Important Definitions

 

ACTION OFFICES

Action offices are required to take action and investigate instances of sexual assault. They can assist with changes in campus living arrangements, assist with class assignments and other arrangements, issue administrative do not contact orders, and take other actions to protect the victim from further harm. The investigation conducted by the action offices can lead to disciplinary action. They also have a duty to honor a victim’s confidentiality request subject to certain limitations. However, if a victim requests confidentiality, a full investigation, discipline and administrative no contact orders will probably not be possible.

 

CAMPUS SAVE ACT

Please see Violence Against Women Re-authorization Act of 2013.

 

CAMPUS SECURITY AUTHORITIES (CSA)

A CSA is a Clery Act specific term that encompasses four groups of individuals and organizations associated with an institution of higher education.

1.  A member of a campus police department or a campus security department of an institution.

2.  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 the institutional property).

3.  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.

4.  An official of an institution who has significant responsibility for student and campus activities, including, but not limited to, student housing, student discipline, and campus judicial proceedings.  An official is defined as any person who has the authority and the duty to take action or respond to particular issues on behalf of the institution.

The Clery Act requires a CSA to report certain information concerning sexual assault and certain other crimes to the UCF Police Department. This report does not require the identity of the victim or perpetrator.

 

CLERY ACT

The Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Crime Statistics Act, otherwise known as the Clery Act, is a federal law that requires institutions of higher education to provide current and prospective students and employees, the public, and the Department of Education with crime statistics and information about campus crime prevention programs and policies. Among other crimes, the Clery Act requires that colleges and universities report forcible sex offenses including sexual assault and rape. The Clery Act was most recently amended by the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2013.

 

Consent, as defined in the Golden Rule, means valid sexual permission that is:

  1. Freely and actively given.
  2. In mutually understandable words or actions.
  3. Consent to one form of sexual activity can never imply consent to other forms of sexual activity.
  4. Consent is not the lack of resistance; there is no duty to fight off a sexual aggressor.
  5. Consent can be withdrawn at anytime, as long as the withdrawal is clearly communicated by the person withdrawing consent through words or actions.
  6. A person shall not knowingly take advantage of another person who is under 18 years of age, mentally defective, under the influence of prescribed medication, alcohol or other chemical drugs, or who is not conscious or awake, and thus is not able to give consent as defined above. Further, a person shall not physically or verbally coerce another person to engage in any form of sexual conduct, to the end that consent as defined above is not given.
  7. Any attempted acts of sexual misconduct are also violations of this policy.

 

Florida Statute 794.011 Sexual Battery – (a) “Consent” means intelligent, knowing, and voluntary consent and does not include coerced submission. “Consent” shall not be deemed or construed to mean the failure by the alleged victim to offer physical resistance to the offender.

 

DATING VIOLENCE

The Department of Education defines the term ‘‘dating violence’’ to mean violence committed by a person:

1.  who is or has been in a social relationship of a romantic or intimate nature with the victim and

2.  the existence of such a relationship shall be based on the reporting party’s statement and with consideration of the length of the relationship, the type of relationship, and the frequency of interaction between the persons involved in the relationship.

 

For the purposes of this definition:

  • Dating Violence includes, but is not limited to, sexual or physical abuse or the threat of such abuse.
  • Dating violence does not include acts covered under the definition of domestic violence.

 

Florida Statute 784.046 (1)(d) Dating Violence means violence between individuals who have or have had a continuing and significant relationship of a romantic or intimate nature. The existence of such a relationship shall be determined based on the consideration of the following factors:

1.  A dating relationship must have existed within the past 6 months;

2.  The nature of the relationship must have been characterized by the expectation of affection or sexual involvement between the parties; and

3.  The frequency and type of interaction between the persons involved in the relationship must have included that the persons have been involved over time and on a continuous basis during the course of the relationship.

 

The term does not include violence in a casual acquaintanceship or violence between individuals who only have engaged in ordinary fraternization in a business or social context.

 

DOMESTIC VIOLENCE

The Department of Education defines the term “domestic violence” to mean:

A.  Felony or misdemeanor crimes of violence committed:

  • By a current or former spouse or intimate partner of the victim;
  • By a person with whom the victim shares a child in common;
  • By a person who is cohabitating with or has cohabitated with the victim as a spouse or intimate partner;
  • By a person similarly situated to a spouse of the victim under the domestic or family violence laws of the jurisdiction in which the crime of violence occurred; or
  • By any other person against an adult or youth victim who is protected from that person’s acts under the domestic or family violence laws of the jurisdiction in which the crime of violence occurred.

B.  For the purposes of complying with the requirements of this section and section 668.41, any incident meeting this definition is considered a crime for the purposes of Clery Act reporting.

