Sexual Misconduct Support and Response Resources

The University of Minnesota Rochester is committed to having an environment free of sexual misconduct.

We encourage anyone who has experienced misconduct to seek support and care. Similarly, we encourage all UMR community members to report incidents of sexual misconduct to ensure proper support for victims, to keep our campus safe and to prevent re-occurrence.

Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 prohibits discrimination based on sex or gender in any federally funded education program or activity.

Your Rights Under Title IX

  • You have the right to live and learn at UMR free from gender discrimination.
  • You have the right to file a complaint according to UMR’s Sexual Misconduct Policy. You also have the right to request a criminal investigation with law enforcement.
  • You have the right to interim support and reasonable protective measures to help you continue to live and learn at UMR; for instance, a housing or academic modification.
  • You have the right to understand that UMR is required to undertake a prompt and thorough investigation of all reports of sexual misconduct.
  • You have the right to request and obtain a no-contact order and to receive information about harassment restraining orders and orders of protection.
  • You have the right not to be discouraged in your use of resources, processes, or support and to report to the Title IX Coordinator if your rights have been violated.
  • You have the right to be free from retaliation for exercising your rights.
  • You have the right to access on- and off-campus support and health services.
  • You have these rights regardless of your race, color, ethnicity, national origin, age, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, physical or mental disability, religion, or any other protected class.

Student Handbook

The Student Handbook is designed to assist you in becoming acquainted with the University community, as well as its policies and procedures. The Handbook also contains the Student Code of Conduct, specifically, information on how to be a responsible member of the community.

The University of Minnesota Rochester’s Title IX Team is here to receive, respond to and resolve all reports of sexual misconduct and concerns about gender equity that affect UMR community members.

Our role is to eliminate, prevent and redress all known instances of prohibited gender-based misconduct, like sexual violence, stalking, sexual harassment or relationship violence.

The UMR Title IX Team

Title IX Coordinator for Student at UMR
Julie Thornton, jthorn@r.umn.edu

Title IX Coordinator for Faculty and Staff at UMR
Andrea Wilson, awilson@r.umn.edu

Title IX Deputy Coordinator for Student Support and Prevention at UMR
Kris Barry, kabarry@r.umn.edu

University of Minnesota System-Wide Title IX Coordinator
Tina Marisam, marisam@umn.edu

We are responsible for:

  • investigating reported misconduct and other gender-equity concerns;

  • supporting the people involved;

  • implementing measures to maximize campus safety; and

  • promoting everyone’s ability to live and learn at UMR in an environment free from sexual misconduct.

The Title IX Team can help you:

  • Obtain and connect with resources.

  • Understand your right to seek protective measures like no-contact orders, harassment prevention orders and abuse prevention orders.

  • Connect with the on-campus student conduct process and local law enforcement.

  • By responding to allegations of retaliation.

  • By providing transparent and accurate information about your Title IX rights, UMR’s Title IX obligations, and our processes and procedures.

  • By organizing interim support and protective measures, like housing or academic modifications.

Consensual Conduct
Understanding consent can be complicated, but lack of understanding is not an excuse for engaging in non-consensual sexual activity. Most importantly, consent is a knowing and voluntary agreement to engage in sexual activity. Silence, incapacitation or non-action is not a form of consent. Please review UMR’s complete consent policy in the Student Handbook.

Prohibited Conduct
UMR’s Student Conduct Code prohibits the following conduct, which is also prohibited gender-discrimination, under Title IX:

  • Sexual harassment

  • Sexual assault

  • Sexual violence

  • Sexual exploitation

  • Aiding or facilitating any form of sexual misconduct

  • Stalking

  • Gender-based bullying

  • Relationship violence

  • Retaliation

Sharing a Concern - Reporting
Giving voice to your experience and getting the support you want and need - reporting sexual misconduct

Reporting Privately or Anonymously at UMR

You may report sexual misconduct anonymously or privately online by submitting a “Sexual Misconduct Concern Form.”

By completing the concern form, you are either asking for help for yourself or asking for a friend. When completing this concern form, it is okay if you haven't completely defined the incident or experience. By sharing the concern, you can talk with a member of the UMR Title IX Team to discuss options about next steps for yourself, your friend or colleague. If you would prefer to file the concern anonymously, that is okay.

The priority in all reports of sexual misconduct or gender equity is on the victim’s wishes. A second priority is on the safety of campus and others. Once a university official (faculty, staff or Resident Assistant) is aware of an incident of sexual misconduct or gender equity, they have a legal responsibility, under Title IX to respond. Please note that responding does not mean that a complaint process begins. Following up with the reporter is the first step.

Student issues reported through the concern form are forwarded to the Title IX Coordinator for Students, Julie Thornton. Faculty or staff issues are forwarded to Title IX Coordinator for Faculty/Staff, Andrea Wilson. An email will be sent to the reporting individual, and next steps are determined together thereafter.

Bottom-line, we want to be sure an individual who has experienced misconduct is getting the support and is aware of their options moving forward.

All UMR staff and faculty and RAs are mandatory reporters of information related to sexual misconduct. When mandatory reporters become aware of information regarding sexual misconduct, they are required to share what they know with the Title IX Coordinator or any member of the Title IX Team.

Reporting Confidentially
If you are not ready to share the concern openly through the UMR reporting process, you can talk with a confidential resource. UMR has a confidential counselor who is not required to report incidents or concerns learned in counseling sessions. You may also choose to speak to an Olmsted County Victim Services staff member about your experience or concerns regarding sexual misconduct. These individuals are under no obligation to share your personal information with the UMR Title IX Team. A Title IX response will NOT be prompted if you speak with a UMR counselor or any of the advocates at Victim Services.

