A. How to Report
Any PLU student who believes they have been subjected to or witnessed Prohibited Conduct is an Impacted Party, and is encouraged to report such a concern. Students may report Prohibited Conduct in several ways:
- Submit an Incident Report via the Student Rights and Responsibilities office. Students are able to electronically submit a report via the online Incident Reporting Form. Impacted Parties can remain anonymous; however, the SRR office will only be able to act on as much information as is given. Any information provided anonymously, including any personally identifying information, may serve as notice to the University for the purpose of starting to investigate the report.
- Contacting Title IX Coordinator or Deputy Coordinators
- The Title IX Coordinator and Deputy Coordinators work to enforce compliance with Title IX, including responding to any complaint or report. See https://www.plu.edu/title-ix/title-ix-coordinator/ for more information on the University’s Title IX Coordinator
- All faculty, staff, administration, Residence Assistants and Campus Safety student employees at PLU are considered responsible employees, and have an obligation to report to the appropriate individuals all incidents related to prohibited conduct that they become aware of. Students are encouraged to disclose information to a PLU faculty, staff, administrator, Resident Assistant, or Campus Safety student employee if they feel safe doing so.
- Students may make a report directly to local law enforcement officials by calling 911.
There is no time limit on making a complaint, but prompt reporting is encouraged in order to obtain evidence and information in a timely manner. As time passes, memories fade and some memories change as students reflect on their own conduct and that of others. As a result, PLU encourages students to make prompt reports.
Any person with knowledge of alleged Prohibited Conduct is encouraged to report concerns or information to any of the above individuals.
All of the above individuals are considered private sources. This means the offices will keep the information as private as possible, but certain procedures will need to be followed once reported, so confidentiality cannot be guaranteed. See below for more information on private vs. confidential resources.
B. Confidentiality and Confidential Resources
The University will make reasonable and appropriate efforts to preserve an Impacted Party’s and Respondent’s privacy and to protect the confidentiality of information. Should an Impacted Party request confidentiality, the Title IX Coordinator and/or their designee will inform the Impacted Party that the University’s ability to respond may therefore be limited – but that where feasible, the University will take reasonable steps to prevent Prohibited Conduct and limit its effects.
The Title IX Coordinator and/or their designee will further inform the Impacted Party that it is not possible to provide confidentiality in all cases and that the University’s decision to share information with others is subject to the balancing test described below in Section VII. In summary, although the University’s goal is to limit the number of individuals who may learn about an allegation of Prohibited Conduct or an investigation, the University cannot guarantee confidentiality in all matters.
1. Confidential Resources
Should an individual not be prepared to make a report, but is seeking information and wanting a confidential resource, there are several options available to the student. The offices below can explore different options with the Impacted Party and/or the Reporter without initiating further action from the University. The University encourages pastoral counselors and professional counselors, if and when they deem it appropriate, to inform the persons they are counseling of any procedures to report crimes on a voluntary, confidential basis for inclusion in the annual disclosure of crime statistics. These individuals/offices cannot and will not report the matter further, and reporting to any of these individuals/offices does not put the University on notice that Prohibited Conduct may have occurred.
Pacific Lutheran University Victim Advocate within the Center for Gender Equity
Office: Center for Gender Equity, 801 121st Street
Pacific Lutheran University Counseling Center
Office: University Center 300
Pacific Lutheran University Student Health Center
Office: 121st and Park Avenue
Pacific Lutheran University Campus Ministry
Office: University Center 190
Pierce County Sexual Assault Center
Telephone: 253-474-7273 or 800-756-7273
Pierce County Domestic Violence Helpline
Telephone: 253-798-4166 or 800-764-2420
2. Private Resources
A report to the University may be made to any of the following offices or individuals. These are trained individuals who will initiate the University’s responsive action to a sexual misconduct complaint. While not bound by confidentiality, these resources will maintain the privacy of an individual’s information within the confines of the Title IX resolution process.
Pacific Lutheran University Campus Safety
Telephone: 253-535-7441, emergencies: 253-535-7911
Office: Basement of Harstad Hall
Pacific Lutheran University Title IX Coordinator
Office: Garfield Station
Pacific Lutheran University Student Rights and Responsibilities
Office: Lee House (House at corner of Park Ave. and 121st Street)
Pacific Lutheran University Residential Life
Office: University Center 161
Additional contacts include Resident Assistants and Community Director
3. Reports to Law Enforcement
The University encourages anyone who believes they have experienced a violation of this Sexual Misconduct policy to make a report through the Police Department. PLU Campus Safety is willing and able to assist with referring students to this resource. The University also encourages Impacted Parties to be aware of the importance of preserving evidence that may assist in proving that an alleged criminal offense occurred or may be helpful in obtaining a protection order. An Impacted Party may also, in their discretion, decline to notify law enforcement officials.
Impacted Parties also have the right to seek other forms of relief from civil authorities, such as no contact orders, restraining orders, or similar. As set out in Section VI: A below, the University also may enter no contact orders and take other Interim Measures to assist the Impacted Party.
4. Anonymous Reports
The University welcomes students to submit anonymous reports of Prohibited Conduct, however, the University may not be able to fully address anonymous reports unless sufficient information is furnished to enable the University to conduct a meaningful and fair investigation. The University takes anonymous reports seriously, and will address the concern in whatever steps it deems appropriate, in the University’s sole discretion, in the best interest of the overall University community.
The University will take steps to protect the confidentiality of the Impacted Party and others involved in the reporting process. Publicly available recordkeeping, including Clery Act reporting and disclosures will be done without personal identifying information about the Impacted Party. Additionally, the University will maintain as confidential any accommodations or protective measures provided to the Impacted Party, to the extent that maintaining such confidentiality would not impair the ability of the institution to provide the accommodations or protective measures.
5. Special Considerations in regards to Confidentiality
Public awareness events, such as “Take Back the Night,” the Clothesline Project, or any other event or forum in which students may disclose incidents of sexual violence are not considered a report for PLU to act upon. However, usually education and resources are available for students at such events
6. Timely Warnings
In the case that PLU determines that an alleged Respondent poses a threat to the PLU community or a part of the PLU community, Campus Safety in conjunction with the Title IX Coordinator, will issue a timely warning to the community. Timely Warnings will not include identifying information of the reporting party or Impacted Party. Timely Warnings will be sent via email to the PLU community as deemed necessary.
7. Support Persons
The resources identified at B.1.a and b. can be utilized by both the Complainant(s) and the Respondent(s) for cases involving allegations of Sexual Misconduct. Additionally, the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities will provide a Support Person to serve as a resource during the Student Conduct process for the Complainant(s) and the Respondent(s). These trained Support Persons are able to provide the following: emotional support, assistance in navigating the Sexual Misconduct process, acts as a liaison for academic and campus services, and provides referrals to counseling and support groups.
8. Respect for Amnesty Provisions
It is in the best interest of the PLU community for students to report cases of Sexual Misconduct; because of that, an individual who reports Sexual Misconduct, either as a Complainant or a Reporter, will have the focus of the investigation on the Prohibited Conduct and no other policy violations. While other potential policy violations cannot be overlooked, the University will work to address these situations by focusing on educational resources for the individuals.