CAMPUS ALERT: Due to the weather, all evening classes at CSB and SJU are canceled. The LINK bus will run on its regular schedule until 5 p.m. and then every hour on the hour for the remainder of the evening, weather permitting. Pre-scheduled campus and community events and college/university sponsored events scheduled at off campus locations may continue at the discretion of the divisional VP.

Complaint Procedure for Sexual Misconduct Violations

for
The College of Saint Benedict and Saint John's University

Introduction

It is the policy of the College of Saint Benedict (CSB) and Saint John's University (SJU) to investigate and promptly seek the equitable resolution of allegations of sexual misconduct in violation of the Joint Sexual Misconduct Policy.

The Joint Complaint Procedure for Sexual Misconduct Violations shall be the exclusive process for handling sexual assault and other sexual misconduct complaints and supersedes all other processes.  If a complaint implicates the Joint Sexual Misconduct Policy and the Joint Human Rights Policy, the Lead or a Deputy Title IX Coordinator or their designee, together with the Faculty/Staff Human Rights Officer and/or Student Human Rights Officer or their designee, may choose, at their discretion, to conduct separate proceedings, or to process all aspects of the complaint in a single proceeding, following both the Human Rights and Sexual Misconduct Procedures where they do not conflict and following the Sexual Misconduct Complaint Procedure where there is a conflict between the procedures.  If a complaint implicates the Joint Sexual Misconduct Policy and another CSB/SJU policy (other than the Joint Human Rights Policy), the complaint of a violation of the Joint Sexual Misconduct Policy will be handled under these procedures and CSB/SJU may, at their discretion and unless an applicable handbook provision states otherwise, consider the other alleged policy violations under this procedures or conduct separate proceedings.

I. Responsibility

The Lead Title IX Coordinator(s) shall exercise oversight over all complaints filed under the Sexual Misconduct Policy, and the Deputy Title IX Coordinator(s) are generally responsible for the implementation of this procedure.

  • The Dean(s) of Students, who serve(s) as Deputy Title IX Coordinators for sexual misconduct complaints involving students, are generally responsible for the implementation of this procedure in cases involving a student.
  • The Faculty/Staff Human Rights Officer ("Faculty/Staff HRO"), who serves as a Deputy Title IX Coordinator for sexual misconduct complaints involving faculty and staff, is generally responsible for implementation of this procedure in cases involving a faculty or staff member.
  • If a complaint involves both a student and a faculty or staff member, the Dean(s) of Students and Faculty/Staff HRO shall share responsibility for implementing this procedure.
  • If a complaint involves an associate or third party, the Dean(s) of Students and Faculty/Staff HRO will determine who should be responsible for implementing the procedure.

In all cases, the Title IX Coordinator(s) will function as (a) neutral party (parties) in implementing this procedure.

II. Policy Statement

CSB and SJU are committed to maintaining an environment that is free from the physical and emotional threat of sexual misconduct, including sexual harassment, sexual assault, and other forms of sexual violence.  In institutions such as ours, which espouse Catholic and Benedictine values, every community member's awareness of and respect for the rights and human dignity of every other member undergirds community life.  These values demand that we strive to create an environment where the sacredness of each person is honored.  Sexually assaultive conduct, sexual harassment and other sexual misconduct violate the sacredness of the person, weaken the health of the community, and are antithetical to the mission of our institutions.  CSB and SJU have zero tolerance for sexual misconduct in any form.

Sexual harassment, sexual assault, and other forms of sexual misconduct are forms of sex discrimination.  Not only are they prohibited by CSB and SJU's Joint Sexual Misconduct Policy, but they are also prohibited by various laws, including Title IX of the Educational Amendments of 1972 and the Minnesota Human Rights Act.

The College of Saint Benedict and Saint John's University will investigate and promptly seek the equitable resolution of all allegations of sexual misconduct.  See the CSB/SJU Sexual Misconduct Policy for more information.

III. Institutional Response

CSB and SJU have a legal obligation to take prompt and appropriate action in response to information regarding an alleged violation of the Sexual Misconduct policy.   The response of the institution(s) will vary depending on the circumstances, including, the seriousness of the alleged offense, the facts reported, and whether the reporting party wishes to initiate a complaint under this procedure.  (A reporting party's preferences cannot be followed in every circumstance, but the institutions will consider and will take reasonable steps to accommodate the reporting party's preferences to the extent possible consistent with the legal obligations of the institution to take prompt and appropriate action in response to the report received).  CSB/SJU will conduct an investigation of all reports of sexual misconduct received.  Making a report to a Title IX Coordinator, the CSB Department of Security or SJU Life Safety Services does not require a reporting party to initiate or participate in a complaint procedure.  However, based on information gathered, one or both institutions may determine that the institution(s) have a responsibility to initiate a complaint procedure (even without the participation of the reporting party).

IV. Definitions

1. Complainant refers to the person or entity who initiates a complaint under this procedure.  In most cases, the complainant will be the person who alleges that he or she has been subject to sexual misconduct, but in some cases the complainant may be CSB or SJU.

2. Respondent refers to the person alleged to have violated the Joint Sexual Misconduct Policy.
3. Community and institutions refer to CSB and SJU and in the case of community, all of their students, faculty and staff, and associates.

