What happens if I tell a faculty or staff member at NEIU about a sexual violence incident?
The most important thing to know is that you will be provided support and resources and informed of your rights. Please know that all employees at NEIU (with very few exceptions listed below) are mandatory reporters who have a duty to report sexual violence to the Title IX Coordinator. This reporting requirement applies to temporary, part-time and full-time staff, faculty, student workers, and graduate assistants. NEIU requires this reporting so that the Title IX Office can confidentially respond to person who may have experienced sexual violence with resources and an explanation of your rights.
NEIU offers several safe spaces where an individual can seek help without officially notifying the University about a Title IX incident. These confidential resources are exempt from the mandatory reporting requirement. If you need confidential support, help, or information regarding any Title IX incident, you may contact any of the following confidential resources who can help you on any NEIU campus:
What if sexual violence happens off campus?
On campus sexual violence reports may be made to the Title IX Office. Sexual violence that happens off campus may be reported to the Dean of Students Office:
Matt Specht, Dean of Students
Office: C 322
Phone: (773) 442-4184
Chris Maxwell, Assistant Dean of Students
Office: C 326
Phone: (773) 442-4528
The Confidential Advisor may be contacted instead of the Dean of Students for off-campus sexual violence incidents. Importantly, the Confidential Advisor is not required to notify the Title IX Coordinator or NEIU of any sexual violence reports.
NEIU’s Confidential Advisor
Rae Joyce Baguilat, Assistant Director
Student Leadership Development
Pedroso Center (B 159)
Can an undocumented student or international student file a complaint?
Yes. Title IX protects all students attending institutions in the United States that are recipients of federal funds, regardless of national origin, international status or citizenship status.
What is the University's responsibility when it learns about Title IX incidents?
If NEIU’s Title IX Office receives a report regarding a potential Title IX incident involving a student, the University must take immediate and appropriate steps to determine what occurred (subject to confidentiality considerations). It will generally be up to the person who experienced the sexual violence (Complainant) to decide whether to seek support or to request an investigation from the Title IX Office or the Dean of Students. If the Complainant wishes to proceed with an investigation, then the University will make every effort to promptly take reasonable steps to end the Title IX violation, prevent its recurrence, and remedy its effects.
Students may request supportive measures from the Title IX Office whether they file a complaint. Examples of supportive measures include, but are not limited, to:
- No Contact Orders
- class or work schedule changes
- housing changes
- academic support or adjustments
- transportation arrangements
- safety planning
Students may also seek supportive measures from the Confidential Advisor, a University employee who is not required to notify the Title IX Coordinator or NEIU of any sexual violence reports.
Does Title IX protect students from retaliation?
Yes. The University does not tolerate retaliation against any person for coming forward with a complaint or concern, or for otherwise participating in the process of addressing sexual violence under Title IX. Retaliatory action of any kind against a student should be reported to the Title IX Office and will be evaluated for an internal investigation.
Are there legal or other professional help available for survivors?
Yes. The How Do I Get Help? webpage lists different resources available for survivors.
How do I file a Title IX complaint?
You may file a complaint online or submit it to the Title IX Office, described below. Anonymous reports are accepted. Please note that your original signature will be needed on the final complaint, unless the Complainant is anonymous.
If a Title IX incident occurred and I was drinking or taking drugs, will I get in trouble?
In order to encourage Title IX reporting and participation in investigations, NEIU generally provides amnesty from disciplinary action to Complainants and witnesses for underage drinking and drug usage. For more information, please see the “Amnesty” section in the University’s Sexual Harassment Policy.
Can I file a Title IX complaint if I am an undocumented student or international student?
Yes. The Title IX office serves all members of the University community: applicants; students; staff; faculty; and visitors. NEIU’s Sexual Harassment Policy makes it clear that all students are covered by the policy, including undocumented and international students. NEIU takes every step to ensure that individuals reporting sexual violence are treated respectfully and listened to carefully, regardless of immigration status.
