Loyola University Maryland

Public Safety

Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) definitions

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 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.

For the purposes of this definition dating violence includes, but is not limited to, sexual or physical abuse or the threat of such abuse. Dating violence does not include acts covered under the definition of domestic violence.

For the purposes of complying with the requirements of this section and 668.41, any incident meeting this definition is considered a crime for the purposes of Clery Act reporting.

There is no definition of dating violence in Maryland law. Dating violence is not distinguished from general crimes of violence, such as assault.

Domestic Violence

A felony or misdemeanor crime of violence committed by:

  • A current or former spouse or intimate partner of the victim.
  • A person with whom the victim shares a child in common.
  • A person who is cohabitating with or has cohabitated with the victim as a spouse or intimate partner.
  • A person similarly situated to a spouse of the victim under the domestic or family violence laws of Maryland, or
  • 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. 

The State of Maryland defines domestic violence “abuse” as the occurrence of one or more assault acts between “family or household members” including:

  • An act that places a person in fear of imminent serious bodily harm.
  • An act that causes serious bodily harm.
  • Rape or sexual offense.
  • Attempt rape or sexual offense.
  • Stalking.
  • False imprisonment, such as interference with freedom, physically keeping you from leaving your home or kidnapping.

Sexual Offense

An offense that meets the definition of rape, fondling, incest, or statutory rape as used in the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) program. Per the National Incident-Based Reporting System User Manual from the FBI UCR Program, a sex offense is “any sexual act directed against another person without the consent of the victim, including instances where the victim is incapable of giving consent.”

Rape

The penetration, no matter how slight, of the vagina or anus with any body part or object, or oral penetration by a sex organ of another person, without the consent of the victim.

Fondling

The touching of the private parts of another person for the purpose of sexual gratification, without the consent of the victim, including instances where the victim is incapable of giving consent because of his/her age or because his/her temporary or permanent mental incapacity.

Incest

Sexual intercourse between persons who are related to each other within degrees wherein marriage is prohibited by law.

Statutory Rape

Sexual intercourse with a person who is under the statutory age of consent.

Sexual Assault 

Defined by the State of Maryland as any sexual act directed against another person, without the consent of the victim, including instances where the victim is incapable of giving consent. The actions constituting sexual assault are set forth in Title 3, Subtitle 3 of the Criminal Law Article of the Annotated Code of Maryland and include, but are not limited to, the following acts committed by an acquaintance or stranger (“Actor”):

  • Rape forcible sodomy, or forcible sexual penetration, however slight, of another person's anal or genital opening.
  • Touching of an unwilling person’s intimate parts (defined as genitalia, groin, breast, or buttocks, or clothing covering them); or,
  • Forcing an unwilling person to touch another's intimate parts. 

To constitute sexual assault these acts must be committed either by force, threat, intimidation or through the use of the victim's mental or physical helplessness of which the Actor was aware or should have been aware.

Stalking

Engaging in a course of conduct directed at a specific person that would cause a reasonable person to:

  • Fear for his or her safety or the safety of others; or
  • Suffer substantial emotional distress.

For the purposes of this definition:

  • Course of conduct means two or more acts, including, but not limited to, acts which the stalker directly, indirectly, or through third parties, by any action, method, device, or means follows, monitors, observes, surveils, threatens, or communicates to or about, a person, or interferes with a person’s property.
  • Reasonable person means a reasonable person under similar circumstances and with similar identities to the victim.
  • Substantial emotional distress means significant mental suffering or anguish that may, but does not necessarily, require medical or other professional treatment or counseling.

Stalking is defined by the State of Maryland (Criminal Law Article § 3-801) as:

A malicious course of conduct that includes approaching or pursuing another where the person intends to place or knows or reasonably should have known the conduct would place another in reasonable fear: of serious bodily injury; of an assault in any degree; of rape or sexual offense as defined by § 3-303 through § 3-308 of this title or attempted rape or sexual offense in any degree; of false imprisonment; or of death; or that a third person likely will suffer any of the acts listed in item(1) of this subsection. In this subtitle, “course of conduct” means a persistent pattern of conduct, composed of a series of acts over time that shows a continuity of purpose.

