Judicial Process for Reports of Sexual Assault, Domestic Violence, Dating Violence, Stalking, Discrimination, Harassment, and Retaliation

Policy Statement

The CSU is committed to maintaining an inclusive community that values diversity and fosters tolerance and mutual respect. All Students have the right to participate fully in CSU programs and activities free from unlawful Discrimination, Harassment and Retaliation. The CSU prohibits Harassment of any kind, including Sexual Harassment and Sexual Misconduct, Domestic Violence, Dating Violence, and Stalking. Such behavior violates both law and University policy. The University shall respond promptly and effectively to all reports of Discrimination, Harassment and Retaliation, and shall take appropriate action to prevent, correct, and when necessary, discipline behavior that violates this policy.

The CSU strives to be free of all forms of unlawful Discrimination, Harassment and Retaliation. This policy is established in compliance with the California Equity in Higher Education Act (Education Code § 66250 et seq.), Title IX, VAWA/Campus SaVE Act, Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, and the Age Discrimination Act of 1975, among other applicable state and federal laws. It is CSU policy that no Student shall, on the basis of any Protected Status, be unlawfully excluded from participation in, or be denied the benefits of, any CSU program or activity. Nor shall a Student be otherwise subjected to unlawful Discrimination, Harassment, or Retaliation for exercising any of his/her rights.

Except as noted below, any Campus community member who knows or has reason to know of allegations or acts that violate this policy, shall promptly inform the DHR Administrator or Title IX Coordinator (where the allegations involve Sex Discrimination, Sexual Harassment or Sexual Misconduct). Except as noted below, Employees are required to disclose the name of a possible victim of Sexual Misconduct to the Title IX Coordinator even where the victim has requested that his/her name remain confidential; the Title IX Coordinator will determine whether confidentiality is appropriate given the circumstances of each such incident as set forth in Executive Order 1095.

The following persons are not required to report any information about an incident of Sexual Violence:

  • physicians; psychotherapists; professional, licensed counselors; and clergy who work on or off campus, and who provide medical or mental health treatment or counseling (including those who act in that role under their supervision); and
  • sexual assault and domestic violence counselors and advocates who work or volunteer on or off campus in sexual assault centers, victim advocacy offices, women’s centers, and health centers (including those who act in that role under their supervision, along with non-professional counselors or advocates who work or volunteer in sexual assault centers, victim advocacy offices, women’s centers or health centers), without the victim’s consent; and
  • The Fresno State Police are not required to report any personally-identifiable information about a victim of Sexual Misconduct, if the victim requests confidentiality, but must report the facts of the incident, including the identity of the perpetrator (if known).

Employees and Students who violate this policy shall be subject to discipline. If employee discipline is appropriate, it shall be administered in a manner consistent with applicable collective bargaining agreements, CSU policies, and legal requirements. Student discipline shall be administered in accordance with 5 Cal. Code Regs. § 41301 and Executive Order 1098, or any superseding executive order, if applicable. 

Policy Implementation and Communication

Each Campus president shall designate a DHR Administrator who shall be responsible for the implementation of, and compliance with, this policy. The DHR Administrator is responsible for publicizing this policy within CO Executive Order 1097, developing campus training policies consistent with this Executive Order, conducting training, and establishing an administrative structure consistent with this Executive Order that facilitates the prevention and elimination of Discrimination, Harassment and Retaliation, including Sex Discrimination, Sexual Harassment, Sexual Misconduct, Domestic Violence, Dating Violence and Stalking. Each Campus shall make the contact information for the DHR Administrator and Title IX Coordinator available to all members of the campus community as well as Third Parties. The contact information shall be updated, as necessary.

The requirements for training to promote awareness of CSU policies against Sex Discrimination, Sexual Harassment, Sexual Misconduct, Domestic Violence, Dating Violence, and Stalking, are set forth in Executive Order 1095.

This Executive Order shall be made readily available to all Students, CSU employees, and Third Parties, utilizing multiple media of communication, including Student orientations and catalogs, new employee orientations, Campus websites and publications, and the Division of Student Affairs and Enrollment Management, Student Conduct, Services for Students with Disabilities, Auxiliary Service Organizations, Continuing and Global Education, and Human Resources.

Complaint Procedures

The CSU has adopted and published complaint procedures that provide for prompt and equitable resolution of Sex Discrimination complaints, including Sexual Misconduct, Sexual Harassment, Domestic Violence, Dating Violence, and Stalking.

