Office of Title IX & Clery Compliance

Frequently Asked Questions

Title IX

  • What is Title IX?

    Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 states that “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 education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.” Title IX covers gender equity in athletics, pregnant and parenting students, in addition to ensuring equal access to educational opportunities and co-curricular involvements free from sexual violence and other gender-based discrimination. These protections extend to students, employees, applicants for admission and employment, and visitors to the university community.

  • What is a responsible employee or mandatory reporter?

    All University employees who receive a report of gender-based/sexual misconduct by students, faculty, or staff on or off-campus are responsible employees (also known as mandatory reporters) and must notify the Director of Title IX and Clery Compliance. These responsible employees include the Office of the Dean of Students, University Police, Housing & Residence Life (including resident assistants), academic advisors, faculty, teaching assistants, athletic coaches, Human Resources, and other professional staff. In addition, all University employees are required by North Carolina law to report abuse or neglect upon a child or any disabled person. The only faculty or staff exempt from this requirement are the confidential resources on campus (staff in CARE, the Counseling Center, and the Abrons Student Health Center).

  • Are mandatory reporters obligated to report sexual misconduct or sexual harassment witnessed or disclosed in the online environment?

    Yes, mandatory reporters still have a duty to report sexual misconduct in online environments. This includes when a mandatory reporter witnesses an incident via video conferencing or when the mandatory reporter receives an email correspondence disclosing sexual misconduct. As with all required reports, mandatory reporters must fill out the following form within one business day of receiving a disclosure or witnessing an incident: https://cm.maxient.com/reportingform.php?UNCWilmington&layout_id=40.

  • What happens after a report is submitted?

    If the case involves a student complainant (victim), the Title IX Director will reach out to the report’s complainant by email to offer support and resources. The complainant may choose to respond or not to respond to this email. If the case involves a faculty or staff complainant, Human Resources will reach out to the complainant and schedule an intake meeting to discuss options and next steps.

  • If the student complainant chooses not to respond to the Title IX Director’s reach-out email, what happens with the information that was submitted in the report?

    Generally, nothing further will occur and the information will be kept in a confidential file. In most cases, an investigation will not commence if the complainant does not want one to be initiated. However, there are certain instances where the university will proceed with an investigation, if it involves an allegation of one or more of the following:

    1) significant violence

    2) reason to believe that the perpetrator has harmed more than one individual

    3) multiple perpetrators

    4) prior reports of alleged misconduct at that location

    5) threat of significant danger to the university community

    6) involves minor status

  • Who finds out about reports made to the Office of Title IX and Clery Compliance?

    If the report concerns students, a staff member from the Office of Title IX and Clery Compliance, CARE, and the Office of the Dean of Students receives that information in order to provide resources to the complainant. If the report concerns faculty or staff, the Office of the Dean of Students is no longer notified. Instead, Human Resources receives the reports along with CARE and the Office of Title IX and Clery Compliance.

  • Can a complainant remain anonymous?

    The Department of Education’s guidance provides that, when possible and requested by a complainant, their identity should remain anonymous. However, there are circumstances where anonymity is not possible.

  • What are my rights as a complainant?

    Student-complainant rights are stated within the Student Gender-Based Sexual Misconduct Policy, found here.  

    Faculty/Staff-complainant rights are stated within the Unlawful Discrimination Harassment and Sexual Misconduct Policy, found here. 

    In addition, the Director of Title IX and Clery Compliance is available to schedule in person meetings to explain student rights as a complainant and the university’s Title IX processes, as well as answer any questions relating to the aforementioned policies. The Director of Title IX and Clery Compliance or representatives from Human Resources can provide the same assistance for faculty or staff complainants.

  • What are my rights as a respondent?

    Student-respondent rights are stated within the Student Gender-Based Sexual Misconduct Policy, found here. 

    Faculty/Staff-respondent rights are stated within the Unlawful Discrimination Harassment and Sexual Misconduct Policy, found here. 

    In addition, the Director of Title IX and Clery Compliance is available to schedule in person meetings to explain student rights as a respondent and the university’s Title IX processes, as well as answer any questions relating to the aforementioned policies. The Director of Title IX and Clery Compliance or representatives from Human Resources can provide the same assistance for faculty or staff respondents.

  • As a student witness, what are my obligations?

    Student witnesses are expected to participate fully and truthfully in the Title IX process, even if the witness does not think there is relevant information to share. The investigators are trying to obtain a full view of the facts and it is therefore critical that any individual identified as a witness responds. In addition, as it relates to students, failure to appear may result in a referral to the Office of the Dean of Students for formal university conduct action as outlined in the Code of Student Life, found here. 

  • Are there any differences between a Title IX proceeding and a criminal proceeding?