There is no Maryland law definition of consent. It is not distinguished from general crimes of violence, such as assault).

Loyola University defines consent as:

An affirmative indication by words and/or actions of a voluntary agreement to engage in the particular sexual act or conduct in question. Consent for one sexual act or conduct does not constitute consent to all sexual acts or conduct. Consent can be withdrawn at any time, and once withdrawal of consent has been expressed, sexual activity must cease. Consent cannot be obtained through the use of force, threat, intimidation, or coercion. Consent cannot be given by someone who is not able to effectively communicate or to understand the nature of the conduct being engaged in as a result of incapacitation due to consuming drugs or alcohol or for any other reason (including but not limited to being unconscious, being asleep or otherwise unaware that sexual activity is occurring). Incapacitation may also exist because of a physical, mental or developmental disability. Incapacitation is a state where an individual cannot make rationale or reasonable decisions because they lack the capacity to give consent (i.e., to understand who, what, where, when, why, and how of a sexual interaction). Silence or absence of resistance on the part of an individual does not constitute his or her consent. 

The definition of consent is used to inform the campus community of the affirmative indication needed for a voluntary agreement to engage in a particular sexual act and to be used during procedures of institutional disciplinary actions in cases of alleged sexual assault.

VAWA Ongoing Prevention and Awareness Campaigns

Educational programs to prevent and to promote the awareness of rape, acquaintance rape, domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, and stalking are offered during Summer Orientation, Fall Welcome Week for new students, in new employee orientations, in residence hall floor meetings, and on campus throughout the academic year. Such prevention and awareness programs include a statement that the University prohibits all forms of sexual misconduct, provides definitions of the various types of prohibited sexual misconduct as well as the definition and meaning of consent, safe and positive options for bystander intervention, and information on risk reduction to recognize warning signs of abusive behavior and how to avoid potential attacks. Programs to prevent dating violence, domestic violence, sexual assault, and stalking means comprehensive, intentional, and integrated programming, initiatives, strategies, and campaigns intended to end dating violence, domestic violence, sexual assault, and stalking that:

  • Are culturally relevant, inclusive of diverse communities and identities, sustainable, responsive to community needs, and informed by research or assessed for value, effectiveness, or outcome; and
  • Consider environmental risk and protective factors as they occur on the individual, relationship, institutional, community, and societal levels. 

Programs to prevent dating violence, domestic violence, sexual assault, and stalking include both primary prevention and awareness programs directed at incoming students and new employees and ongoing prevention and awareness campaigns directed at students and employees.

Subject codes for tables

RRSA: Risk Reduction and Safety Awareness
DV: Domestic Violence
BI: Bystander Intervention
SA: Sexual Assault
ST: Stalking
DAV: Dating Violence
CON: Consent

Primary Prevention and Awareness Programs for 1st Year Students

Name of Program

Date of Program

Location

Subject Codes Covered

Realities of College Life

Day 2 of Summer Orientation 2019

McManus Theater

SA

Campus Safety for incoming International Students

8/30/2019

Sellinger Hall

SA/DAV/ST/RRSA

Know More: Building a community of consent (undergrads and transfer students)

8/30/2019

Reitz Arena

CON/DAV/SA/ST/RRSA

Preventing Discrimination and Sexual Violence for new graduate students

Fall semester

Online

SA/DV/DAV/ST/RRSA

Sexual Assault Prevention for Student Athletes-NCAA

Fall semester

Online

SA/DAV/ST/RRSA/CON

Step Up! For 1styear students

Fall semester

Messina Class

BI

Primary Prevention and Awareness Programs for New Employees

Name of Program

Date of Program

Location

Subject Codes Covered

Employee Orientation

Quarterly

5000 York Road

RRSA/SA/DV/DAV/ST

Preventing Discrimination and Sexual Violence: Title IX, VAWA and Clery Act for Administrators 

