Know Your Rights
All members of the LAU community have the right to enjoy freedom of expression, study and work in a secure environment based on mutual respect. As LAU’s Discrimination, Harassment and Sexual Misconduct Prevention Policy states,
“LAU fosters an atmosphere of mutual respect among all members of its community, where each individual is judged solely on criteria related to academic or job performance. LAU is committed to the elimination of all forms of discrimination, harassment and sexual misconduct on its campuses or on any other University controlled area or event….
LAU has a zero tolerance rule for acts of discrimination, harassment, and sexual misconduct. LAU is an equal opportunity employer and does not permit discrimination due to race, color, religion, creed, gender, marital status, national origin, disability, age, sexual orientation, political affiliation, pregnancy, or belief. LAU is committed to a working and learning environment where people can achieve their full potential.”
If you feel that you have been discriminated against, harassed, or sexually assaulted, you have the right to:
- Submit a complaint to the Title IX Office.
- Have the complaint investigated (preliminary investigation or a preliminary investigation plus formal investigation based on circumstances of the complaint).
- Learn the final decision regarding the investigation of your complaint.
- Be protected from retaliation.
Ensuring an equitable complaint process
Under Title IX, both the accuser (also called the complainant) and accused (also called the respondent) have equal rights, such as the right to:
- Present evidence or have witnesses speak on their behalf
- Have timely access to information that will be used in the investigation
- Present their case
- Receive the final decision in writing at the same time as the other party without being required to sign a non-disclosure agreement
- Appeal the final decision
In addition, since Title IX is a federal civil right, the appropriate standard of evidence is a “preponderance of the evidence.” This means that an investigation must determine whether a complaint of sex discrimination or harassment is “more likely than not” to have occurred or 51% likely to have occurred. This standard applies for all complaints of sex discrimination, including sexual harassment and violence, because Title IX outlines standards for school disciplinary processes — not criminal complaints, which require the highest standard of evidence, “beyond a reasonable doubt.”
Under Title IX, schools are legally required to respond and remedy hostile educational environments. Failure to do so constitutes a violation, which could put the school at a risk of losing its federal funding.
As a federal civil right, Title IX automatically protects any individual who reports sex discrimination, sexual harassment, or sexual violence against retaliation. This means employees and third party reports are protected along with reporting victims from any adverse consequence, harassment, intimidation, or discrimination that is causally related to reporting sex discrimination under Title IX. Universities must protect against other employees or students retaliating against a reporting party when it “knows or should know” about the retaliatory harassment or behavior. LAU prohibits retaliation in its Discrimination, Harassment, and Sexual Misconduct Policy.
LAU takes confidentiality very seriously. Confidentiality will be maintained throughout any complaint and/or investigation process per LAU’s Confidentiality Policy, LAU’s Code of Ethics and other policies. This means that only those individuals at LAU who must know about a complaint and/or investigation will be informed and only to the extent needed to ensure due process. Complainants and Respondents also should abide by confidentiality.