Welcome to Arizona Western College
At Arizona Western College we're committed to creating and maintaining a community dedicated to the advancement of our students, faculty, and staff. Below you'll find more information and resources about Title IX and learn about our efforts to create an atmosphere free of discrimination, harassment, exploitation, or intimidation.
"No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance." —Title IX - 20 U.S.C. § 1681
Need to report a Title IX Grievance?
Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, 20 U.S.C. Sec. 1681, et seq., and its implementing regulations, 34 C.F. R. Part 106 is a federal law that prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in any federally funded program or activity. In compliance with Title IX, Arizona Western College prohibits sex discrimination, inclusive of sexual harassment and sexual assault, towards any person regardless of sex, gender, or gender identity.
All members of the Arizona Western College, including students, employees, guests, and visitors, have the right to be free from gender-based or sexual misconduct in their educational pursuits at Arizona Western College. Arizona Western College has designated a Title IX Coordinator who oversees Arizona Western College’s compliance with Title IX. For any Title IX related concerns, contact:
Arizona Western College’s Title IX Coordinators monitor compliance with applicable laws and coordinate the institution’s response to complaints of discrimination based on sex. The Title IX Coordinators will ensure that complaints of this nature are addressed by the appropriate College representatives and will assist complainants and respondents with supportive measures and resources if and when they may be warranted.
Questions about Title IX and information about how someone may report or file a formal complaint about an alleged violation are encouraged to contact one of Arizona Western College’s Title IX Coordinators.
Title IX Compliance Coordinators:
Ms. Karen Johnson
Chief Human Resources Officer
PO Box 929, Yuma, AZ, 85366-0929
Dr. Nikki Hage
Associate Dean of Campus Life and Student Conduct
PO Box 929, Yuma, AZ, 85366-0929
Alternatively, or in addition to the Title IX Coordinators, inquiries may be directed to the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights, the federal agency charged with enforcing compliance with Title IX:
Arizona Attorney General
1275 West Washington Street
Phoenix, AZ 85007-2926
Phone: (602) 542-5025
Fax: (602) 542-4085
400 Maryland Avenue, SW, Washington, DC 20202-1100
Customer Service Hotline #: (800) 421-3481 | FAX: (202) 453-6012
TTY#: (800) 877-8339 | Email: OCR@ed.gov |Web: http://www.ed.gov/ocr
Denver, CO 80204-3582
FAX: 303-844-4303; TDD: 800-877-8339
Office for Civil Rights
U.S. Department of Education
Cesar E. Chavez Memorial Building
1244 Speer Boulevard, Suite 310
Denver, CO 80204-3582
Telephone: (303) 844-5695
FAX: (303) 844-4303
Examples of Sexual Harassment
An adjunct professor asks a student to go on a date with them in exchange for a good grade on a midterm assignment. This constitutes sexual harassment regardless of whether the student agrees to the request and irrespective of whether a good grade is promised or a bad grade is threatened.
A student repeatedly sends graphic, sexually-oriented jokes and pictures around campus via social media to hundreds of other students. Many don’t find it funny and ask the sender to stop, but the sender does not. Because of these jokes and pictures, one student avoids the sender on campus, and another drops a class they had together.
An ex-partner widely spreads false stories about their sex life with a former partner to the clear discomfort and frustration of the former partner, a student at the college, turning the former partner into a social pariah on campus.
Examples of Stalking
Students A and B were friends with benefits. Student A wanted a more serious relationship, which caused student B to break it off. Student A could not let go, and pursued student B relentlessly. Student B obtained a campus no-contact order. Subsequently, Student B discovered their social media accounts were being accessed, and things were being posted and messaged as if they were from them, but they were not. Whoever accessed their account posted a picture of a penis, making it look as if they had sent out a picture of themselves, though it was not their penis. This caused them considerable embarrassment and social anxiety. They changed their passwords, only to have it happen again. Seeking help from the Title IX Coordinator, Student B met with the IT department, which discovered an app on their phone and a keystroke recorder on their laptop, both of which were being used to transmit their data to a third party.
An employee working as an on-campus tutor received flowers and gifts delivered to their office. After learning the gifts were from a student they recently tutored, the employee thanked the student and stated that it was not necessary and would appreciate it if the gift deliveries stopped. The student then started leaving notes of love and gratitude on the tutor’s car, both on-campus and at home. Asked again to stop, the student stated by email, “You can ask me to stop, but I’m not giving up. We are meant to be together, and I’ll do anything to make you have the feelings for me that I have for you.” When the tutor did not respond, the student emailed again, “You cannot escape me. I will track you to the ends of the earth. If I can’t have you, no one will.”
Examples of Sexual Assault
Amanda and Bill meet at a student chess club party. They spend the evening dancing and getting to know each other. Bill convinces Amanda to find an empty room in the campus’ student center. After finding an empty room, Bill uses every line he can think of to convince Amanda to have sex with him, but she adamantly refuses. Despite her clear communications that she is not interested in doing anything sexual with him, Bill keeps at her, questions her religious convictions, and accuses her of being “a prude.” He brings up several rumors that he has heard about how she performed oral sex on a number of other guys. Finally, it seems to Bill that her resolve is weakening, and he convinces her to “jerk him off” (hand to genital contact). Amanda would have never done it but for Bill's incessant advances. He feels that he successfully seduced her and that she wanted to do it all along but was playing shy and hard to get. Why else would she have gone away with him to an empty room with him. If she really didn't want it, she could have left.
