Title IX: Policy Expectations

Overview of Policy Expectations with Respect to Physical Sexual Misconduct

The expectations of our community regarding sexual misconduct can be summarized as follows: In order for individuals to engage in sexual activity of any type with each other, there must active, clear, and voluntary consent prior to and during sexual activity. Consent is sexual permission. Consent can be given by word or action, but non-verbal consent is not as clear as talking about what you want sexually and what you don’t. Consent to some form of sexual activity cannot be automatically taken as consent to any other form of sexual activity. Silence without actions demonstrating permission—cannot be assumed to show consent. Consent is defined in the Additional Applicable Definitions section of this policy.

Additionally, there is a difference between seduction and coercion. Coercion happens when someone is pressured unreasonably for sex. Coercing someone into sexual activity violates this policy in the same way as physically forcing someone into sex.

Because alcohol or other drug use can place the capacity to consent in question, sober sex is less likely to raise such questions. When alcohol or other drugs are being used, a person will be considered unable to give valid consent if s/he cannot fully understand the details of a sexual interaction (who, what, when, where, why, or how) because s/he lacks the capacity to reasonably understand the situation. Individuals who consent to sex must be able to understand what they are doing. Under this policy, “No” always means “No,” and “Yes” may not always mean “Yes.” Anything but an active, clear, and voluntary consent to any sexual activity is equivalent to a “No.”

Overview of Policy Expectations with Respect to Consensual Relationships

Goodwin University’s strict policy is that administrators, staff and faculty members must maintain professional boundaries in personal relations with other colleagues and students. Social meetings with students either individually or in a group are not permitted except for school-sponsored events. Connecting with students directly through social media websites, such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or Snapchat, is also prohibited. Exceptions to this policy may be made for websites that are purely designed for professional networking, such as LinkedIn. Romantic relationships with students are strictly prohibited.

Consensual romantic or sexual relationships in which one party maintains a direct supervisory or evaluative role over the other party are unethical. Therefore, persons with direct supervisory or evaluative responsibilities who are involved in such relationships must bring those relationships to the timely attention of their supervisor. This will likely result in the necessity to remove the employee from the supervisory or evaluative responsibilities. While no relationships are prohibited by this policy, failure to self-report such relationships to a supervisor as required can result in disciplinary action for an employee.