Sussex County Community College will not tolerate sexual assault in any form. Where there is probable cause to believe that College regulations prohibiting sexual assault have been violated, the College will pursue strong disciplinary action through its student conduct and due process procedures. This discipline includes the possibility of suspension or dismissal from the College. An individual charged with sexual assault can be prosecuted under New Jersey criminal statutes and disciplined under Sussex County Community College’s institutional policies. Even if the criminal justice authorities choose not to prosecute, the College can pursue disciplinary action.
WHAT IS SEXUAL ASSAULT?
The Federal Government defines “sexual assault” to mean any kind of non-consensual violence including but not limited to, rape, acquaintance rape, domestic violence, dating violence and stalking. Rape and acquaintance rape are defined as acts of non-consensual sexual penetration. The other acts are defined as follows:
“Dating violence” means violence by a person who has been in a romantic or intimate relationship with the victim. Whether there was such relationship will be gauged by its length, type and frequency of interaction.
“Domestic violence” means asserted violence misdemeanor and felony offenses committed by the victim’s current or former spouse, current or former cohabitant, person similarly situated under domestic violence or family violence law, or anyone else protected under domestic or family violence law.
“Stalking” means a course of conduct directed at a specific person that would cause a reasonable person to hear for her, his or others’ safety, or to suffer substantial emotional stress.
WHAT IS CONSENT?
Consent in this policy means a clear YES to the specific act in question. Consent is informed, knowing and voluntary. Consent is active, not passive. Silence, in and of itself, cannot be interpreted as consent. Consent to one form of sexual activity cannot imply consent to future sexual acts. At any time, a participant can communicate that he or she no longer consents to continuing the activity. Consent cannot be procured by use of physical force, compelling threats, intimidating behavior, or coercion.
CAMPUS AWARENESS PROGRAMS
SCCC provides educational programs related to awareness and prevention of sexual assault. Annually, the Student Advisement Center provides workshops on prevention and the Office of Campus Life provides workshops on safety, health and wellness. A number of workshops and seminars, documentaries and film series, and survivor panels are held on campus in collaboration with Domestic Abuse and Sexual Assault Intervention Services (DASI) of Sussex County and with the Center for Prevention and Counseling of Newton, NJ. Presentations for faculty and staff on sexual violence and trauma are scheduled. The Clothesline Project, a domestic violence awareness program, is held every April in the Student Center.
Campus Sexual Assault Victim’s Bill of Rights Introduction: A college or university in a free society must be devoted to the pursuit of truth and knowledge through reason and open communication among its members. Academic communities acknowledge the necessity of being intellectually stimulating where the diversity of ideas is valued. Its rules must be conceived for the purpose of furthering and protecting the rights of all members of the university community in achieving these ends.
The boundaries of personal freedom are limited by applicable state and federal laws and institutional rules and regulations governing interpersonal behavior. In creating a community free from violence, sexual assault and non-consensual sexual contact, respect for the individual and human dignity are of paramount importance.
The State of New Jersey recognizes that the impact of violence on its victims and the surrounding community can be severe and long lasting. Thus, it has been established this Bill of Rights to articulate requirements for policies, procedures and services designed to insure that the needs of victims are met and that the colleges and universities in New Jersey create and maintain communities that support human dignity.
BILL OF RIGHTS
The following Rights shall be accorded to victims of sexual assault that occur:
- on the campus of any public or independent institution of higher education in the state of New Jersey and
- where the victim or alleged perpetrator is a student at that institution and/or
- when the victim is a student involved in an off-campus sexual assault.
HUMAN DIGNITY RIGHTS
- to be free from any suggestion that victims must report the crimes,
- to be assured of any other right guaranteed under this policy,
- to have any allegations of sexual assault treated seriously; the right to be treated with dignity,
- to be free from any suggestion that victims are responsible for the commission of crimes against them,
- to be free from any pressure from campus personnel to:
- report crimes if the victim does not wish to do so,
- report crimes as lesser offenses than the victim perceives them to be,
- refrain from reporting crimes,
- refrain from reporting crimes to avoid unwanted personal publicity.
RIGHTS TO RESOURCES ON and OFF CAMPUS
- to be notified of existing campus and community based medical, counseling, mental health and student services for victims of sexual assault whether or not the crime is formally reported to campus or civil authorities,
- to have access to campus counseling under the same terms and conditions as apply to other students in their institution seeking such counseling,
- to be informed of and assisted in exercising:
- any rights to confidential or anonymous testing for sexually transmitted diseases, human immunodeficiency virus and/or pregnancy,
- any rights that may be provided by law to compel and disclose the results of testing of sexual assault suspects for communicable diseases.