Examples of Retaliation
A faculty member alleges gender inequity in pay within her department. The Department Chair subsequently revokes his approval for her to attend a national conference, citing the faculty member’s tendency to “ruffle feathers.”
A student from Organization A participates in a sexual misconduct investigation as a witness whose testimony is damaging to the Respondent, who is also a member of Organization A; the student is subsequently removed as a member of Organization A because of their participation in the investigation.
These examples have been provided by ATIXA and are reproduced here with permission.
Arizona Western College prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in admissions, recruitment, education, employment, enrollment, as well as in the provision of all services, programs, and activities. The policy of Arizona Western College is to provide an educational, employment, and business environment free of sexual violence, unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct or communications constituting Sexual Harassment as prohibited by state and federal law. This Policy prohibits Sexual Harassment and Discrimination in any college education program or activity, which means all academic, educational, extracurricular, athletic, and other programs.
Prohibited behaviors are defined as:
- Sexual Harassment. Any unwelcome verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature that is sufficiently severe, persistent, or pervasive that it unreasonably interferes with, limits, or deprives a student of the ability to participate in or benefit from any AWC educational program or activity. The unwelcome behavior may be based on power differentials, the creation of a Hostile Environment, or retaliation for allegations of Sexual Harassment under this Policy. Sexual Harassment can occur regardless of the relationship, position or respective sex of the parties. Sexual Harassment includes Hostile Environment Harassment, Sexual Assault, Inducing Incapacitation for Sexual Purposes, Sexual Exploitation, Dating Violence, and Stalking. Same-sex Sexual Harassment violates this Policy. Sexual Harassment by and between students; employees and students; and campus visitors and students are prohibited by this Policy.
Depending on the particular circumstances, Sexual Harassment may include, but is not limited to, the following:
- Physical assaults of a sexual nature, such as rape, sexual battery, molestation, or attempts to commit these assaults; and intentional physical conduct that is sexual in nature such as touching, pinching, patting, grabbing, poking, or brushing against another individual's body in a sexual manner.
- Offering or implying an education-related reward (such as a better grade, a letter of recommendation, favorable treatment in the classroom, assistance in obtaining employment, grants or fellowships, or admission to any educational program or activity) in exchange for sexual favors or submission to sexual conduct.
- Threatening or taking a negative educational action (such as giving an unfair grade, withholding a letter of recommendation, or withholding assistance with any educational activity) or intentionally making the individual's academic work more difficult because sexual conduct is rejected.
- The use or display in the classroom, including electronic, of pornographic or sexually harassing materials such as posters, photos, cartoons, or graffiti without pedagogical justification.
- Explicit sexual comments by one or more students about another student, or circulating drawings or other images depicting a student in a sexual manner.
- Unwelcome sexual advances, repeated propositions or requests for a sexual relationship to an individual who has previously indicated that such conduct is unwelcome, or sexual gestures, noises, remarks, jokes, questions, or comments by a student about another student’s sexuality or sexual experience. Such conduct between peers must be sufficiently severe, persistent, or pervasive that it creates an educational environment that is hostile or abusive. A single incident involving severe misconduct may rise to the level of Sexual Harassment.
- Hostile Environment Harassment. Harassment based on sex, pregnancy, gender identity, gender expression, or sexual orientation that is sufficiently serious (i.e., severe, pervasive, or persistent) and objectively offensive so as to deny or limit a person’s ability to participate in or benefit from the college’s programs, services, opportunities, or activities.
A Hostile Environment can be created by anyone involved in a college program or activity (e.g., administrators, faculty members, students, and campus visitors or contractors). Mere offensiveness is not enough to create a Hostile Environment. Although repeated incidents increase the likelihood that harassment has created a Hostile Environment, a serious incident, such as a sexual assault, even if isolated, can be sufficient.
In determining whether harassment has created a Hostile Environment, consideration will be made not only as to whether the conduct was unwelcoming to the person who feels harassed, but also whether a reasonable person in a similar situation would have perceived the conduct as objectively offensive. Also, the following factors will be considered:
- the degree to which the conduct affected one or more students’ education;
- the nature, scope, frequency, duration, and location of incident or incidents;
- the identity, number, and relationships of persons involved;
- the nature of higher education.
- Sexual Assault. An act involving forced or coerced sexual penetration or sexual contact.
- Inducing Incapacitation for Sexual Purposes. Using drugs, alcohol, or other means with the intent to affect, or having an actual effect on, the ability of an individual to consent or refuse to consent to sexual contact.
- Sexual Exploitation. Taking non-consensual or abusive sexual advantage of another for anyone’s advantage or benefit other than the person being exploited, and such behavior does not otherwise constitute a form of Sexual Harassment under this Policy. Examples of behavior that could rise to the level of Sexual Exploitation include:
- Prostituting another person;
- Non-consensual visual (e.g., video, photograph) or audio-recording of sexual activity;
- Non-consensual distribution of photos, other images, or information of an individual’s sexual activity, intimate body parts, or nakedness, with the intent to or having the effect of embarrassing an individual who is the subject of such images or information;
- Going beyond the bounds of consent (such as letting your friends hide in the closet to watch you having consensual sex);
- Engaging in non-consensual voyeurism;
- Knowingly transmitting an STI (sexually transmitted infection), such as HIV, to another without disclosing one’s STI status;
- Exposing one’s genitals in non-consensual circumstances, or inducing another to expose his or her genitals;
- Possessing, distributing, viewing, or forcing others to view obscenity.