4. Campus refers to the grounds of CSB and SJU.

5. Student refers to any person enrolled in CSB or SJU, undergraduate or graduate.

6. Faculty refers to a person employed by CSB or SJU in a faculty appointment.

7. Staff refers to a person employed by CSB or SJU in an administrative or support staff appointment.

8. Supervisor refers to administrators, department chairs, faculty, residence directors, faculty residents, staff persons, and third parties who have the responsibility for faculty, staff, or students' terms and/or conditions of employment or education.

9. Associate refers to any individual or organization engaging in or conducting activities associated with CSB and/or SJU or doing business at or with CSB and/or SJU, including members of Saint John's Abbey or Saint Benedict's Monastery.

10. Third Party refers to an individual or entity who is not a member of the campus community but whose activities bring them into contact with members of the campus community, including, but not limited to, visitors to campus, alums, and prospective students and prospective employees.

11. Complaint refers to a signed statement made under the Joint Complaint Procedure for Sexual Misconduct Violation.

12. Report refers to the providing of any information to a campus security authority or supervisor at CSB or SJU regarding conduct that may violate this policy.

13. Advisor refers to the individual chosen by a student or employee involved in a sexual misconduct disciplinary proceeding to serve as his or her advisor.  See Part V - Right to an Advisor.

14. Title IX Coordinators are officials from CSB and SJU who have been appointed by their respective institutions to address issues of gender-based discrimination and/or sexual misconduct.  The Title IX Coordinators for each institution who have responsibility for sexual misconduct complaints are listed in the contact information at the end of the Sexual Misconduct Policy and at the end of this procedure.  The Lead Title IX Coordinators of each institution are responsible for general oversight of issues related to sexual misconduct and sex discrimination.  The Deputy Coordinators help to process complaints of sexual misconduct and sex discrimination and assist with general education and compliance efforts.  All coordinators are knowledgeable about and will provide information on, options for complaint resolution.  When this policy refers to the "Dean(s) of Students and/or Title IX Coordinator(s)" the Title IX Coordinator referred to is the Deputy Title IX Coordinator responsible for processing complaints involving students.  When this policy refers to the "Faculty/Staff HRO and/or Title IX Coordinator" the Title IX Coordinator referred to is the Deputy Title IX Coordinator responsible for processing complaints involving employees.  Contact information for the Title IX Coordinators can be found at the end of these procedures.

15. Suspension is a sanction that may be used for students, faculty, or staff.  It is also an interim protective measure that may be taken while an investigation is being conducted.  For students, the term suspension means the temporary separation of a student from the institution.  When a hearing process results in a recommendation of suspension for a student, the suspension will be effective on the date set forth in the notice of outcome letter.  For a faculty or staff member, a suspension generally refers to a temporary suspension of work duties.  Faculty and staff members may be suspended with or without pay.  Students, faculty, and staff suspended from the institution generally may not be present on the premises of the College of Saint Benedict or Saint John's University for the period of the suspension and may be subject to other conditions as well.

16. Expulsion means the permanent separation of the student from the institution.  Students expelled from the institution may not be present on the premises of the College of Saint Benedict or Saint John's University.  When a hearing process results in a recommendation of expulsion, the expulsion will be effective on the date set forth in the notice of outcome letter.

V. General Provisions

1. Right to an Advisor.  A student, staff or faculty member involved in a disciplinary proceeding as a complainant or a respondent has the right to choose an Advisor.  The Advisor may be a CSB or SJU faculty member, administrator, staff member or student.  The role of the Advisor is to advise and assist the complainant or respondent during the course of the proceeding.  The Advisor may accompany the complainant or respondent to all meetings relating to the disciplinary proceedings.  At the discretion of the Dean(s) of Students or Faculty/Staff HRO, the Advisor may also be allowed to accompany a person involved in other aspects of the complaint process.  The Advisor may not appear in lieu of the complainant or respondent or speak on his or her behalf.  The Advisor may not address the hearing officer or the committee, and may not interrupt or otherwise delay the proceedings.  Violations of confidentiality or other forms of interference with the proceedings by the Advisor may result in the immediate disqualification of an Advisor and the student may be required to proceed without the privilege of an Advisor.

2. Timing.  CSB and SJU are committed to the prompt and equitable resolution of sexual misconduct complaints and strive to meet or beat the timing requirements set forth in these procedures.  However, in some cases, temporary extensions to the timing requirements may be necessary.  The Dean(s) of Students, Faculty/Staff HRO, and/or Title IX Coordinator may grant reasonable extensions to timing requirements in these procedures when warranted by the circumstances.  For example, extensions of timing requirements may be granted if the institution(s) have been asked to delay its procedures during the evidence gathering stage of a criminal investigation, if the allegations of sexual misconduct are particularly complex (including, without limitation, allegations that involve multiple incidents and/or multiple individuals), or if witnesses are not on campus due to a scheduled break or for another reason.  Extensions will be no longer than necessary.

Where the Procedure indicates that an action will be completed within a specified period of days, "day" generally means business days for CSB/SJU staff.  Adjustments to the time frames will be made when school breaks, holidays, or exigent circumstances require.  As a general rule, CSB and SJU strive to complete their investigation and related procedure within 60 (sixty) calendar days or less, recognizing that certain complaints may take longer to process depending on the circumstances.

