Sexual Assault Policy

The University recognizes that Sexual Assault can occur between individuals regardless of sexual orientation, gender, gender identity and/or relationship status. The University also recognizes that individuals who have experienced Sexual Assault may experience mental, physical, academic and/or other difficulties. The University is committed to:

  • Supporting those who have experienced sexual assault by providing information, referral to counselling and medical care and appropriate accommodations ;
  • Ensuring that those who disclose that they have experienced Sexual Assault are supported and treated with compassion, dignity and respect throughout the process of disclosure and institutional response;
  • Respecting the privacy of individuals who disclose Sexual Assault and recognize that those individuals are the final decision-makers about their own best interests subject to the limits of confidentiality (as per section 2.16 of the Sexual Assault policy);
  • Coordinating and communicating among the various departments who are most likely to be involved in the response to Sexual Assault affecting the University Community and implementing interim measures, while ensuring that fairness and due process are respected;
  • Engaging in education, awareness and prevention activities;
  • Providing information to the University Community about Sexual Assault on campus;
  • Providing appropriate education and training to the University Community about responding to the disclosure of Sexual Assault.

Role of the Office of Human Rights and Conflict Management
The Human Rights and Conflict Management Officer or Advisor will provide information and assistance if you have a concern regarding Sexual Assault.  The staff will assist in resolving your concern informally, and refer you to various other supports and services and provide you with information on the formal complaint process. 

What is Sexual Assault?
Sexual Assault is the intentional sexual touching of another person with any object or body part without consent or by force.

What is Consent?
Consent is the voluntary agreement of a person to engage in a sexual activity. Consent is NOT present where a person submits or does not resist sexual activity because of:

  • The use or threat of force;
  • The use of fraud or blackmail;
  • The exercise of authority position of trust or power;
  • Agreement to the sexual activity being given by someone other than the person involved in the activity;
  • The person not being able to consent to the sexual activity because of age, mental incapacity, or the influence of drugs or alcohol; or
  • The person, having previously consented to sexual activity, withdraws their consent to continue the activity.

Accommodation
The University recognizes that individuals who have experienced Sexual Assault may experience mental, physical, academic and/or other difficulties.  The University will provide reasonable accommodations for students (e.g.: deferred exams) and staff (e.g.: work accommodations in consultation with human resources) who are affected by Sexual Assault.

Safety Plans
The process of dealing with a Sexual Assault may involve interim measures to ensure safety of all involved while a response is built and implemented.  In a case of an allegation of Sexual Assault, a safety plan will be put in place to prevent further danger to the person assaulted, and to the University Community.

Confidentiality
Confidentiality is particularly important to those who have disclosed Sexual Assault. The confidentiality of all persons involved in a report of Sexual Assault must be strictly observed, and the University will respect the confidentiality of all persons whenever possible. 

Where possible, a person who has experienced Sexual Assault will retain control over the process of reporting a Sexual Assault.  However, the University has an obligation to protect the University Community from harm.  If the University takes action in this way, efforts will be made to preserve the anonymity of the person who experienced the Sexual Assault. Further, the person who experienced the Sexual Assault will be notified of actions the University intends to take so that person can work with the University on safety precautions.