- Dating Violence. Violence committed by a person who is or has been in a social relationship of a romantic or intimate nature with the victim and where the existence of such a relationship shall be determined based on a consideration of the following factors:
- the length of the relationship;
- the type of relationship;
- the frequency of interaction between the persons involved in the relationship.
- Stalking. Engaging in a course of conduct directed at a specific person that would cause a reasonable person to fear for his or her safety or the safety of others or suffer substantial emotional distress.
- Consenting to Sexual Activity. Consent is clear, knowing, and voluntary; it is active, not passive. Silence, in and of itself, cannot be interpreted as consent. Consent can be given by words or actions, as long as those words or actions create mutually understandable clear permission regarding willingness to engage in sexual activity.
Consent to one form of sexual activity cannot imply consent to other forms of sexual activity. Previous relationships or consent cannot imply consent in future sexual acts. Consent cannot be procured by use of physical force, compelling threats, intimidating behavior, or coercion.
Coercion is unreasonable pressure for sexual activity. Coercive behavior differs from seductive behavior based on the type of pressure someone uses to get consent from another. When people make clear to you that they do not want sex, that they want to stop, or that they do not want to go past a certain point of sexual interaction, continued pressure beyond that point can be coercive. In order to give effective consent, one must be age 18 or older.
If you have sexual activity with someone you know to be – or should know to be – mentally or physically incapacitated, you are in violation of this Policy. Incapacitation is a state where one cannot make a rational, reasonable decision because one lacks the ability to understand the who, what, where, why or how of that person’s sexual interaction.
Arizona Western College is dedicated to creating and supporting an inclusive education and work environment free of harassment and discrimination. In support of our commitment to this goal, during the Fall 2020 term AWC will be offering a Title IX prevention program to its employees and students.
Harassment Prevention training will be available for all institution employees inclusive of Faculty, Staff, Designated Campus Colleagues and Student Employees. All employees and students of the AWC College Community are required to take the training.
The following legal definitions are provided to assist in understanding when behavior that violates College policy may also violate federal or state law. If you believe you have been a victim of a crime, please consider taking action to preserve any evidence that may be helpful to you in pursuing legal or protective action. You have the right to pursue both the criminal and the campus processes to address incidents that may violate both the law and campus policy. The campus process is not designed to be a substitute for the criminal justice process. You can also review or print a brochure of your rights and options.
- Sex Offenses, defined by the FBI as any sexual act directed against another person without the consent of the victim, including instances where the victim is incapable of giving consent. This includes:
- Rape: penetration, no matter how slight, of the vagina or anus with any body part or object, or oral penetration by a sex organ of another person, without the consent of the victim.
- Fondling: the touching of the private parts of another person for the purpose of sexual gratification, without the consent of the victim, including instances where the victim is incapable of giving consent because of his/her age or because of his/her temporary or permanent mental incapacity.
- Incest: Non-forcible sexual intercourse between persons who are related to each other within the degrees wherein marriage is prohibited by law
- Statutory Rape: Non-forcible sexual intercourse with a person who is under the statutory age of consent
- Domestic Violence: As defined in section 40002(a) of the Violence Against Women Act of 1994 (42 U.S.C. 13925(a)), domestic violence means a felony or misdemeanor crime of violence committed by:
- A current or former spouse or intimate partner of the victim,
- A person with whom the victim shares a child in common,
- A person who is co-habitating with or has cohabitated with the victim as a spouse or intimate partner,
- A person similarly situated to a spouse of the victim under the domestic or family violence laws of the jurisdiction receiving grant monies [under VAWA], or
- Any other person against an adult or youth victim who is protected from that person’s acts under the domestic or family violence laws of the jurisdiction
- Dating Violence: As defined in section 40002(a) of the Violence Against Women Act of 1994 (42 U.S.C. 13925(a)), dating violence means violence committed by a person who is or has been in a social relationship of a romantic or intimate nature with the victim; and where the existence of such a relationship shall be determined based on a consideration of the following factors: the length of the relationship; the type of relationship; and the frequency of interaction between the persons involved in the relationship.
- Sexual Assault, defined in the State of Illinois as “Sexual penetration by force or threat of force or an act of sexual penetration when the victim was unable to understand the nature of the act or was unable to give knowing consent.” (720 ILCS 5 Criminal Code of 1961 § 12-13) Illinois State Law defines sexual penetration as: “Any contact, however slight, between the sex organ or anus of one person by an object, the sex organ, mouth or anus of another person, or any intrusion, however slight, of any part of the body of one person or of any object into the sex organ or anus of another person, including but not limited to cunnilingus, fellatio, or anal penetration. Evidence of emission of semen is not required to prove sexual penetration.” (720 ILCS 5 Criminal Code of 1961 §12-12(f))
- Stalking: Section 40002(a) of the Violence Against Women Act of 1994 (42 U.S.C. 13925(a)) defines stalking as: engaging in a course of conduct directed at a specific person that would cause a reasonable person to fear for the person’s safety or the safety of others or suffer substantial emotional distress. (For the purpose of this definition, “Course of conduct” means two or more acts, including, but not limited to, acts in which the stalker directly, indirectly, or through third parties, by any action, method, device, or means follows, monitors, observes, surveils, threatens, or communicates to or about, a person, or interferes with a person’s property. “Substantial emotional distress” means significant mental suffering or anguish that may, but does not necessarily, require medical or other professional treatment or counseling. “Reasonable person” means a reasonable person under similar circumstances and with a similar identity to the victim.