UMR Counseling Services

Olmsted County Victim Services 507-289-0636

Most victims/survivors do not use terms like "rape" or "sexual assault." Rather, they may say, "something happened," or describe a situation where consent was not present and express confusion.

What to say to a victim/survivor

  • "I believe you."

  • "It's not your fault. No one deserves to be treated like that."

  • "I'm glad you told me."

  • "I'd like to help—May I call the Health and Wellness program or Victim Services for you?"

UMR Faculty and Staff

  • Believe a student when she or he discloses any kind of violence to you.

  • Do not press for details. It is not your job to investigate. Instead, offer support and resources.

  • Faculty and staff members have an obligation to report a sexual assault if the alleged perpetrator is a student or if the alleged perpetrator is a faculty or staff member. In any circumstance, faculty and staff members should be sure to respect the victim/survivor's choices and need for as much confidentiality as possible. Please direct any questions to Julie Thornton.

UMR Students

  • Believe your friend if your friend discloses a sexual assault.

  • Let your friend know that you want to help and that you will be there.

  • Do not question your friend or press for details about the assault.

  • Do not say anything that might imply that your friend's decision making led to their assault.

  • Let your friend choose what to do next. Do not tell your friend what they "should" do.

  • Let your friend know that the Health and Wellness program is a resource for assistance and support. Also, Victim Services is a community resource that can offer confidential advocacy services and explain options for reporting and medical care.

  • Tell your friend that they can make a police report if they want to.

  • Take care of yourself. Caring for a friend who has been hurt can be hard on you as well. Health and Wellness offers support and information for people who are concerned about a friend.

Resident Assistants/Student staff members
Resident Assistants and student staff members have overlapping roles. If you receive a disclosure while you are fulfilling your employee duties, follow the faculty and staff protocol. If you receive a disclosure from a friend when you are NOT fulfilling employee duties, follow the student protocol.

What is relationship violence?
Relationship violence is "causing physical harm or abuse, and threats of physical harm or abuse, arising out of a personal, intimate relationship. Relationship violence often is a criminal act that can be prosecuted under Minnesota state law, as well as under the Student Conduct Code and employee discipline procedures."

Relationship violence is any unhealthy behavior in a relationship that causes you hurt, fear or shame. Harsh or belittling words, threats and isolation are often used by one person in a relationship to control the other person. Sometimes relationship violence includes physical assaults, but not always, it can be verbal or emotional abuse too.

How do I know if it qualifies as relationship violence?
Just as there are many signs of a healthy relationship, there are also many red flags which indicate your relationship may be unhealthy and may be at risk of becoming violent. The Power and Control Wheel helps you identify those red flags. Violent relationships can follow a pattern of good times and bad times called the Cycle of Violence.

Where can I get help?
If you have experienced violence in your relationship:

  1. If you are in immediate danger, contact 911.

  2. If you need immediate shelter/housing assistance, contact Victim Services or the Women's Shelter.

  3. Go someplace safe.

  4. Tell a person who will support you and/or call Victim Services.

  5. Have your medical needs attended to at a hospital or clinic.

  6. Think about how you can keep yourself safe for the next 72 hours. Talk with someone on campus that help you connect with Victim Services and/or the Women's Shelter for information on resources or to discuss a safety plan or restraining order.

  7. Consider filing a police report. An advocate through Victim Services or The Women's Shelter can facilitate and support you through this process. You can contact the police on campus by dialing 911.

Consider joining a support group for survivors of relationship violence. Ongoing support groups are offered through the Women's Shelter.

Members of the Title IX Team are available to provide information, offer support and answer questions about your options for recourse throughout the process.

On-Campus Student Conduct Process
You have the option to initiate a complaint alleging sexual misconduct through UMR’s Student Conduct Process. For information about this process, please refer to the Student Handbook.
Additionally, any member of the Title IX Team can help you navigate the process.

Requesting a Criminal Investigation
Outside of the UMR Process, you also have the option to request a criminal investigation for any criminal behavior you have suffered. For information about the criminal process, contact:
Olmsted County Victim Services        507-289-0636
Rochester Police Department            507-285-8968
UMR Health and Wellness             507-258-8671

Getting Help

  • If you are in immediate danger, call 911.

  • If you have been Sexually Assaulted:

    • Go to a safe place.

    • Tell a person who will support you. That can be a friend, family member or someone on campus.

    • Meet with a member of the Title IX Team or the counselor. They can provide you with options for reporting, medical care and support resources in the community.

    • Call Victim Services to speak with an advocate. An advocate can explain your options, meet you at the hospital to give you support (if you choose), and answer any questions you may have.

    • Have your medical needs attended to at a clinic or in St. Marys Emergency Room.

    • Consider whether you'd like to make a police report. If there's any chance that you want to report your assault to the police now or in the future:

      • Do not shower.

      • Save the clothes, sheets, blankets or anything else you were wearing at the time of the assault in a paper bag.

      • Do not throw anything away or try to clean up.

      • Save any texts, e-mails, messages or other things you have regarding the assault for evidence.

      • Go the emergency room where you can receive a sexual assault exam (performed by specially-trained Sexual Assault Nurse Examiners). Such an exam can be performed up to 120 hours after an assault, but it is most successful within the first 24 hours.

 
    • Consider joining a support group for survivors of sexual assault. You can contact Victim Services for more information on support groups.

Learn more about sexual assault.