Complaints Made by Students

Executive Order 1097, entitled “Systemwide Policy Prohibiting Discrimination, Harassment, and Retaliation, Sexual Misconduct, Dating and Domestic Violence, and Stalking Against Students and Systemwide Procedure for Addressing  Such Complaints by Students” is the appropriate systemwide procedure for all complaints of Sex Discrimination, Sexual Harassment, Sexual Misconduct, Sexual Violence, Domestic Violence, Dating Violence, and Stalking made by CSU students against the CSU, a CSU employee, another CSU student, or a third party. See Executive Order 1097.

Complaints Made by Employees, Former Employees, Third Parties, and Applicants for Employment

Executive Order 1096, entitled Systemwide Policy Prohibiting Discrimination, Harassment and Retaliation, Sexual Misconduct, Dating and Domestic Violence, and Stalking Against Employees and Third Parties and Systemwide Procedure for Addressing Such Complaints by Employees and Third Parties” is the appropriate systemwide procedure for all complaints of Sex Discrimination, Sexual Harassment, Sexual Misconduct, Domestic Violence, Dating Violence, and Stalking made by employees and former employees against the CSU, another CSU employee, a CSU student or a third party. Employees covered by a collective bargaining agreement that provides a grievance procedure for raising allegations of Sex Discrimination or Sexual Harassment, including Sexual Misconduct, Domestic Violence, Dating Violence, and Stalking shall use the grievance procedure specified in their collective bargaining agreement. See Executive Order 1096.

Complaints Made by Student Employees

Executive Order 1096 is the appropriate systemwide procedure for all complaints of Sex Discrimination, including Sexual Harassment or Sexual Misconduct, Dating and Domestic Violence, and Stalking, made by student-employees where the alleged Sex Discrimination, Sexual Harassment, Sexual Misconduct, Domestic Violence, Dating Violence, and Stalking arose out of the person’s status as an employee and not his/her status as a student. See Executive Order 1096.

Complaints Made by Third Parties

Executive Order 1096 is the appropriate systemwide procedure for all complaints of Sex Discrimination, including Sexual Harassment or Sexual Misconduct, Dating and Domestic Violence, and Stalking filed by third parties against the CSU, a CSU employee or a CSU student. See Executive Order 1096.

Regardless of whether an employee, a student or a third party ultimately files a complaint under the applicable complaint procedure, if the University knows or has reason to know about possible Sex Discrimination, Sexual Harassment, Sexual Misconduct, Domestic Violence, Dating Violence, and Stalking, it must review the matter to determine if an investigation is warranted. When warranted, all such investigations must be prompt, thorough and impartial. The University must then take appropriate steps to eliminate the Sex Discrimination, Sexual Harassment, Sexual Misconduct, Domestic Violence, Dating Violence, and/or Stalking, prevent its recurrence, and remedy its effects.

Employee Disciplinary Procedures

The following is the appropriate systemwide procedure for complaints of Sex Discrimination, Sexual Harassment, Sexual Misconduct, Domestic Violence, Dating Violence, and Stalking made by employees and former employees against the CSU, another CSU employee, a CSU student or a third party. See Executive Order 1096.

Investigation Process

Campuses will investigate Complaints of Discrimination, Harassment, Retaliation, Sexual Misconduct, Dating or Domestic Violence, or Stalking unless an Early Resolution is reached, whether or not a written complaint is submitted. The DHR Administrator, Kirsten Corey or the Title IX Coordinator, Erin Boele, will determine whether to open an investigation after making a preliminary inquiry into the allegations. An investigation may not proceed when the reported information is insufficient.

In cases where the Complainant does not want to pursue an investigation, the DHR Administrator/Title IX Coordinator should inform the Complainant that the ability to take corrective action may be limited. The Campus may determine that circumstances warrant initiating an investigation even if a Complaint has not been filed and independent of the intent or wishes of the Complainant. In cases involving Sexual Misconduct, Dating or Domestic Violence, or Stalking, when determining whether to go forward with an investigation, the Title IX Coordinator should consider the seriousness of the allegation(s), the age of the Complainant, whether there have been other Complaints against the Respondent, and the risk to the Campus community if the Responder’s alleged conduct remains unaddressed.

Intake Interview

The DHR Administrator/Title IX Coordinator shall meet with the Complainant as soon as possible, but no later than 10 working days after the Complaint was received. The Complainant shall make him/herself available for this meeting.