After an Incident
If you have experienced any act of sexual misconduct, our first concern is for your safety and well-being. If you experienced a crime of sexual violence, please review your rights and options. Please consider the following:
- Get to a safe place where you feel as physically and emotionally safe as possible.
- If you are not sure what to do or where to start, call the 24-hour confidential Amberly’s Place, a Family Advocacy Center at (928) 373-0849.
- Seek medical attention for any physical injuries, potential pregnancy, or potential sexually transmitted diseases. You can visit a local emergency room, or seek off-campus medical assistance. The community resources in this Guide can assist you with finding medical care and possible financial assistance.
- If you have experienced behavior that may also be a violation of the law, it is important that you consider preserving any evidence, even if you are not sure yet if want to file a formal complaint. This can help you later to prove that a criminal offense occurred, and can also help you in obtaining a civil protection order. This kind of exam can be done at a hospital and involves collecting evidence and photographs. As difficult as it may feel at the time, it is most helpful if you can get evidence collected quickly – before you eat, drink, shower, use the bathroom, etc. The locations closest to the main Arizona Western Campus
- Yuma Regional Medical Center
- Address: 2400 S. Avenue A, Yuma, AZ 85364
- Phone: 928-344-2000
- San Luis:
- Regional Center for Border Health San Luis Walk-In Clinic, Inc.
- Address #1: 1896 E. Babbit Ln, San Luis, AZ 85349
- Phone: 928-722-6122
- Address # 2: 1233 S. Main Street, Ste 1A, San Luis, AZ 85349
- Regional Center for Border Health San Luis Walk-In Clinic, Inc.
- Address: 214 W. Main Street, Somerton, AZ
- Phone: 928-627-1120
- Sunset Community Health Center
- Address: 10425 Williams Street, Wellton, AZ 85356
- Phone: 928-785-35256
- Parker Medical Center
- Address: 905 S Fiesta Ave, Parker, AZ 85344.
- Phone: 928-669-2225
- If the College perceives there is an on-going threat to the campus community, a timely warning may be issued. In such a case, your name will be withheld as confidential from such a communication.
- If you would like to learn about your options for, and receive assistance in, changing academic, living, transportation, or work situations, contact the Title IX Coordinators. Examples of the kinds of things that can be done include, but are not limited to: changing to a different class section, completing a course via independent study, receiving escort service to your class or vehicle while on campus, and adjusting your work schedule. You can also learn about how to apply for a medical withdrawal, get questions answered about financial aid, and learn how to request protective measures on campus.
If a friend has experienced sexual assault or other sexual violence, keep these tips in mind:
- Listen. Be there. Do not be judgmental.
- Be patient. It will take some time for your friend to deal with what happened.
- Help empower your friend. Crimes of sexual violence (including dating violence, domestic violence, and stalking) take away a person’s power. It is important not to pressure your friend to do something he or she isn’t ready to do yet.
- Encourage your friend to report the crime to law enforcement. If there are questions about the process, you or your friend can call a hotline or get assistance from another resource.
- If your friend is interested and willing to get medical attention or report to the police, offer to accompany him/her or find safe transportation.
- Get help for yourself. You can speak with a confidential counselor and not share your friend’s name if you need help to be a support.
(Source: Adopted from RAINN: Rape, Abuse and Incest National Network, https://www.rainn.org)
As each person experiences and responds to these incidents in differing ways, there are a variety of options for support. Please review the information pertaining to your options for support, assistance, and reporting so that you can make an informed decision based on your personal needs. Your needs may change over time, so please also know that you may choose to utilize different forms of response at different times.
If you are seeking immediate assistance in a crisis, contact the Amberly’s Place, a Family Advocate Center through their 24-hour crisis hotline at 928-373-0849. You can visit https://www.amberlysplace.com/ to learn about how Amberly’s Place can assist with crisis support, medical and legal advocacy, and counseling.
Employees looking for confidential assistance may also contact Arizona Western College’s Aetna Employee Assistant Program, at 1-800-872-3862, or visit https://www.mylifevalues.com
The following information explains how to pursue protective acts whose jurisdiction extends beyond the campus. To obtain one of the orders below, contact the courthouse for the area in which you live. If you would like assistance, or if you have other questions about civil orders of protection or no contact orders, please contact AWC Campus Police at 928-344-5555 or your local police department.
Civil Orders of Protection
This is a court order that is designed to stop violent and harassing behavior and to protect you and your family from the abuser. They offer civil legal protection from domestic violence to both male and female victims, as well as minors. A civil order of protection can only be filed against certain persons with whom the petitioner has a special relationship with: people who are married or formerly married, people who are related by blood, people who live together or formerly lived together, people who are dating or formerly dated, people who are engaged or formerly engaged, and people with disabilities against their caregivers. There are three types of orders: Emergency and Interim Orders of Protection provide temporary, short-term protection. A Plenary Order of Protection offers longer term protection.