Ongoing

Online

SA/DAV/ST/DV

Title IX Responsible Employee

Ongoing

Online

SA/ST/DV/DAV/CON

Sexual Harassment

January, May, August, and November

McGuire Hall

RRSA

Ongoing Awareness and Prevention Programs for Students

Name of Program

Date of Program

Location

Subject Codes Covered

Graduate Student Orientation

Prior to each Semester

Email

SA/DV/DAV/ST

Escalation

Spring Semester 2019

Various

DV/DAV

Take Back the Night

4/4/2019

Quad

SA/DAV/ST/CON

Sexual Assault Awareness Week

April 1-5, 2019

Various

SA/DAV/ST/CON

Mike Green, national speaker on alcohol & its impacts on decision-making including sexual violence for student athletes.

9/15/2019

Reitz Arena

SA/DAV

 

Ongoing Awareness and Prevention Programs for Employees

Name of Program

Date of Program

Location

Subject Codes Covered

Responsible Employee Training

Ongoing

Online

SA/DAV/DV/ST

Campus Security Authority

Annually

Online

SA/DV/DAV

Overview of Education Programs 

Every year, various Loyola departments offer programs on sexual assault prevention and awareness open to all members of the Loyola community. During the month of April, the Women’s Center, Health Center, DPS, and members of the student government co-sponsor Sexual Assault Awareness Month. Programs about sexual assault prevention and awareness are conducted throughout the month. Numerous programs on safety awareness and crime prevention are offered annually for students and employees.

Title IX Responsible Employee Training

A “responsible employee” has the duty to report harassment or other types of misconduct, is someone a student could reasonably believe has this authority or responsibility to react to reported sexual harassment and misconduct and could be any Loyola community member including faculty, administrators, staff, GAs, RAs, coaches, and trainers. The University is obligated to ensure that responsible employees are trained to understand their obligations to report sexual harassment/assault/or misconduct. Title IX Responsible Employee training is a one-hour online course that all employees of the Loyola community are required to take annually.

Preventing Discrimination and Sexual Violence

This online course was implemented the fall 2019 semester for all new graduate students.

Escalation Workshop

Escalation is a powerful, emotionally engaging 90-minute film-based workshop that educates the community about relationship violence and empowers individuals to work for change. This program is presented to lacrosse, soccer, and tennis teams and is open to all.

Sexual Assault Awareness Week

A week of programs lasting from April 9th through 13th each year designed to bring awareness to issues of sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking.

Bystander Intervention and Risk Reduction information

Bystander Intervention

Bystander intervention means safe and positive options that may be carried out by an individual or individuals to prevent harm or intervene when there is a risk of dating violence, domestic violence, sexual assault, or stalking. Bystander intervention includes recognizing situations of potential harm, understanding institutional structures and cultural conditions that facilitate violence, overcoming barriers to intervening, identifying safe and effective intervention options, and taking action to intervene.

Loyola University Maryland strives to promote a culture of community accountability where bystanders are actively engaged in the prevention of violence without causing further harm. We may not always know what to do, even if we want to help. Listed below are some ways to be an active bystander. If you or someone is in immediate danger, dial 911. This could be when a person is yelling at or being physically abusive towards another and it is not safe for you to interrupt.

Bystanders play a critical role in the prevention of sexual and relationship violence. Bystanders are “individuals who observe violence or witness the conditions that perpetuate violence. Bystanders are not directly involved but have the choice to intervene, speak up, or do something about it.” Loyola University Maryland strives to promote a culture of community accountability where bystanders are actively engaged in the prevention of violence without causing further harm. We may not always know what to do, even if we want to help. Listed below are some ways to be an active bystander. If you or someone is in immediate danger, dial 911. This could be when a person is yelling at or being physically abusive towards another and it is not safe for you to interrupt.