Complaint Accepted for Investigation

The DHR Administrator/Title IX Coordinator will review all written Complaints and the information received during the intake interview. If the DHR Administrator or the Title IX Coordinator determines that the Complaint falls within the scope of the Executive Order, s/he will notify the Complainant within 10 working days that the complaint has been accepted for investigation and the time line for completion of the investigation. If the DHR Administrator/Title IX Coordinator determines the complaint does not fall within the scope of this Executive Order, she will provide the Complainant with written notice of this determination within 10 working days. The DHR Administrator/Title IX Coordinator will also inform the Complainant that if additional information is provided, the Complaint will be reviewed again. The DHR Administrator/Title IX Coordinator will maintain a record of the Complaint and the reasons the Complaint was deemed not within the scope of this Executive Order.

The DHR Administrator/Title IX Coordinator shall determine whether the Complaint should be processed through another Campus office or University procedure available to the Complainant. If appropriate, the DHR Administrator/Title IX Coordinator shall direct the Complainant to that procedure as soon as possible.

Investigation Procedure

The DHR Administrator/Title IX Coordinator shall promptly investigate the Complaint or assign this task to another investigator on a case-by-case basis. If assigned to another investigator, the DHR Administrator/Title IX Coordinator shall monitor, supervise, and oversee all such delegated tasks, including reviewing all investigation reports before they are final to ensure that the investigation was sufficient, appropriate, impartial, and in compliance with this Executive Order.

The Complainant and the Respondent shall have equal opportunities to present relevant witnesses and evidence in connection with the investigation. Upon inquiry, the Complainant and Respondent shall be advised of the status of the investigation.

Before reaching a final conclusion or issuing a final investigation report, the investigator shall have:

  • Advised the Parties or have offered to do so, verbally or in writing, of any evidence upon which the findings will be based
  • Given the Parties an opportunity to respond to the evidence, including presenting further relevant evidence, information or arguments that could affect the outcome.

The investigator will not reach a final conclusion or issue an investigation report until giving careful consideration to any such relevant evidence, information or arguments provided by the Parties. The investigator retains discretion and authority to determine relevance.

The investigation shall be completed no later than 60 working days after the intake interview, unless the time line has been extended. The time line should not be extended for a period longer than an additional 30 working days from the original due date.

On occasion, a criminal investigation may be initiated by a law enforcement agency over the same allegations that are reported in a Complaint filed under this policy. A pending (campus or local) police investigation is a separate investigation and it does not relieve a Campus of its responsibility to timely investigate Complaints under this policy. Thus, a Campus is not obligated to wait until the conclusion of a police investigation to commence its own investigation. Although it may be necessary to temporarily delay the investigation while the police are gathering evidence, once notified that the police have completed the fact gathering portion of their investigation, the Campus must promptly resume and complete its own investigation.

Notice of Investigation Outcome

Within 10 working days of issuance of the final investigation report, the DHR Administrator/Title IX Coordinator shall notify the Complainant and Respondent in writing of the outcome of the investigation. The notice shall include a summary of the allegations, the investigative process, the Preponderance of Evidence standard, the evidence considered, the findings of fact, a determination as to whether this Executive Order was violated, and if so, any Remedies to be afforded to the Complainant. The notice shall advise the Complainant and Respondent of their right to file an appeal under this Executive Order and to request a copy of the final investigation report with exhibits/attachments, if any, redacted as appropriate. The notice shall be delivered to the Parties in a manner which guarantees delivery within 2 working days (email delivery is acceptable). Where a Complaint is made against a Student and this Executive Order is found to have been violated, the DHR Administrator/Title IX Coordinator shall also notify the Campus Student Conduct Administrator of the investigation outcome, and provide a copy of the investigation report. Where the Respondent is an Employee, Human Resources or Academic/Faculty Affairs shall be notified and provided a copy of the investigative report.

Appeal Review – Office of the Chancellor

Any Complainant or Respondent who is not satisfied with a Campus investigation outcome may file an appeal with the Chancellor’s Office no later than ten working days after the date of the Notice of Investigation Outcome. The appeal shall be in writing and shall be based on one or more of the following appeal issues:

  1. The Investigation Outcome is unsupported by the evidence, based on the Preponderance of the Evidence Standard.
  2. Prejudicial procedural errors impacted the investigation outcome to such a degree that the investigation did not comply with this Executive Order.
  3. New evidence arose that was not available at the time of the investigation.