Emergency Orders: An emergency order can be obtained based solely on your testimony to a judge. The abuser does not need to be present. The judge must be convinced that you are in immediate danger, or experiencing emotional distress, or else the judge may not grant the order. The emergency order will last until you can have a full hearing for a plenary order, usually within 14-21 days.
Interim Orders: An interim order offers you a bit more protection than an emergency order. You do not need to have a full court hearing to be granted an interim order. They are often used to protect you in between the time when your emergency order expires and your full court hearing takes place. However, your abuser or his lawyer must have made an initial appearance before the court OR the abuser must have been notified of the date of your court hearing, before you can be given an interim order. An interim order lasts for up to 30 days.
Plenary Orders: A plenary order of protection can be issued only after a court hearing in which you and the abuser both have a chance to tell your sides of the story. It provides the most protection and the longest-term protection. A plenary order may last up to two years, and there is no limit on the number of times an order of protection can be renewed.
No Contact Orders
If you do not have a relationship with the offender, you may seek to obtain a “no contact order.”
A Civil No Contact Order (CNSCO) is a civil “stay away” order for crime victims who do not have a relationship with the offender. Under a CNCO, the court orders the offender not to have any contact with the victim. A CNCO may last up to two years.
A Stalking No Contact Order (SNCO) is a civil “stay away” order for victims of stalking who do not have a relationship with the offender. Under a SNCO, the court orders the offender not to have any contact with the victim. A SNCO may last up to two years.
Any violation of the above orders is a criminal offense and a Class A misdemeanor (up to one year in jail) and a 2nd offense or subsequent violation is a Class 4 felony (one to three years in jail and possible fines).
Interim action can be imposed on campus while an investigation is occurring. Forms of interim action can vary from a campus no-contact order, reassigning an individual to a different course, adjusting work schedule, limiting access on campus, and interim suspension or ban from campus. Interim action that maximizes the ability for all parties involved to continue their education/work on campus, while minimizing adverse effects will be sought. Many forms of interim action can be utilized even if you do not want to seek disciplinary action against a person. For more information, contact the College's Title IX Coordinators.
Campus No-Contact Orders
A campus no-contact order is a directive issued by a campus authority that prevents contact between persons or from one person to another. Such an order may be issued through the formal reporting process (i.e. Student Conduct or Human Resources) or under the direction of a Title IX Coordinator. This may apply to communications in-person, online, and other forms of contact, both on- and off-campus. It is important to note that this is different than a civil order, which is issued by a court. A campus no-contact order may be issued as a sanction or outcome, and may also be issued on an interim basis while an incident is under investigation or adjudication. It is important to note that the burden of proof for a campus no-contact order is often less than that required for a court issued order, and the consequences for violating it are also limited to action that can be taken by the College, such as an additional student conduct charge of failure to comply with a college official.
There are always individuals you can talk to, even after business hours. Below are a list of crisis lines that are open 24 hours a day that you can call.
- Cenpatico Crisis Line 1-(866) 495-6735
- Community Interventions Associates (928) 376-0026
- Nurse Wise 1 (877) 613-2074
- Amberly's Place (928) 373-0849
- Yuma Police Department (928) 783-4421
You can find more community resources on the Health and Wellness page.
Reporting – A Formal Compliant
"Perhaps most important, we need to keep saying to anyone out there who has ever been assaulted: you are not alone. We have your back. I've got your back."
- President Barack Obama on January 22, 2014
Arizona Western College offers an online system for reporting care reports, academic misconduct, student code of conduct, and Title IX violations.
A formal complaint is a document filed and signed by the Complainant or signed by the Title IX Coordinator alleging a policy violation by a Respondent and requesting that AWC investigate the allegation(s). A complaint may be filed with the Title IX Coordinator in person, by mail, or by electronic mail, by using the contact information in the section immediately above, or as described in this section. As used in this paragraph, the phrase “document filed by a Complainant” means a document or electronic submission (such as by electronic mail or through an online portal provided for this purpose by AWC) that contains the Complainant’s physical or digital signature, which can include the Complainant’s name on the email, or otherwise indicates that the Complainant is the person filing the complaint.
Please select the appropriate reporting form to route your submission to the responsible party. If you are unsure of which form to choose, please use the Student Conduct Incident Reporting form on the Incident Reporting Page.
Notice or complaints of discrimination, harassment, and/or retaliation in violation of this Policy may be made using any of the following options:
- File a complaint with, or give verbal notice to, a college Title IX Coordinator or an Official with Authority. Such a report may be made at any time (including during non-business hours) by using the telephone number or email address, or by mail to the office address, listed for the Title IX Coordinator or any other official listed. Title IX Coordinators can be found on the following page: www.azwestern.edu/titleix. It is the responsibility of each of the AWC to ensure this list is up to date with correct information.
- Report online, using the reporting form posted at www.azwestern.edu/titleix. Anonymous reports are accepted and can give rise to a need to investigate. AWC tries to provide supportive measures to all Complainants, which is impossible with an anonymous report when the name of the Complainant is not shared in the report. Since anonymous reporting carries no obligation to initiate a formal response and since the AWC respects a Complainant’s requests to dismiss complaints, unless there is a compelling threat to health and/or safety.
The Title IX Coordinator will contact the Complainant regarding any notice that is submitted in a form that does not comply with these requirements to ensure that it is filed correctly.
Abridged Title IX Grievance Process
- Upon receipt of a complaint or notice to the Title IX coordinator of an alleged violation of this Policy, AWC will initiate a prompt initial assessment to determine the next steps:
- Initial Assessment
- Review of report and need supportive measures needed.
