Frequently Asked Questions

The following are frequently asked questions in regard to Title IX and related policies. The material in these FAQs may be difficult to read and triggering; please take care of yourself and reach out to the Campus Advocate Team if you need assistance.

If your question was not answered or if you would like to see additional questions added please contact the Title IX Office at titleix@humboldt.edu or (707) 826-5542.

General Overview

What is Title IX?

What is Title IX?

Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 is a federal law intended to end sex discrimination in all areas of education. Title IX applies to all recipients of federal funds (both public and private institutions) and covers:

  • Non-discrimination based on sex or gender
  • Sexual harassment and sexual assault
  • Program equity, such as athletics.

What is DHR?

What is DHR?

"DHR" stands for "discrimination, harassment, and retaliation". No student or employee may be discriminated or harassed against on the basis of a protected status. More details can be found under the "Discrimination & Harassment" tab on our website.

My friend told me they were assaulted. What can I do to help?

My friend told me they were assaulted. What can I do to help?

It can be really difficult for someone to share they've been sexually assaulted, abused, or experienced harm. It can also be difficult to know how to respond, if you've never dealt with this before. We have several resources available to you to help support your friend, as well as resources you can share with them. These are located under the "Resources & Support: For Students" tab on our website.

What is prohibited by Title IX and other related policies?

What is prohibited by Title IX and other related policies?

To ensure compliance with Title IX and other laws, California State University (CSU) policy prohibits:

  • Discrimination, including Harassment, because of any Protected Status
  • Retaliation against anyone exercising rights under this policy or participating in any related investigation or proceeding
  • Sexual Misconduct, which includes sexual activity engaged in without Affirmative Consent
  • Dating and Domestic Violence and Stalking

Who is HSU's Title IX Coordinator?

Who is HSU's Title IX Coordinator?

David Hickcox is HSU's Title IX Coordinator and DHR Prevention Administrator. He can be reached at:

Additional staff contact information is listed here: https://titleix.humboldt.edu/contact-titleix

What are my rights?

What are my rights?

The list below is not intended to be exhaustive. We recommend you review the relevant Executive Order for further information.

  • You may have an advisor of your choice accompany you to any meeting of proceeding, including interviews with investigators and disciplinary hearing. If you are an employee, that advisor may be your union representative.
  • You may provide documentary evidence to be reviewed in the course of the investigation.
  • You may provide witnesses to be interviewed in the course of the investigation, though the investigator retains the right to determine which witnesses are relevant. 
  • Your identifying information will be kept private and only disclosed to those with a need-to-know.
  • You have the right to review the evidence upon which a decision is being made prior to the investigator's report being finalized.
  • You will be provided the outcome of any proceedings in writing.
  • You will be provided with instructions and the opportunity to appeal the results of an investigation or disciplinary proceeding prior to the time such results become final. 

I want to know more about the policies

I want to know more about the policies

You can review the policies in full here: https://titleix.humboldt.edu/compliance#exec

Reporting

If I don't want to make a report, who can I talk to for support?

If I don't want to make a report, who can I talk to for support?

You have several options for confidential support. For more information, review the options here: https://titleix.humboldt.edu/content/confidential-reporting

What happens after I make a report?

What happens after I make a report?

Upon receipt of a report, the Title IX Coordinator will meet with the Complainant. This is a preliminary meeting between the Complainant and the Title IX Coordinator.

The purpose of the preliminary meeting is to allow the Title IX Coordinator to gain a basic understanding of the nature and circumstances of the report or formal complaint; it is not intended to be a full investigation interview. The Title IX Coordinator will seek to determine how the reporting party wishes to proceed.

Options range from not pursuing resolution of any kind to pursuing Formal Resolution. Supportive measures will be offered to the Complainant at this meeting regardless of their wishes to move forward with a formal complaint. Examples of possible supportive measures include (but aren't limited to):

  • counseling
  • extensions of deadlines or other course-related adjustments
  • modifications of work or class schedules
  • campus escorts
  • mutual restrictions on contact between parties
  • changes in work or housing locations
  • leaves of absence
  • increased security and monitoring of certain areas of the campus

The Title IX Coordinator will follow up the meeting with a written explanation of the student or employee's rights and options and procedures. This written explanation will be sent through email using Maxient, our case management software application. For more details on Maxient, see below.

The Campus Advocate Team is available for advocacy and accompaniment during the university reporting and investigative processes.

What supportive measures are available to me?

What supportive measures are available to me?

