Gender-Based Misconduct Policy
Gender-Based Misconduct Policy
No form of Gender-Based Misconduct will be tolerated at NYIT. This includes activity by students, staff, and faculty, on or off campus, and any vendors or visitors on NYIT's campuses. Gender-Based Misconduct, as more particularly defined below, includes sexual assault, sexual harassment, and other forms of nonconsensual sexual activity, as well as stalking and relationship violence.
Any violation of this Gender-Based Misconduct Policy by an NYIT student is also considered a violation of the Code of Conduct1. All policies, procedures, and definitions applicable to other violations of the Code of Conduct apply to complaints of Gender-Based Misconduct against students unless inconsistent with this Gender-Based Misconduct Policy.
1. "Code of Conduct" throughout this policy refers to both the Student Code of Conduct: US Campuses and the Student Code of Conduct: NYITCOM, and the Vocational Independence Program: Student Code of Conduct.
Student Bill of Rights under New York State Law
Applies to students at all NYIT campuses:
- Make a report to local law enforcement and/or state police
- Have disclosures of domestic violence, dating violence, stalking, and sexual assault treated seriously
- Make a decision about whether or not to disclose a crime or violation and participate in the conduct process and/or criminal justice process free from pressure by the institution
- Participate in a process that is fair, impartial, and provides adequate notice and a meaningful opportunity to be heard
- Be treated with dignity and to receive from the institution courteous, fair, and respectful health care and counseling services, where available
- Be free from any suggestion that the reporting individual is at fault when these crimes and violations are committed, or should have acted in a different manner to avoid such crimes or violations
- Describe the incident to as few institution representatives as practicable and not be required to unnecessarily repeat a description of the incident
- Be protected from retaliation by the institution, any student, the accused and/or the respondent, and/or their friends, family and acquaintances with the jurisdiction of the institution
- Have access to at least one level of appeal of a determination
- Be accompanied by an advisor of choice who may assist and advise a reporting individual, accused or respondent through the conduct process including during all meetings and hearings related to such process
- Exercise civil rights and practice of religion without interference by the investigative, criminal justice, or conduct process of the institution
Definition of Gender-Based Misconduct
State law defines various violent and/or non-consensual sexual acts as crimes. While some of these acts may have parallels in criminal law, NYIT has defined categories of sexual or gender-based acts for which Code of Conduct charges may be brought against a student.
Acts of gender-based misconduct defined below may be committed by any person upon any other person, regardless of the sex, sexual orientation and/or gender identity of those involved.
Specific forms of Gender-Based Misconduct include but are not limited to:
A. Nonconsensual Sexual Penetration
Committed when an individual subjects another person to sexual penetration without the consent of the person, and/or by force. Sexual penetration is defined by anal, oral, or vaginal penetration, however slight, by a penis, tongue, finger, or object.
B. Nonconsensual Sexual Contact
Any type of intentional touching, or intentional contact with, another person's sexual or intimate parts, under or over clothing without their consent.
- Either through force or without the person's consent, causing the other person to touch or make contact with the perpetrator's sexual or intimate parts.
- Touching of other parts of the body (e.g. squeezing, grabbing or pinching) for the purpose of sexually degrading or abusing the other person or for the purpose of gratifying the perpetrator's sexual desire.
Definition of Consent: Affirmative consent is a knowing, voluntary and mutual decision among all participants to engage in sexual activity. Consent can be given by words or actions, as long as those words or actions create clear permission regarding willingness to engage in the sexual activity. Silence or lack of resistance, in and of itself, does not demonstrate consent. The definition of consent does not vary based upon a participant's sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression.
- Consent of any sexual act or prior consensual sexual activity between or with any party does not necessarily constitute consent to any other sexual act.
- Consent is required regardless of whether the person initiating the act is under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol.
- Consent may be initially given but withdrawn at any time.
- Consent cannot be given when a person is incapacitated, which occurs when an individual lacks the ability to knowingly choose to participate in sexual activity. Incapacitation may be caused by the lack of consciousness or being asleep, being involuntarily restrained, or if an individual otherwise cannot consent. Depending on the degree of intoxication, someone who is under the influence of alcohol, drugs, or other intoxicants may be incapacitated and therefore unable to consent.