Complainants are encouraged to begin the complaint process as soon as possible following an alleged incident.  If a complaint is brought forward more than two (2) calendar years after an alleged incident, the institution(s), in their discretion, may decline to process a complaint under this Procedure, but reserve the right to take other administrative action as appropriate depending on the specific circumstances of the complaint.

3. Confidentiality.  CSB and SJU strive to protect the confidentiality interests of all parties involved in the sexual misconduct reporting and complaint process.  However, because of the need to investigate and respond to reports of sexual misconduct, CSB/SJU cannot guarantee strict confidentiality in most cases.  Please refer to the CSB/SJU Sexual Misconduct Policy for more information about confidentiality, including confidential resources available to parties.  In addition, individuals with concerns about confidentiality may speak with a Title IX Coordinator about the complaint process.

4. Interference with Process.  Interference with this procedure is strictly prohibited.  Interference includes, but is not limited to the following:

a. Falsification, distortion or misrepresentation of information before an investigator, hearing officer or committee;

b. Knowingly instituting a complaint without cause and in bad faith;

c. Harassment and/or intimidation of any member of a committee, or of any complainant, respondent, witness, student, or employee involved in a complaint proceeding before, during or after a proceeding;

d.
 Breaching the confidentiality requirements before, during or after a complaint proceeding.
Students who interfere with this procedure will be subject to disciplinary hearing and sanctions.  Staff and faculty members who interfere with this procedure will be subject to discipline, up to and including termination in accordance with the applicable handbook.  Associates or other third parties who interfere with this procedure will be subject to removal from campus, prohibition from returning to campus, and other appropriate measures as determined by CSB and/or SJU.

5. Interim Restrictions or Suspension

a. For Students.  At any time following the initiation of a complaint proceeding or at any other time throughout the process, the Dean(s) of Students of the institution of a party to a complaint proceeding may impose various conditions or restrictions on a party pending resolution of the complaint proceedings.  The Dean(s) of Students may also alter or suspend the rights of a student to be present on campus, to attend classes, or to participate in extracurricular activities or events pending resolution of the complaint proceedings.  The Dean(s) of Students will base his/her decision on whether the allegations of misconduct are apparently reliable and whether the continued unrestricted status of the student on the campus poses a threat to the physical or emotional condition or well-being of any individual, including the student, or for reasons relating to the safety, integrity and welfare of the community as a whole.

The interim restrictions, behavioral requirements, and/or alteration or suspension of privileges will be communicated to the student in writing and will remain in effect until a final decision has been made in the complaint proceedings, or until modified or withdrawn in writing.

b. For Faculty, Staff, Associates, and Third Parties.  CSB and SJU may impose various conditions and restrictions on a party pending resolution of the complaint proceedings or at any other time throughout the process.

6. Treatment of Parties.  CSB and SJU strive to treat all parties involved in a complaint procedure with dignity and provide nonjudgmental support to students, faculty, and staff who are engaged in this process.  Upon request, personal counseling services are available to students and the Employee Assistance Program is available to faculty and staff.

7. Non-Participation and Silence.  If, at any time during the process, a party does not participate, the Dean(s) of Students, Faculty/Staff HRO, and/or Title IX Coordinator may move the process to the next step, dismiss the complaint, or take whatever other steps may be necessary to ensure the integrity of the process.

Silence in response to an allegation on the part of the student respondent will not be viewed as an admission of the allegation, but may leave the complainant's allegations undisputed.

Faculty and staff have a duty to CSB and SJU to truthfully answer complaint allegations.  Silence in response to an allegation on the part of a faculty or staff member may be viewed as an admission of the allegation.  Similarly, silence on the part of an Associate or third party in response to a complaint may be viewed as an admission of the allegation.

8. Bringing Complaints.  Ordinarily, complaints under this procedure against a student, faculty, or staff member will be brought by people who feel that their rights have been violated.  Nevertheless, circumstances may arise in which a complaint may be initiated in the name of the institution(s) in order to protect the safety, integrity and welfare of the community as a whole.  Generally, the Lead Title IX Coordinators, the President(s), or the President(s)' designee will make a determination of whether a Complaint should be initiated in the name of the institution(s).  Complaints proceedings, if any, against third parties or associates will generally be initiated by one or both institutions.

9. Conflicts.
  In cases where it is determined that a Dean of Students or the Faculty/Staff HRO has a conflict of interest with respect to a complaint, the Lead Title IX Coordinator of the institution of the conflicted individual shall appoint an alternate person to serve as the Deputy Title IX Coordinator.  If a Lead Title IX Coordinator has a conflict of interest with respect to a complaint, the President(s) or the President(s)' designee of the institution of the conflicted Lead Title IX Coordinator shall appoint an alternate person to serve as the Deputy or Lead Title IX Coordinator.  In cases where the President of CSB or SJU is a party to the Complaint or has a conflict of interest with respect to a complaint, the Chair of the Board of Trustees for the institution shall ensure that the institution puts in place appropriate safeguards under the circumstances to ensure that the institution promptly and equitably responds to the complaint, including, but not limited to, appointment of alternate individuals to serve in roles of Deputy and/or Lead Title IX Coordinator.

