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Sexual Assault Policy and Procedure

Policy

Massasoit Community College is committed to providing an atmosphere for learning that is free of any conduct that could be considered harassing, abusive or disorderly. In an effort to assure safety to all members of the college community, the procedures set forth on the following pages have been established. Copies of these procedures are available in the offices of the Advisement and Counseling Center, Health Services, Women’s Resource Center, Dean of Student Services and Campus Police.

Sexual assault is a criminal offense and will not be tolerated. Sexual assault includes forcible and non-forcible offenses.

Massasoit Community College is required by the Crime Awareness and Campus Security Act of 1990 and the Higher Education Amendments of 1992 to collect information related to sexual assault on campus. When an allegation of sexual assault is made, the alleged victim is encouraged to pursue criminal prosecution. In addition, appropriate campus disciplinary action may be pursued.

All allegations of sexual assault will be handled confidentially and will be investigated. Both the accuser and the accused will have equal opportunity for a hearing.

Prevention

Massasoit Community College has adopted a pro-action plan with education and awareness programs to prevent these crimes on campus.

The prevention of sexual assault depends in part on the awareness of an individual’s responsibility for crime prevention and personal safety. Information is provided through programs and education which include:

  • Student and employee handbooks
  • Campus media, including the newspaper and newsletters
  • Seminars, workshops, pamphlets and posters addressing specific issues, such as sexual assault, acquaintance rape, sexual harassment, self-protection for men and women.

It is our concern, when a rape or sexual assault is reported to campus authorities, that the victim’s welfare be paramount, and she or he is not victimized again by the system. With this in mind, we have established procedures to follow in the event of a rape or sexual assault on campus.

Procedeures

Campus Police

  1. Campus Police will notify the Director of Health Services x 1450 or the Advisement and Counseling Center x 1461 to provide advocacy and medical attention.
  2. Campus Police will identify a support person for the victim, such as the respondent from the college staff or someone whom the victim chooses and feels comfortable with, to provide support and accompany the victim to the police station, hospital or home.
  3. In case of medical emergency, Campus Police will arrange transportation to the hospital emergency room. The support person may accompany the victim. Medical attention should be encouraged even if the victim does not feel it is necessary, for the person may be in shock or otherwise unable to make such a decision which may be important to future legal action. The victim should be informed of the importance of preserving evidence.
  4. If there is potential for immediate apprehension of the assailant, Campus Police will take appropriate action.
  5. The Chief of Police will be the spokesperson for all media or outside inquiries.

Faculty and Staff

  1. Any faculty or staff member who receives a report of or discovers a possible sexual assault on campus should do the following:
     - Assure the victim of his or her safety and, in emergency situations, move the victim to a safe, private location
     - Do not leave the victim alone and, if possible, send someone else to get additional assistance
     - Immediately report this to the Campus Police x 1296 and the Dean of Student Services x1415. Every effort will be maintained to assure    confidentiality in the investigation of the assault.
  2. The Office of Student Services shall be responsible for ensuring College policies and procedures are followed and shall also determine appropriate College disciplinary action if the alleged perpetrator is a student. Any student or employee who is a victim will be offered information of law enforcement options, mental health services and options for changing academic and/or living situations if requested and available.

Students

  1. Any student who receives a report of or discovers a possible sexual assault on campus should do the following:
      - Assure the victim of his/her safety and, in emergency situations, move the victim to a safe, private location
      - Do not leave the victim alone and, if possible, send someone else to get additional assistance
    Immediately notify the Campus Police x 1296, a faculty member or a staff member
  2. The College may initiate College disciplinary action against the student or employee accused of rape/sexual assault, or other sex offenses, forcible or non-forcible. Possible sanctions which may be imposed following the final determination of an on-campus disciplinary procedure regarding such changes include suspension or dismissal.
  3. The Dean of Student Services shall oversee and implement these decisions for students and ensure the accuser and accused are treated fairly and informed of the outcome of any campus disciplinary proceeding and action.

See Disclosure of Student Disciplinary Records for further information.

