How to make a report
Making a report means telling a Reporting Resource (see below) what happened -- in person, by telephone, in writing or by email. At the time a report is made, a complainant does not have to decide whether or not to request any particular course of action, nor does a complainant need to know how to label what happened. Deciding how to proceed after making the report can be a process that unfolds over time. The University provides support that can assist each individual in making these important decisions, and to the extent possible (based on the factors in the policy at Section X(C)), will respect an individual’s autonomy in deciding how to proceed.
We encourage all individuals to make a prompt report to the University using the reporting resources below, but we recognize that individuals may choose to make a report to any University employee. With the exception of confidential resources, all other University employees, including student employees or volunteers who have a responsibility for student welfare, are expected to share the report with the Title IX Coordinator to ensure a prompt and equitable review, investigation and resolution.
No matter how you choose to report your privacy will be respected and the information will be shared with the limited circle of individuals who need to know in order to support you.
- Title IX Coordinator | 540-458-4055 | firstname.lastname@example.org
Elrod Commons 212
Coordinates prompt and equitable responses to reports of sexual misconduct by eliminating the misconduct, preventing its recurrence, and remedying the effects.
- W&L Public Safety | 540-458-8999
Available 24 hours a day.
Will escort any Washington and Lee community member to a safe place, provide transportation to the hospital, assist in coordination with local law enforcement (including filing a report and obtaining a protective order), and provide information about the University's resources and complaint processes.
- Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students | 540-458-8754 | email@example.com
Assists with academic concerns, changes in housing or other accommodations and referrals to other resources
- Assistant Title IX Coordinator for Employment | 540-458-8920 | firstname.lastname@example.org
Office of Human Resources, 2 South Main 109
Can assist complainants requesting information, resources and reporting options for complaints against employees or other non-students. Additionally, Human Resources can assist faculty and staff with requesting workplace accommodations during the mediation or investigation process.
- Additional Student and Employee Resources: Any of the people identified as a resource are trained to share the available reporting options.
Use the anonymous on-line sexual misconduct reporting form to make a report concerning an act of sexual misconduct. An individual may report the incident without disclosing his/her name or identifying the respondent.
If the case involves sexual misconduct, the Title IX Coordinator will receive the anonymous report and will determine any appropriate steps, including individual or community remedies as appropriate. The University will make every effort to investigate the report, though in some cases it may be difficult to conduct a thorough investigation based only on an anonymous complaint.
Students, faculty, staff and visitors may also use the LiveSafe app to submit reports for suspicious activity, harassment, or other misconduct with picture, video, or audio attachments to Public Safety. Reports can be submitted anonymously if the user chooses.
Law Enforcement Resolution Options
In addition to making a report with the University, the University encourages complainants to pursue criminal action for incidents of sexual misconduct that may also be crimes under Virginia law. The University will assist a complainant in making a criminal report and will cooperate with law enforcement agencies if a complainant decides to pursue the criminal process. Complainants can bring criminal charges through the criminal justice system and use the University’s resolution procedures simultaneously.
- Lexington Police Department: 540-463-9177
- Rockbridge County Sheriff's Office: 540-463-7328
- Virginia State Police: 804-674-2000
Project Horizon can provide legal information to complainants about criminal reporting, investigations, as well as civil and criminal court proceedings. Project Horizon Advocates may accompany complainants to court dates and appointments with law enforcement officers, the Commonwealth's Attorney, Court Services Unit, and other legal proceedings and answer questions about these processes. To speak with Project Horizon's legal advocate, call (540) 463-8761.
What happens after a report has been made?
Upon receipt of a report, the Title IX Coordinator will conduct an initial assessment of the incident or behavior at issue, the complainant’s desired course of action, and the necessity for any interim remedies or accommodations.
Following this assessment, depending on the wishes of the complainant, the University may seek a remedies-based resolution that does not involve disciplinary action against a respondent, or refer the matter for investigation. The goal of the investigation is to gather all relevant facts before referring the report for disciplinary action using the University’s resolution procedures.
Sometimes a complainant may wish to report an incident of sexual misconduct without pursuing disciplinary action. The University will seek to respect the wishes of the complainant when possible. Even if a complainant does not want to proceed, the University may determine to proceed to disciplinary action under limited circumstances. Information on how that decision will be made can be found in the policy Section X (C). In such cases, the University will notify and support the original complainant and a complainant will never be required to participate in any investigation or hearing process.
Pursuant to Virginia law, in certain circumstances the University will need to report to law enforcement. In the event of any disclosures, complainants retain the right to decline to participate in any investigation and/or to request that a criminal investigation not proceed.
For further information about the University’s resolution options see the Sexual Discrimination and Misconduct Policy.
Is there a time limit for making a report?
There is no time limit for making a report. The University encourages reporting an incident as soon as possible in order to maximize the University's ability to respond promptly and effectively. The University does not, however, limit the timeframe for reporting.
Protections against retaliation
Retaliation is a violation of University policy and may result in disciplinary action. The University recognizes that retaliation can take many forms, may be committed by or against an individual or a group, and that a respondent or third party may also be the subject of retaliation by another individual, including the complainant.
An individual who makes a report, participates in the resolution process, or assists as a bystander to stop sexual misconduct, is entitled to protection from any form of retaliation.
Upon receipt of a report of sexual misconduct, the University will impose reasonable and appropriate interim measures designed to eliminate the reported hostile environment, prevent the recurrence, and address its effects. Interim measures may be imposed regardless of whether formal disciplinary action is sought by the complainant or the University. All individuals are encouraged to report concerns about failure of another individual to abide by any restrictions imposed by an interim measure. The University will take immediate and responsive action to enforce a previously implemented measure and disciplinary sanctions can be imposed for failing to abide by a University-imposed measure.
Interim measures may include:
- Access to counseling services and assistance in setting up initial appointment, both on and off campus
- Imposition of an on-campus no-contact directive
- Rescheduling of exams and assignments
- Providing alternative course completion options
- Change in class schedule, including the ability to transfer course sections or withdrawal from a course without penalty
- Change in work schedule or job assignment
- Change in student's University-sponsored or University-controlled housing
- Assistance from University support staff in completing housing relocation
- Limit of an individual's or organization's access to certain University facilities or activities pending resolution of the matter
- Voluntary leave of absence
- Providing an escort to ensure safe movement between classes and activities
- Providing medical services
- Providing academic support services
- Working in conjunction with student affairs to impose a behavioral agreement with the respondent
- Any other remedy which can be tailored to the involved individuals to achieve the goals of this policy.