Sexual Assault Policy
Central Washington University will not tolerate sexual assault or sexual misconduct in any form. The university affirms respect, responsibility and caring among all persons within the community. Federal law requires specific policies and procedures to address sexually assault behavior on the part of students. Allegations of sexual assault by students should be addressed through this policy, administered by the office of the Associate Vice President for Student Affairs, Bouillon Hall, room 204, 509-963-1515.
The university is committed to preventing all forms of sexual assault and to providing accessible, responsive services for dealing with such offenses. Sexual assault on the part of any student is clearly inconsistent with Central Washington University values. It is also considered a form of sexual harassment in violation of the university Student Rights and Responsibilities Policy, as well as a violation of state and federal law.
Individuals are responsible for their behavior when they are consuming alcohol or other controlled substances, and such consumption is not an excuse for unacceptable behavior. Sexual assault often occurs in the context of the use of alcohol or other controlled substances. Under these circumstances, individuals put themselves at increased risk for being a victim of sexual assault or of being accused as a perpetrator. Lack of consent can exist if a person is too intoxicated and/or is unable to freely agree to sexual intercourse or sexual contact. The university’s highest concern is for the emotional and physical well being of sexual assault victims. The victim shall have access to the full complement of university services that can help students maintain emotional and psychological well-being and provide for the safety of the victim. These include, but are not limited to, assistance in changing academic and living arrangements if these changes are reasonably available. The University Sexual Assault Response Coordinator will be the official first point of contact (509-963-3233 or e-mail Andrea Easlick at email@example.com), other than police, for facilitating victim access to all needed services. Other departments, if contacted first, will make a referral to the Sexual Assault Response Coordinator.
Central Washington University encourages all members of the campus community who believe they are victims of sexual assault to immediately report the incident to the police agency of jurisdiction. Although reporting is not required, it is encouraged. If the assault occurs in the residence halls or apartments, the Office of University Housing and New Student Programs and the C.W.U. Public Safety and Police Services should be contacted, as well as the Sexual Assault Response Coordinator. Immediate reporting to the police is an important factor in successful investigation and prosecution of sexual assault cases. Victims are not required to pursue prosecution just because they report a crime to a police agency. However, the reporting of sexual assault to the police agency may prevent others from being victims. If a victim has a complaint with a non-student member of the university community, they should contact the Office For Equal Opportunity at 509-963-2205 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Any member of the university community can file a third party report with the Sexual Assault Response Coordinator, Student Health and Counseling or C.W.U. Public Safety and Police Services detailing an incident involving sexual assault. It is important to note that the university cannot initiate student judicial action or a criminal complaint against the alleged perpetrator based on a third party report. The report is encouraged, none the less, as it can provide useful information for protecting the community-at-large and connecting similar reports while protecting the victim’s anonymity.
Where there is sufficient evidence to believe that the university regulations prohibiting sexual assault have been violated, the university may pursue disciplinary action through its Student Rights and Responsibilities. Sanctions for persons found in violation of these policies may include suspension and/or expulsion from the university. Education, including violence prevention and awareness, may be required of the perpetrator. The university, through the office of Student affairs, reserves the right to pursue disciplinary action in the case of an off-campus incident, when the alleged perpetrator is a student and the behavior involved threatens the health, safety, and/or property of the university and its staff and students. When proceedings are conducted on-campus in cases of alleged sexual assault, the accuser and the accused are entitled to: (a) the same opportunity to have an advocate present, and (b) be informed of the outcome of the proceeding. For a detailed description of due process see the Student Judicial code, sections V and VI. No victim of sexual assault shall be penalized or retaliated against in any way for his or her participation in the university’s complaint process.
A victim has the right to avoid face-to-face interaction with the offender during any campus judicial hearings. She/he also has the right to appeal the findings of investigations conducted by the Office of the Student Affairs. A victim of sexual assault or misconduct has legal recourse outside the university, if she/he chooses. Campus authorities will assist victims in notifying proper law enforcement authorities, including CWU Public Safety and Police Services and local police. It is the victim’s right to decide whether or not to file a complaint. Legal and medical advocacy is freely available through A.S.P.E.N., the local domestic violence/sexual assault agency. For the full sexual assault policy see www.cwu.edu/~wellness/sexualAssaultPolicy.html#policy.