Title IX

Faculty & staff resources

If you are staff, faculty, or other academic personnel seeking support and options related to sexual harassment, sexual assault, or other sexual misconduct you have experienced, please visit the Support & Help or Reporting Options page. For information related to supporting and assisting students, employees, or other members of the UW community, see below.

A word about UW’s commitment
The University of Washington is committed to fostering an environment where discrimination, harassment, and violence are not tolerated. As we work to create a culture of prevention, we must also stop and remedy the effects of harmful behavior that has occurred. UW’s guiding values in this work are:

  • Survivor choice: providing options and support resources for the person who has experienced the unwanted behavior or harm
  • Community safety: working to prevent physical harm to members of the UW community
  • Equity: offering support, using equitable procedures, and ensuring due process for both/all parties

What is Title IX and why does it matter to me?

Title IX is a 1972 federal civil rights law that prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in schools, colleges, and universities. Other laws, including Title VII, the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA), and Washington State law also prohibit sex and gender discrimination. While Title IX covers all forms of sex discrimination and seeks equity and equality, the term “Title IX” is often used as a short-hand to describe the sub-set of policies, procedures, or programs that specifically address sexual misconduct. Title IX applies to students, faculty and other academic personnel, staff, visitors, and guests of the University. For more information visit the About Title IX at UW page and the FAQs about Title IX page.

What should I do if I become aware that a student or colleague has experienced sexual harassment or another form of sexual misconduct?

UW’s first priorities are to get support to the person who has experienced the harm and to ensure they are aware of their rights and options so they can decide what next steps to take, if any.  If you have been notified you are a Title IX Official Required to Report you have specific obligations and responsibilities when you become aware of possible sexual misconduct. Please refer to the instructions you have received.

For all other employees, if you become aware of a situation that involves sexual harassment, sexual assault, relationship violence, domestic violence, stalking, other sexual misconduct, or retaliation, you are encouraged to initiate the Title IX Protocol by contacting SafeCampus. By contacting SafeCampus you are not making a formal complaint to the University or initiating an investigation — rather, you are ensuring that someone who has been harmed has professional support and the information they need to make decisions that are right for them.

What happens when I call SafeCampus about sexual harassment, sexual assault, or other sexual misconduct?

Unless you are a Title IX Official Required to Report, you can call SafeCampus anonymously and choose not to share your name or the name of the person about whom you are calling. When you contact SafeCampus, they will gather information about what you’ve learned to the extent you feel comfortable sharing it. If you have limited information, that’s okay. Regardless of how much information you have to share, SafeCampus will:

  • Assess for any immediate safety concerns and provide consultation on next steps if needed to address the concerns
  • Consult with you on your role and any next steps you need to take
  • Provide the person who experienced unwanted behavior or harm with information about their rights and resources via email, after determining that email is a safe form of communication
  • Connect the person who experienced unwanted behavior or harm with a confidential advocate who will reach out to provide confidential support, discuss what the person needs in their academic or employment environment, and engage in safety planning. The person who experienced harm does not need to engage with the advocate. It is their choice. If they do not want to share their name, SafeCampus will consult with you about how to provide information in a way that respects their choice
  • Provide emotional support to you and referrals to additional support resources as needed. We understand that many employees have not received training on handling disclosures of sensitive or difficult information and may experience emotional impacts themselves following such disclosures
  • Share the information received with the Title IX Coordinator, who is responsible for assessing any risk to the larger community and identifying patterns and systemic issues related to Title IX

How can I respond in a helpful way?

Inform yourself. Review the Know Your Rights and Resources guide on the Support & Help page. This guide may be helpful in assisting a student or colleague who has experienced unwelcome conduct or harm. Among other things, the guide includes:

  • “Where to start”—a support and reporting options map
  • Support resources at UW and in the community
  • A description of each of the key services and offices
  • An overview of the investigation and adjudication process if someone chooses to submit a formal complaint

Listen and empower. When someone shares that they have experienced harm, thank them for sharing with you. Ask them how they are doing and if they have any immediate safety concerns for themselves or others. If so, encourage them to call SafeCampus to begin safety planning.

Tell the person who shared information with you that you want to (or must, if you’re a Title IX Official Required to Report) connect them with professionals at the University who are trained to respond to situations like theirs and ask if it would be okay if you shared their name. If they agree, let them know SafeCampus and a confidential advocate will reach out to them. Also reassure them that they may choose whether to take any action, including whether to respond to any communications they receive.

If the individual who experienced the harm does not want their name shared and/or specifically asks you not to contact SafeCampus, please provide them with the University’s Know Your Rights & Resources guide and encourage them to consider reaching out to a confidential advocate.

Avoid asking the person who experienced harm to provide details about what they experienced or any questions that might be investigatory in nature. Remember, others on campus are specifically trained to gather this information in a trauma-informed manner. Also, avoid telling the person what they should do. Decisions should be made by the person in accordance with their own needs and on their own timeline.

Take care of your needs too. As someone who learned about distressing information, know that it’s also okay—and appropriate—for you to ask for help. You may also need some support, particularly if you felt triggered upon hearing what was shared with you.

If you’re a professor, colleague, or supervisor of the person who shared information with you, you may have questions about how to talk with the person who experienced the harm during future conversations. Ask SafeCampus for help with this; their staff is able to offer resources and support.

What resources are there for respondents (students or employees who have been accused of violating UW sexual misconduct policies)?

Community Standards & Student Conduct (CSSC) offers guidance and information to student respondents at all UW campuses. Employee respondents receive resources and options from staff in Human Resources, the Secretary of the Faculty, and/or the Office of the Title IX Coordinator. The Office of the Ombud is available to any student or employee seeking support or consultation.

Who are Title IX Officials Required to Report?

The 2020 Department of Education federal regulations specify that certain individuals, referred to as “officials with authority,” must report incidents of sexual misconduct to the Title IX Coordinator or designee. The purpose of this report is not to initiate an investigation but rather to ensure the person who has experienced harm is offered supportive measures and is aware of their right to submit a formal complaint if they choose to do so. If you are a Title IX Official Required to Report, you have received information about your responsibilities. Contact the Office of the Title IX Coordinator at titleix@uw.edu with any questions or to review a list of Title IX Officials Required to Report.