Sexual Harassment: You Have the Right To File a Complaint

“Sexual harassment is prohibited by University Policy, and federal and state law, and will not be tolerated in any form.”  –UCLA Administrative Policies and Procedures.

When it comes to understanding our legal rights, it can be tedious to decode– especially when there are multiple sources for us to research. In the following article, I have compiled basic fragments of information that may serve as a starting point regarding sexual harassment in schools, the process and possible options when filing a complaint, and the available resources that the UC system, UCLA, and the U.S. Department of Education provide to ensure that our rights are being enabled.

According to the U.S. Department of Education,  Title IX of the Education Amendments states the following:

“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.”

   *Making sexual harassment a form of prohibited sex discrimination in schools.

 

UC policy defines sexual harassment as:

“Unwelcome advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature, when submission to or rejection of this conduct explicitly or implicitly affects a person’s employment or education, unreasonably interfered with a person’s work or educational performance, or creates an intimidating, hostile or offensive working or learning environment.”

Sexual harassment may occur with any member of the UC community, including:

  • “Faculty and other academic appointees, staff, coaches, house staff, students, and non- student or non-employee participants in University programs, such as vendors, contractors, visitors, and patients.”

“Sexual harassment may also occur in hierarchical relationships or between peers, or between persons of the same sex or opposite sex.”

 

Examples of sexual harassment:

According to the University of California sexual harassment prevention website, types of sexual harassment may include:

  • Unwelcome sexual propositions

  • Sexual innuendoes or other behavior, such as repeated, unwanted requests for meals, dates, etc.

  • Unwelcome sexual comments or jokes; questions or discussions about an individual’s sex life; comments about a person’s body or appearance

  • Unwanted touching or leering

  • Sending someone unwanted sexual materials

Making a Report

UCLA’s policies and procedures states that employees are responsible for taking any necessary action to prevent or correct sexual harassment, as well as to report it to Complaint Resolution Officer or to the Sexual Harassment Officer.

Regarding victims, The Dean’s of Student Office and the Title IX Officer can assist with information about reporting a possible policy violation. However, if students do not feel satisfied, or comfortable with efforts made by the aforementioned sources, students can also file a grievance, whose purpose is to:

“Enable the resolution of student grievances alleging violations of Anti-Discrimination Laws or of University policies against discrimination based on race, color, national or ethnic origin, alienage, sex, religion, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, marital status, veterans status, physical or mental disability, or perceived membership in any of these classifications which result in injuries to the Student.”

UCLA Ensures Confidentiality

UCLA offers confidential resources to assist victims and witnesses with concerns about sexual harassment. Individuals may discuss or express their concerns and options about filing a report of sexual harassment, procedures and possible outcomes.

Regarding confidentiality, individuals can contact:

Campus Ombuds Office,
 whose mission statement is to offer:

“A place where members of the UCLA community–students, faculty, staff and administrators–can go for assistance in resolving conflicts, disputes or complaints on an informal basis. In order to afford visitors the greatest freedom in using its services, the Office is independent, neutral and confidential.”

It is located in Strathmore Building, Room 105

8am-5pm, Monday-Friday or by appointment

(310) 825-7627

UCLA Prohibits Retaliation

According to UCLA’s Sexual Harassment Prevention Office, UCLA supports its student and staff to report any issue concerning sexual harassment. It should also be noted that “retaliation against someone who reports or provides information about sexual harassment is strictly prohibited.”

 

For more information:

UCLA’s Administrative Policies and Procedures

University Of California Policy On Sexual Harassment 

UCLA’s Sexual Harassment Brochure

 Office of Sexual Harassment
Pamela J. Thomason
Sexual Harassment & Title IX Officer
2241 Murphy Hall Box 951405
Los Angeles, California 90095-1405
(310) 206-3417
http://www.sexualharassment.ucla.edu
 
Office of Vice Chancellor Dean of Student’s Office
Robert J. Naples
1104 Murphy Hall
Box 951626
Los Angeles, CA 90095-1626
Phone: (310) 825-3871
[email protected]
 
Student Legal Services
A239 Murphy Hall, Box 951439
Los Angeles, California
90095-1439
(310) 825-9894
[email protected]
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