Sexual Misconduct: Common Questions
What should you do if you are a victim of sexual misconduct? Below you will find simple answers that will help you understand sexual misconduct and your rights as a member of the Savannah State University community.
- What is sexual misconduct?
- Who is protected by the Savannah State University Sexual Misconduct Policy?
- What do I do if I'm a victim of sexual assault or other forms of sexual misconduct?
- How do I file a Sexual Misconduct Report?
- What happens after I file a report through Savannah State University?
- Will my parents be notified if I file a report?
- What resources are available to me on campus and in the community?
- Can I lower my risk of becoming a victim of sexual violence?
What is sexual misconduct?
Sexual misconduct is unwelcome behavior of a sexual nature, including, but not limited to, sexual assault, sexual exploitation, sexual harassment and stalking. Some examples of sexual misconduct include rape; touching of a sexual nature; displaying or distributing sexually explicit drawings, pictures or written materials; spreading sexual rumors; and circulating or showing e-mails or Web sites of a sexual nature. There are many other types of examples of sexual misconduct; some specific examples are listed below, but it is not an exhaustive list. If you are uncomfortable with a situation or unsure if you are a victim of sexual misconduct, it is always best to ask and seek help.
Examples of sexual assault
- Any type of sexual contact with someone who is unable to consent. This could include someone underage, someone who has an intellectual disability or someone who is passed out.
- Attempted rape
- Sexual battery
- Sexual coercion
- Sexual contact with a child
- Unwanted touching or fondling above or under clothes
Examples of sexual exploitation
- Invasion of sexual privacy
- Prostituting another individual
- Non-consensual video or audio of sexual activity
- Non-consensual distribution of video or audio of sexual activity, even if the sexual activity or video or audio taken of sexual activity was consensual
- Intentional observation of unconsenting individuals who are partially undressed, naked or engaged in sexual acts
- Knowingly transmitting an STD or HIV to another individual
- Intentionally and inappropriately exposing one's breasts, buttocks, groin or genitals in non-consensual circumstances
- Sexually-based bullying
Examples of sexual harassment
- Unwelcome sexual advances
- Requests for sexual favors
- Discussing sexual activities
- Sexual jokes, innuendo, texts, teasing and/or remarks
- Verbal or nonverbal conduct of a sexual nature, including rape, sexual assault and sexual exploitation
Examples of stalking
- Following or spying on someone
- Sending unwanted emails or letters
- Showing up at one's house, school or work
Who is protected by the Savannah State University Sexual Misconduct Policy?
The Savannah State University Sexual Misconduct Policy applies to all Savannah State University students, faculty, staff and third-party visitors to campus. The policy applies to these groups regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity.
What do I do if I'm a victim of sexual assault or other forms of sexual misconduct?
- If you are in immediate danger, call 911.
- If you are on campus and in danger, you can access one of the emergency telephones, which are located at or near campus buildings and parking areas. The phones will dial directly to the Savannah State University Police dispatcher. When an emergency phone or a call box is picked up or activated, a dispatcher is immediately notified of the location of the caller.
- Find a safe place.
- Seek help from a friend, trusted adult or Savannah State University employee.
- If you are not in immediate danger but require the assistance of law enforcement, contact Savannah State University police at 912-358-3004 or the Savannah-Chatham County Metropolitan Police Department (non-emergency number) at 912-652-6500.
- Preserve evidence if possible. This may include your clothing, bedding, etc. If possible, avoid taking a shower, brushing your teeth or changing your clothing.
- File an administrative or anonymous Sexual Misconduct Report with Savannah State University.
- Call Savannah State University's Ethics and Compliance Reporting Hotline 24/7 at 1-877-516-3462.
How do I file a Sexual Misconduct Report?
Sexual Misconduct Reports are available online or in the Colston Administration Building, Room 208.
What happens after I file a report through Savannah State University?
If you file a Sexual Misconduct Report through Savannah State University, your complaint will be investigated and adjudicated by university officials. Interim protective measures may be implemented while an investigation takes place.
Once the investigation is complete, the investigator will issue a written report to the parties involved that sets forth any charges and/or sanctions, along with an explanation of the evidence against the respondent. The parties will have an opportunity to respond to the report, a further investigation will be conducted if necessary, and a final report will be issued.
If the complainant is a student, a hearing and corresponding appeal may take place. Depending on the outcome, sanctions may follow.
Will my parents be notified if I file a report?
No. Savannah State University will not contact your parents or guardians if you file a Sexual Misconduct Report unless you request the university to do so. In cases of a medical emergency, the university may contact parents or guardians.
What resources are available to me on campus and in the community?
Savannah State University has numerous campus resources available to members of the community. In addition, there are several excellent local and national resources available for anyone requiring further information.
Can I lower my risk of becoming a victim of sexual violence?
While some forms of sexual violence cannot be prevented, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' Office on Women's Health offers the following tips on how to stay safe in general:
- Go to parties or gatherings with friends.
- Look out for your friends, and ask them to look out for you.
- Have a code word with your family and friends that means "Come get me, I need help" or "Call me with a fake emergency."
- Download an app on your phone. Some apps share your location with your friends or the police if you need help.
- Avoid drinks in punchbowls or other containers that can be easily "spiked."
- Know your limits when using alcohol or drugs.
- Trust your instincts.
- Be aware of your surroundings.