- Consent cannot be given when it is the result of any coercion, intimidation, force, or threat of harm.
- When consent is withdrawn or can no longer be given, sexual activity must stop.
C. Sexual Exploitation
Taking abusive or nonconsensual sexual advantage of another. Examples include:
- Taking or transmitting sexual photographs, videos, or audiotapes without consent, or causing or permitting others to take or transmit such photographs, videos, or audiotapes without consent.
- Watching another engage in sexual activity or contact without consent; viewing another nude without consent (e.g. watching someone in the shower without consent); allowing a third party to observe sexual acts without a partner's consent.
D. Sexual or Gender-Based Harassment
- Unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal, nonverbal, expressive or physical conduct of a sexual nature.
- Other verbal, nonverbal, or physical acts, or acts of aggression, intimidation or hostility, when based on gender or gender-stereotyping.
This conduct constitutes sexual or gender-based harassment when it either substantially interferes with an individual's ability to participate in or benefit from the institution's programs or activities or creates an intimidating, hostile, or offensive environment for learning or participating in NYIT programs and activities.
- Unwanted flirtation, advances, or propositions of a sexual nature.
- Insults, humor, jokes, or anecdotes (not legitimately related to the subject matter of a course, if one is involved) that belittle or demean an individual's or a group's sexuality or gender.
- Unwelcome comments of a sexual nature about an individual's body or clothing.
- Physically threatening a person because of his or her gender identity or expression or sexual orientation.
E. Domestic Violence
The use of physical violence, coercion, threats, intimidation, isolation, stalking, or other forms of emotional, sexual or economic abuse directed toward:
- A current or former spouse or intimate partner;
- A person with whom one shares a child; or
- Anyone who is protected from the respondent's act under the domestic or family violence laws of the state.
This includes any behaviors that intimidate, manipulate, humiliate, isolate, frighten, terrorize, coerce, threaten, blame, hurt, injure, or wound someone. Domestic violence can be a single act or a pattern of behavior in relationships.
F. Dating Violence
The use of physical violence, coercion, threats, intimidation, isolation, stalking, or other forms of emotional, sexual, or economic abuse directed toward a person who is or has been in a social relationship of a romantic or sexually intimate nature with the victim.
This includes any behaviors that intimidate, manipulate, humiliate, isolate, frighten, terrorize, coerce, threaten, blame, hurt, injure, or wound someone. Dating violence can be a single act or a pattern of behavior in relationships.
Intentionally and for no legitimate purpose engaging in a course of conduct directed at another person, on more than one occasion, that the student knows or reasonably should know is likely to cause a reasonable person to fear for his or her safety or the safety of others or causes the other person to suffer substantial emotional damage. Such behaviors and activities may include, but are not limited to:
- Nonconsensual communication (including face-to-face, telephone calls, voice messages, electronic mail, written letters/notes, unwanted gifts).
- Threatening or obscene gestures.
- Pursuing or following.
- Electronic or any form of surveillance and/or other types of nonconsensual observation.
Procedures for Reporting
If a student has experienced Gender-Based Misconduct, they have the right to make a criminal report to law enforcement, and/or to make a conduct report to NYIT, but do not have to do either. It is the student's decision whether to make a report of any kind, but students should be aware of NYIT's limitation on confidentiality as described in this policy (See "Reporting to NYIT" and "Confidentiality"). Law enforcement will also have its own obligations once a report is made to them that students should be aware of.
Reporting to the Police
At NYIT's New York campuses, Campus Security is responsible for the safety and security of students, staff and faculty members. At the NYITCOM-Arkansas campus, the University Police Department is responsible for campus security. All security guards (New York) and police officers (Arkansas) are trained in emergency response procedures. Campus Security can assist a student in making a report to the local police department, or the student may contact the police department directly.
In an emergency, call 911 first.
Campus Security: 516.686.7789
Nassau County Special Victims Squad: 516.573.8055
New York City
Campus Security: 212.261.1536
NYPD Special Victims Division: 646.610.7272
Arkansas State University Police: 870.972.2093
Jonesboro Police: 870.935.5657
It is important to remember that the criminal justice process is separate from NYIT's conduct process. Decisions by law enforcement regarding whether or not to arrest or prosecute an individual do not determine if a violation of NYIT policy has occurred.
