Bias Incident Support and Advisory Team Protocol
The Team will be convened by the designated co-conveners in response to incidents on an as-needed basis. The Core Team members will convene for all incidents under review. Additional Team members will be convened dependent upon the circumstances of the incident as appropriate and necessary. For example, if the incident involved a student organization, the Student Activities designee will participate in the review for that incident.
Additionally, all members of the Team will convene at least two (2) times each semester to review any relevant policies, procedures, and/or practices, along with the Team’s response to incidents, to discuss the effectiveness and best practices.
Reporting of Bias Incidents
Students, faculty, staff, administrators, visitors, community members, vendors, and contractors, and/or any other member of the campus community who experience or become aware of a possible bias incident will be encouraged to report the incident to any member of the Bias Incident Support and Advisory Team. Additionally, an online form is available for individuals to report incidents to the University, with an option to remain anonymous. Information regarding reporting options, including information on filing a formal complaint, will be made available to the campus community through print, web and other electronic publications.
The report/complaint will be reviewed by the Team who will then determine the appropriate response taking into account various factors such as the availability of information and details, severity of the incident, identity of parties involved, and threat to the greater campus community. As indicated previously, the Office of Equal Opportunity and Title IX will make determinations on jurisdiction to initiate an investigation under the 1B.1.1 and/or 1B.3.1 Procedures or referral to another University office. The Team does not have a role in determining whether campus policy has been violated and/or imposing disciplinary action.
The Bias Incident Support and Advisory Team will function under this established protocol and relevant policies, procedures, and other protocols to take a timely and comprehensive approach to addressing bias incidents, and to aid in communication with the extended community about incident-related concerns.
The Team should be convened and the protocol implemented whenever a bias incident is perceived to have occurred and/or reported to the Team. As indicated previously, this protocol is not a substitute for and does not override established University or external complaint processes, including investigation protocols or services available to the University community. For certain incidents, an assessment of free speech or academic freedom issues by multi-functional areas may be conducted, which may include consultation with General Counsel.
The Bias Incident Support and Advisory Team may respond to reported incidents in ways that include:
- Identifying the needs of the affected individuals, as well as those of the larger learning community.
- Referring affected individuals to other appropriate campus offices such as the 1B.1/1B.3 designated officer, the Title IX Coordinator, Student Conduct, counseling services, University Security, etc. to receive additional supportive services.
- Providing support, resources, and consultation to those harmed by the incident.
- Referring the matter to law enforcement if circumstances warrant, and as permitted by law.
- Recommending updates to the campus community as appropriate, which would occur through the President’s office with approval.
- Organizing and holding open forums for affected individuals as well as the larger community to gather suggestions, to reaffirm campus values and standards, and to educate.
- Recommending incident-related topic program areas for additional training for students, staff, and faculty to the appropriate campus offices.
Additionally, all efforts should be made to identify and provide opportunities for the community that will enhance and encourage inter-group dialogue that focuses on relevant issues of bias and discrimination, and effective strategies for enhancing individual and community safety and well-being and reinforcing community values.