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Investigating and Resolving Reports of Student Violations of the Policy

Offices Services / Handbooks & Policies / Anti-Harassment and Non-Discrimination Policy / Investigating and Resolving Reports of Student Violations of the Policy
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The University offers both informal (mediation) and formal (formal adjudication) procedures for promptly investigating and resolving reports of student violations of the Policy in a fair, unbiased and impartial manner. Mediation is not appropriate for certain cases, such as alleged sexual assaults, even on a voluntary basis.

All investigations, whether resolved by informal or formal means, will be conducted as expeditiously as possible and normally will be completed within sixty (60) calendar days after receipt of the report, except where the Complainant agrees that a longer period of time would be appropriate, or circumstances require it. If and when an extension of the timeframe is required for good cause, written notice will be provided to the Complainant and Responding Party of the delay and the reason for the delay. If a Complainant and/or Responding Party withdraws from the University at any stage of the formal investigation, the University will continue its process as outlined in this Policy.

Mediation is an informal, voluntary process that allows the Complainant and Responding Party involved in an alleged report of discrimination or harassment to discuss their respective understandings of the incident with each other through the assistance of a trained mediator. Mediation is designed to encourage each person to be honest and direct with the other and to accept personal responsibility where appropriate. Mediation is only offered as an option if both the Complainant and Responding Party are students at Rider University. If either student is less than 18 years of age, the University may require that the minor student’s parent consent in writing to the student’s participation in the mediation. Mediation is not appropriate for certain cases, such as alleged sexual assaults, even on a voluntary basis.

Formal Adjudication is the formal process for investigating reports of student violations of the Policy. A report is formally adjudicated when it involves sexual assault, when the discrimination or harassment report has not been addressed as a result of mediation, or if either the Complainant or Responding Party requests referral to Formal Adjudication as described below. Formal adjudication involves a fact-finding investigation along with a hearing or other related decision-making process to determine if the alleged incident occurred and what actions the University must take in response. A formal investigation is initiated by the Title IX Coordinator (or designee) as the first step in the process.