    Yes, there are many differences between UNCW’s Title IX process and a criminal case. First and foremost, the Title IX process is a completely separate entity from the court system. A finding of responsibility through the Title IX process has no connection to the civil or criminal court process. Individuals impacted by sexual misconduct are able to take advantage of both systems. If a criminal investigation is pending, however, the Office of Title IX and Clery Compliance may have to wait to proceed with the Title IX case until law enforcement is finished collecting evidence for a criminal case. Once the evidentiary gathering process is complete with law enforcement, the Title IX process can continue. Other notable differences between a Title IX proceeding and a criminal proceeding include standard of evidence used and possible sanctions.

  • Are there confidential resources for students on campus?

    There are three confidential resources on campus for students:

    All three of these resources are the only offices located on the second floor of DePaolo Hall.

  • Are there confidential resources for faculty and staff on campus?

    Faculty and staff are able to utilize the services of CARE. If resources off-campus are desired, faculty and staff can also utilize the Employee Assistance Program (EAP) through Human Resources.

  • Can a complainant utilize multiple resources at once, such as CARE and the Counseling Center?

    Yes, you may choose to use any and all resources available to you, at any given time. A student has access to confidential services which include CARE, the Counseling Center, and the Health Center. Faculty and staff may also use CARE and can receive referrals to other resources confidentially through Human Resources and EAP.

  • Can the Title IX office assist me with interim accommodations without proceeding with a formal investigation?

    Yes, the office can assist with accommodations. These accommodations may vary depending on the circumstances of each case. Student accommodations can include academic accommodations, such as connections to tutoring or assistance with schedule changing; housing relocation; or no contact orders, among other options. Faculty and staff accommodations can include work space relocation; no contact orders; or parking relocation, among other options.

  • What services are still available during the university's adjusted operations for COVID-19?

    All services offered by the Office of Title IX and Clery Compliance are still available. The only difference in operations is that all meetings will occur remotely.

  • Is there someone at UNCW who can help answer my Title IX questions?

    The staff of the Office of Title IX and Clery Compliance are available to answer any Title IX related questions you may have. You can visit the office in person on the first floor of DePaolo Hall, suite 1003, email titleix@uncw.edu, or call at 910-962-3557 for assistance.


Pregnancy

  • Are Title IX rights granted to pregnant students?

     The Department of Education's regulation implementing Title IX specifically prohibits discrimination against a student based on pregnancy, childbirth, false pregnancy, termination of pregnancy, or recovery from any of these conditions. Under Title IX, it is impermissible to exclude a pregnant student from participating in any part of an educational program. This applies to specific classes, extracurricular programs, sports, honor societies, opportunities for student leadership, among other activities.

    Institutions may implement special instruction programs or classes for a pregnant student, but participation must be voluntary on the part of the student and the programs/classes must be comparable to those offered to other students.

    Additionally, institutions must excuse a student's absences because of pregnancy or childbirth for as long as the student's doctor deems the absences medically necessary. When a student returns to school, she must be allowed to return to the same academic and extracurricular status as before her medical leave began. It is important to note that any such accommodations contemplated herein must not fundamentally alter the structure of a course to ensure that the educational opportunity afforded is similarly situated to other students.

    For more information, see the Department of Education's guidance document, Supporting the Academic Success of Pregnant and Parenting Students.


Athletics

  • How do athletics relate to Title IX?

    The National Collegiate Athletic Association (“NCAA”) specifies that college sports are considered “educational programs and activities,” within the realm of Title IX. As such, Title IX requires equitable participation, proportionate scholarships and other benefits related to equality of male and female collegiate athletes. The other equal benefits required include scheduling, per diem in regards to travel, tutoring, coaching, facilities, services, housing, promotions, support services, and equal recruitment of all.

  • What is the Intercollegiate Athletics Policy?

    The Office of Civil Rights (“OCR”) created the Intercollegiate Athletics Policy in 1979, and it remains in effect today. It is the specific policy related college athletics and enforcement of Title IX policies in relation to them. In addition, OCR’s Title IX Athletics Investigator’s Manual assists with issues that arise in collegiate sports.

  • Do the same sports need to be offered by a university, in both male and female formats?

    No. Variations are allowed in the sports options, as long as both males and females are given the same equal treatment.

  • Who can answer questions related to sports and Title IX?

    The UNCW Title IX & Clery Compliance Director, as well as the UNCW Director of Athletics, are available to answer any questions related to the university’s athletic compliance with Title IX.


Clery

  • What is the Clery Act?

    The Clery Act originated as a consumer protection law of sorts. It was created to provide transparency to all students, faculty, staff, as well as prospective students, faculty and staff related to crimes on and adjacent to university campuses. One way that transparency occurs is with the publication of an Annual Security Report on or before October 1 of each year, which includes Clery crime statistics as well as emergency preparation and safety measures in place on the university campus.

  • What is a Campus Security Authority (CSA)?

