The Sexual Misconduct Resource and Response Program (SMRRP) has a list of FAQs on their website that pertain to students and employees at the university. The FAQs below address additional questions individuals in our department may have and/or questions specific to the Psychology Department.
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I am a student who has experienced sexual misconduct. What can I do?
There are many individuals, groups, offices, and organizations – both on and off campus – that want to help you. In the table below, you can see options available to you as well as information that may help you decide why to choose a particular option. All of these options can provide you with resources (e.g., information about how to receive support). But, the options do differ in important ways. Most notably, some options are confidential and others are not. Additionally, some options can result in an investigation/response while other cannot. For example, the Sexual Misconduct Resource and Response Program (SMRRP) can investigate and respond to sexual misconduct while University Health Services (UHS) cannot.
I am an employee who has experienced sexual misconduct. What can I do?
The Employee Assistance Program and Ombuds Office are confidential resources for employees. The other resources listed in the table below, with the exception of UHS and the Dean of Students Office, are also available and appropriate for employees.
I want to help someone who has experienced sexual misconduct and/or need advice about how to proceed after learning about sexual misconduct.
All of the options listed in the table below can provide guidance, regardless of whether you are a Responsible Employee (RE). If you are an RE, you must report knowledge of sexual misconduct to the SMRRP.
Who can make a report to the SMRRP?
Anyone can make a report to the SMRRP.
What happens when a Responsible Employee contacts SMRRP program to report sexual misconduct?
The SMRRP asks the Responsible Employee to report what they know about the incident, including the names of people involved. Then, the SMRRP attempts to reach out to the person who experienced the misconduct. If the person who experienced the misconduct does not wish to engage with the SMRRP, then usually the SMRRP does not pursue the incident further; the SMRRP simply keeps a record of the report. If the person who experienced the misconduct does wish to engage with then SMRRP, then SMRRP will follow up.
I experienced sexual misconduct, but I’m just not sure how I want to proceed. I don’t know if I want to make a report and I don’t want to start anything I can’t undo. What should I do?
If you are an employee (including a graduate student TA), you could consider calling the Employee Assistance program or the Ombuds Office for advice. They are confidential resources. If you are a student (including a graduate student TA), you could also call UHS; they are also a confidential resource and the Survivor Services Advocate (608-265-5600, option 3) can help you think through the different options available to you. You could also call the SMRRP to receive information from them, but then not provide the SMRRP with your name or other details you do not want them to know.
Why isn’t the Psychology Department itself listed in your table of resources?
Our department is a collection of people who have varying degrees of training and experience helping those who have experienced, witnessed, or learned about sexual misconduct. Further, some members of our department are Responsible Employees and others are not. For these reasons, it is difficult to accurately summarize the Psychology Department as a resource. But, it is very accurate to state that the Psychology Department faculty and administration condemn sexual misconduct and are committed to supporting students and employees who experience misconduct.
I feel most comfortable talking to people in the Psychology Department. Can the Psychology Department just handle acts of sexual misconduct without involving anyone else (e.g., the SMRRP)?
The Psychology Department cannot, on its own, investigate or take action with regard to sexual misconduct. Federal Title IX laws require our department to work with the SMRRP but only the SMRRP is trained to investigate incidents and sanction responsible parties. That said, regardless of the involvement of the SMRRP, the Psychology Department is supportive of taking actions that are within its power to support those who have experienced misconduct (e.g., requests to change offices or schedules in the Psychology Department).
Each of the following resources can also connect students, faculty, and staff to other resources as needed:
|Confidential?||Can investigate/sanction?||Can provide academic housing/workplace accommodations?|
|UHS Survivor Services (Advocacy, Mental Health, Medical)+||√||√|
|Dean of Students +||Will connect to SMRRP|
|Meriter FNE Program||√|
|Rape Crisis Center||√|
|Responsible Employees||Will connect to SMRRP|
*available to employees only
+available to students only
Sexual Misconduct: a type of violence that uses power, control, and/or intimidation to harm another and can include sexual assault, sexual harassment, sexual exploitation, dating or domestic violence, and stalking
Title IX: federal law designed to protect people from discrimination based on sex in education programs or activities that receive Federal financial assistance
SMRRP: UW office that oversees reporting and investigation for sexual misconduct allegations
Responsible employees (RE): individuals who are mandated (required) to report instances of sexual misconduct to the university (SMRRP/Dean of Students)
– If you speak to a RE, you can expect that they will have to make a report.
– A list of Psychology Department REs can be found here.
– If you are unsure whether an employee is an RE, ask that person BEFORE describing an experience that you do not want to be formally reported.
Confidential resources keep your information private unless subpoenaed by the courts. Non-confidential resources will protect your privacy to the extent possible within the parameters of the investigation.