10. Reservation of Flexibility.  This Procedure reflects the desire of the institutions to respond to complaints in good faith and in a manner that promotes fairness to all parties.  The institutions recognize, however, that each case is unique in its presentation and requires that the institutions reserve some flexibility in responding to the particular circumstances of each case.  In the rare cases where it is not possible or practical to follow this procedure, the institutions reserve the right to modify the procedure or to take other administrative action as appropriate under the circumstances.

VI. Procedure
The procedure followed by CSB and SJU to resolve sexual misconduct complaints will vary depending on the status of the respondent.  Procedure VI.A. will be followed in all cases in which the respondent is a student.  Procedure VI.B. will be followed in all cases in which the respondent is a member of the faculty or staff.  Procedure VI.C will be followed in cases where the respondent is an associate/third party.

A. Complaint Procedure for Complaints in which the Respondent is a Student

The following constitutes the steps which make up the complaint process when the respondent is a student.

Step 1:  Initiation of Complaint
Any member of the community may initiate the Complaint Procedure.  This complaint process may be initiated by submitting a signed and completed complaint form to a Dean of Students, SJU Life Safety or CSB Campus Security.  Students at the SJU School of Theology·Seminary may alternately submit their complaint form to the Rector or Dean of the School of Theology•Seminary, who will then refer the matter to the Dean(s) of Students.  The complaint form should contain sufficient detail to enable the Dean(s) of Students to make a determination as to whether an investigation should be conducted.  Forms are available from the Dean(s) of Students, SJU Life Safety, CSB Campus Security, or Rector or Dean of the SJU School of Theology•Seminary. Reporting Forms are also available on the CSB/SJU website.

Step 2:  Investigation
Following the submission of a completed complaint form that states a possible violation of the sexual misconduct policy, an investigation will be conducted by SJU Life Safety, CSB Campus Security, or an appointed outside investigator.  The investigator may interview the complainant, respondent and/or other witnesses or request additional information from the complainant, respondent or others.  A written summary of the results of the investigation and relevant documents, if any, will be provided to the Dean(s) of Students.  Every attempt will be made to complete the investigation process within ten (10) business days of the filing of the complaint, but in some cases more time will be required.  If a criminal complaint has been filed, CSB's and/or SJU's investigation may be temporarily delayed to allow law enforcement to gather evidence.  Such delay may only occur at the request of law enforcement and shall not be any longer than necessary for law enforcement to complete the gathering of evidence.  In no case will CSB and SJU wait for the conclusion of a criminal investigation or criminal proceeding to begin its own Title IX investigation.

Step 3:  Determination of Options for Resolution
 Upon completion of the investigation, the Dean(s) of Students and/or Lead Title IX Coordinator(s) of the institution(s) of the parties involved in the complaint, will review the information gathered by the investigator and make an initial assessment regarding the options available for resolution of the complaint.  Based on this review, the case will be referred for resolution in one of the ways listed below.  Every attempt will be made to determine the appropriate option for resolution in Step 3 within five (5) business days of the completion of the preliminary investigation:

a. Referral.  If the Dean(s) of Students and/or Lead Title IX Coordinator(s) of the involved institutions determine that there is not sufficient basis to believe that a violation of the Joint Sexual Misconduct Policy may have occurred, the parties will be notified of that determination and the complainant will be informed of other procedures for resolving the complaint and of other resources that may be available to complainant.  The Dean(s) of Students and/or Lead Title IX Coordinator(s) of the involved institutions may also directly refer the matter to other institutional disciplinary procedures.  This referral option will generally be used when: (1) the type of behavior that is alleged to have occurred does not constitute a violation of the sexual misconduct policy; (2) the behavior that is alleged to have occurred is better handled under another disciplinary procedure; or (3) the information gathered overwhelmingly demonstrates that a violation did not occur.

b. Recommendation for Resolution.  If the Dean(s) of Students and/or Lead Title IX Coordinator(s) of the involved institutions determine that there is a sufficient basis to believe that a violation occurred, and that the allegations presented would not normally result in the suspension or expulsion of the respondent, the parties to the case may be offered an administrative recommendation for resolution of the complaint.

The recommended resolution may include a variety of institutional responses or requirements, including, but not limited to, the following: warning, behavioral contracts, administrative referrals, community service hours, restitution, required attendance at educational programs, required assessment or counseling, mediation at the complainant's request,  restriction of privileges, parental notification and/or probation.  If all parties to the complaint agree in writing to the terms and conditions of the recommended resolution within five (5) business days, the respondent's education record will include a finding that the Joint Sexual Misconduct Policy was violated and the case will be resolved without further process under this procedure.  If all parties to the complaint do not agree in writing to the terms and conditions of the recommended resolution within five (5) business days, the complaint will be referred to an administrative hearing.

c. Hearing
i. Administrative Hearings for Cases in Which Expulsion or Suspension is Not a Possible Sanction

If there is sufficient basis to believe that the allegations presented, if proven to be more likely than not true and in violation of the Joint Sexual Misconduct Policy, would not result in the suspension or expulsion of the Respondent, but there is not agreement between the parties as to an appropriate resolution, the matter shall be referred for an administrative hearing as described below beginning with Step 4.a.

ii. Committee Hearings in Cases in Which Suspension and Expulsion is a Possible Sanction

If there is a sufficient basis to believe that the allegations presented, if proven to be more likely than not true and in violation of the Joint Sexual Misconduct Policy, might result in the suspension or expulsion of the respondent, the case shall be referred to a committee hearing as described below beginning with Step 4.b.