- Formal Complaint Accepted
- After either accepting a Formal Complaint or receiving credible evidence that Discrimination has occurred, and determining after a preliminary inquiry that there is reasonable cause to believe this Policy has been violated, the Title IX Coordinator will
- Advisors Identified
- An Advisor accompanies a party to a Title IX case to meetings related to the resolution process, advises the party on that process, and conducts cross-examination for the party at the hearing if one is held.
- Appointment of Investigators
- To conduct a fact-finding investigation.
- Investigation Process initiated
- at a minimum, a review of written evidence (including the Complaint and response);
- interviews with appropriate employees and students;
- obtaining available, relevant evidence; and identifying sources of expert information.
- Inspection and Review of Evidence
- First Inspection Period: At the end of the investigation, BUT BEFORE a report is drafted.
- Second Inspection Period: After the final investigative report is written, BUT BEFORE the hearing where the determination of a possible violation of the Title IX policy will be made.
- Participants at the hearing will include the hearing facilitator/ decision-maker, the investigator(s) who conducted the investigation, the parties, advisors to the parties, any called witnesses, the Title IX coordinator, and anyone providing authorized accommodations or assistive services.
- Deliberation, Decision-making, and Standard of Proof
- The decision-maker will deliberate in a closed session.
- Notice of Outcome
- The Title IX Coordinator will then provide the notice of outcome to the parties and their advisors within five (5) business days of receiving the decision-makers' deliberation statement.
- Applicable Sanctions will be identified if deemed appropriate to the grievance.
- Any party may file a request for appeal by submitting such a request in writing to the Title IX Coordinator within five (5) business days of the delivery of the notice of outcome letter. Once the five (5) business days have passed, the matter will be deemed closed.
Education and Resources
"If you have come to help me, you are wasting your time. But if you have come because your liberation is bound up with mine, then let us work together."
- Aboriginal activists group, Queensland, 1970s
It is on all of us to educate ourselves about sexual assault and to stop it from happening in our homes, on our campus, in our community, and in our society. This section of the website includes prevention and education opportunities for students, faculty, and staff who want to end sexual violence in our communities.
The responsibility of preventing crimes of sexual violence lies with the person initiating sexual behavior, as that is the person who has the power to stop what he or she is doing. With this in mind, these are things to consider when initiating sexual activities:
- Sexual assault, rape, domestic violence, and dating violence are crimes and violations of Arizona Western College policy. As such, being found responsible for such a violation can result in a maximum sanction of expulsion from Arizona Western College (for students) and termination of employment (for employees). Additionally, criminal charges could be brought forward as well as civil litigation within the court system.
- Because crimes of sexual violence are crimes of power and control, the most important thing to consider when engaging in sexual behavior is the CONSENT of the other person involved. Only a person’s consent gives one the right to engage in sexual contact.
- Not Alone: The White House Resource on Campus Sexual Assault
- It's On Us: Take the pledge to stop sexual assault
- National Sexual Violence Resource Center
- Office on Violence Against Women's Changing our Campus Culture
Although the responsibility of prevention truly lies with the offender, there are things that all individuals can be aware of and do that may help reduce their risk of being a victim of a crime. These are not guarantees of safety, nor does failure to do one of these things mean that someone is at fault for being sexually assaulted, stalked, or otherwise victimized:
- You have the right to your own values, attitudes, and beliefs about sexual behavior and relationships in general. Therefore you have the right to determine the type of interactions and activities you feel comfortable with and to end those activities at any time.
- While there is no perfect profile of someone who will be sexually violent, there are some common warning signs. These include:
- Domineering, overly controlling actions
- A tendency to disregard your feelings and desires
- The expression of hostility or dominance toward potential partners
- The belief that certain actions entitle one to sex with another person
- Intrusion into your personal physical space
- Touching you in a way that makes you feel uncomfortable
- No one is ever entitled to sex. You are not obligated to perform sexual acts as payment, as a favor, or in order to be a “real man” or a “good woman.”
- Alcohol is a frequently used and highly effective rape facilitating drug. It affects each person’s ability to make decisions, set boundaries, and engage in sexual activities differently. Keep track of how much you drink, and consider some of these tips in relation to alcohol consumption:
- You have the right not to drink alcohol at any time.
- If you feel pressure to drink, you can keep a beer can in your hand without drinking from it frequently.
- Alternate water with each alcoholic beverage and eat prior to and while drinking.
- You have the right to say no to any sexual activity at any time for any reason. When you feel that your personal rights are being threatened, you have every right to take a stand and let the offending party know that what he/she is doing is unwelcome. This includes if you have started activities and you no longer wish to pursue them.
- If you go to larger parties, bring friends with you and check in regularly. Make plans ahead of time for how to get home, and who will remain sober throughout the night in case any emergency arises.
- Having your own transportation gives you a degree of power to leave a situation if you see the need to.
- While using social media, such as Facebook or Twitter, be mindful of the type of information you provide, including your address or phone number, and whether you are at home or away. Review and update your privacy settings regularly.
- If you wish to pursue sexual activity with someone, consider discussing your boundaries prior to engaging in physical activity together so you have a clearer understanding of each other’s preferences. If you decide to engage in sexual activity shortly after meeting someone, you may not have as great of an understanding of each other yet, which means you both may need to seek further clarification as you communicate.
