N-2-10 Informal Investigation, Decision and Appeal
The College will utilize the following process should the complainant wish to pursue an informal process, noting that other activities may take place at the discretion of the Title IX Officer and as appropriate to the investigation. The timelines listed below are estimates only and the College reserves the right for additional time should complex situations arise.
Note that this process is only available in situations involving a student(s) as the responding party. If the responding party is an employee, the College must pursue an investigation under the formal process (N-2-11).
Initial Notification and Determination of Process
- The Title IX Officer will meet with the complainant to explain reporting options and processes, including the option to report to law enforcement; review the informal and formal investigation process; confidentiality; and provide information on available support resources.
- Should the complainant wish to move forward with an informal investigation, the Title IX Officer will notify the respondent, in writing, of the alleged complaint.
- The Title IX Officer will review the informal and formal investigation process with the complainant and respondent independently. Both parties must agree, in writing, to pursue the informal investigation.
- Should both parties agree, the College will assign an investigator who does not have a conflict of interest with either party (see G-28-6). Should one or both parties not agree, and if the complainant wishes to pursue a formal investigation, the College will use the formal process (see N-2-11).
Investigation and Decision
- The investigator will meet independently with both parties, allowing each to share their perspective on the alleged incident(s), ask questions for clarity, information about potential witnesses, appropriate evidence, and any other information needed to best determine the facts associated with the incident. The investigator will meet with witnesses as appropriate.
- After meeting with all parties, the investigator will complete a written report summarizing all facts and evidence within ten business days.
- The report will be forwarded to the Title IX Coordinator. If the complaint is between students only, or if the respondent is a student, the report will be sent to the Director of Student and Campus Life to consider if a potential policy violation exists. If so, the Director of Student and Campus Life will hold a student conduct hearing and determine potential sanctions or remedies (see N-2-9). If the complaint involves an employee as the complainant, the report will be sent to the Director Human Resources to consider if a potential policy violation exists and any appropriate next steps. Note that the College is required to shift the complaint to the formal process if the responding party is an employee.
The complainant or respondent party may appeal the decision under the following circumstances:
- Violation of the process detailed in this section;
- light of new evidence not reasonably available at time of investigation;
- Evidence of bias on part of the investigator(s), Director of Campus and Student Life or Director of Human Resources to; or
- Evidence of conflict of interest of the investigator(s), Director of Campus and Student Life or Director of Human Resources (see G-28-6 for “Conflict of Interest” definition)
The appeal must be filed within five business days of the final decision and submitted to the Director of Campus and Student Life or Director of Human Resources.
Request for appeal involving only students will be reviewed by the Chief Information and Human Resources Officer (CIHRO); in the absence of the CIHRO, the CIHRO will designate an alternate. The request for an appeal will be denied if any one of the above conditions are not met or if it not filed within five business days. If an appeal is warranted, the VPSA will review the decision, investigator report, and evidence. The VPSA will notify all parties of their decision within ten business days unless extenuating circumstances exist. The VPSA’s decision is final.
Request for an appeal involving employees will be reviewed by the Chief Information and Human Resources Officer (CIHRO); in the absence of the CIHRO, the Title IX Coordinator will designate an alternate. The request for an appeal will be denied if any one of the above conditions are not met or if it not filed within five business days. If an appeal is warranted, the CIHRO will review the decision, investigative report, and any evidence. The CIHRO will notify all parties of their decision within ten business days unless extenuating circumstances exist. The CIHRO’s decision is final.