Reporting to NYIT
NYIT's Title IX Coordinator is responsible for overseeing and coordinating the institution's Title IX and Gender-Based Misconduct compliance efforts, including ensuring the prompt and effective investigation and response to complaints.
The Title IX Coordinator also provides leadership to the Deputy Title IX Coordinators who assist in compliance efforts. NYIT's Deputy Title IX Coordinators serve as the primary Title IX officials for students.
Students should contact the Title IX Coordinator or one of the Deputy Title IX Coordinators to make a report of Gender-Based Misconduct or to discuss questions or concerns related to this policy; however, please note that these individuals cannot guarantee confidentiality to students who report, as discussed further in "Confidentiality."
Title IX Coordinator
Director, Compliance & Title IX Coordinator
Tower House, Room 106
Old Westbury, NY 11568
Title IX Support Staff
NYIT's deputy Title IX Coordinator for faculty and staff:
North House, Room 205
Old Westbury, NY 11568
NYIT's deputy Title IX Coordinators for students:
Interim Dean of Students
Student Activity Center, Room 205
Old Westbury, NY 11568
New York City
Interim Dean of Students
26 West 61st Street, Room 201
New York, NY 10023
Vocational Independence Program
Senior Director, VIP
SUNY Old Westbury
Marshall Hall, Room 204
Old Westbury, NY 11568
Mary Ann Achtziger
Associate Dean, Student Administration
New York College of Osteopathic Medicine of NYIT
Serota Hall, Room 213
Old Westbury, NY 11568
Assistant Dean, Student Administration
NYIT College of Osteopathic Medicine
Wilson Hall, Room 204A
State University, AR 72467
All NYIT employees (faculty, staff, administrators) are expected to report incidents of Gender-Based Misconduct to the Title IX Coordinator immediately, though there are some limited exceptions. In order to make informed choices, it is important to be aware of confidentiality and mandatory reporting requirements when consulting campus resources.
On campus, some resources may maintain confidentiality, meaning they are not required to report Gender-Based Misconduct to any NYIT official or outside agency. Other resources exist for students to report crimes and policy violations and will take action when an incident is reported to them (See "Procedures for Reporting" above). The following further describes the disclosure options at NYIT:
- On-campus licensed professional counselors and staff (Counseling and Wellness)
- On-campus health service providers and staff (Academic Health Care Center/Student Health Center)
- Any off campus agencies or counselors
The above-listed individuals will maintain strict confidentiality except in extreme cases of immediate threat or danger or abuse of a minor. Additional information on these resources is provided below under the section entitled, Referrals and Resources.
All employees of NYIT, other than Counseling and Wellness and Academic Health Care Center professionals, are required to promptly report details of incidents disclosed to them to the Title IX Coordinator. Therefore, disclosing parties may want to consider carefully whether they share personally identifiable details with non-confidential employees.
However, even NYIT offices and employees who cannot guarantee confidentiality will maintain a disclosing party's privacy to the greatest extent possible. The information a disclosing party provides to a non-confidential resource will be relayed only as necessary for the institution to investigate and/or seek a resolution. This means information may be shared with investigators, witnesses and the responding party, but the circle of people with this knowledge will be kept as tight as possible to preserve a disclosing party's rights and privacy. But it is important to remember that NYIT cannot guarantee that other parties will not disseminate information on their own.
Generally, climate surveys, classroom writing assignments or discussions, human subjects research, or events such as Take Back the Night marches or speak-outs do not provide notice that must be reported to the Title IX Coordinator by employees, unless the disclosing party clearly indicates that they wish a report to be made. Remedial actions may result from such disclosures without formal institutional action.
Request for Confidentiality
If a disclosing party does not wish for their name to be shared, does not wish for an investigation to take place, or does not want a formal resolution to be pursued, the disclosing party may make such a request to the Title IX Coordinator, who will evaluate that request in light of the duty to ensure the safety of the campus community and comply with federal law.
Declining to consent to an investigation shall be honored unless the institution determines in good faith that failure to investigate does not adequately mitigate a potential risk of harm to the reporting individual or other members of the community.
