Advisor – A person whom Complainants and Respondents are entitled to have with them anytime they participate in the investigation and resolution process who is there to provide support throughout the process. The Advisor may observe the proceedings and provide guidance to their Party. In hearings, the Advisor conducts cross-examination on behalf of the Complainant or the Respondent.
Complainant – The individual(s) who is alleged to be the victim of conduct that could constitute prohibited conduct under the Gender Equity Policy.
Consent – Consent is an act or statement that is knowing, freely given, and mutually understood to communicate a willingness to engage in the activity. It is the responsibility of each person involved in any sexual act to ensure that they have the Consent of the other(s).
- The existence of a dating or sexual relationship between the people involved, or the existence of a past sexual encounter, is not by itself an indication of Consent for any current or future sexual encounter.
- Consent cannot be obtained by force, threat, Coercion, or by causing a reasonable fear of imminent injury.
- For sexual activity to be consensual, Consent must be ongoing throughout the sexual encounter. A person can withdraw Consent at any time. Consent to one sexual act does not automatically constitute Consent to another sexual act.
- A person withdraws Consent by clearly communicating withdrawal through words or actions.
- Consent to engage in sexual activity with one person does not automatically constitute Consent to engage in sexual activity with another person.
- Lack of protest or resistance, alone, is not Consent.
- A person who is Incapacitated cannot give Consent.
Dating Violence – Violence committed by a person who is or has been in a social relationship of a romantic or intimate nature with the victim. The existence of such a relationship shall be determined based on the reporting party’s statement and with consideration of the length of the relationship, the type of relationship, and the frequency of interaction between the persons involved in the relationship.
- This includes but is not limited to sexual or physical abuse or the threat of such abuse.
- This does include acts covered under the definition of domestic violence
Domestic Violence – Felony or misdemeanor crime of violence committed by:
- a current or former spouse or intimate partner of the victim; or
- by a person whom the victim shares a child in common; or
- by a person who is cohabitating with, or has cohabitated with, the victim as a spouse or intimate partner; or
- by a partner similarly situated to a spouse of the victim under the domestic or family violence laws of the jurisdiction in which the crime of violence occurred; or
- by any other person against an adult or youth victim who is protected from that person’s acts under the domestic or family violence laws of the jurisdiction in which the crime of violence occurred
Formal Complaint – A document filed by a Complainant (meaning a document or electronic submission (such as by electronic mail) that contains the Complainant’s physical or digital signature, or otherwise indicates that the Complainant is the individual filing the Formal Complaint) alleging misconduct against a Respondent and requesting that the University investigate the allegation of prohibited conduct. A Formal Complaint may be filed with the University Title IX Coordinator in person, by mail, or by electronic mail, by using the contact information provided in the Gender Equity Policy, and by any additional method identified in this Policy. Formal Complaint also refers to a document signed by the University Title IX Coordinator alleging misconduct against a Respondent. Where the University Title IX Coordinator signs a Formal Complaint, the University Title IX Coordinator is not a Complainant or otherwise a Party.
Gender-Based Discrimination – Discrimination that involves treating someone unfavorably because of that person’s sexual orientation or gender identity.
Gender-Based Harassment – A wide range of offensive behaviors (verbal or non-verbal actions of aggression, intimidation, and hostility) based on gender, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, and gender expression. These behaviors do not need to be of a sexual nature but must place the receiving person in reasonable fear of physical harm, or objectively disrupt or interfere with their employment, education, or other activities related to their role at the University.
Informal Resolution – Informal Resolution is an alternative to a Formal Investigation that may be used to address allegations of Gender Equity Policy violation(s). The objective of Informal Resolution is to empower the individual parties to successfully navigate through a resolution on their terms, communicate healthily and effectively, and learn the importance of healthy relationships.
Investigative Report – The report that is generated at the conclusion of an investigation into allegations of prohibited conduct that violated the Gender Equity Policy.
Non-Consensual Intimate Touching – Any unwelcome intentional sexual touching of another, which does not constitute sexual violence, without the consent of the other person or in circumstances in which the person is unable, due to incapacitation, to give consent.
Non-Consensual Sexual Penetration – A category of sexual assault defined as any anal, vaginal, or oral penetration with an object or body part by a person(s) upon another person, without the consent of the other person or in circumstances in which the person is unable, due to incapacitation, to give consent.
Officials with Authority – An employee of the University who has the ability to implement corrective measures on behalf of the institution. Officials with Authority must report gender equity violations to the Title IX Coordinator or their deputies. The obligation to report applies whenever an Official with Authority receives, in the course and scope of employment, information about the alleged misconduct and Policy violation. The report must include all information known to the employee that would be relevant to an investigation or redress of the incident, including whether the alleged victim has expressed a desire for confidentiality.