The issues and evidence raised on appeal shall be limited to those raised and identified during the investigation, unless new evidence becomes available after the Campus investigation process and is made part of the appeal by the appealing party. The Chancellor’s Office (CO) may conduct an interview, at their discretion, with the appealing party to clarify the written appeal. Appeals shall be addressed to: Equal Opportunity and Whistleblower Compliance Unit Systemwide Human Resources Office of the Chancellor, 401 Golden Shore, 4th Floor, Long Beach, California 90802, or emailed to the Equal Opportunity and Whistleblower Compliance Unit.

The CO shall provide prompt written acknowledgement of the receipt of the appeal to the appealing party, and will provide written notification of the appeal to the other party and the Campus DHR Administrator or Title IX Coordinator.

The CO will provide reasonable accommodations to any party or witness in the appeal process with a qualified Disability upon request by the person needing the accommodation. A reasonable accommodation may include an extension under these procedures. The time frame for the CO appeal Response will automatically be adjusted for the time needed, if any, to provide reasonable accommodations.

The CO review will not involve a new investigation by the CO and will not consider evidence that was not introduced during the Campus investigation, unless the new evidence was not available at the time of the Campus investigation process. The CO may make reasonable inquiries to determine if the new evidence could have affected the investigation determination. If the new CO review determines the investigation should be reopened to cure any defects in the investigation and/or consider new evidence introduced for the first time on appeal (that could have affected the investigation determination), the investigation will be remanded back to the Campus and the investigation reopened at the Campus level.

The CO will return the matter to the Campus and will specify in writing the time line by which a reopened investigation must be completed. The CO will notify the Parties of the reopening of the investigation and the time line for completion of the reopened investigation. The Campus will complete the reopened investigation and provide the CO with an amended investigation report. The Campus will also provide the Parties with amended Notices of Investigation Outcome, and such Notices will provide the Parties the opportunity to appeal any new or amended findings, in accordance with this Executive Order. Upon receipt of the amended investigation report, the CO will contact the appealing party to determine whether that party wishes to continue with the appeal.

The CO shall respond to the appealing party no later than 30 working days after receipt of the written appeal unless the time line has been extended.

The CO Appeal Response shall include a summary of the issues raised on appeal, a summary of the evidence considered, the Preponderance of Evidence standard, and the determinations reached regarding the issues identified within the written appeal. A copy of the final CO Appeal Response shall be forwarded to the Complainant and Respondent, as well as the Campus DHR Administrator or the Title IX Coordinator.

The CO Appeal Response is final and concludes the Complaint and CO review process under this Executive Order.

Potential Sanctions For Employees

Employees may be subject to disciplinary action under applicable personnel policies or collective bargaining agreements. Possible sanctions the University may impose are:

  • Written reprimand in personnel file
  • Reduction in salary
  • Temporary or permanent demotion
  • Unpaid Suspension
  • Denial or curtailment of emeritus status
  • Dismissal from the employ of the University
  • Mandated education
  • Change in work location
  • Restrictions from all or portions of campus
  • Restrictions to scope of work

Potential Sanctions for Students

Possible sanctions to be imposed following the final determination of an on-campus disciplinary procedure regarding Sexual Misconduct, Domestic Violence, Dating Violence, or Stalking, may be one or any combination of the following:

  • Expulsion from the University
  • Suspension
  • Denial of Access to Campus and/or Specific Persons
  • Loss of Financial Aid
  • Restitution
  • Other educational or remedial sanctions intended to discourage similar misconduct, or as deemed appropriate based on the nature of the violation.

Student Disciplinary Proceedings

The following procedures govern all student disciplinary matters systemwide involving allegations of Sexual Misconduct, Dating or Domestic Violence, or Stalking. See Executive Order 1098.

Title IX Coordinator

The Title IX Coordinator (or designee) is responsible for investigating Complaints of Gender Discrimination, Harassment and Retaliation, including Sex Discrimination and Sexual Harassment, as well as Complaints of Sexual Misconduct, Domestic and Dating Violence, and Stalking. (See Executive Orders 1095, 1096, 1097.) In accordance with Executive Orders 1096 and 1097, the Title IX Coordinator, Erin Boele, in the University Courtyard at 559.278.2677, investigates those Complaints, determines whether a student violated the Student Conduct Code, and prepares a report that includes findings of facts and conclusions about whether the student violated the Student Conduct Code. Unless the determination is appealed as provided in Executive Order 1097, it is final and binding in all subsequent proceedings.