Individuals in underrepresented groups are impacted by sexual violence at a higher rate than their peers. This includes people of color, veterans, persons with LGBTQ identities, undocumented students, and persons with disabilities. The Title IX Office is dedicated to a culturally competent approach, and recognizes the societal and institutional barriers for many members of our campus community. It is important to eliminate those barriers and provide full access to the Title IX process.
I am worried that reporting sexual violence will make things worse. Should I still report?
If you are worried about reporting a Title IX incident, NEIU encourages you to talk to a confidential resource (described below) about the pros and cons of reporting. The University maintains an environment where reporting is taken seriously and all persons, including the accused (Respondents), are treated respectfully and fairly. If you are concerned about your safety after reporting, the Title IX Office can provide a No Contact Order, academic accommodations, and take other steps to assist you. NEIU does not tolerate retaliation against students who participate in a Title IX process.
Confidential Support Resources on Campus
If there is a sexual history between the individual submitting the complaint (Complainant) and the accused (Respondent), can an incident still be considered sexual assault?
Yes. A Title IX investigation can find that the University’s Sexual Harassment Policy has been violated regardless of the past sexual history between the Complainant and Respondent. The policy explicitly states that past consent to sexual activities does not by itself imply ongoing or future consent. Previous sexual history does not equate to consent during the time of the reported incident.
What happens if there is a false complaint made against me?
False complaints are a serious violation of University policy and may trigger a separate investigation. NEIU’s Sexual Harassment Policy states that a person who knowingly and intentionally files a false Title IX complaint is subject to University discipline. If you believe someone has made a false complaint against you with the Title IX Office, please notify the NEIU Title IX Coordinator immediately.
If I make a complaint of sexual violence, will my complaint remain confidential? Is NEIU required to report this to my parents or other family members?
NEIU will never share information about your complaint with your parents or family members without your written consent. You may request that the Title IX Office share information with any person, including family members. You will need to sign a consent form to identify what information you wish to share and with whom. The only exception is if you are under 18 years of age, in which case the University will likely need to contact your parents if the matter involves criminal conduct.
If a person reporting a Title IX incident (Complainant) requests to remain confidential, NEIU will provide serious consideration to that request. Generally, the University will seek to honor the request of the Complainant not to proceed with a Title IX investigation without their consent. The Title IX Coordinator will consider whether there is a safety risk to the Complainant or community. Should the University, in weighing such factors, determine it must proceed with an investigation for safety reasons, the Complainant will not be required to participate in the process.
What if I change my mind after reporting an incident to the Title IX Office? How do I stop the process?
If you are a person who has reported a Title IX incident (Complainant) and wish to stop the process, the Title IX Coordinator will generally honor that request. In rare instances, the University will not terminate the investigation process if there is a plausible safety risk to the Complainant or NEIU campus community.
What is the difference between a Title IX investigation and a criminal investigation? Do I need to file a Title IX complaint and file a criminal report?
Title IX and criminal investigations are very different. Criminal investigations are intended to determine whether the law has been broken, while Title IX investigations determine whether NEIU’s Sexual Harassment Policy has been violated. A criminal investigation can result in jail time depending on the verdict, while a Title IX investigation can result in disciplinary action by the University. A person can choose to file only a Title IX Complaint or only file a criminal report, or do both. A person may also decide to do neither. It is the Complainant’s choice how to proceed. NEIU respects the rights of members of its campus community to make this difficult decision. You are encouraged to discuss your options with a confidential resource listed below or a non-profit organization off campus or trusted friend or family member.
Confidential Support Resources on Campus
I want to know more about Title IX reports on campus and how NEIU deals with violations.
For purposes of transparency and accountability, the NEIU Title IX web page shares the University’s most recent Preventing Sexual Violence in Higher Education Act report. This report includes data regarding sexual violence reports and describes how each matter was handled, including sanctions for violations. In addition, the University publishes its Annual Security Report, as required by federal law. This report is also included on the NEIU Title IX web page. NEIU must balance transparency with privacy rights, so these two reports do not include identifying information regarding the persons involved in the sexual violence cases.