Party or Parties – Refer to the Complainant(s) and the Respondent(s).
Pregnancy Discrimination – Unfavorable treatment due to pregnancy or parental status.
Preponderance of Evidence – The burden of proof that applies under this Policy, which means that the evidence presented supports the finding that it is more likely than not that the Respondent violated the Gender Equity Policy. The burden of proof is on the University.
Quid Pro Quo Harassment – An employee of the University conditioning the provision of an aid, benefit, or service of the University on an individual’s participation in unwelcome sexual conduct;
Relationship Violence – Relationship Violence encompasses both dating and domestic violence. Dating violence is violence or a threat of harm between people who have or have had a relationship of a romantic or intimate nature, not living together in the same household. Domestic violence is violence or a threat of harm between family members or individuals living in the same household.
Report – Information brought to the attention of an Official with Authority alleging conduct prohibited under the Gender Equity Policy; a Report is not considered to be a Formal Complaint. A Party may bring a Report and then subsequently file a Formal Complaint.
Respondent – The individual(s) alleged to be the perpetrator of conduct that may constitute prohibited conduct under the Gender Equity Policy.
Retaliation – Any adverse action or behavior (or attempted adverse action or behavior) imposed against an individual as a result of their participation/ involvement in an investigation. To be retaliatory, the action or behavior must have a materially adverse effect on an individual’s employment, academics, living environment, or mental well-being. Allegations of retaliation should be immediately reported to the Title IX Coordinator; any individual responsible for retaliation will be subject to disciplinary action.
Sexual Assault – A form of sexual misconduct that includes a broad range of sexual acts that are unwanted by one party and do not have the knowing consent of all parties involved. Sexual Assault can be categorized as either Non-consensual Intimate touching or Non-consensual Sexual Penetration. Specific types of Sexual Assault include (but are not limited to): forcible touching, kissing, fondling, oral copulation, and intimate partner violence.
Please note that the Title IX definition of sexual assault is more specific. All instances of sexual assault are addressed in the UF Gender Equity Policy through procedures that ensure adherence to both the Title IX regulations and the institutional efforts to address all sexual-based misconduct and relationship violence.
Sexual Exploitation – Taking non-consensual sexual advantage of an individual for the purpose of sexual gratification, financial gain, retribution, personal advantage, or any other illegitimate purpose. Examples include (but are not limited to) the following: observing, photographing, recording, or streaming another individual’s identifiable nudity, private parts, or sexual activity without their knowledge or consent – or – allowing another to observe, photograph, record or stream consensual sexual activity without the knowledge or consent of those in the act, causing or attempting to cause the incapacitation of another for the purpose of taking sexual advantage, distributing sexually explicit materials of another without their consent and/or the consent of the recipient, and knowingly exposing another to a sexually transmitted infection/disease without their knowledge/consent.
Sexual Harassment – Unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, or other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature directed at a person that places another person in reasonable fear of physical harm, or objectively disrupts employment, education, research, living, or other activities.
Please note that the Title IX definition of sexual harassment is more specific. All instances of sexual harassment are addressed in the UF Gender Equity Policy through procedures that ensure adherence to both the Title IX regulations and the institutional efforts to address all sexual-based misconduct and relationship violence
Sexual Violence – Any sexual act perpetrated against a person’s will, including but not limited to the use of physical force or threats, or in circumstances in which the person is unable, due to Incapacitation, to give Consent. Acts falling into the category of sexual violence include but are not limited to non-consensual sexual intercourse.
Stalking/Cyberstalking – A course of conduct committed with the intent to kill, injure, harass, or intimidate another person that either place the person in reasonable fear of the death of, or serious bodily injury to, that person, an immediate family member, a spouse or an intimate partner of that person; or causes, attempts to cause, or would be reasonably expected to cause substantial emotional distress to a person listed above.
Substantiated – The information gathered through the investigation supports a finding that the Respondent has violated the Gender Equity Policy, by a preponderance of the evidence.
Supportive Measures – Non-disciplinary, non-punitive individualized services offered as appropriate, as reasonably available, and without fee or charge to Parties before or after the filing of a Formal Complaint or where no Formal Complaint has been filed. Supportive Measures are designed to restore or preserve equal access to the University’s education programs or activities without unreasonably burdening the other Party, including measures designed to protect the safety of all Parties or the University’s educational and work environment or deter conduct prohibited under the Policy.
Unsubstantiated, Inconclusive – The information gathered through the investigation does not allow for the establishment of facts or supported conclusions necessary to render a finding that misconduct occurred (i.e., a lack of information prevents the investigator from making a conclusive finding), by the preponderance of the evidence.
Unsubstantiated, No Misconduct – The information gathered through the investigation supports the finding that no violation of the Policy occurred (i.e., sufficient information exists for the investigator to conclude that the alleged misconduct did not occur).