  • Watch out for your friends and fellow students/employees. If you see someone who looks like they could be in trouble or need help, ask if they are okay.
  • Confront people who seclude, hit on, and try to make out with, or have sex with people who are incapacitated.
  • Speak up when someone discusses plans to take sexual advantage of another person.
  • Believe someone who discloses sexual assault, abusive behavior, or experience with stalking.
  • Refer people to on or off campus resources listed in this document for support in health, counseling, or with legal assistance.
  • Watch out for your friends and vice versa. If a friend seems out of it, is way too intoxicated for the amount of alcohol they’ve had, or is acting out of character, get her or him to a safe place immediately.
  • If you suspect you or a friend has been drugged, contact local law enforcement immediately (local authorities can be reached by calling 911 in most areas of the U.S.). Be explicit with doctors so they can give you the correct tests (you will need a urine test and possibly others). 

Risk Reduction Awareness

Risk reduction means options designed to decrease perpetration and bystander inaction, and to increase empowerment for victims in order to promote safety and to help individuals and communities address conditions that facilitate violence. With no intent to victim blame and recognizing that only abusers are responsible for their abuse, the following are some strategies to reduce one’s risk of sexual assault or harassment taken from Rape, Abuse, & Incest National Network, www.rainn.org.

  • Be aware of your surroundings. Knowing where you are and who is around you, may help you to find a way to get out of a bad situation.
  • Try to avoid isolated areas. It is more difficult to get help if no one around.
  • Walk with purpose. Even if you don’t know where you are going, act like you do.
  • Try not to load yourself down with packages or bags as this can make you appear more vulnerable.
  • Make sure your cell phone is with you and charged and that you have cab money. Loyola DPS recommends establishing an Uber or Lyft account. Links to both organizations can be found on the Loyola transportation and parking webpage.
  • Don’t allow yourself to be isolated with someone you don’t trust or someone you don’t know.
  • Avoid putting music headphones in both ears so that you can be more aware of surroundings, especially if you are walking alone.
  • When you go to a social gathering, go with a group of friends. Arrive together, check in with each other throughout the evening, and leave together.
  • Trust your instincts. If you feel unsafe in any situation, go with your gut. If you see something suspicious, contact law enforcement immediately (local authorities can be reached by calling 911 in most areas of the U.S.).
  • Don’t leave your drink unattended while talking, dancing, using the restroom, or making a phone call. If you’ve left your drink, just get a new one.
  • Don’t accept drinks from people you don’t know or trust. If you choose to accept a drink, go with the person to the bar to order it, watch it being poured, and carry it yourself. At parties, don’t drink from punch bowls or other large common containers.

If you need to get out of an uncomfortable or scary situation here are some things that you can try:

  • Remember that being in this situation in not your fault. You did not do anything wrong; it is the person who is making you uncomfortable that is to blame.
  • Be true to yourself. Don’t feel obligated to do anything you don’t want to do. “I don’t want to” is always a good enough reason. Do what feels right to you and what you are comfortable with.
  • Have a code word with your friends or family so that if you don’t feel comfortable you can call them and communicate your discomfort without the person you are with knowing. Your friends and family can then come to get you or make up an excuse for you to leave.
  • Lie. If you don’t want to hurt the person’s feelings it is better to lie and make up a reason to leave than to stay and be uncomfortable, scared or worse. Some excuses you could use are needing to take care of a friend or family member, not feeling well, having somewhere else that you need to be, etc.
  • Try to think of an escape route. How would you try to get out of a room? Where are the doors and windows? Are there people around who might be able to help you? Is there an emergency phone nearby?
  • If you and/or the other person have been drinking, you can say that you would rather wait until you both have your full judgement before doing anything you may regret later.

 

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