(Source: Adapted from Bowling Green State University’s 2014-2015 Student Handbook)
Every person has a role in stopping sexual violence from occurring on our campus and in society. If you observe a concerning situation, you may have the ability to intervene in a safe and positive way to change the outcome of a situation. A key goal of bystander intervention is to step in early – before the situation escalates to violence. These are the basic steps of bystander intervention in the form of taking action:
Notice what is happening.
The first step in bystander intervention is being attentive to what is happening around you. This is especially important in high-risk situations, such as large parties, where alcohol is present, at concerts/bars with loud noise or in other environments that might otherwise perpetuate high-risk behaviors. If you are in a larger group or with friends, it is often easy to assume that if no one else thinks there is a problem, then maybe there isn’t. Instead, be willing to be the one to pay attention and to think for yourself as to whether or not an intervention can be helpful.
Consider whether the situation warrants your action.
Even situations that don’t seem serious may benefit from your action. The goal is to intervene well before there is a problem, not once a violent act has started. For example, if you notice a friend who is drinking a lot of alcohol, raising his voice, and saying he wants to “get laid, no matter what”, this could be an indication of high risk behaviors. If you hear someone yell or you see someone who is intoxicated and being hit on by someone else, you might be able to step in.
Decide if you have a responsibility to act.
You might have formal responsibility to act (such as if you are a team captain or if you are a student leader), or you might have informal responsibility to act (such as if others look to you as a role model, or if you are often the leading voice in your friend group). As an individual and member of our campus community, you also have a responsibility to act with integrity and to look out for fellow people, regardless of how good of friends you are.
Choose what form of action/assistance to use.
Forms of assistance can vary depending on the situation. Examples include:
- Stepping in directly and engaging both parties
- Separating the individuals
- Calling an authority
- Getting help from other friends
- Diverting someone from the situation
- Creating a distraction
- Changing the subject
Implement the intervention safely.
Ultimately you have to intervene in a safe way so that further threats do not occur, and so that any safety concerns are minimized. You might have an initial intervention followed by a follow-up conversation later after any feelings have calmed down. This is also why it is important to step in through conversations early, rather than having to look to more intrusive action if a situation escalates.
(Source: Adopted from Darley and Latane,1968)
Transgender is a term used to describe individuals whose gender identity differs from the sex the doctor marked on their birth certificate. Gender identity is a person's internal, personal sense of being a man or a woman, or of being someone whose gender exists outside of one of those two ideas. For transgender people, the sex they were assigned at birth doesn't match their internal gender identity. Transgender includes a range of identities, including: transgender, transsexual, and genderqueer. Trying to change a person's gender identity doesn't work, just like trying to change a person's sexual orientation doesn't work. This means transgender people may seek to bring their bodies more into alignment with their gender identity, and/or may define themselves outside of the two boxes that society has constructed for male and female. The best thing to do is ask a person how they identify and to utilize those words.
New information will be added to this site to assist transgender students in learning about on-campus resources, and to assist faculty/staff in learning about the needs of our transgender students. In the meantime, please review these external resources:
- Human Rights Campaign Transgender Resources
- GLAAD Tips for Allies of Transgender People
- University of Wisconsin-Madison's Gender Pronouns Guide
- Campus Pride's Best Practices to Support Transgender Students
Title IX FAQ's
Below are some commonly asked questions regarding Title IX and sexual harassment, discrimination, and violence.
Q: Will AWC blame me if I was drinking or on drugs at the time of an incident involving sexual harassment, discrimination, or violence?
A: No. Students will not be blamed if they are the victim of sexual harassment, discrimination, or violence while under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
Q: Can someone give consent to sexual activities when they're drunk?
A: No, it is not considered consent if the individual is under the influence of alcohol or drugs when they engage in any type of sexual activity.
Q. What if a person gives consent to a sexual activity the day before the act, before they passed out, or before they consumed alcohol or drugs? Is that still consent?
A. No. See the definition of consent.
Q: Is it still sexual harassment or violence if it's between two people of the same sex?
A: Yes. Sexual harassment, discrimination, and violence can happen between any combination of sexes, including but not limited to...
- Male and female interactions
- Male and male interactions
- Female and female interactions
Q: Can I file a report or Formal Complaint even if I can't prove that my environment was hostile when the act of sexual harassment, discrimination, or violence was committed?
A: Yes. You are encouraged to report any alleged act of sexual harassment, discrimination, or violence regardless of whether or not you can prove that the environment was hostile.
Q: Will AWC allow someone to retaliate against me for filing a report about an act of sexual harassment, discrimination, or violence?
A: No. Individuals who file a report, experience, or witness an alleged act of sexual harassment, discrimination, or violence are protected against retaliation.
1. What does an Advisor do?
An Advisor accompanies a party to a Title IX case to meetings related to the resolution process, advises the party on that process, and conducts cross-examination for the party at the hearing, if one is held.
2. Do both the Complainant and the Respondent in a Title IX case get an Advisor?
Yes, both parties have the right to an Advisor of their choosing. Each party may select whomever they wish to serve as their Advisor, as long as the Advisor is eligible and has no institutionally conflicting roles (such as being a Title IX Coordinator, a supervisor who would implement sanctions in the event of a finding of responsibility, or a witness in the process).