In weighing such a request, the Title IX Coordinator will consider the following factors:
- Whether the responding party has a history of violent behavior or is a repeat offender;
- Whether the incident represents escalation in unlawful conduct on behalf of the responding party;
- The increased risk that the responding party will commit additional acts of violence;
- Whether the responding party used a weapon or force;
- Whether the disclosing party is a minor; and
- Whether the institution possesses other means to obtain evidence such as security footage, and whether available information reveals a pattern of perpetration at a given location or by a particular group.
Therefore, in cases indicating pattern, predation, threat, weapons and/or violence, NYIT will likely be unable to honor a request for confidentiality. If the institution determines that an investigation is required, it shall notify the disclosing party and take immediate action as necessary to protect and assist them.
In cases where the disclosing party requests confidentiality and the circumstances allow NYIT to honor that request, the institution will offer interim supports and remedies to the disclosing party and the community, but will not otherwise pursue formal action. This means that NYIT's ability to remedy and respond to a reported incident may be limited if the disclosing party does not want the institution to proceed with an investigation and/or wishes to remain anonymous.
Reporting by NYIT
NYIT is required to report incidents of certain crimes that include some forms of Gender-Based Misconduct. These crimes are reported in the school's Annual Security Report. For reporting purposes, parties' identifying information and specifics of the incident will be kept confidential.
NYIT is also required to issue timely warnings of certain crimes that occur at on-campus locations if the crime represents a serious or continuing threat to the campus community. NYIT will ensure that a victim's name and other identifying information is not disclosed, while still providing enough information for community members to make safety decisions in light of the potential danger.
The health and safety of every student at NYIT is of the utmost importance. NYIT recognizes that students who have been drinking and/or using drugs (whether such use is voluntary or involuntary) at the time that Gender-Based Misconduct occurs may be hesitant to report such incidents due to fear of potential consequences for their own conduct. NYIT strongly encourages students to report Gender-Based Misconduct to institution officials. A bystander acting in good faith or a reporting individual acting in good faith that discloses any incident of Gender-Based Misconduct to NYIT officials or law enforcement will not be subject to NYIT's Code of Conduct action for violations of alcohol and/or drug policies occurring at or near the time of the commission of the Gender-Based Misconduct.
Prohibition on Retaliation
No individual will be penalized or retaliated against in any way for his or her participation in the Gender-Based Misconduct investigation or disciplinary process.
Retaliation is defined as any adverse action taken against a person participating in a protected activity because of their participation in that protected activity. Retaliation against an individual alleging Gender-Based Misconduct, supporting a party bringing an allegation, or assisting in providing information relevant to a claim of Gender-Based Misconduct is a serious violation of NYIT policy and will be treated as another possible instance of misconduct. By definition, retaliation does not apply to a responding party, however other Code of Conduct violations may be applicable. Acts of alleged retaliation should be reported immediately to the Title IX Coordinator and will be promptly investigated. NYIT is prepared to take appropriate steps to protect individuals who fear that they may be subjected to retaliation.
Preservation of Evidence
NYIT recognizes that making the decision to report Gender-Based Misconduct often takes time. Nevertheless, pending the decision to report, individuals are strongly encouraged to take immediate steps to preserve all evidence that might support a future report or an investigation by the police, by NYIT, or both.
Such evidence may include:
- A forensic sexual assault examination (See "Immediate Medical Treatment" below) or a medical examination for non-sexual bodily injuries.
- Any clothing, sheets, or other materials (items containing bodily fluids should be stored in cardboard boxes or paper bags).
- Electronic exchanges (e.g., text messages, emails, and Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat or other social media posts, to the extent that they can be captured or preserved).
- Photographs (including photographs stored on smartphones and other devices).
- Voicemail messages and other physical, documentary, and/or electronic data that might be helpful or relevant in an investigation.
- Written account of what happened as close to the event as possible (doing this electronically could help identify the date the document was created).
Immediate Medical Treatment
In cases of sexual assault, victims are advised not to shower, eat, drink, douche or change their clothes, as these activities destroy important physical evidence. They are also encouraged to seek medical attention, even if there are no obvious physical injuries.