Step 4:  Hearing
The purpose of the hearing is to formulate a decision as to whether it is more likely than not that a violation of the Joint Sexual Misconduct Policy occurred, and if so, to determine appropriate sanction(s).

a. Administrative Hearing.  If a matter has been referred for an administrative hearing, the Dean(s) of Students and/or Lead Title IX Coordinator(s) of the involved institutions shall appoint two administrative hearing officers to consider and make a decision on the complaint.  The Dean(s) of Students and/or Title IX Coordinator(s) of the involved institutions shall ensure that all administrative hearing officers have received training on the Sexual Misconduct Policy, these procedures, and applicable law.  If a matter has been referred for an administrative hearing, the administrative hearing process will commence within ten (10) business days of referral to an administrative hearing.

The administrative hearing officers shall review the complaint and investigation report and talk to each of the parties to the complaint.  The administrative hearing officers have the authority, in their discretion, to call witnesses or to review other information where they deem it necessary, but in most administrative hearings, witnesses will not be called and no additional information (beyond the investigation report and statements of the parties) will be reviewed.  Administrative hearings will not be recorded.  The Dean(s) of Students and/or Lead Title IX Coordinator(s) of the involved institutions shall be available to consult with administrative hearing officers and will be present at the administrative hearing to oversee the process.  The Dean(s) of Students and/or Lead Title IX Coordinator(s) may answer procedural question but shall not have a vote.

The administrative hearing officers will render a decision based upon the investigation report, additional statements provided by the parties to the complaint, and any other information the administrative hearing officer deems appropriate.  The administrative hearing officers will make a determination on whether it is more likely than not that a violation of the sexual misconduct policy occurred.  If the administrative hearing officers determine that it is more likely than not that the policy was violated, the administrative hearing officers shall determine the appropriate sanction(s).  The decision of the administrative hearing officers following an administrative hearing may be appealed under Step 5.

b. Committee Hearing
i. Selection of Committee Members

A three person committee comprised of faculty and/or staff will be appointed on a case-by-case basis by the Dean(s) of Students and/or Lead Title IX Coordinator(s) of the involved institution(s).  Once selected, the committee will select a chair.  The Dean(s) of Students and/or Lead Title IX Coordinator(s) of the involved institutions will also be present at the committee hearing(s) to oversee the process and will, if necessary, answer procedural questions, but shall not have a vote.

All committee members must have received training on the Joint Sexual Misconduct Policy, these procedures, and applicable law before serving on the committee.  The Dean(s) of Students and/or Lead Title IX Coordinator(s) of the involved institutions will be responsible for ensuring that committee members have received training with regard to their duties, and that Advisors have been instructed as to their duties.

ii. Pre-Hearing Procedures

The committee hearing process shall commence no later than ten (10) business days following the referral, under Step 3, to a committee hearing.  Facts and circumstances may warrant a delay in some cases, however.

Following the appointment of the committee, the investigation file will be made available to the committee members.  The Dean(s) of Students and/or Lead Title IX Coordinator(s) will schedule the hearing and send a written notice of hearing to the parties no less than five (5) business days and no more than ten (10) business days prior to the date set for the hearing.  The notice of hearing will include the date, time, location and nature of the hearing, and the names of the committee members selected to hear the case.

The complainant or respondent may request the removal of a member of the committee on the grounds of personal bias by submitting a written statement to the Dean(s) of Students and/or Lead Title IX Coordinator(s) setting forth the basis for the challenge no later than two (2) business days after receiving the notice of the hearing.  The Dean(s) of Students and/or Lead Title IX Coordinator(s) will determine whether to accept or deny the challenge.  If the request is accepted, a replacement will be appointed to serve on the hearing committee.  The decision of the Dean(s) of Students and/or Lead Title IX Coordinator(s) with regard to the challenge is final and is not appealable.

The parties will be afforded the opportunity to meet with the Dean(s) of Students to discuss the hearing process prior to the hearing.  The investigation file will also be made available for review by the parties and their designated Advisors by making an appointment with the Dean(s) of Students during regular business hours.  Confidential information in the investigation file that cannot be shared with the parties may be redacted from the file in accordance with applicable law.  The file cannot be copied or removed from the Dean(s) of Students' office or other location provided for review purposes.

At least three (3) business days prior to the hearing, the respondent and the complainant will provide to the Dean(s) of Students and/or Title IX Coordinator(s) any written documentation to be presented, the names of any witnesses the respondent or complainant believes should be called by the committee at the hearing, and a summary of the factual information such witnesses may provide.

iii. Hearing Procedures

In order to preserve the confidential nature of the process, and to protect the privacy of all parties, hearings will be closed.