CAMPUS SEXUAL ASSAULT VICTIM INFORMATION

1. Whom To Contact

In the event that you are the victim of sexual assault on campus, find yourself a place of safety. Once safe, call one or more of the following:

  • Campus Police x 1296 from a college phone, anytime day or night and weekends. If you are off Campus, call (508)-588-9100 x 1041
  • Local Police (911)
  • A friend
  • Rape Crisis Hotline (508)-588-8255
  • Brockton Hospital (508)-941-7000
  • Health Services x 1450*
  • Advisement & Counseling Center x 1460*
    * Monday through Friday or after 5:00 p.m., call Campus Police x 1296

2. The Importance of a Medical Examination

For purposes of ensuring your own physical health, as well as successful apprehension and prosecution of your attacker (if desired/warranted), it is very important that you promptly go or be sent to a nearby hospital emergency room to be examined. As awkward or uncomfortable as it may be, you should not change your clothing or bathe prior to this examination. At this time you may want to be tested and treated for any injuries you have sustained and also be tested for the presence of any sexually transmitted diseases.

Be aware that it is your right to have a trained rape counselor accompany you throughout all or any part of the medical examination. The counselor is there to provide support and answer any questions you have. The information you share privately with the counselor is confidential. Seeing the doctor and having an evidentiary “rape kit” completed does not mean you must prosecute your attacker, but it does significantly increase the potential for success if you choose to do so.

If possible, either bring a change of clothing with you to the hospital or have someone do so for you, as your clothing worn during the assault should be collected by the medical team.

3. Protecting Yourself Following A Sexual Assault

After a sexual assault has occurred, it is extremely important to provide for your personal safety. If you know or fear that your attacker knows your whereabouts, you may want to make temporary arrangements to stay elsewhere. Restraining orders preventing your attacker from contacting you are available through the court system. Although you must request the order (with or without the assistance of an attorney), rape crisis counselors can help you fill out the required paperwork at the police station. Counselors can also refer you to appropriate support agencies and shelters, if desired.

4. Recovery

It is important to remember that sexual assault can happen to anyone. Sexual violence is not the victim’s fault. However, victims frequently experience confusing and deeply troubling feelings following an attack. It is important not to hold such feelings in. Talk to a trusted friend or relative and seek appropriate professional counseling. Rape Crisis Centers offer 24 hour hotlines and these conversations are completely confidential. You can talk to the counselors about anything. They are there to listen and to help answer questions about police proceedings, legal issues, medical procedures, counseling options, and many other topics.

REMEMBER, if you have been sexually assaulted, you need to take appropriate steps toward physical and emotional recovery.

Definitions:
Forcible sex offenses are defined as “any sexual act directed against another person, forcible and/or against that person’s will; or not forcibly or against the person’s will when the victim is incapable of giving consent. Forcible offenses include:

  1. Forcible Rape: the carnal knowledge of a person forcibly and against that person’s will; or not forcibly or against the person’s will where the victim is incapable of giving consent.
  2. Forcible Sodomy: oral or anal sexual intercourse with another person, forcibly and/or against the person’s will; or not forcibly or against the person’s will where the victim is incapable of giving consent because of his/her youth or because of his/her temporary or permanent mental or physical incapacity.
  3. Sexual Assault with an Object: to use an object or instrument to unlawfully penetrate, however slightly, the genital or anal opening of the body of another person, forcibly and/or against the person’s will; or not forcibly or against the person’s will where the victim is incapable of giving consent because of his/her youth or because of his/her temporary or permanent mental or physical incapacity.
  4. Forcible Fondling: the touching of the private body part of another person for the purpose of sexual gratification, forcibly and/or against that person’s will; or not forcibly or against the person’s will where the victim is incapable of giving consent because of his/her youth or because of his/her temporary or permanent mental incapacity.

Non-forcible sex offenses may include:

  1. Incest: nonforcible sexual intercourse between persons who are related to each other within the degrees wherein marriage is prohibited by law.
  2. Statutory Rape: nonforcible sexual intercourse with a person who is under the statutory age of consent.
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