It is the policy of Naugatuck Valley Community College to prohibit “sexual harassment.” Sexual harassment is a form of sex discrimination which is illegal under state and federal law and is also prohibited by the Board of Trustees’ Nondiscrimination Policy.
- Any unwelcome sexual advances or requests for sexual favors or any conduct of a sexual nature when (1) submission to such conduct is made either explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of an individual’s employment or education, (2) submission to or rejection of such conduct by an individual is used as a basis for employment or academic decisions affecting the individual, or (3) such conduct has the purpose or effect of substantially interfering with an individual’s work performance or creating an intimidating, hostile or offensive employment environment.
Also prohibited is any romantic/sexual liaison between a professional or classified staff member and a student for whom that staff member has a teaching, advisory or other supervisory responsibility.
Sexual harassment may be verbal, visual or physical. It may be overt or implicit and may, but need not, have tangible adverse effects on the victim’s employment or learning experience. The perpetrator of sexual harassment, like the victim of such conduct, may be a man or a woman. It may involve individuals of the same or opposite sex. This college will not tolerate sexual harassment in any form. All employees shall be responsible and accountable for maintaining an environment free from sexual harassment. Any employee or agent found to have engaged in sexual harassment as defined above will be subject to serious disciplinary action up to and including dismissal.
Employees who feel that they have been sexually harassed have the right to file a complaint. Employees may report incidents of sexual harassment to the Dean of the area of the College in which the individual is involved, the College’s Affirmative Action Officer, or to the President of the College. Ronald Clymer is the college’s Affirmative Action Officer. His office is located in Kinney Hall, Room K705A, and he may be reached at 203-575-8110. Dr. Daisy Cocco De Filippis is the President of the College, her office is located in Kinney Hall, Room K703B, and her telephone number is 203-575-8044.
(Excerpted from the Board of Trustees policy, via Employee Relations Memorandum 98-2. rev. 12/5/97.)
What is Sexual Harassment?
Sexual harassment is a form of sex discrimination which is illegal under state and federal law and is also prohibited by the Board of Trustees’ Nondiscrimination Policy. The Board’s policy recognizes that sexual harassment undermines the integrity of employer-employee and student-faculty-staff relationships and interferes with the right of all members of the College community to work and learn in an environment free from harassment. Such conduct will not be tolerated.
Sexual harassment may be described as: Any unwelcome sexual advance or request for sexual favors, or any conduct of a sexual nature when (1) submission to such conduct is made either explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of an individual’s employment or education, (2) submission to or rejection of such conduct by an individual is used as a basis for employment or academic decisions affecting the individual, or (3) such conduct has the purpose or effect of substantially interfering with an individual’s academic or work performance or creating an intimidating, hostile or offensive employment or educational environment.
Sexual harassment may be verbal, visual or physical. It may be overt or implicit and may, but need not, have tangible adverse effects on the victim’s employment or learning experience.
Examples of conduct which may constitute sexual harassment include but are not limited to:
- sexual flirtation, touching, advances or propositions
- verbal abuse of a sexual nature
- pressure to engage in sexual activity
- graphic or suggestive comments about an individual’s dress or appearance
- use of sexually degrading words to describe an individual
- display of sexually suggestive objects, pictures, or
- sexual jokes
- stereotypic comments based upon gender
- threats, demands or suggestions that retention of one’s employment or educational status is contingent upon toleration of or acquiescence to sexual advances
The perpetrator of sexual harassment, like the victim of such conduct, may be a man or a woman. Sexual harassment may involve individuals of the same or opposite sex and, in the College environment, may involve an employee and a student, an employee and another employee or a student and another student. Harassment in any of these relationships is a violation of the Board’s policy.
Because of the power relationship between faculty and student, and between supervisor and subordinate employee, freedom of choice may be compromised in such relationships. Accordingly, this policy holds that where a faculty member or professional staff member has responsibility for a student through teaching, advising, supervision or other obligation, romantic or sexual liaisons between such persons shall be deemed a violation of this policy.
It should be noted, additionally, that retaliation against a person for complaining or being associated in any way with the resolution of a complaint of sexual harassment also violates Board policy.
What To Do If You Are The Victim of Sexual Harassment
When an employee or student feels that he or she has been the victim of sexual harassment, he or she should report such incident(s) to a College official.
- Employees may report incidents of sexual harassment to the Dean of the area of the College in which the individual is involved, the College Affirmative Action Officer, or another College official who has been designated by the President as a recipient of such complaints.
- Students may report incidents of sexual harassment to the Dean of Students or to such other College official as the President may have designated. Nothing shall prevent students from speaking to a college counselor about their concerns. However, such communication is not a substitute for filing a complaint of sexual harassment with an appropriate College designee.
- A claim that an employee of a third party contractor has engaged in sexual harassment on College premises or in connection with the performance of the third party contract should be reported immediately either to the President or to another appropriate College official as set forth in this document. The President will ensure that appropriate follow-up action is taken.