Complaint/Investigation/Findings

Complaints by Students against Students shall be investigated according to the procedures set forth in Executive Order 1097. The DHR Administrator/Title IX Coordinator shall notify the Student Conduct Administrator of the status of any such complaint, including any appeal to the Chancellor’s Office (CO), as well as the investigation results (including findings, conclusions, and any Interim Remedies afforded Complainant). Where the investigative report finds a violation or a finding of a violation is sustained after appeal, the Student Conduct Administrator will initiate student conduct proceedings. The Student Conduct Administrator and the DHR Administrator/Title IX Coordinator will consult with respect to appropriate Sanctions and Remedies.

Complaints by California State University (CSU) employees or Third Parties (e.g., vendors, auxiliary employees, or campus visitors) against students shall be investigated according to the procedures set forth in Executive Order 1096. The DHR Administrator or the Title IX Coordinator shall notify the Student Conduct Administrator of the status of any such complaint, including any appeal to the CO, as well as the investigation results (including findings, conclusions, and any Interim Remedies afforded to the Complainant). Where the investigative report finds a violation or the finding of a violation is sustained after appeal, the Student Conduct Administrator will initiate student conduct proceedings. The Student Conduct Administrator and the DHR Administrator/Title IX Coordinator will consult with respect to appropriate Sanctions and Remedies.

Unless the CO notifies the Campus that an appeal has been filed, investigative findings pursuant to Executive Orders 1096 or 1097 become final 11 working days after the date of the Notice of Investigation Outcome is issued pursuant to those Executive Orders. If an appeal is filed, the investigative findings do not become final until the appeal has been exhausted.

Conference with Complainant

The Student Conduct Administrator shall offer the Complainants the opportunity to confer with the Student Conduct Administrator. Any conference with the Complainants shall occur within 10 working days after the Student Conduct Administrator receives the final investigation report – or, if an appeal was filed, the final appeal outcome. The purpose of the conference is to provide an opportunity for the Complainant to provide input concerning appropriate sanctions and Remedies in light of the investigative findings. Therefore, it should take place before the Notice of Conference, described below, is served on the Student charged. The Complainant may be accompanied by an Advisor.

Notice of Conference and Conference with the Student Charged

Within 10 working days after the Student Conduct Administrator receives the final investigation report – or if an appeal was filed, the final appeal outcome, and after the Complainant has been given ten working days to have a conference with the Student Conduct Administrator, the Student Conduct Administrator shall notify the student charged, in writing, that a conference has been schedule or that the student is directed to promptly schedule a conference with the Student Conduct Administrator.

The Notice of Conference shall include:

  • The sections of the Student Conduct Code and other Campus policies that are the subject of the proposed discipline;
  • The proposed sanction or range of sanctions, including sanctions designed to provide Remedies to the Complainants;
  • The location on the Campus where the student can view his or her discipline file, including the location (or copies) of the Campus policies that were violated;
  • Notification of any immediate, interim suspension (see Article VI) and/or withdrawal of consent to remain on Campus;
  • The right to have an Advisor;
  • A copy of Executive Order 1098 or notice of where the Student may obtain a copy. If an interim suspension has been imposed or consent to remain on Campus has been withdrawn by the time the Notice of Conference is sent, a copy of Executive Order 1098 shall be enclosed, along with any other Campus policy referenced in the Notice of Conference.

Conference with Student charged and/or Complainant shall be conducted as follows:

  • The conference shall not be recorded.
  • The Student Conduct Administrator controls the conference and may exclude any Advisor who materially disrupts the conference.
  • The conference requirement is waived if the Student or Complainant fails to attend the conference or otherwise declines to cooperate.

The Student Conduct Administrator shall, in consultation with and agreement from the Title IX Coordinator, determine which cases are appropriate for resolution (via written resolution agreement), taking into consideration the investigation report and any additional information provided by the Student charged and the Complainant during any conferences. If a proposed resolution agreement can be reached with the Student charged as to an appropriate disposition, the terms of the proposed resolution shall be put in writing and signed by the Student and the University after the Student has been given reasonable opportunity to review the proposed resolution agreement with an Advisor of the Student’s choice. The student charged must be informed that any proposed resolution may be appealed by the Complainant and is not final until any such appeal is exhausted. Suspension of one academic year or more or expulsion, withdrawal in lieu of suspension or expulsion, and withdrawal with pending misconduct investigation or disciplinary proceedings shall be entered on the Student’s transcript permanently without exception; this requirement shall not be waived in connection with any resolution agreement.