A forensic sexual assault examination needs to be performed within the first 72 hours after a sexual assault to collect evidence and to evaluate a person's physical condition. This exam will help maintain a victim's legal options and will also allow the individual to get important preventative treatment and information for pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections, including HIV.
New York State has established Sexual Assault Forensic Examiner programs (SAFE) in hospitals that have specially trained health professionals who will ensure that compassionate, competent, and prompt care is provided, along with the use of advanced technology for evidence collection and preservation. A person may go directly to a center or may seek accompaniment from a victim advocate or from an NYIT official. The exam will be done at no cost to the victim.
North Shore University Hospital
300 Community Dr.
Manhasset, NY 11030
New York City:
Mount Sinai West Hospital
100 10th Ave.
New York, NY 10032
St. Bernard's Regional Medical Center
224 East Matthews
Jonesboro, AR 72401
Referrals and Resources
Counseling and Wellness Services
This office coordinates student mental health services on both the Long Island and New York City campuses. Counselors are available Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.. Counselors can be seen on an emergency basis during office hours, and a counselor is always on call after business hours for emergencies. The on-call counselor can be reached by contacting Campus Security.
Both NYITCOM campuses have their own counseling offices. At the NYITCOM-Arkansas campus, counseling services are provided by the Arkansas State University Counseling Center. The Counseling Center is open 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday and offers daily drop-in hours for students to speak to a counselor without an appointment. After business hours, students can reach an on-call counselor by contacting the Arkansas State Police Department.
Services at all campuses are free and confidential.
Student Activity Center, 3rd Floor
New York City
33 W. 60th St., Room 308
Student Activity Center, Room 318
Student Activity Center, Room 319
Reng Student Services Center, Suite 2203
Academic Health Care Center
Students at the Long Island campus may also visit the Riland Academic Health Care Center located in the first floor of the Riland Building. The hours are Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. The center can be reached at 516.686.1300.
Students at the NYITCOM-Arkansas campus may utilize the Arkansas State University Student Health Center located at 333B Red Wolf Blvd., adjacent to the football stadium. The hours are Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. The center can be reached at 870.972.2054.
Please note neither of these facilities can perform a sexual assault forensic exam.
Other On-Campus Resources
The Office of International Education is available to assist students with concerns related to their visa or immigration status.
Student Activity Center, Room 310
New York City
26 W. 61 St., Room 104
The Office of Financial Aid is available to provide counseling to students regarding the impact of class withdrawals and other schedule and enrollment status changes on their financial aid package.
NYITCOM-Long Island (NYITCOM Students)
Serota Academic Center, 2nd Floor
Long Island (non-NYITCOM Students)
Harry Schure Hall, 1st Floor
New York City (non-NYITCOM Students)
16 West 61st St., 1st Floor
NYITCOM-Arkansas (NYITCOM Students)
Wilson Hall, Student Affairs Suite, Room 220
The following organizations offer free and confidential mental health, victim advocacy, immigration, and legal services (including obtaining orders of protection) for victims of sexual assault, dating and domestic violence, and stalking, among other crimes:
The SAFE Center LI
15 Grumman Rd. W. #1000
Bethpage, NY 11714
24-Hour Crisis Hotline: 516.542.0404
New York City:
Crime Victims Treatment Center
126 W. 60th St.
New York, NY 10023
24-Hour Crisis Hotline: 1.800.621.HOPE
The organizations located in New York State can also help liaise victims with the New York State Office of Victim Services, which provides crime-related compensation for crime victims. Please note that this service requires a police report be filed.
Family Crisis Center of Northeast Arkansas
24 Hour Crisis Hotline: 870.933.9449
Interim and Protective Measures
NYIT will work cooperatively with any student who experiences Gender-Based Misconduct to promote their health, well-being, and physical safety, and to make available accommodations within the educational, living, and/or work environment. Upon learning of an incident of Gender-Based Misconduct involving a member of the NYIT community, the Title IX Coordinator will take immediate steps to ensure the safety and well-being of the reporting party.
When warranted to protect a student, the Title IX Coordinator may implement one or more Interim Measures, if appropriate and/or reasonably available, including but not limited to the following:
- Issuing of no-contact orders to prevent contact between the disclosing party, the responding party, witnesses, and/or third parties to ensure the safety of all parties and the integrity of the process. These orders may be mutual or non-mutual as deemed appropriate by NYIT officials.