Depending on the nature of the complaint and the desires of the complainant, the College official to whom the complaint has been made may attempt to resolve the complaint informally. Any informal resolution of a complaint must be approved by the College President. No person shall be forced to pursue informal avenues of resolution before filing a formal complaint of sexual harassment.
If informal resolution is not possible or appropriate, a written complaint should be filed in accordance with the existing Affirmative Action Grievance Procedure for Employees (see Board Policy 2.1.3) or Student Grievance Procedure for students (see Board Policy 5.2.2).
- For employees, a written complaint should be filed within fifteen (15) calendar days of the alleged harassment. This time frame may be extended by up to fifteen (15) additional calendar days if efforts at informal resolution have been made.
- For students, a written complaint should be filed within thirty (30) days of the date the grievant knew or should have known of the alleged harassment. However, a delay in filing a formal complaint will not be a reason for refusing to investigate such complaints. Although the ability to investigate may be compromised by delay, a written complaint will be treated in the manner prescribed by this policy if filed within 180 days of the date the student knew or should have known of the alleged harassment.
When a formal complaint of sexual harassment is received, the College will investigate it. The rights of all persons involved in the investigation shall be respected and every effort will be made to protect the confidentiality of both the alleged victim and the alleged harasser. Toward this end, only persons with a need to know shall be made privy to the complaint. However, complete anonymity cannot be assured, given the College’s obligation under law to investigate and take appropriate action in all cases of sexual harassment.
All complaints of sexual harassment shall be taken seriously. It is expected that complaints will be made in good faith, however. Frivolous or vexatious complaints can cause irremediable damage to the reputation of an accused person, even though he or she is subsequently vindicated. Therefore, any person who files a false complaint of sexual harassment shall himself or herself be subject to disciplinary action, up to and including termination, if an employee, or expulsion, if a student.
In addition to invoking the available grievance procedure, an employee who believes he or she has been sexually harassed may file a complaint with the Connecticut Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities, 21 Grand Street, Hartford, CT 06106 and/or with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, One Congress Street, Boston, Massachusetts 02114, within 180 days of the date when the harassment occurred. A student who believes he or she has been sexually harassed may, in addition to the available grievance procedure, file a complaint with the Federal Office for Civil Rights, U.S. Department of Education (Region1), John W. McCormack Post Office and Courthouse, Room 222, Post Office Square, Boston, Massachusetts 02109.
Publication of Sexual Harassment Policy
This document shall be distributed to all members of the College community. Notice of the Board’s policy against sexual harassment also shall be given to any independent contractor with whom a College has a business relationship, as a mandatory part of that contract.
Training in the implementation of the Board’s policy against sexual harassment and in sexual harassment prevention shall be provided for all supervisory employees, in accordance with the provisions of State law. Attendance at such training sessions shall be mandatory. In addition, awareness and sensitivity training for all employees is required and for students is strongly encouraged.
Informal concerns may be brought to the attention of the Dean of Students. Formal complaints of sexual harassment will be addressed according to our established Affirmative Action Student Grievance procedure contained in the Student Handbook, on the College website, in the Learning Resource Center and widely available from college Deans and Division Leaders.
A student who believes he or she has been sexually harassed may, in addition to the available student grievance procedure, file a complaint with the Office for Civil Rights, U.S. Department of Education (Region1), John W. McCormack Post Office and Courthouse, Room 222, Post Office Square, Boston, Massachusetts 02109.
All complaints of sexual harassment shall be taken seriously.
Sexual Assault Resource Team (SART)
Naugatuck Valley Community College’s Sexual Assault Resource Team (SART) is designed to provide a collaborative victim-centered team response to sexual assault. The mission of SART is to provide services that ensure a transition from victim to survivor for every individual whose life is impacted by sexual violence. The SART members can provide a survivor with referrals and general information regarding sexual assault.
The college works with Safe Haven of Greater Waterbury, which is our community-based sexual assault and domestic violence agency. They provide a wide range of free and confidential services including counseling, criminal court advocacy, referrals, support groups, assistance with restraining orders, Police accompaniment and advocacy, hospital accompaniment for sexual assault survivors and emergency shelter.
Should a survivor choose to file a police report, the College Public Safety Office, The Dean of Students, or Title IX Coordinator will assist the individual with the reporting process. We will strive to empower the survivor to make their own decisions by providing on and off campus resources, offer support as needed, and hold perpetrators accountable. The team includes a coordinator and designated individuals from the College and local community organizations including Safe Haven and the Waterbury Police Department. The Sexual Assault Resource Team is available to help anyone who reports a violation of the sexual assault policy. In cases of immediate danger or an emergency call 911. On campus contact the Public Safety office at (203) 575-8113 - ROUTINE CALLS (203) 575-8112 - EMERGENCY LINE.
For information or to report a sexual assault case, students may contact the Dean of Students at 203-575-8086, Title IX Coordinator at 203-575-8043 or any other team member. Please visit: nv.edu/sart for team members’ contact information and details of services.