The Student Conduct Administrator shall promptly notify the Title IX Coordinator of the outcome of the conferences with the Student and the Complainant. If the case does not proceed to hearing, the Title IX Coordinator shall at that time:

  • Notify the Complainant of the outcome of the conference, including any propose resolution agreement as well as the Complainant’s right to appeal any proposed resolution agreement to the CO pursuant to Article IV.
  • Take any appropriate further steps to address the effects of any Sexual Misconduct, Dating or Domestic Violence, or Stalking.
  • Identify and address any remaining systemic or other patterns of Sexual Misconduct, Dating or Domestic Violence, or Stalking at the Campus.

Discipline cases may be resolved through the conference process. It is, however, not appropriate for a Complainant to be required to “work out the problem” directly with the Student charged, and in no event should any meeting between the Complainant and Student be required.

Notice of Hearing on Sanctions

If not resolved, the Student Conduct Administrator shall issue a Notice of Hearing promptly after the conference. Simultaneous notice shall also be provided to the Complainant and the Title IX Coordinator. The Notice of Hearing shall be issued within five working days after the conference has concluded.

The Notice of Hearing shall be issued under the following circumstances:

  • If the Student charged fails to attend the conference or otherwise declines to cooperate;
  • If the matter is not closed or the disposition is not memorialized in writing promptly after the conference; or
  • No agreement can be reached with respect to the sanction.

The Notice of Hearing shall include the following information:

  • The sections of the Student Conduct Code and other Campus policies that are the subject of the proposed sanctions;
  • The proposed sanctions, including sanctions designed to provide protection/Remedies to the Complainant;
  • Notification that neither the Hearing Officer nor the president is bound by the proposed sanction, and that the Hearing Officer may recommend, and/or the president may set, a more severe sanction;
  • The date, time, and place of the hearing;
  • The location on the Campus where the Student may view his or her discipline file, including the location (or copies) of the Campus policies that were violated, and any related investigation report;
  • Notification that the Student charged and the Complainant each may be accompanied at the hearing by an Advisor. Notification shall be given that any person who intends to bring an attorney must inform the Student Conduct Administrator of the attorney’s name, address and phone number at least 5 working days before the hearing. Failure to provide this notice in a timely manner will result in exclusion of the attorney from the hearing;
  • Notification that the Student can waive the right to a hearing by accepting the proposed sanction, subject to the Complainant’s right to appeal (subject to the approval of the Title IX Coordinator);
  • Notification of any immediate, interim suspension (see Article VI of Executive Order 1098) and/or withdrawal of consent to remain on Campus; and
  • A copy of Executive Order 1098 or notice of where the Student and/or Complainant may obtain a copy. If an interim suspension has been imposed or consent to remain on Campus has been withdrawn by the time the Notice of Hearing is sent, a copy of the Executive Order shall be enclosed, along with any other Campus policy referenced in the Notice of Hearing.

The Student Conduct Administrator shall schedule the hearing promptly, but in any event no sooner that 10 working days after, and no later than 20 working days after, the date of the Notice of Hearing.

A notice to appear at hearing shall be sent to any University-related witnesses and to the Complainant at least 5 working days before the hearing at the University–assigned or other primary email addresses linked to these persons’ University accounts.

The Notice of Hearing may be amended at any time, and the Student Conduct Administrator may (but is not required to) postpone the hearing for a reasonable period of time. If the notice is amended after a hearing is underway, the Hearing Officer may (but is not required to) postpone the hearing for a reasonable period of time.

The Title IX Coordinator retains ultimate authority regarding whether a proposed resolution agreement may be entered into after the Notice of Hearing has been issued, or after the hearing has commenced. Factors to consider will vary based on the facts and circumstances of the specific case.

Sanctions Hearing

The findings and conclusions of the investigations conducted in accordance with Executive Orders 1096 and 1097, once any appeals are exhausted, are final and binding. The hearing is limited to determining appropriate sanctions. The findings of the investigation are not under review.

The hearing is closed to all persons except the Student Conduct Administrator; the Student charged; the Complainant; their respective Advisors; appropriate witnesses while they are testifying; and other alleged victims while they are testifying together with their Advisors; the Hearing Officer; and one person to assist the Hearing Officer in recording the hearing. All parties and witnesses who will testify must attend the hearing in person unless the Student Conduct Administrator permits an exception (e.g., participation via video conference or telephone). A police or security officer may also be present if deemed appropriate or necessary by the Vice President for Student Affairs or Hearing Officer. The University will cooperate in providing University witnesses wherever possible, provided that they are identified at least 5 working days before the hearing.

