Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What is sexual misconduct?
Sexual misconduct is a broad term encompassing a range of nonconsensual sexual activity or unwelcome behavior of a sexual nature. The term includes, but is not limited to, sexual harassment, sexual violence, sexual assault, sexual exploitation, sexual intimidation, domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking. The term also includes unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, or verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature that does not rise to the level of sexual harassment but is unprofessional and inappropriate for the education and training environment. Sexual misconduct is a form of prohibited sex discrimination.
What should I do if I have been a victim of sexual violence?
If you believe you are a victim of sexual violence, get to safety and seek immediate medical care. It is important to preserve all physical evidence and to get a medical exam, regardless of whether you intend to report a crime, notify the police, or press criminal charges. You should immediately contact UTSWPD at 214-648-8911 if the incident occurred on campus. If the incident occurred off campus, contact the police in that jurisdiction. Contact the UTSW Title IX Coordinator at 214-648-8597 as soon as possible to report the incident, discuss your options, and obtain information about support and resources.
What is “consent”?
A voluntary, mutually understandable agreement that clearly indicates a willingness to engage in each instance of sexual activity. Consent to one act does not imply consent to another. Past consent does not imply future consent. Consent to engage in sexual activity with one person does not imply consent to engage in sexual activity with another. Consent can be withdrawn at any time. Any expression of an unwillingness to engage in any instance of sexual activity establishes a presumptive lack of consent. Consent is not effective if it results from:
- the use of physical force;
- a threat of physical force;
- incapacitation; or
- any other factor that would eliminate an individual’s ability to exercise his or her own free will to choose whether or not to have sexual activity.
A current or previous dating or sexual relationship, by itself, is not sufficient to constitute consent. Even in the context of a relationship, there must be a voluntary, mutually understandable agreement that clearly indicates a willingness to engage in each instance of sexual activity.
How do I make a complaint?
All complaints should be submitted in writing to the Title IX Coordinator or a Deputy Title IX Coordinator as soon as possible after the incident(s) giving rise to the complaint. Delay can limit UT Southwestern’s ability to investigate and remediate any sexual misconduct. The complaint should include as much detail as possible, including a description of the incident, the time and place it occurred, and the names of any witnesses. Reports of sexual misconduct can also be made by using the Compliance Hotline or by calling 1-877-507-7319.
What happens when I make a complaint?
Upon receipt of an informal or formal complaint, the Title IX Coordinator or Deputy Title IX Coordinator will discuss available resolution options and provide information about campus and community resources. In the appropriate case, the Title IX Coordinator or a Deputy Title IX Coordinator will also evaluate whether interim measures are appropriate, such as changes to the course schedule or living situation. There is an administrative process to address complaints of discrimination, to protect individuals affected by sexual misconduct, and to prevent reoccurrence. Details about the formal and informal processes may be found in EDU-116P-01 Sex Discrimination Complaint and Resolution Procedure.
Will my complaint be kept confidential?
UTSW supports an individual’s desire to keep a complaint private; however, UTSW has an obligation to provide a safe and nondiscriminatory environment for all members of the UTSW community. UTSW will take steps to protect the confidentiality of all complaints and the individuals involved by limiting the disclosure of information to those who need to know. All records regarding a complaint will be treated as confidential and will only be disclosed in accordance with law and UTSW policy.
If I report sexual misconduct to UTSW, will I be required to press criminal charges or give information against the alleged offender in the UTSW process?
No, you will not be required to bring any criminal charges. You can choose whether or not to participate in UTSW’s investigation. If an individual chooses not to provide information or participate in an investigation, UTSW may be limited in its ability to fully respond to the reported incident and continue its investigation. However, the Title IX Coordinator may determine a full investigation of the reported incident is required and UTSW has an obligation to proceed without your participation in order to provide a safe and nondiscriminatory environment for all members of the community.
What is bystander intervention?
Bystander intervention is the choice to respond to a potentially harmful situation or interaction in a way that should positively influence the outcome. Bystander intervention includes recognizing a potentially harmful situation, choosing to respond, and taking appropriate action. A bystander should determine based on the situation and the safety of all those involved whether to directly intervene with the parties, create a distraction, or obtain outside help from other people or law enforcement.
Is there a time limit to report sexual misconduct?
There is no time limit for making a report. UTSW encourages members of the community to report an incident as soon as possible in order to maximize UTSW’s ability to respond effectively. A delay in making a report can greatly limit UTSW’s ability to conduct an investigation, implement appropriate interim measures, or take effective action against the alleged offender.
Who do I contact if I want to discuss a potential report of sexual misconduct in a confidential manner?
Confidential consultations about sexual misconduct are available from persons who by law have a special professional status, i.e. mental health professionals and clergy. You may contact the following offices for confidential advice and assistance: Student Mental Health Services at 214-645-8680 or Student Health at 214-645-8690.
Where can I learn more?
More information about Title IX at UT Southwestern, including complaint resolution procedures, policies, and support, are available by clicking the link above or by contacting the Title IX Coordinator or Deputy Title IX Coordinators.