Statement of Purpose
Immaculata University is committed to creating and maintaining an educational, working and living environment for all members of the campus community. Immaculata is also committed to supporting any administrator, faculty member, student, staff or visitor who believes that he or she has experienced an incident of dating violence through the appropriate provision of safety and support services. Immaculata will respond to all reports in an integrated, consistent manner that treats each individual with dignity and respect and will take prompt responsive action to end the misconduct, prevent its recurrence, and address its effects.
Administrators, students, faculty members, and staff are protected under this policy in connection with all the University’s administrative, academic, educational, extracurricular, athletic, and other programs whether those programs take place on campus or elsewhere. In responding to off-campus events, the University will consider the effects of the off-campus conduct on an individual’s working, educational and living experience.
Definition of Dating Violence
Dating violence is violence committed by a person who is or has been in a social relationship of a romantic or intimate nature with the victim and where the existence of such a relationship shall be based on a consideration of the following factors:
1. the length of time the relationship has existed
2. the type of the relationship
3. the frequency of the interaction between the persons involved in the relationship
Dating Violence shall mean the use of abusive behaviors, including, but not limited to, internet, electronic (e-mail, text messages, social media platforms, etc.), written, verbal, sexual or physical contact by a person to harm, threaten, intimidate or control a current or former dating partner, regardless of sex, sexual orientation or gender identity.
Dating violence is currently not specifically defined as a crime by Pennsylvania state statute. However, dating violence may be an isolated incident or a repeated course of conduct. Dating violence includes but is not limited to:
1. Physical Abuse: Any intentional unwanted contact with the victim’s body by either the perpetrator or an object within the perpetrator’s control, regardless of whether such contact causes pain or injuries to the victim.
2. Emotional Abuse: The intentional infliction of mental or emotional distress by threat, coercion, stalking, humiliation, harassment, or other unwanted verbal or nonverbal conduct.
3. Sexual Abuse: Any sexual behavior or contact by the perpetrator that is unwanted by the victim and/or interferes with the victim’s ability to consent to or control the circumstances of sexual behavior.
Prohibition of Retaliation:
The University will not engage in nor tolerate retaliation against an individual who makes a report of dating violence, serves as a witness, or provides information concerning an act of dating violence. Retaliation is a serious violation of this policy. Any acts of retaliation or threatened retaliation should be reported immediately to the Department of Campus Safety and Protection, the Dean of Students, or the Director of Human Resources. Any person found to have retaliated against another individual in violation of this policy will be subject to appropriate sanctions. Individuals, who believe they have been subject to any acts of retaliation or threatened with retaliation, should promptly report the same pursuant to the complaint procedure outlined in this policy.
Any administrator, faculty member, staff or student who experiences or sees another member of the Immaculata community experiencing dating violence and/or retaliation should report the behavior to a member of the Campus Safety and Protection Department, the Dean of Students, or the Director of Human Resources. If safety is an immediate concern, contact Campus Safety and Protection or the local police department for assistance.
The University will take interim measures as necessary to prevent the complainant from being subjected to discrimination or harassment during the investigative and complaint process. The University will take steps to ensure that any interim measures taken do not adversely affect the complainant and will provide written notice to a complainant of such options. By way of example only, such changes may include, but are not limited to arranging for excused absences, extended periods of time to make up examinations, tutoring or changes in class schedule, placing the respondent on leave, make alternative living arrangements, or authorize other types of temporary measures to ensure the safety and well-being of the complainant and the campus community while the investigation and complaint process is pending, including but not limited to “no contact orders”.
These changes will be made regardless of whether the complainant chooses to report the crime to campus police or local law enforcement.
The University provides support to victims of dating violence through on and off campus resources. Caring professionals are available to discuss the individual’s options and to offer support, compassion and practical assistance.