The Hearing Officer controls the hearing. Except as provided in Article IV. H, sections 6-8 of Executive Order 1098, the Student Conduct Administrator and the Student charged each put on the evidence in their case and may each ask questions of the witnesses in whatever manner the Hearing Officer deems appropriate.

The Hearing Officer may ask questions of any witness, the Student, the Complainant, Student Conduct Administrator, or the Title IX Coordinator.

The Complainant may be present while evidence is being presented concerning the charges that relate to him/her, unless the Hearing Officer grants a request that the Complainant be excused during certain testimony to protect privacy rights and/or pursuant to FERPA.

The Title IX Coordinator may attend the hearing in its entirety.

Questions may not be posed to Complainants about their past sexual behaviors involving any persons other than the Student charged.

The Hearing Officer shall ask any questions of the Complainant and other witnesses on behalf of the Student charged (who shall give the Hearing Officer a written list of any such questions), unless the Complainant or witness expressly waives this requirement and consents to questioning directly by the Student charged.

The Hearing Officer shall ask any questions of the Student charged and other witnesses on behalf of the Complainant (who shall give the Hearing Officer a written list of questions), unless the Complainant in question expressly waives this requirement.

The investigation report and any Chancellor’s Office Appeal Response prepared pursuant to Executive Orders 1096 or 1097 shall be entered into evidence at the hearing, redacted as appropriate to protect private (e.g., contact) information or as otherwise required by law.

Formal rules of evidence applied in courtroom proceedings (e.g., California Evidence Code) do not apply in the hearing. All information that responsible persons are accustomed to rely upon in the conduct of serious affairs is considered. Hearsay may be considered and will be given the weight appropriate under all of the circumstances. Unduly repetitive information may be excluded.

The Hearing Officer shall make an official audio recording of the hearing (with assistance, at the Hearing Officer’s discretion). The recording is University Property. No other recording of the hearing is permitted. The audio recording shall be retained by the Student Conduct Administrator in accordance with the Campus records/information retention and disposition schedule.

If the Student charged fails to appear at the hearing without good cause, the hearing shall nevertheless proceed. The Hearing Officer is responsible for maintaining order during the hearing and makes whatever rulings are necessary to ensure a fair hearing. Abusive or otherwise disorderly behavior that causes a material disruption is not tolerated. The Hearing Officer may eject or exclude anyone (including the Student, the Complainant, and Advisors) whose behavior causes material disruption.

Where there is more than one Student facing sanctions in connection with a single occurrence or related multiple occurrences, the Student Conduct Administrator and the Students charged may agree to a single hearing. A Student may request consolidation of his or her case with others, or the Student Conduct Administrator may initiate the consolidation (subject to FERPA and other applicable privacy laws). The Student Conduct Administrator makes consolidation decisions, which are subject to review by the Hearing Officer and thereafter are final.

At any time during the hearing, and subject to the approval of the Title IX Coordinator, the Student charged may waive the right to a hearing and accept the proposed sanction, subject to the Complainant’s right to appeal. Such a waiver must be in writing. The Title IX Coordinator retains ultimate authority regarding whether a proposed resolution agreement may be entered into after the Notice of Hearing has been issued, or after the hearing has commenced. Factors to consider will vary based on the facts and circumstances of the specific case.

The Hearing Officer shall submit a written report to the President recommending sanctions, if any, as well as any recommendations regarding additional Remedies, including, but not limited to, restricting the Student’s contact with, or physical proximity to, the Complainant or other persons. The report shall include any mitigating or aggravating factors relied upon by the Hearing Officer in reaching the recommendations. The report shall be submitted within 10 working days after the hearing.

The Hearing Officer’s report shall be based only on the investigative report and the information received at the hearing. The Hearing Officer shall not, prior to preparing the report, have substantive communications about the facts of the case with the Student Conduct Administrator, the Complainant, the Student, the witnesses, DHR Administrator or the Title IX Coordinator, unless both the Student Conduct Administrator and the Student are present.