The committee chair will rule upon procedural matters.  Whether or not a witness is called is a decision which remains within the discretion of the committee.  The committee chair will call those witnesses whom the committee believes can provide information that will be helpful to the committee and probative of the issues presented by the complaint.  The committee may decide not to call a witness if the information to be provided by that witness is immaterial, irrelevant, unduly repetitious, or otherwise not helpful to the committee.  Similarly, the committee chair will determine what documentation and other information will be considered by the committee.

The hearing will be recorded.  Except to the extent prohibited by law, copies of the recording(s) may be reviewed by the parties involved in the complaint, in a manner prescribed by the Dean(s) of Students and/or Lead Title IX Coordinator(s).  Parties to a complaint will not be provided copies of the recordings.

iv. Presentation of the Case

The manner of presentation of the complaint to the committee will be as follows:

a) The complainant will be called to meet with the committee to provide a statement and to respond to the questions of the committee;
b) The respondent will be called to meet with the committee to provide a statement and to respond to the questions of the committee;
c) Other witnesses will be called individually to meet with the committee and to provide statements and to respond to the questions of the committee;
d) The complainant and respondent will be given the opportunity to review the statements and responses in a format designated by the Dean(s) of Students and/or Lead Title IX Coordinator(s).  The complainant and the respondent may then request an opportunity to appear before the committee to make any additional statement they feel is necessary;
e) The committee may call additional witnesses, examine additional information, or recall the parties and/or any witnesses for further questioning before closing the hearing.

v. Hearing Panel Deliberations and Recommendations

Only the members of the hearing committee and the Dean(s) of Students and/or Lead Title IX Coordinator(s) may be present during deliberations.  The hearing committee will use a preponderance of the evidence standard ("more likely than not" standard) to determine whether a policy violation occurred.  The Dean(s) of Students and/or Title IX Coordinator(s) are available for consultation, but will not participate in making a decision.

A simple majority of committee members is necessary to find that a violation of the Joint Sexual Misconduct Policy more likely than not occurred and to determine appropriate sanction(s).

The committee will render its decision and will communicate the decision to the Dean(s) of Students and Lead Title IX Coordinator(s) of the institutions of the parties.  The decision of the committee will take the form of findings of fact, conclusions, and appropriate sanctions if a violation is found to have occurred.  The Dean(s) of Students are responsible for providing to the parties an appropriate notice of the outcome of the committee within five (5) business days of the close of the hearing.  This notice will also inform the parties of their right to an appeal as set forth at Step 5 below.

In the event that no appeal is filed within the time periods prescribed below, the decision of the hearing committee will be final.

Step 5:  Appeal from Hearing

Following the outcome of an administrative hearing or a committee hearing, the complainant or respondent may request an appeal of the decision.  The request for an appeal must be submitted in writing to the Vice President for Student Development of the institution of the appealing party within three (3) business days of receiving notice of the hearing outcome.  Failure to file an appeal or request an extension in a timely manner constitutes a waiver of any right to an appeal.

 Generally, the basis for an appeal will be limited to the following:

  • The sanction is excessively severe or grossly inadequate;
  • New or newly discovered evidence may substantially affect the outcome of the hearing;
  • There was a procedural error which substantially affected the outcome of the hearing.

Appeals should not be requested frivolously.  An appeal conference is not a re-hearing; it represents a procedural safeguard for the parties.  In an appeal the burden of proof is shifted to the appealing party to show that it is more likely than not that one or more of the above grounds for appeal are satisfied.

 a. Determination of Whether Appeal Has Merit

The appeal request will be reviewed and considered by the Vice President(s) for Student Development of the institution(s) of the parties involved in the complaint.  The Vice President(s) of Student Development will determine whether it is more likely than not that one or more of the above grounds for appeal are satisfied.

  • If there is adequate reason to believe that one or more grounds for appeal may have merit, an appeal conference may be scheduled between the appealing party and the Vice President(s) for Student Development. If, after such meeting, the Vice President(s) for Student Development continues to believe that the appeal may have merit, the Vice President(s) for Student Development will also meet with the non-appealing party. If after meeting with both parties, the Vice President(s) of Student Development determine that it is more likely than not that one of the above grounds for appeal has been satisfied, the appeal will move to Step 5.b.
  • If, either following review of the initial written appeal or following a meeting with the appealing party or both parties, there is not adequate reason to believe that one or more grounds for appeal has been satisfied, the Vice President(s) of Student Development may dismiss the appeal. This decision is final and is not appealable.
  • The Vice President(s) of Student Development of the institution of the appealing party will notify the parties to the complaint in writing of his/her/their determination at this step 5.a within 10 business days of the filing of the appeal.

 b. Determination on Remand.