CAMPUS JUDICIAL RIGHTS
- to be afforded the same access to legal assistance as the accused,
- to be afforded the same opportunity to have others present during any campus disciplinary proceeding that is allowed the accused,
- to be notified of the outcome of the sexual assault disciplinary proceeding against the accused.
- to have any allegation of sexual assault investigated and adjudicated by the appropriate criminal and civil authorities of the jurisdiction in which the sexual assault is reported,
- to receive full and prompt cooperation and assistance of campus personnel in notifying the proper authorities,
- to full, prompt and victim-sensitive cooperation of campus personnel with regard to obtaining, securing and maintaining evidence, including a medical examination when it is necessary to preserve evidence of the assault.
CAMPUS INTERVENTION RIGHTS
- to require campus personnel to take reasonable and necessary actions to prevent further unwanted contact of victims by their alleged assailant,
- to be notified of the options for and provided assistance in changing academic and living situations if such changes are reasonably available.
WHAT TO DO IF YOU ARE A VICTIM OF SEXUAL ASSAULT
First, you should get to a place of safety. Next, get necessary medical treatment. A DASI Confidential Sexual Violence Advocate can be with you during medical and legal proceedings. Call 973-875-1211 for an advocate or to activate the Sussex County Sexual Assault Response Team (SART). According to the DASI.org website, it is important that you:
- do not change your clothing
- do not bathe, shower or douche
- do not urinate, if possible
- do not drink, eat or smoke
- place additional evidence (such as clothing or bedding) in a paper bag
PHYSICAL EXAMINATION and MEDICAL TREATMENT
A complete physical examination is very important. Victims of sexual assault may be aware of external and internal injuries that may require treatment. Early medical attention is necessary to test for, and possibly prevent sexually transmitted diseases or infections. If left untreated, sexually transmitted infections/venereal diseases may result in serious health problems. Early medical attention is necessary to test for and receive treatment to prevent unwanted pregnancy.
Follow-up care is very important to ensure that injuries have healed properly and that sexually transmitted infections are treated appropriately. Tests for infections and pregnancy must be repeated.
A forensic kit is typically used within 5 days to collect evidence from the victim’s body (the earlier the better). This evidence can be used in prosecuting the offender. The victim may have the forensic kit done anonymously and the evidence can be held for 90 days. There is no cost associated with the forensic evidence collection and initial treatment.
HOW TO FILE A COMPLAINT
There are multiple places for students to report allegations of sexual assault both on and off campus. Reports of sexual assault can be made to any of the following:
Barbara Harford, Director of Counseling & Advising, B206 (973) 300-2209 (for confidential campus support)
John Scully, Director of Campus Safety & Security, D313 (973) 300-2357 or the Security Desk, B Building Lobby (973) 300-2222
New Jersey State Police, Sussex Barracks (973) 383-1515
The following resources exist on campus and in the community for reporting allegations of sexual assault and obtaining appropriate medical treatment and counseling support services:
The Student Advisement Center, B206 (973) 300-2209
SCCC Campus Security, B Building Lobby (973) 300-2222
Domestic Abuse and Sexual Assault Intervention Services (DASI) 24-hour hotline (973) 875-1211
Sussex County Sexual Assault Response Team (SART) 24-hour hotline (973) 875-1211
Sussex County Prosecutor’s Office, Sex Crimes Unit (973) 300-1570
Warren County Domestic Abuse and Sexual Assault Crisis Center (908) 453-4121
Morris County Morris CARES 24-hour hotline (973) 829-0587
Pike County, PA Safe Haven, Inc. 24-hour hotline (570) 296-4357
Monroe County, NY Crisis Center 24-hour toll-free hotline 1-800-832-1200
NJ Statewide Domestic Violence Hotline 1-800-572-SAFE
NJ Statewide Sexual Violence Hotline 1-800-986-7543
NJ Statewide Sexual Human Trafficking Hotline 1-877-986-7543
Rape, Abuse, Incest National Network (RAINN) 1-800-656-4673 www.rain.org
Information packets on the Bill of Rights and access to resources for assistance are available in the Office of Student Affairs, Counseling & Advising Center, Athletic Office, Human Resources and the Office of Campus Safety & Security.