Title IX

Grievance Procedure

In accordance with Title IX of the Education Amendment Act of 1972, Bryant University prohibits sex discrimination in its educational and athletic programs, as well as in extracurricular activities sponsored by the University.

An individual’s sex can not be considered as a basis for making decisions in areas such as:

  • Admission and graduation requirements
  • Access to course enrollment or campus facilities
  • Counseling and health services
  • Competitive athletic programs and activities
  • Housing, financial aid, or other benefits/services

A student, employee, or other individual may use this grievance procedure to file a complaint alleging a violation of Title IX against any Bryant employee, Bryant student, or third party. Complaints may include claims of discrimination, sexual harassment, or sexual violence against the complainant or against others. An employee may also report any claim of discrimination, harassment, or retaliation by following the procedures contained in the policy entitled “Bryant University — Protection from Harassment.” Person aggrieved may choose to file a criminal complaint with the appropriate local or state authorities.

Sex discrimination includes unwanted sexual advances, sexual violence, requests for sexual favors, and all other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature where submission to such conduct is made either explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of an individual’s employment or academic status, or submission to or rejection of such conduct by an individual is used as the basis for employment or academic decisions affecting such individual, or such conduct has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with an individual’s work or academic performance or creating an intimidating , hostile, or offensive environment in which to work or learn.

Step 1: Filing a Complaint

A grievance should be filed as soon as possible but no later than 14 days after the alleged unlawful discriminatory practice. The complaint should be filed in writing by utilizing the “Title IX Grievance Form.”)Forms may be obtained from the Human Resources Department. Supplemental sheets may be attached to provide additional detail regarding the alleged violation. The completed Title IX Grievance Form and any supplemental attachments should be filed with:

Linda S. Lulli, Title IX Coordinator

Human Resources Department

1150 Douglas Pike

Smithfield, RI 02917

lslulli@bryant.edu

(401) 232-6011

If the Title IX Coordinator is the person alleged to have discriminated, the complaint may be filed with the Vice President for Student Affairs/Dean of Students, Dr. John Saddlemire, jsaddlemire@bryant.edu (401-232-6046).

Step 2: Preliminary Investigation Process

Within 14 days of receiving the grievance form, the Title IX Coordinator will designate a senior administrator as Investigator, who will meet with the complainant. The purpose of the meeting is for the Investigator to clarify details of the alleged violation, and to obtain names of witnesses to be interviewed and other relevant information deemed necessary to investigate and resolve the complaint. The Complainant shall have the opportunity to present witnesses and other evidence.

A complainant will be notified in writing if a meeting can not occur within this timeframe.

The Investigator will within seven (7) days of the initial meeting, interview the individual(s) accused of discrimination, who at that time will have an opportunity to provide relevant information for the investigation and/or advise of witnesses to be interviewed. The accused person(s) shall have the opportunity to present witnesses and other evidence.

Step 3: Investigation Process

The investigation will be conducted to ensure the greatest degree of confidentiality of all parties involved. Further, all parties involved in the investigation will be advised of the expectation of confidentiality of the active investigation. Retaliation against the complaining party or witnesses is strictly prohibited. Proven retaliation by an employee or student will result in discipline, up to and including termination, or other appropriate sanctions.

Step 4: Completion of Investigation Report

The Investigator should complete the investigation and submit a written report within 60 days of the initial complaint. The report will detail the facts and allegations made by the complainant, summarize the witness meetings, and make recommendations to resolve the complaint. However, due to the extensiveness or complexity of the issues of an investigation, more time may be needed to complete a thorough and equitable investigation. In those cases, the complainant and accused will be advised in writing that additional time is required.

The Investigator will submit a written report to the Title IX Coordinator, or if necessary to the Vice President for Student Affairs/Dean of Students. The complainant will be advised when the report has been submitted. The Title IX Coordinator may (1) choose to follow the recommendations, (2) attempt to resolve the complaint through a designated representative, or (3) identify and implement other acceptable solutions.

a. Recommendations for Proven Violations

Recommended solutions for allegations of discrimination that are proven to be valid will be based on the severity of the offense, the frequency that the offense occurred, and the duration of the prohibited conduct or practice. Other factors may include the extent to which the misconduct or practice, however minor or severe, may isolate or intimidate the person filing the complaint. Recommendations may involve corrective action, appropriate disciplinary action, suspensions or expulsion. The complainant will be advised as to the outcome of the Investigation, and any appeal options.

b. Recommendations for Unproven Violations

In cases where the investigation does not establish by a preponderance of the evidence that a violation has occurred, the Title IX Coordinator or designated representative will advise both the complainant and the person accused of discriminating of the investigation outcome, and any appeal options.

Step 5A: Investigation Recommendations Acceptable to Complainant

If the proposed recommendations are acceptable to the complainant and the solutions are implemented, the complaint is considered resolved. The Title IX Coordinator will advise the complainant to come forward if retaliation takes place.

Step 5B: Appeal Process with the University

If the complaint is not resolved to the satisfaction of the complainant or the party alleged to have discriminated, a written appeal may be submitted to the Vice President of Student Affairs/Dean of Students or Title IX Coordinator. The written request should:

a) be submitted within 14 calendar days of receipt of the University’s decision

b) include the reasons for the appeal and the requested outcome.

The Vice President of Student Affairs/Dean of Students or Title IX Coordinator will notify the opposing party of the appeal and rule on the appeal within 14 days of receipt.

Step 5C: Appeal Process with External Agencies

The complainant may also file a complaint of alleged discrimination with the Office of Civil Rights:

Office for Civil Rights

U.S. Department of Education

400 Maryland Avenue, S.W.

Washington, D.C. 20202-1100

(202) 245-6800 – 1-800-421-3481

FAX: (202) 245-6840; TDD: (877) 521-2172

Email: OCR@ed.gov

Web: http://www.ed.gov/ocr

 

Title IX Grievance Form