If the Vice President(s) for Student Development of the institutions of the involved parties determine, after meeting with both the appealing and non-appealing party, that the appealing party has demonstrated that it is more likely than not that one of the above grounds for appeal is satisfied, the Vice President(s) for Student Development will remand the case as follows:

  • In the event that the Vice President(s) of Student Development determine that the sanction was excessively severe or grossly inadequate, the Vice President(s) of Student Development will appoint an appeal committee and remand the case to the appeal committee with information necessary to issue an appropriate sanction. The appeal committee will independently make the decision of what the appropriate sanction should be based upon information provided by the Vice President(s) of Student Development and other information the appeal committee deems relevant. The decision of the appeal committee will be made within 5 business days of the notice of the decision at Step 5.a. The decision of appeal committee may not be appealed by either party.
  • In the event that the Vice President(s) of Student Development determine that (1) new evidence may substantially affect the outcome of the decision or (2) a procedural error occurred that substantially affected the outcome of the hearing, the Vice President(s) for Student Development will appoint new administrative hearing officers (for administrative hearings) or a new hearing committee (for committee hearings) and remand the case for a new hearing and decision. The Vice President for Student Development may not change the hearing decision or sanction. Only the administrative hearing officer(s) or hearing committee may make such a decision.

The Dean(s) of Students will be available for consultation and will ensure that members of any appeal or new hearing committee or new administrative officers have received training on the Joint Sexual Misconduct Policy and Complaint Procedures as well as applicable law.

B. Complaint Procedure if the Respondent is a Faculty or Staff Member

Any member of the community who has a concern about potential sexual misconduct by a faculty or staff member should meet with the Faculty/Staff HRO (or in the case of a student's concern, may also meet with the Dean(s) of Students) to discuss their concerns, determine options going forward, and learn about other resources available.  To make a Complaint under this procedure, the following steps will generally be followed:

Step 1:  Initiation of Complaint

Any member of the community may initiate the Complaint Procedure.  This complaint process may be initiated by submitting a signed and completed complaint form to the Faculty/Staff HRO, a Dean of Students, SJU Life Safety or CSB Campus Security.  The complaint form should contain sufficient detail to enable the Faculty/Staff HRO (and in cases involving students, the Deans of Student(s)) to make a determination as to whether the complaint falls within the policy.  Forms are available from the Faculty/Staff HRO, Dean(s) of Students, SJU Life Safety, or CSB Campus Security. Reporting Forms are also available on the CSB/SJU website.

Step 2:  Investigation

Following the submission of the complaint form and a determination that the complaint falls within the policy, an investigation will be conducted by SJU Life Safety, CSB Campus Security, or an appointed outside investigator.  The investigator may interview the complainant, respondent and/or other witnesses or request additional information from the complainant, respondent or others.  A written summary of the results of the investigation and relevant documents, if any, will be provided to the Faculty/Staff HRO and, in cases involving students, the Dean(s) of Students.  Every attempt will be made to complete the investigation process within ten (10) business days of the filing of the complaint, but in some cases more time will be required.  If a criminal complaint has been filed, CSB's and/or SJU's investigation may be temporarily delayed to allow law enforcement to gather evidence.  Such delay may only occur at the request of law enforcement and shall not be any longer than necessary for law enforcement to complete the gathering of evidence.  In no case will CSB and SJU wait for the conclusion of a criminal investigation or criminal proceeding to begin its own Title IX investigation.

Step 3:  Determination

Upon completion of the investigation, the Faculty/Staff HRO and, if the case involves a student, the Dean(s) of Students, shall review the investigator's findings and may, in her or his/their discretion, request additional investigation by the investigator or another appropriate individual.  The Faculty/Staff HRO will also ensure that the complainant and respondent have been given equivalent opportunities to present relevant information for consideration in the investigation process.  If the investigation is complete and appropriate, the Faculty/Staff HRO shall use the investigator's written summary and other appropriate information to prepare an investigation report and provide it to the appropriate administrative officer for a determination of whether it is more likely than not that the Joint Sexual Misconduct Policy has been violated.

In cases of alleged sexual misconduct by a staff member, the Director of Human Resources will generally serve as the administrative officer on issues of whether the Joint Sexual Misconduct Policy has been violated.  In cases of alleged sexual misconduct by a faculty member, the Vice Provost will generally serve as the administrative officer on issues of whether the Joint Sexual Misconduct Policy has been violated.  An alternative administrative officer may be appointed by the President or the President's designee in cases involving a conflict of interest, the appearance of a conflict of interest, or in other appropriate circumstances.  The administrative officer will have received training on the Sexual Misconduct Policy, these procedures, and applicable law before rendering any decision and may consult with the Faculty/Staff HRO and/or a Title IX Coordinator about such topics.

The administrative officer shall review the complaint and investigation report and shall determine whether it is more likely than not that the Joint Sexual Misconduct Policy was violated.  The administrative officer may, in his or her discretion, request additional information.  The Faculty/Staff HRO and/or a Title IX Coordinator of the involved institutions shall be available to consult with the administrative officer.
 
a. Determination of No Violation

If the administrative officer determines that there is not sufficient basis to believe that it is more likely than not that a violation of the Joint Sexual Misconduct Policy occurred, the Faculty/Staff HRO will provide a notice of outcome to the parties and the complainant will be informed of other procedures for resolving the complaint and of other resources that may be available to the complainant.

b. Determination of Violation

If the administrative officer determines that it is more likely than not that a faculty member has violated the Joint Sexual Misconduct Policy, the matter will be referred to the Provost for appropriate sanctions, which shall be determined and administered in a manner consistent with the Faculty Handbook.  Appropriate sanctions include, but are not limited to unpaid suspensions, suspension of promotion and salary increments, suspension or withdrawal of faculty privileges, and dismissal.  In referring a finding of a violation by a faculty member to the Provost for sanctions, the administrative officer shall state whether the evidence establishes a violation by "clear and convincing evidence" such that dismissal for cause may be considered as a possible sanction under Section 2.13.6.5 of the Faculty Handbook.