Upon a report of a Title IX concern, the University will work with the Complainant to put supportive measures in place to ensure a safe, hostile-free environment for the Complainant. Following an investigation and a determination that conduct prohibited by Title IX or related CSU policies occurred, more permanent supportive measures and remedies may be implemented. Supportive measures could include:

  • Counseling
  • Extensions of deadlines or other course-related adjustments
  • Modifications of work or class schedules
  • Campus escorts
  • Mutual restrictions on contact between the parties
  • Changes in work or housing locations
  • Leaves of absence
  • Increased security and monitoring of certain areas of the campus

The Title IX & DHR Prevention Office is responsible for coordinating the effective implementation of supportive measures.

Confidentiality will be maintained regarding supportive measures to the extent that maintaining such confidentiality would not impair the ability to provide the supportive measures.

Can I file criminal charges as well as file something with the Title IX & DHR Prevention Office?

Can I file criminal charges as well as file something with the Title IX & DHR Prevention Office?

Yes. For those that have experienced sexual misconduct, discrimination, harassment, retaliation, or other inappropriate behavior, there are several reporting options available. Depending on the nature of the incident, some may choose to report to multiple entities. More details are listed under the "Reporting Process" tab on our website.

What if I want to remain anonymous?

What if I want to remain anonymous?

You have confidential reporting options available, such as the HSU Campus Advocate Team (available 24/7). Additionally, you can file a report with our office anonymously, however, we may be limited in our response if a report to our office is anonymous.

Do I have to identify the alleged perpetrator?

Do I have to identify the alleged perpetrator?

If you do not want to reveal the alleged perpetrator's identity, our office can still provide information and connect you with valuable resources and assistance. However, in order to conduct a thorough investigation, the alleged perpetrator should be identified.

I'm concerned that reporting might make matters worse. Should I still file a complaint?

I'm concerned that reporting might make matters worse. Should I still file a complaint?

If you have concerns for your safety, our office can provide No Contact Directives, academic accommodations, and other supportive measures to assist you. In addition, retaliation is prohibited conduct, and we enforce it if a complainant or witness is retaliated against for participating in an investigation.

Can I be terminated for filing a complaint of sexual violence/harassment?

Can I be terminated for filing a complaint of sexual violence/harassment?

No. Retaliation against an employee or student after they have filed a complaint about sexual misconduct, discrimination, harassment, or other inappropriate behavior, or cooperating in an investigation is unlawful and can lead to serious consquences. An act of retaliation against a Complainant, Respondent, or witness in an investigation is a violation of University policy. Any such retaliation constitues a separate basis for a complaint, even if the initial complaint was found to be unsubstantiated or dismissed.

What can I do if I am a victim of retaliation?

What can I do if I am a victim of retaliation?

You can file a report with our office.

What are the reporting expectations for Employees?

What are the reporting expectations for Employees?

HSU employees have reporting obligations through Executive Orders 1095-1098. These EOs classify almost every faculty and staff member on campus as a "responsible employee" who is mandated to report incidents of sexual harassment and sexual violence involving students to the Title IX & DHR Prevention Office. SAPC and Kim Berry have created a brief set of slides for employees on how to support survivors. Additional resources for employees can be found on the "Resources & Support: Faculty & Staff" tab on our website.

Post-Reporting

What will the hearing be like?

What will the hearing be like?

The hearing is a meeting at which the hearing officer (the individual who will oversee the hearing) listens to the witnesses and analyzes the evidence. The hearing officer asks questions (including questions proposed by the complainant and respondent) of the witnesses and makes a decision about whether the Executive Order was violated.

Do I have to be in the same room as the other Party (Complainant or Respondent)?

Do I have to be in the same room as the other Party (Complainant or Respondent)?

Not necessarily. If you do not want to be in the same room with the other person involved in the complaint, please discuss your request with the campus hearing coordinator in advance of the hearing so that special arrangements can be made.

What does cross-examination mean?

What does cross-examination mean?

Cross-examination means asking questions of a witness (including the complainant or respondent) to challenge that witness’s statements or credibility. In the hearing process, the respondent and complainant will “cross-examine” by asking the hearing officer to ask questions of the witnesses. The university’s process of providing for “indirect” questioning by the hearing officer is designed to minimize anxiety for the participants in the hearing.

What if I don't want to participate in the hearing?

What if I don't want to participate in the hearing?

You are not required to participate in a hearing, but there is risk in not attending.

If you are a complainant and do not participate in the hearing, the University’s ability to take action will be limited. The hearing will happen, but statements you made during the investigation (even if described in the investigation report) might not be considered at the hearing because you won’t be available to answer questions about those statements.

If you are a respondent and do not participate in the hearing, the hearing will happen, but statements you made during the investigation (even if described in the investigation report) might not be considered at the hearing because you won’t be available to answer questions about those statements. If you are a witness and do not attend the hearing, you subject yourself to discipline (as a student or employee) and a hold may be placed on any student witness’s transcript. If a witness does not attend the hearing, the hearing officer will likely not rely on what that witness told the investigator (even if it is described in the investigation report) because the witness won’t be available to answer questions about those statements.