 

Florida Statute 741.28 Domestic Violence; definitions.

  1. “Domestic violence” means any assault, aggravated assault, battery, aggravated battery, sexual assault, sexual battery, stalking, aggravated stalking, kidnapping, false imprisonment, or any criminal offense resulting in physical injury or death of one family or household member by another family or household member.
  2. “Family or household member” means spouses, former spouses, persons related by blood or marriage, persons who are presently residing together as if a family or who have resided together in the past as if a family, and persons who are parents of a child in common regardless of whether they have been married. With the exception of persons who have a child in common, the family or household members must be currently residing or have in the past resided together in the same single dwelling unit.

 

FERPA Protected

This term means that information protected by the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) will not be released without the student’s permission. The outcome of any institutional disciplinary hearing, as a result of an allegation of a sexual offense, must be provided to both the accuser and the accused. Release of this information does not violate FERPA and is required by the Clery Act. Click here for more information.

FORMAL REMEDIES

Formal remedies for violations of the Golden Rule by a student will be handled through the Office of Student Conduct. If the conduct process finds a violation, it can impose punishment up to and including expulsion. For a full explanation of the Student Conduct process, click here.

Formal remedies for violations perpetuated by employees or other non-students over which the university has authority will be handled by the Title IX Coordinator though the Office of Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action Programs (EOAA). This process involves an investigation by the EOAA Office and recommendation for remedies when the investigation identifies a violation.  Appropriate discipline is handled by the department in which the employee works and can include punishment up to and including termination.

 

INFORMAL REMEDIES

Informal remedies do not replace formal discipline and can be taken before or during an investigation. Examples include: issuing a no-contact order, assigning an individual to a different department; asking an administrative authority to speak to the individual to express concerns about a behavior; reorganizing housing assignments, and changing campus living arrangements. These remedies are available through Action Offices.

 

PREPONDERANCE OF EVIDENCE STANDARDS

The standard of proof that is used in a school’s Title IX proceedings, including fact finding and hearing procedures for resolving complaints of student-on-student sexual violence. The preponderance of the evidence standard requires evidence that supports a conclusion that it is more likely than not that sexual misconduct occurred.

 

RETALIATION

Retaliation is a violation of federal law and university regulation.  Retaliation is intimidating, threatening, coercing, or taking other negative action against someone because of her or his complaint or participation in a school or federal investigation related to sexual violence or other civil rights concerns.  Federal civil rights laws, including Title IX, make it illegal to retaliate against an individual for speaking out against possible civil rights problems at school.

 

RESPONSIBLE EMPLOYEE

  • “Responsible employees” are university employees who have the authority to take action to redress the sexual misconduct, who have the duty to report to appropriate school officials sexual misconduct or any other misconduct by students or employees, or an individual who a student could reasonably believe have this authority or responsibility. Responsible Employees are required to report all the details of an incident (including the identities of both the victim and alleged perpetrator) to the Title IX Coordinator.
  • A report to these employees constitutes a report to the university and generally obligates the university to investigate the incident and take appropriate steps to address the situation.
  • If a victim wants to maintain confidentiality, the university will try to honor the request but must also weigh the request against the university’s obligation to provide a safe campus for all. If the request can be honored, the victim must understand that the investigation process may be limited.

 

SEXUAL ASSAULT

  • Rape and sexual assault are called “Sexual Battery” under Florida criminal law, the terms are synonymous and occurs when someone compels a victim to engage in sexual intercourse against the victim’s will. It is a violation of state law, and is defined as:“oral, anal, or vaginal penetration by, or union with, the sexual organ of another or the anal or vaginal penetration by another with any other object.” The crime also includes circumstances when the victim in mentally incapable of giving consent such as being in a coma or passed out from drug or alcohol use.” (see Fl. Stat. Ann. § 794.011)
  • “Sexual assault” is defined by the Department of Education as an offense that meets the definition of rape, fondling, incest, or statutory rape as used in the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reporting system. A sex offense is any act directed against another person, without the consent of the victim,
  • “Rape” is defined as the penetration, no matter how slight, of the vagina or anus with any body part or object, or oral penetration by a sex organ of another person, without the consent of the victim.
  • “Fondling” is defined as the touching of the private parts of another person for the purposes of sexual gratification, without the consent of the victim, including instances where the victim is incapable of giving consent because of his/her age or because of his/her temporary or permanent mental incapacity.
  • “Incest” is defined as non-forcible sexual intercourse between persons who are related to each other within the degrees wherein marriage is prohibited by law.
  • “Statutory Rape” is defined a non-forcible sexual intercourse with a person who is under the statutory age of consent.