- Providing the disclosing party an escort to ensure that they can move safely between classes, work, and/or activities.
- Changing a party's on-campus housing, and providing assistance from NYIT support staff in completing the relocation.
- Rescheduling class work, assignments, and examinations.
- Changing work arrangements or schedules.
- Providing academic support services, which may include alternative options for course completion or withdrawal.
- Providing visa and immigration assistance.
- Providing student financial aid counseling.
- Limiting an individual or organization's access to certain NYIT facilities or activities pending resolution of the matter.
- Interim suspension of a responding party or organization pending resolution of the matter.
Interim suspensions will only be used when in the judgment of the Dean of Students (or the Associate Dean of Student Administration for NYITCOM) and the Title IX Coordinator the safety or well-being of any member(s) of the campus community may be jeopardized by the presence on-campus of the responding party or the ongoing activity of a student organization whose behavior is in question. In all cases in which an interim suspension is imposed, the student or organization will be given the option to meet with the Dean of Students/Associate Dean of Student Administration and/or the Title IX Coordinator prior to such suspension being imposed, or as soon thereafter as reasonably possible, to show cause why the suspension should not be implemented. The Dean of Students/Associate Dean of Student Administration, in consultation with the Title IX Coordinator, will implement or stay an interim suspension and determine its conditions and duration.
When taking interim measures, NYIT will minimize the burden on the disclosing party to the extent practicable. These measures can be requested regardless of whether an individual makes a formal institutional complaint or contacts law enforcement. Some of these measures may also be implemented as protective sanctions if a student is found responsible for a Code of Conduct violation. Failure of students to adhere to the parameters of any interim measure(s) is a violation of this Policy and may lead to additional disciplinary action.
NYIT will maintain as confidential any interim or protective measures, provided confidentiality does not impair NYIT's ability to provide the measures.
Students may also seek an order of protection (sometimes known as a "restraining order"), which is issued by state courts. While NYIT does not issue orders of protection, the institution will assist a member of the community in obtaining an order of protection.
NYIT will also ensure that those impacted by an order of protection understand the availability of an order, the content and parameters of an order, and the consequences for violating an order, including but not limited to arrest, additional conduct charges, and interim suspension.
Campus Security at all campuses will also provide assistance to reporting parties in calling on and assisting local law enforcement in effecting an arrest for violation of an order of protection.
NYIT Conduct Process Procedural Rights
Investigations and student conduct proceedings at NYIT involving Gender-Based Misconduct will be prompt and fair. Additionally, investigations and resolutions will be impartial and will be conducted by NYIT officials who have received annual training.
As set forth fully in the Codes of Conduct, both reporting and responding parties are entitled to a number of rights in the student conduct process. These rights include, but are not limited to: the right to an information meeting with a student conduct officer prior to any hearing or determination of responsibility, the right to have an advisor of choice present at all meetings and conduct hearings, the right to present evidence and witnesses and to review all relevant information in the student conduct file, the right to simultaneous written notice of the outcome and sanctions, and the right to appeal a decision.
Possible sanctions for violation of this policy range from warning to expulsion and include suspension and probation. Additional sanctions may apply. The full range of sanctions are set forth in the Codes of Conduct; however, lower-level sanctions such as a warning will rarely be appropriate in cases of Gender-Based Misconduct.
Generally speaking, NYIT considers Non-Consensual Sexual Penetration violations to be the most serious offenses, and therefore typically imposes the most severe sanctions, including suspension or expulsion. However, NYIT reserves the right to impose any level of sanction for any Gender-Based Misconduct, based on the facts and circumstances of the particular allegation.
In determining an appropriate sanction, the Judicial Body shall consider aggravating factors including but not limited to: (a) any record of past violations, (b) the nature and severity of such past violations, and (c) premeditation/intent to commit a violation. The Judicial Body will also consider whether the sanction will (a) bring an end to the violation in question, (b) reasonably prevent a recurrence of a similar violation, and (c) remedy the effects of the violation on the complainant and the NYIT community.