CONFIDENTIALITY AND PRIVACY
The University is committed to protecting the privacy of all people involved in a report of sexual misconduct.
Information related to a report to the University of sexual misconduct will be kept private by the University unless disclosure is required by law; thus, it will be shared only with those University officials with a designated interest in order to assist in the investigation and/or in the resolution of the matter. Under no circumstances will the University release the name of the Complainant to the general public without the express consent of the Complainant.
- Counselors at the University Counseling Center
- Priests acting in a pastoral capacity
- Faculty ombuds
Information about the above resources:
Any community member may seek advice and counseling confidentially, including about sexual assault, sexual harassment or other sexual misconduct, by speaking to these University employees.
Confidentiality will be maintained by a counselor or, therapist or priest acting in a pastoral capacity under all circumstances, except when there is an immediate threat of serious harm to a person. This means that in almost all circumstances, these people are not required to report any information to anyone without permission. Please note that the University also has a Faculty Ombuds who, except in certain required instances such as the immediate threat of serious harm, will not report instances of sexual misconduct.
Resources That Will Maintain Privacy:
Information about the above resources (related to SARC and NP at Student Health Center):
These resources and not Confidential Resources but are private[SB1] resources that the University has designated to provide assistance and support to any student who has expereinced sexual misconduct. Each resource's unique reporting responsibilities is outlined below:
Nurse practitioners and nurses at the Student Health Center will provide safe, caring and respectful medical care to all students. They can provide confidential predatory drug and sexually transmitted infection (STI) testing free of charge and connect students with appropriate resources; however, forensic exams and collection of evidence are not available at the Student Health Center.
Important Note: physicians at the Student Health Center (M.D.s and D.O.s) are generally required by Pennsylvania law to make a report to the police department with jurisdiction any time they receive a report of an injury caused by a criminal act, including sexual assault.
Nurses and Nurse Practitioners at the Student Health Center are Responsible Employees and Campus Security Authorities (CSAs) required to share disclosures of sexual misconduct with the Title IX Coordinator, including the name of the Respondent (if shared), the name of the reporting person (if they grant permission or their identity is needed to conduct a risk assessment), all details shared regarding the incident, as well as other information needed to assess whether an on-going threat is present in order to evaluate whether a timely warning should be issued.
The SARC team is comprised of Villanova staff and faculty members who care deeply about the issue of sexual misconduct and who have completed extensive training on how to support survivors of sexual misconduct at Villanova. A member of the SARC team is on call Monday-Friday, 9am-5pm for Villanova students who need support following an incident of sexual misconduct.
The members of the Sexual Assault Resource Coordinator Team are Responsible Employees and are required to share disclosures of sexual misconduct and all known information with the Title IX Coordinator, including the name of the Respondent (if shared), the name of the reporting person, all details regarding the incident, as well as other information.
All Other University Employees:
All employees, except for the confidential resources listed above, are required to share disclosures of sexual misconduct with the Title IX Coordinator. These reports to the Title IX Coordinator will include the name of the reporting person, name of the Respondent (if shared), general nature of the incident, date, time of day, and location, as well as other information needed to assess whether an on-going threat is present in order to evaluate whether a timely warning should be issued.
If a Complainant reports an incident of sexual misconduct and chooses not to file a formal complaint, supportive measures will remain available to the Complainant. In such cases, the University must weigh the Complainant’s choice against its obligation to provide a safe, non-discriminatory environment for all students and employees, including the Complainant. Although rare, there may be times when the University cannot honor a Complainant’s request and the Title IX Coordinator may determine that a formal complaint is necessary in order to provide a safe, non-discriminatory environment for all community members.
When weighing such a request by the Complainant, the Title IX Coordinator or Deputy Coordinator(s) will consider a range of factors, including but not limited to, the following:
- The risk that the Respondent will commit additional acts of sexual or other violence, such as:
- When an incident a pattern of alleged sexual misconduct is reported toby the same Respondent;
- whether the Respondent has a history of arrests or records from a prior school indicating a history of sexual and/or physical violence;
- whether the Respondent threatened further sexual violence or other violence against the Complainant or others;
- whether the sexual violence was committed by multiple perpetrators;
- whether the Complainant’s allegations involved violence, use of weapons or similar factors;
- whether the Complainant is a minor;
- whether the University possesses other means to obtain relevant evidence of the alleged sexual violence (e.g., security cameras, eye-witnesses or, physical evidence);
- whether the Complainant’s report reveals a pattern of perpetration (e.g., alcohol or drug-facilitated sexual violence) at a given location or by a particular group.
If none of these factors are present, the Title IX Coordinator will likely respect the Complainant’s request to not file a formal complaint. In such cases, the Complainant should understand that the University’s ability to meaningfully address the incident may be limited.
However, the presence of one or more of these factors could lead the Title IX Coordinator to file a formal complaint allowing the University will to investigate and, if appropriate, pursue the grievance process and/or involve the law enforcement agency with jurisdiction. In such cases, the University will inform the Complainant and will share the University’s reasoning for proceeding with a formal complaint. The Complainant may still decide whether and how much they want to be involved in any next steps. The University will only share information with those needing to know in order to conduct an investigation. Students, faculty and staff deemed relevant facilitate the University’s response to the case report of sexual misconduct.
The University may consolidate formal complaints alleging sexual misconduct against more than one respondent, or by more than one complainant against one or more respondents, or by one party against the other party, where the allegations of sexual misconduct arise out of the same facts or circumstances.
Whether or not a report results in a full investigation, the University will remain mindful of the well-being of those involved and take ongoing steps to prevent retaliation. The University will take action to assist those involved consistent with their wishes, to the extent possible. A variety of supportive measures are available to those involved as outlined in Appendix B. participate in The Title IX Coordinator, Sexual Assault Resource Coordinator and Respondent Resource Coordinator Teams are available to assist Complainants and Respondents, respectively, in determining what measures are helpful or needed and will assist in the implementation of such supportive measures.
Finally, the University is committed to a safe environment for all students and employees and to addressing the issue of sexual misconduct. Reports of such misconduct provide the University with the opportunity to consider broader remedial action including increased monitoring of campus locations, additional education and prevention efforts, and climate assessments.
Although the University encourages a Complainant to talk with someone directly, the University does provide anonymous reporting options, including a website and phone line.
Reporting via these two options will trigger an investigation. However, the University's ability to respond effectively may be limited by the level of information provided and/or the anonymity of the complaint. All anonymous reports will be referred to the Title IX Coordinator.
The University is committed to protecting the privacy of all people
involved in matters falling under this Policy.
Privacy means that
information related to a report of sexual misconduct will be shared only
with those University officials with a designated interest in order to
assist in the investigation and/or in the resolution of the matter,
unless further disclosure is required by law or necessary due to a
health and/or safety emergency.
Under no circumstances will the University release the name of a Complainant to the general public without the express consent of the Complainant.