Is there any alternative to having a hearing?

Is there any alternative to having a hearing?

Yes. An Early Resolution is an agreement between you and the other party that would resolve the matter without a hearing. It is a completely voluntary process that can occur at any time up to the point where the hearing officer makes a final decision. Neither the complainant nor respondent should feel pressured to agree to an Early Resolution.

Both parties and the campus Title IX Coordinator have to agree with the terms of the Early Resolution before it can become final. If you would like to pursue an Early Resolution agreement, you can discuss this option with your campus Title IX Coordinator.

When will my case go to hearing?

When will my case go to hearing?

If your case is in the investigation phase, the investigator will interview witnesses, gather the evidence, show you the evidence, invite you to respond to the evidence, and then prepare a report of the evidence. If you would like, you may explore Early Resolution with your campus Title IX Coordinator during this time. As soon as the interim policy becomes effective, cases that have been investigated will begin to be scheduled for a hearing.

What does it mean if I’m told my allegation does not meet the threshold of prohibited conduct?

What does it mean if I’m told my allegation does not meet the threshold of prohibited conduct?

The Chancellor’s Office has issued Addendum B: Federal Mandated Hearing Addendum, which accompanies CSU Executive Orders 1096 and 1097, and which outlines the policy and procedures required under the Title IX Federal Regulations. This sets up a separate process if prohibited conduct meets the threshold of Addendum B.

If the prohibited conduct does not meet the threshold for Addendum B, or whether a case meets criteria for an investigation, our office will continue providing supportive measures and other services, conduct intakes relating to reports and complaints of sex- and gender-based misconduct, and coordinate with other campus offices on issues of discrimination, harassment (including sexual harassment), sexual misconduct, dating/domestic violence, stalking, and discrimination/harassment based retaliation.

What happens if I’m found responsible?

What happens if I’m found responsible?

Discipline for Employees includes, but is not limited to, formal reprimand, suspension, demotion and termination of employment. Discipline for Students includes, but is not limited to, probation, suspension and expulsion and other Sanctions as defined in Article V, California State University Executive Order 1098.

You can request a meeting with the Title IX Coordinator, David Hickcox to discuss the process or ask questions:

Additional information can be found under the "Resources & Support: Respondent Information" page on our website.

Revised Title IX Regulations

Why has the CSU revised its Title IX Student Policy?

Why has the CSU revised its Title IX Student Policy?

A California Court of Appeal recently ruled (in a case involving another university) that students accused of sexual misconduct who face severe discipline (expulsion or suspension) at any California university have the right to a hearing to cross-examine (question), directly or indirectly, their accusers and other witnesses if witness credibility is “central” to the case. Until now, the University process did not include a hearing.

What kinds of cases are impacted by this revised policy?

What kinds of cases are impacted by this revised policy?

The irevised policy applies only to cases that meet all of the following three criteria:

  • Student (respondent) is accused of Sexual Misconduct as defined by Executive Orders 1096/1097 (Revised August 14, 2020);
  • Student accused of Sexual Misconduct faces suspension or expulsion; and
  • The credibility of the accuser (complainant) or other witnesses is central to a determination of whether the accused student engaged in Sexual Misconduct.

What policy applies if the circumstances of my Title IX (sex discrimination/harassment) case do not meet these criteria?

What policy applies if the circumstances of my Title IX (sex discrimination/harassment) case do not meet these criteria?

If the circumstances of your case do not meet all three of the criteria described above, EO 1096/1097 Addendum A (Revised August 14, 2020) applies to your case. The investigator makes findings of fact and the Title IX Coordinator makes the final determination about whether CSU policy was violated.

How will these changes most directly affect me?

How will these changes most directly affect me?

Regardless of which process, or whether a case meets criteria for an investigation, our office will continue providing supportive measures and other services, conduct intakes relating to reports and complaints of sex- and gender-based misconduct, and coordinate with other campus offices on issues of discrimination, harassment (including sexual harassment), sexual misconduct, dating/domestic violence, stalking, and discrimination/harassment based retaliation.

For more information on how this impacts Title IX at HSU, check out this resource created by HSU's CHECK IT:

Does the new policy apply to dating and domestic violence or stalking cases?

Does the new policy apply to dating and domestic violence or stalking cases?

The revised policy only applies to matters involving sexual misconduct as defined by CSU policy. However, if a matter involves sexual misconduct as well as dating and domestic violence or stalking (or all three), all charges will likely be governed by the revised policy. Please direct any questions to your campus Title IX Coordinator.

What effect does the revised policy have on closed cases?

What effect does the revised policy have on closed cases?

Cases that were concluded before January 2019 were properly addressed under CSU policy and in compliance with law. Please direct any questions to your campus Title IX Coordinator.