making contact with the Complainant during the investigation.

If I am accused of sexual misconduct, can I be charged both on-campus and off-campus?
Yes. A Complainant has the right to pursue both on-campus and off-campus (civil or criminal) complaints. Regardless of the Complainant’s decision to pursue off-campus legal action, the University will move forward with the on-campus investigation.   

Will NCCU inform my parents or guardians?
Generally, no. Whether you are the Complaint or the Respondent, NCCU’s primary relationship is with you and not your parents, unless you are 17 years old or younger. The University will only speak with your parents/guardians with your consent. However, in certain limited circumstances, the University may share information where an imminent health or safety danger to the student or another individual exists in the opinion of professional staff or a campus administrator.

Can the University retaliate against someone for filing a sexual misconduct complaint, or for participating in a sexual misconduct investigation?
No. Retaliation is intimidating, threatening, coercing, or in any way discriminating against an individual because of the individual’s informal or formal complaint or participation in an investigation or proceeding. Retaliation against an individual who reports or complains of sexual misconduct or who provides information in a sexual misconduct investigation or proceeding is prohibited. If you have participated in a sexual misconduct investigation and feel that you have been retaliated against, let the Title IX coordinator know immediately. Any allegations of retaliation will be promptly investigated and will result in disciplinary action if substantiated.

 
NCCU complies with Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, which prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in all programs and activities (including sexual harassment and sexual violence) in the University's educational programs and activities. For additional resources or to file a Title IX complaint, visit the NCCU's Title IX webpage.
© 2017 North Carolina Central University 1801 Fayetteville St., Durham, NC 27707