If the administrative officer determines that it is more likely than not that a staff member has violated the Joint Sexual Misconduct Policy, the staff member's supervisor, in consultation with Human Resources and Divisional Vice President, shall determine the appropriate sanctions, which shall be determined and administered in a manner consistent with the Administrative and Support Staff Handbook.

The parties to a complaint will be provided an appropriate notice of outcome.

Step 4:  Appeal

A party may appeal only on the grounds that CSB/SJU failed to follow the procedures set forth in this Complaint Procedure.  A party who wishes to appeal shall submit a written statement of appeal no later than ten (10) business days after receiving the notice of outcome.

An appeal should not be requested frivolously.  An appeal represents a procedural safeguard for the parties.  The appealing party must show that it is more likely than not that the grounds for the appeal have merit.

The appeal shall be directed to the Lead Title IX Coordinator of the institution of the appealing party.  If the complaint involves parties from both institutions, the Vice President of Student Development who has received the appeal shall involve the Vice President of Student Development of the other institution and they shall consider and decide the appeal together.  If the Lead Title IX Coordinator(s) determine that there is adequate reason to believe that the appeal may have merit, an appeal conference may be scheduled between the appealing party and the Lead Title IX Coordinator(s).  If, after such meeting, the Lead Title IX Coordinator(s) continue to believe that the appeal may have merit, the Lead Title IX Coordinator(s) will also meet with the non-appealing party.

  • The Lead Title IX Coordinator(s) will determine whether it is more likely than not that CSB/SJU failed to follow the procedures set forth in this Complaint Procedure.
  • If the Lead Title IX Coordinator(s) determine that it is not more likely than not that a procedural error occurred, the administrative officer's decision is final.
  • If the Lead Title IX Coordinator(s) determine that it is more likely than not that a procedural error occurred, but that the procedural error did not substantially affect the outcome, the administrative officer's decision is final, but the Lead Title IX Coordinator shall work with appropriate institutional officials to ensure that the procedural error does not reoccur.
  •  If the Lead Title IX Coordinator(s) determine that it is more likely than not that a procedural error occurred, and the procedural error substantially affected the outcome of the proceeding, the administrative officer's decision shall be overturned.  The Lead Title IX Coordinator(s) shall appoint an alternative decision-maker to make a new decision and take other steps to correct the procedural error.

The decision of the Lead Title IX Coordinator(s) as to whether a procedural error occurred is final.

 C. Complaint Procedure if the Respondent is an Associate or Third Party

Any member of the community who has a concern about potential sexual misconduct by an Associate or third party should report their concern to the Faculty/Staff HRO, Dean(s) of Students, and/or Lead Title IX coordinator(s).

Upon receiving a report of potential sexual misconduct by an Associate or third party, the Faculty/Staff HRO and/or Dean(s) of Students will involve the appropriate administrative officials to make a determination of how to handle the issue.  The administrative official, in consultation with the Lead or a Deputy Title IX Coordinator, may exercise discretion to determine an appropriate investigative and decision making process based on the facts and circumstances.  The administrative official will document the report received, process used, and the outcome and will submit such information to the Lead Title IX Coordinator. CSB/SJU will notify the parties and, if applicable, employing entities that contract with CSB/SJU, of the outcome of the complaint.  Associates and third parties may not appeal the decision made.  Any party with concerns about the process or outcome, however, should consult with the Lead Title IX Coordinator(s).

VII. CONTACT INFORMATION

COLLEGE OF SAINT BENEDICT
Faculty/Staff Human Rights Officer and Deputy Title IX Coordinator  
Judy Bednar, jbednar@csbsju.edu, 320-363-5071

VP for Student Development and Lead Title IX Coordinator 
Mary Geller, mgeller@csbsju.edu, 320-363-5051

Dean of Students and Deputy Title IX Coordinator 
Jody Terhaar, jterhaar@csbsju.edu, 320-363-5270

Security Director 
Darren Swanson, dswanson@csbsju.edu, 320-363-5000

SAINT JOHN'S UNIVERSITY (including School of Theology)
Faculty/Staff Human Rights Officer and Deputy Title IX Coordinator 
Judy Bednar, jbednar@csbsju.edu, 320-363-5071

VP for Student Development and Lead Title IX Coordinator  
Doug Mullin, dmullin@csbsju.edu, 320-363-2737

Dean of Students and Deputy Title IX Coordinator  
Michael Connolly, mconnolly@csbsju.edu, 320-363-3171

Life Safety Services Director  
Shawn Vierzba, svierzba@csbsju.edu, 320-363-2144

Dean of the SJU School of Theology·Seminary 
Bill Cahoy, bcahoy@csbsju.edu, 320-363-3182

Rector of the SJU School of Theology•Seminary 
Michael Patella, mpatella@csbsju.edu, 320-363-2108

If any changes are made in the persons holding these positions, current information will be available on the CSB/SJU web site.

Updated July 2013