President’s Sanction Decision/Notification

The President or his/her designee shall review the investigative report and the Hearing Officer’s report and issue a decision concerning the appropriate sanction

The President or his/her designee may impose the recommended sanctions, adopt a different sanction or sanctions, or reject sanctions altogether. If the President adopts a different sanction than what is recommended by the Hearing Officer, the President must set forth the reasons in the decision letter. The President’s decision letter shall be issued within 10 working days after receipt of the Hearing Officer’s report.

The President or his/her designee shall simultaneously send the decision electronically to the Student charged and Complainant at the University-assigned or other primary email address linked to their University accounts. The decision shall also be sent to the Student Conduct Administrator and the Hearing Officer. The decision letter shall include:

  • The outcome of the hearing on sanctions, including any sanction imposed and the name of the Student charged; and
  • A copy of the Hearing Officer’s report, redacted as appropriate or as otherwise required by law.
  • Notice of the Complainant’s and Student’s right to appeal to the CO.

The President shall also send the decision to the Title IX Coordinator so that s/he may determine whether any additional Remedies or steps shall be afforded or undertaken in order to maintain a safe and nondiscriminatory University environment.

Unless the Chancellor’s Office notifies the campus that an appeal has been filed, the President’s sanction decision becomes final 11 working days after the date of the decision letter.

Appeal of Sanction to the Chancellor’s Office (CO)

The Complainant and Student charged each may file an appeal of the President’s decision of appropriate sanctions to the Chancellor’s Office no later than 10 working days after the date of the President’s decision letter. The Complainant may also appeal any proposed sanctions agreed to as part of a proposed resolution agreement with the Student charged either in the conference procedure described above or at any time thereafter. Such an appeal must be filed within 10 working days after the date of notice to the Complainant of the proposed resolution agreement. The appeal request shall be in writing and shall indicate the basis of the appeal. Sanction appeals are limited to a determination as to whether any prejudicial procedural errors occurred during the hearing. The Chancellor’s Office may conduct an interview with the appealing party to clarify the written appeal, at the Chancellor’s Office discretion. A sanction decision appeal shall be addressed to” Equal Opportunity and Whistleblower Compliance Unit, Systemwide Human Resources Office of the Chancellor, 401 Golden Shore, 4th Floor, Long Beach, California 90802, or emailed to the Equal Opportunity and Whistleblower Compliance Unit.

The Chancellor’s Office shall provide prompt written acknowledgement of the receipt of the appeal to the appealing party, and will provide written notification of the appeal to the other party, the campus Title IX Coordinator, and the campus President (or designee).

The Chancellor’s Office will provide reasonable accommodations to any party or witness with a qualified disability during the appeal process upon request by the person needing the accommodation. A reasonable accommodation may include an extension of time to file or respond to an appeal. The time freame for Chancellor’s Office response to an appeal will automatically be adjusted for the time needed, if any, to provide reasonable accommodations.

The Chancellor’s Office appeal review shall be limited in scope to determining whether the sanction is reasonable under the facts and circumstances as determined by the investigation and whether any prejudicial procedural errors occurred during the hearing. The Chancellor’s Office appeal review will not involve a new investigation and will not consider evidence that was not introduced during the investigation or hearing. The record will be limited to the record at the hearing.

The Chancellor’s Office shall issue a final appeal response to the parties, The Title IX Coordinator, and the campus President (or his designee) no later than 10 working days after receipt of the written appeal unless the time line has been extended under Article V. E of Executive Orders 1096 or 1097.

The Chancellor’s Office Appeal Response shall include a summary of the issues raised on appeal, a summary of the evidence considered, the determination reached regarding the issues identified within the written appeal, a decision about whether the President’s sanction decision is reasonable, and where applicable, a decision regarding the final sanction.

A copy of the Chancellor’s Office final appeal response shall be forwarded to the Complainant and Student charged, the Title IX Coordinator, and the President (or designee).

Other Student Conduct Code Violations Related to Incidents of Sexual Misconduct, Dating or Domestic Violence, or Stalking

Alleged victims and witnesses should not be deterred from reporting any incidents of Sexual Misconduct, Dating or Domestic Violence, or Stalking out of a concern that they might be disciplined for related violations of drug, alcohol, or other University policies. The University’s primary concern is the safety of the Campus Community; therefore, a person who participates as a Complainant or witness in investigations or proceedings involving Sexual Misconduct, Dating or Domestic Violence, or Stalking shall not be subject to discipline for related violations of the Student Conduct Code at or near the time of the incident unless the University determines the violation was egregious, including but not limited to plagiarism, cheating, academic dishonesty, or conduct that places the health and safety of another person at risk.