3. Who can serve as an Advisor?
The Advisor may be a friend, family member, attorney, neighbor, or another individual. Arizona Western College (AWC) has a list of trained Advisors who stand ready to serve if selected by a party. Trained Advisors are familiar with AWC resolution process as well as how to best serve in their Advisor role. If a party chooses an Advisor from outside the pool of trained AWC Advisors, they would not have been trained and may not be familiar with AWC’s policies and procedures. Parties also have the right to choose not to have an Advisor in the initial stages of the resolution process, but at the hearing stage, the party without an Advisor would be appointed an Advisor to conduct the cross-examination during the hearing. The party can reject the appointed Advisor in favor of selecting their own Advisor, but the party cannot proceed in the hearing without an Advisor present. This is the case because the parties are not permitted to directly cross-examine each other or any witness.
4. What is an Advisor’s role in the investigative process?
The parties may be accompanied by their Advisor in all meetings and interviews at which the party is entitled to be present. Advisors should help the parties prepare for the meetings and interviews. Advisors are expected to Advise ethically and with integrity (i.e., not permitting a party to lie or to present false evidence).
AWC cannot guarantee equal Advisory experiences, meaning that if one party hires an attorney to serve as their Advisor and the other party does not hire an attorney, AWC is not obligated to provide an attorney Advisor for the other party. Also, if one party selects an Advisor from AWCs list of Advisors and the other party selects a family member as an Advisor, AWC Advisor would have received training in order to serve in this capacity while the family member Advisor would not have received such training. AWC is not obligated to train the family member Advisor.
All Advisors are subject to the same AWC policies and procedures, whether they are attorneys or not. Advisors are expected to advise without disrupting proceedings. Advisors should not address AWC officials in a meeting or interview unless they are permitted to do so by the investigators—for instance, to ask procedural questions. Advisors are not permitted to make presentations or opening/closing statements during any meeting or proceeding (including during a hearing). Advisors are also prohibited from speaking on behalf of the advisee to the Investigator(s) or the Decision-maker (at a hearing), except during the cross-examination at the hearing.
Although the Advisor generally may not speak on behalf of their advisee, the Advisor may consult with their advisee, either privately as needed, or by conferring or passing notes during any resolution process meeting or interview. For longer or more involved discussions, the parties and their Advisors should ask for breaks to allow for a private consultation.
5. What happens if an Advisor breaks the rules outlined in Question #4?
Any Advisor who oversteps their role as defined by this policy will be warned only once. If the Advisor continues to disrupt or otherwise fails to respect the limits of the Advisor role, the meeting will be ended and the Title IX Coordinator will determine how to address the Advisor’s non-compliance moving forward. The Title IX Coordinator may prohibit the Attorney from continuing to act in that capacity in future meetings/proceedings. The party will be allowed to select a new Advisor.
6. Is my Advisor allowed access to information collected as evidence during the Title IX case?
AWC expects that the parties may wish to have documentation and evidence related to the allegations of Title IX sexual harassment with their Advisors. Parties may share this information directly with their Advisor or other individuals, if they wish. If the party wants the AWC to share documentation and evidence with Advisors, AWC will provide the party with a FERPA authorization to disclose consent form to sign. The authorization will remain in the Title IX file.
If a party requests that all communication be made through their Attorney Advisor, AWC will not comply with that request.
7. Can an Advisor schedule a meeting with the Title IX Coordinator?
It is permitted for an Advisor to request to meet with the Title IX Coordinator in advance of these interviews or meetings. This pre-meeting allows Advisors to clarify and understand their role and AWCs policies and procedures.
8. Can a party change Advisors during the Title IX resolution process?
Yes. If a party changes Advisors, the party is expected to provide timely notice to the Title IX Coordinator if they change Advisors at any time during the proceedings. It is assumed that if a party changes Advisors, consent to share information with the previous Advisor is terminated, and a release for the new Advisor must be secured. Parties are expected to inform the Title IX Coordinator of the identity of the new Advisor at least two (2) days before a meeting where the party and their Advisor is to be present. If a party changes Advisors before the hearing, the party is expected to inform the Title IX Coordinator of that change at least two (2) business days before the hearing.
9. Are there any other expectations of an Advisor?
AWC expects Advisors to adjust their schedules to allow them to attend scheduled meetings and proceedings. AWC may make reasonable provisions to allow an Advisor who cannot attend in person to attend a meeting by telephone, video conferencing, or other similar technologies as may be convenient, but only if the advisee agrees to the provision.
For a complete list of AWC Trained Advisors, please visit: AWC List of Trained Advisors .
Notice of Outcome FAQ's
Using the deliberation statement provided by the Decision-maker, the Title IX Coordinator will to prepare a Notice of Outcome letter. Upon its completion, the Title IX Coordinator will share the letter, which will include the final determination, rationale, and any applicable sanction(s) with the parties and their Advisors within five (5) days of receiving the Decision-maker(s)’ deliberation statement.
The Notice of Outcome letter will specify the finding on each alleged policy violation; the findings of fact that support the determination; conclusions regarding the application of the relevant policy to the facts at issue; and a statement of, and rationale for, the resulting decision.
The Notice of Outcome will also include information on the relevant procedures and bases for any available appeal options.
The Notice of Outcome letter may be delivered via U.S. mail to the local or permanent address of the parties as indicated in Arizona Western Colleges records and via email to the parties’ (AWC)-issued email. Once mailed and/or emailed, notice will be presumptively delivered.