What’s Sexual Misconduct?

Sexual misconduct can be more than just offensive – it can also be dangerous. Educators who engage in sexual misconduct can have a serious impact on their students.

Sexual misconduct includes everything from unwanted touching to rape. It can be verbal – sexual jokes or stories; commentary about an individual’s body or sexual prowess; leering; or visual – pornography, pictures, text messages and other online materials.

Sexual Assault

Sexual assault is any nonconsensual act of penetration, however slight, into the vagina or anus of another person. It includes rape, sexual assault with an object and sodomy, as well as any other act that invades a person’s privacy in a sexual way. Sexual assault may be committed by a stranger or by someone the victim knows, including people in a dating relationship, domestic violence or other intimate association.

Unwanted or unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors or physical contact that make the recipient feel offended, humiliated or intimidated are also considered sexual misconduct. Examples include unwelcome physical touching, indecent exposure and voyeurism, as well as sexually teasing or offensive jokes, including those that use sex stereotypes. It also includes the unwelcome imposition of a university aid, benefit or service on an individual’s participation in unwelcome sexual conduct, which is referred to as quid pro quo sexual harassment.

Sexual exploitation is the taking of any nonconsensual or abusive sexual advantage of another for one’s own personal gain, or for the gain of others. It also includes sexual intercourse without consent and engaging in sexual coercion.

Sexual Exploitation

Sexual exploitation is taking non-consensual or abusive sexual advantage of another for the perpetrator’s own gain or to benefit anyone other than the person being exploited. It includes, but is not limited to: forwarding of pornographic or sexually inappropriate material; voyeurism; exposing one’s own or someone else’s genitals; or any other sexual activity without consent.

It can be verbal or non-verbal, and may include any communication that is sexual in nature: commenting on an individual’s appearance, sexual practices or orientation; unwelcome efforts to develop a romantic or sexual relationship; whistling; sexual innuendos; comments about body size; and/or the display of objects or other visual material of a sexual nature.

A Complainant has the option to file a criminal report for their own safety and protection. The Institute will assist a Complainant in filing such a report to the police. An individual who reports alleged Sexual Misconduct may choose to remain anonymous; however, it is more difficult for the institution to respond when a complaint is made anonymously.

Sexual Harassment

It’s a broad term that covers any behavior focused on sex or gender discrimination. Examples include, but are not limited to, sexual harassment, non-consensual sexual contact, exploitation and relationship violence.

Sexual harassment includes unwelcome sexual advances, propositions or threats; unwanted touching, including offensive touching, pinching, brushing or impeding movement of the body; teasing or bullying with unwelcome sexual innuendo or references; or verbal, written or digital comments about an individual’s sex, gender or orientation or negative stereotyping based on sex or gender.

It also includes invading an individual’s privacy with unwanted and inappropriate information about them, such as private health or family records, pictures or videos or exposing their genitals, and the recording of a person without their consent (by audio, video or other electronic means). If you are being harassed, you may wish to enlist the help of others. It is often safer and more effective to bring in someone from outside your immediate situation — such as a security guard, police officer or RA in your dorm.

Stalking

A willful course of conduct that involves two or more acts over a period of time directed at a specific person that seriously alarms, annoys or causes the victim to suffer substantial emotional distress. Stalking may include following, harassing or threatening another person, making repeated telephone calls, sending instant messages or emails or placing objects on property owned, leased or occupied by that individual.

Sexual harassment can be verbal or physical. Examples of unwelcome sexually suggestive comments or jokes include remarking on an individual’s body, clothes or appearance; leering; obscene language; teasing of a sexual nature; and sexual jokes or stories.

Non-consensual sexual touching includes offensive contact with a private area of the body (vagina, anus or mouth) without consent. Penetration of any kind, even if slight, is considered rape. Violation of the sex harassment, sexual assault or stalking laws can be charged as a felony and can lead to serious consequences if convicted. If you believe you are being stalked, you should inform the perpetrator firmly that you do not want to have any contact with him or her and immediately report it to MUPD.

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