The outlined bias response process is housed within the Student Development Division. Student Development addresses student related behaviors. The report bias form is intended for incidents where a student has been harmed or caused the harm. Employees should contact Human Resources for employee (faculty, staff, & administrator) to employee related incidents.
What happens when a bias related incident report is filed?
When a bias related behavior form is submitted, it will be received by the Vice President for Student Development Office who will then take action based on the information provided. The targeted person/harmed parties will be contacted by a Loyola administrator and offered support through the bias response process.
A Student Development administrator will conduct a follow-up interview with the targeted person/harmed parties to gather additional information regarding the incident, and discuss options for addressing the behavior through the Alternative Resolution or Conduct Process. The Student Development administrator may consult with relevant university personnel (Dean of Students Office, Student Conduct, Student Life, Counseling Center, ALANA Services, Disability Support Services, Women’s Center, Academic Affairs staff, Department of Public Safety, Assistant Vice President for Human Resources, Chief Equity and Inclusion Officer) to determine next steps. Where the person who is alleged to have committed a bias act is a faculty member, staff member, or administrator, the bias report will be referred to Human Resources, who will process the bias report according to the University’s Harassment and Discrimination Policy and Procedures. The following procedures apply to bias reports against students (except that the Harassment and Discrimination Policy shall apply to a bias report against a student who was acting in the capacity of a University employee at the time of the bias incident). The alleged targeted person and alleged offender each have the option of being assigned an advisor whose role is to support them through the investigation and/or Alternative Resolution or Conduct process. The advisor must be a full-time member of the Loyola University community (student, faculty, administrator, or staff) and cannot be an attorney or hold a law degree. Members of Loyola’s peer conduct board have received special training to advise students on the bias process. The Vice President for Student Development Office may provide advisors with pertinent information regarding the bias related incident/case being investigated. The incident will be handled in a confidential manner, except in cases where the University is required by law to notify the community. Periodically, the Vice President for Student Development and the Chief Equity and Inclusion Officer or their designees will notify the Loyola community of any incidents where a member of our community was the object of demeaning behavior that targeted a protected class. With regard to community notification, the Vice President for student development, or designee, in consultation with the Chief Equity and Inclusion Officer will determine when such notification will be sent. For reasons of privacy, notification will occur only when the identities of the involved community members can be protected, and the notification will not interfere with any ongoing investigation. The purpose of notifying the campus community is to provide transparency regarding incidents of this nature and create awareness and opportunities for discussion about ways to reduce incidents of bias and insensitivity.
There are several departments on campus able to assist students in coping and managing these situations. As always, we encourage students to contact the Dean of Students Office, Counseling Center, ALANA Services, Campus Ministry, Center for Community, Service, and Justice, Disability Support Services, Student Life, or Women's Center for assistance if you or someone you know is a target of any type of harassment. Our community recognizes and values the similarities and differences among students, faculty, staff, and recognized student organizations at Loyola University. Discrimination, bias related harassment, and other violations of rights disrupt the educational process and the personal well-being of others and will not be tolerated. Any retaliation, reprisal, or intimidation directed toward a targeted person or anyone else as a result of reporting or participating in an investigation or adjudication of alleged Bias related behaviors is strictly prohibited. Any incidents of retaliation should be reported immediately to Student Life or Student Conduct and are considered a serious violation of this Policy.
What are the procedures for addressing bias related incidents?
All hearings involving bias related behaviors will be conducted in accordance with the normal rules and procedures of the student conduct process with special sensitivity to the nature of the charges and the best interests of all parties involved. In recognition of the unique nature of bias related behavior cases, the procedures specified in this section supersede any conflicting provisions of the University student conduct process. Alleged violations involving behaviors outlined in the Sexual and Gender-Based Misconduct policy will be adjudicated using the sexual misconduct hearing procedures outlined within that policy. Pursuit of charges through the University’s student conduct system does not preclude the pursuit of criminal charges. The University will investigate all reports of bias related behaviors. However, it should be noted that the University’s ability to investigate or act upon anonymous reports may be limited. Upon becoming aware of alleged bias related behaviors, the Vice President for Student Development’s Office in conjunction with the Office of Student Conduct and Department of Public Safety will initiate an investigation and take actions deemed necessary to protect the well-being of the students involved, as well as the educational environment of the University community. These actions may include, but are not limited to, relocating residence hall assignments, restricting access to certain campus buildings, prohibiting contact between the alleged offender, targeted person, or harmed parties or suspending the alleged offender from campus or residence halls pending a hearing. Actions that involve removing the alleged offender from campus or residence halls will follow the process outlined in University Policy II.B. Immediate Removal from Campus. The alleged targeted person or harmed parties will have the opportunity to determine the resolution path, Alternative Resolution or Conduct Process.
Alternative Resolution includes but is not limited to: educational conversation, conflict coaching, mediation, or restorative practices such as circles. Restorative practices, such as conferences or circles, are processes designed to facilitate an intentional conversation where targeted person, or harmed parties, can share the harm they experienced and be an active decision-maker for determining resolutions for the harm to be addressed. Additionally, in a restorative process, the alleged offender, the person who caused harm, may answer questions such as why they caused the harm and discuss steps they will take to repair the harm. Normally a restorative process concludes with an agreement between all parties involved that addresses how the respondent and other community members can repair the harm caused, rebuild trust, and restore any broken relationships.