Be aware of On-Campus Resources that can assist you:
- IU Counseling Services, Bruder Center, 610 647-4400 ext 3478 or ext. 3506 (After 4:30 PM please contact IU Campus Safety and Protection and they will contact the on-call counselor for you)
- IU Campus Safety and Protection ext. 5555 (on campus) or 610 854-2451 (24 hours, off campus)
- IU Residence Life and Housing ext. 3130 (After 4:30 PM please contact IU Campus Safety and Protection and they will contact the on-call professional for you.)
- IU Student Health Services ext. 3500 (After 4:30 PM please contact IU Campus Safety and Protection and they will contact a member of the Student Health Services staff for you)
- Others on campus student feel comfortable with
Additionally, be aware of Off-Campus Resources that can assist you:
- Crime Victim’s Center of Chester County (24-hour hotline) 610 692-7273. Counselors on a hotline are specifically trained to help assault victims and to offer confidential support and information about legal, medical, and mental health resources. www.cvcofcc.org
In cases involving potential criminal conduct, the University will determine, consistent with state and local law, whether the appropriate law enforcement agency should be notified. A complainant has the option to file a formal criminal complaint with the appropriate law enforcement agency, to pursue the University’s internal complaint process, or to pursue both processes simultaneously. The University will proceed with its own internal investigation even while law enforcement personnel are conducting their investigation, although, in certain circumstances, the University may delay its investigation if directed by law enforcement based on the belief that the University investigation may impede the criminal investigation.
Disciplinary Proceedings and Sanctions:
Any student, administrator, faculty member, or staff who, after appropriate investigation, has been found to have engaged in dating violence consistent with this Policy (even if not unlawful) will be subject to appropriate disciplinary and/or corrective action, as defined in the Immaculata University Policy Manual Volume VI for students, Volume IV for faculty, Volume III for employees. Sanctions include but are not limited to expulsion from the University or dismissal from employment.
Prevention and Awareness
Immaculata University is committed to the prevention of dating violence through a variety of educational programs and awareness activities. These include:
- Programming presented as part of New Student Orientation, Respect Week (during Dating and Domestic Violence Awareness Month) and Sexual Assault Awareness Month.
- Workshops and mandatory online education courses concerning sexual violence prevention, date rape, sexual assault, and bystander intervention.
- Educational material disseminated throughout campus regarding dating safety, emotional abuse, sexual violence, and date rape drugs.
Active Bystanders play a critical role in the prevention of sexual violence and other sexual offenses. These are individuals who observe violence or conditions that may perpetuate violence and follow the appropriate reporting procedures, such as, calling 911, informing campus safety and protection and/or University officials. It is understandable that in many circumstances, the active bystander may be uncomfortable intervening or communicating concerns; however, conveying potential risks to individuals or the college community will help the University maintain a safe environment. As a support to employees, the Office of the Dean of Students provides information on the role of active bystanders. The RAINN website also has other important information on the role bystanders can play in preventing and responding to acts of sexual violence.
Title IX Reporting
Complaints of sexual assault, sexual exploitation, domestic violence, dating violence, stalking or rape or other sexual offenses can also be reported to the University’s Title IX Coordinator or a Deputy Coordinator. The Title IX Coordinator can be reached at TitleIXCoordinator@immaculata.edu.
As stated in the University’s Notice of Non-Discrimination and Equal Opportunity, the University complies with the Title IX Educational Amendments of 1972. Title IX prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in any federally funded education program or activity. Sexual harassment, which includes sexual assault and other sexual misconduct, is a form of sex discrimination.
Additional information on the University’s commitment to prohibiting sex discrimination, sex-based harassment, and sexual assault/violence is set forth in a separate policy, Title IX Policy, in Volume II of the University Policy Manual.
If a member of the University community feels that he/she has been the victim of sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, stalking or rape or other sexual offenses, sex discrimination, or sex-based harassment, such an individual should also report the incident to the University’s designated Title IX Coordinator at TitleIXCoordinator@immaculata.edu.