    "Campus security authority" is a Clery Act-specific term that encompasses four groups of individuals and organizations associated with an institution. Those groups are as follows:

    • A campus police department or a campus security department of an institution.
    • Any individual or individuals who have responsibility for campus security but who do not constitute a campus police department or a campus security department (e.g., an individual who is responsible for monitoring the entrance into institutional property, including building access).
    • Any individual or organization specified in an institution's statement of campus security policy as an individual or organization to which students and employees should report criminal offenses.
    • An official of an institution who has significant responsibility for student and campus activities, including, but not limited to, taking students abroad/on trips, student housing, student discipline, and campus judicial proceedings.
  • How can a CSA report an incident?

    Any incident of sexual misconduct, whether it is Clery reportable or not, should be reported to the Office of Title IX and Clery Compliance utilizing the Online Reporting Form. That report must be submitted within one (1) business day of a disclosure of a Clery/Title IX sexual misconduct violation.

    Otherwise, the UNCW Police Department is the point of origin for all emergency services on campus. The department is open and provides police and security services 24-hours a day, year-round. Students, employees, and campus visitors should immediately report all crimes to University Police.

    University Police encourages anyone who is the victim or witness to any crime or suspected crime to promptly report the incident to police. Because police reports are public records under state law, University Police cannot hold reports of crime in confidence. Confidential reports for purposes of inclusion in the annual disclosure of crime statistics can generally be submitted anonymously as described below. Reports may also be submitted to other Campus Security Authorities, who may report the occurrence to University Police without personally identifiable information in certain circumstances.

    The police department monitors emergency call boxes as well as emergency telephones located on university properties. Elevators are equipped with an emergency telephone and some building locations have intercoms that connect directly to University Police.

    In addition to the methods listed above, University Police may be contacted in the following ways:

    • In an emergency, call 911.
    • For non-emergencies, from a campus phone, call extension 2-2222. From a non-campus phone, call (910) 962-2222.
    • To submit an anonymous report, employees, students, and visitors may:From a campus phone, call extension 2-8477 (TIPS). From a non-campus phone, call (910) 962-8477 (TIPS).
    • Send an anonymous email from the University Police web page.
    • Utilize TEXT-A-TIP, a program in cooperation with Wilmington Police Department. Go online at www.tip708.com to submit an anonymous online report or make a report by text:Begin the text message with “Tip 708.” Type the remainder of the tip/message. Send the text message to 274637 (CRIMES).
  • What types of crimes are included in the Annual Security Report, for the public's knowledge?

    Statistics for the following crimes must be included in the Annual Security Report:

    1) Criminal offenses: murder, manslaughter, sexual assault, robbery, aggravated assault, burglary, motor vehicle theft, arson

    2) Hate crimes (including those that involve the criminal offenses above and the following): larceny-theft, simple assault, intimidation, destruction (or damage) of property

    3) Violence Against Women Act (also referred to as VAWA) offenses: domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking

    4) Arrests and referrals for disciplinary actions: weapons law violations, drug law violations, and liquor law violations

  • Do I have to have seen or witnessed a Clery crime in order to have to report it?

    No. As a CSA, once you become aware of a Clery criminal matter, then you must report it. Awareness does not solely come from firsthand knowledge, it can include witnessing the event or learning about it from another person.

  • Does someone have to be convicted of a crime before it is reportable under the Clery Act?

    No. Under the Clery Act, a crime is "reported when it is brought to the attention of a CSA, University Police, or local law enforcement personnel by a victim, witness, or other third party. It doesn't matter whether or not the individuals involved in the crime or reporting the crime are associated with the institution. If a CSA receives a report, it must be included as a crime in the university's crime statistics. It is not necessary for the crime to have been investigated by University Police or a CSA, nor must a finding of guilt or responsibility be made to include the crime in the university's crime statistics.  

  • Where can I report a crime confidentially?

    To submit an anonymous report to University Police, employees, students, and visitors may:

    • From a campus phone, call extension 2-8477 (TIPS). From a non-campus phone, call (910) 962-8477 (TIPS).
    • Send an anonymous email from the  University Police web page.
    • Utilize TEXT-A-TIP, a program in cooperation with Wilmington Police Department.Go online at www.tip708.com to submit an anonymous online report or make a report by text:Begin the text message with “Tip 708.” Type the remainder of the tip/message. Send the text message to 274637 (CRIMES).

    To submit an anonymous report of Harassment, Discrimination, or Retaliation, non-mandatory reporters can utilize the Online Reporting Form found on this site.

  • What are Timely Warnings and Emergency Notifications?

    Under the Clery Act, every institution is required to issue an emergency notification and immediately notify the campus community upon confirmation of a significant emergency or dangerous situation occurring on the campus that involves an immediate threat to the health or safety of students or employees. An immediate threat includes an imminent or impending threat, such as an approaching hurricane, fire in a building, or armed intruder, among other examples. This type of notification is not limited to crimes.

    On the other hand, the Clery Act requires institutions to issue timely warnings to alert the campus community to certain crimes in a manner that is timely and will aid in the prevention of similar crimes. This includes crimes reported to CSAs or local police agencies that represent a serious or continuing threat to students and employees.