The Conduct Process involves an administrative hearing. For the administrative hearing process to occur, the alleged targeted person or harmed parties must submit a formal complaint, which is a document filed and/or signed by the alleged targeted person or harmed parties alleging a violation of code of conduct policy 32 by an alleged offender and requesting that the University address the allegation(s) through the conduct process. A complaint may be filed with the Vice President for Student Development Office, by mail, or by electronic mail. As used in this paragraph, the phrase “document filed and/or signed by the alleged targeted person or harmed parties” means a document or electronic submission (such as by electronic mail or through an online portal provided for this purpose by the University) that contains the alleged targeted person’s or harmed parties’ physical or digital signature, or otherwise indicates that the alleged targeted person or harmed parties is the person filing the complaint. The formal complaint must include sufficient details known at the time including the identities of the parties involved in the incident, the conduct allegedly constituting bias related behavior(s), and the date, time and location of the alleged incident. If notice is submitted in a form that does not meet this standard, a Student Development administrator will contact the alleged targeted person or harmed parties to ensure that it is filed correctly. A harmed party may decide to withdraw their formal complaint at any time prior to the hearing.
The administrative hearing panel consists of the following: Chief Equity and Inclusion Officer or their designee, Peer Conduct Board member, and the Director of Student Conduct or their designee. The University reserves the right to have a modified panel hear the case when circumstances warrant it. During the administrative hearing, the alleged targeted person or harmed parties have the right to present testimony at the hearing in person or by submitting a written statement. The respondent, the alleged offender responding to conduct charges of violating the Bias Policy, has the right to listen to or review testimony made by the alleged targeted person or harmed parties. The alleged targeted person or harmed parties have the right to provide a written impact statement, due prior to the start of the hearing to the panel chair that describes how the incident has affected them. The impact statement is reviewed by the hearing panel only if a determination of responsibility is made and before a sanction is determined. If an impact statement was submitted and reviewed by the hearing panel, a copy will be provided to the respondent with the decision letter. If the panel determines that the respondent is responsible for a violation of this policy, the panel will decide the appropriate sanctions in accordance with the Student Code of Conduct. The final outcome of the hearing including any sanctions that are imposed will be communicated to the respondent usually within five University business days of the last day of the hearing.
What is the standard sanction for violation of the bias policy?
A violation of the Bias Policy is considered a serious breach of our community standards, and more severe sanctions may be imposed for incidents in which the violation was motivated by consideration of race, sex, color, national or ethnic origin, age, religion, disability, marital status, sexual orientation, genetic information, military status, gender or gender identity, any other legally protected classification, or other targeted aspects of one’s identity. The determination of sanctions will be guided by the interests of the University community, the impact of the violations on the victim(s), previous documented student conduct history, and any mitigating or aggravating circumstances. Although there are no standard sanctions, a hearing panel may consider a range of sanctions that include, but are not limited to, disciplinary probation, deferred suspension, suspension, and/or expulsion.
Are all bias related incidents adjudicated or handled through the student conduct process?
No. While incidents impact the community, not all behaviors are determined to be bias. Incidents that impact the community will be addressed and provide opportunity for education. Some reports do not contain sufficient information to determine whether or not bias related behavior occurred. If additional information is unable to be obtained during the investigation process, the incident may not be classified as bias.
Is the campus community notified of bias incidents?
The incident will be handled in a confidential manner, except in cases where the University is required by law to notify the community. Periodically, the Vice President for Student Development and the Chief Equity and Inclusion Officer or their designees will notify the Loyola community of any incidents where a member of our community was the object of demeaning behavior that targeted a protected class. With regard to community notification, the Vice President for student development, or designee, in consultation with the Chief Equity and Inclusion Officer will determine when such notification will be sent. For reasons of privacy, notification will occur only when the identities of the involved community members can be protected, and the notification will not interfere with any ongoing investigation. The purpose of notifying the campus community is to provide transparency regarding incidents of this nature and create awareness and opportunities for discussion about ways to reduce incidents of bias and insensitivity.
What is the difference between bias related behaviors and hate crimes?
Bias related behaviors and hate crimes are similar in that age, gender, religion, racial/ethnic or national origin, sexual orientation, or disability is the impetus for the behavior/action. Bias related behaviors are intentional or unintentional actions that are often motivated by bias, but are not accompanied by a crime.
What is the difference between the university’s definition of “bias related behaviors” and the university’s harassment and discrimination policies?
The Office of Human Resources oversees the University’s harassment and discrimination policies. This policy prohibits discrimination, including harassment, against students or employees of Loyola University Maryland by anyone on University property or at University-sponsored activities. Allegations of discrimination or harassment made against a student in his/her capacity as a student are resolved through the student judicial process, rather than under the University’s harassment and discrimination policies. Allegations against student employees (e.g. work study) in their capacity as employees are resolved through the University’s harassment and discrimination policies and the vice president of student development or his/her designee and the director of employee relations and professional development. Learn more about the University’s harassment and discrimination policies.
Bias related behaviors, hate crimes, harassment, and discrimination are similar in that someone or a particular group is intentionally or unintentionally mistreated or targeted because of the actual or perceived group to which they belong. As a Loyola student, you have a responsibility to take an active role in fostering a sense of community and sending the message that mistreatment of others and insensitivity within our campus will not be tolerated. Students who feel they have been the target of bias (or who have witnessed bias motivated behaviors) may report the behaviors online, or contact the Vice President for Student Development Office at 410-617-5171.