 

SEXUAL HARASSMENT AND MISCONDUCT

  • Unwelcomed sexual advances or requests for sexual favors to another person, or engaging in any activities or conduct of a sexual nature with respect to another person that is offensive, degrading or pervasive, or that creates an intimidating or hostile academic, work, living or social environment for that person.
  • Sexual assault is an extreme form of sexual harassment and misconduct.
  • Dating violence, domestic violence and stalking may also constitute sexual harassment and misconduct
  • Males and females can be victims or harassers. Both same-sex and opposite-sex sexual harassment is prohibited.

 

STALKING

Stalking is defined as repeated and unwanted attention, harassment, contact, or any other course of conduct directed at a specific person that would cause a reasonable person to feel fear.

The Department of Education defines “stalking” as:

1. Engaging in a course of conduct directed at a specific person that would cause a reasonable person to –

(i) fear for the person’s safety or the safety of others; or

(ii) suffer substantial emotional distress.

2. For the purposes of this definition—

(i) Course of conduct means two or more acts, including, but not limited to, acts which the stalker directly, indirectly, or through third parties, by any action, method, device, or means follows, monitors, observes, surveils, threatens, or communicates to or about, a person, or interferes with a person’s property.

(ii) Substantial emotional distress means significant mental suffering or anguish that may, but does not necessarily, require medical or other professional treatment or counseling.

(iii) Reasonable persons means a reasonable person under similar circumstances and with similar identities to the victim.

3. For the purposes of complying with the requirements of this section and section 668.41, any incident meeting this definition is considered a crime for the purposes of Clery Act reporting.


Florida Statute 784.048 
Stalking; definitions; penalties.
(1) As used in this section, the term:

(a) “Harass” means to engage in a course of conduct directed at a specific person which causes substantial emotional distress to that person and serves no legitimate purpose.

(b) “Course of conduct” means a pattern of conduct composed of a series of acts over a period of time, however short, which evidences a continuity of purpose. The term does not include constitutionally protected activity such as picketing or other organized protests.

(c) “Credible threat” means a verbal or nonverbal threat, or a combination of the two, including threats delivered by electronic communication or implied by a pattern of conduct, which places the person who is the target of the threat in reasonable fear for his or her safety or the safety of his or her family members or individuals closely associated with the person, and which is made with the apparent ability to carry out the threat to cause such harm. It is not necessary to prove that the person making the threat had the intent to actually carry out the threat. The present incarceration of the person making the threat is not a bar to prosecution under this section.

(d) “Cyberstalk” means to engage in a course of conduct to communicate, or to cause to be communicated, words, images, or language by or through the use of electronic mail or electronic communication, directed at a specific person, causing substantial emotional distress to that person and serving no legitimate purpose.

 

TITLE IX

  • Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 is a federal law that protects people from discrimination based on sex in education programs or activities which receive Federal financial assistance. Title IX 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’s sex discrimination prohibition protects against sexual harassment and sexual violence and extends to claims of discrimination based on gender identity or failure to conform to stereotypical notions of masculinity or femininity. Other examples of the types of discrimination that are covered under Title IX include the failure to provide equal opportunity in athletics; discrimination in a school’s science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) courses and programs; and discrimination based on pregnancy and parental status.

 

 

TITLE IX COORDINATOR

Educational institutions that receive federal funding must designate at least one employee to coordinate the recipient’s compliance with Title IX. This person is often called a “Title IX coordinator.” The coordinator’s responsibilities include overseeing all Title IX complaints and identifying and addressing any patterns or systemic problems that arise during the review of such complaints. The Title IX coordinators should not have other job responsibilities that may create a conflict of interest, and they must have adequate training on what constitutes sexual harassment and university procedures. UCF’s Title IX Coordinators and Deputy Title IX Coordinators are:

  • Dawn Welkie, Title IX Coordinator and Director of Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action. She may be reached at 407-823-1354 or Dawn.Welkie@ucf.edu.
  • Dana Juntunen, Deputy Title IX Coordinator. She may be reached at 407-823-4683 or Dana.Juntunen@ucf.edu.

 

VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN RE-AUTHORIZATION ACT OF 2013

The Violence Against Women Re-authorization Act of 2013 amended the Violence Against Women Act and the Clery Act to provide new requirements for schools to prevent and respond to sexual violence, domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking. Some of these requirements include providing primary prevention education and awareness programs for all incoming students and employees; collecting statistics on domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking in addition to current requirements to collect sexual assault statistics; issuing complainants a written notice of their rights; and adopting grievance policies that are prompt, fair, and impartial as well as administered by trained officials. These updates are sometimes referred to as Campus Sexual Violence Elimination Act or Campus SaVE Act.