Policy and Procedure
Nebraska state law defines various violent and/or nonconsensual sexual acts as crimes. Additionally, Central Community College has defined categories of sexual misconduct for which action under this policy may be imposed. Generally speaking, the college considers nonconsensual sexual intercourse violations to be the most serious and therefore typically imposes the most severe sanctions, including suspension or expulsion for students and termination for employees. However, the college reserves the right to impose any level of sanction, ranging from a reprimand up to suspension or expulsion/termination, for any act of sexual misconduct or other gender-based offenses, including intimate partner or relationship (dating and/or domestic) violence, nonconsensual sexual contact and stalking based on the facts and circumstances of the particular grievance.
Acts of sexual misconduct are defined as an action committed by any person upon any other person, regardless of the sex, gender, sexual orientation and/or gender identity of those involved. Use of alcohol or other drugs will never function to excuse any behavior.
Both the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and the State of Nebraska regard sexual harassment as a form of sex/gender discrimination and, therefore, as an unlawful discriminatory practice. Central Community College has adopted the following definition of sexual harassment in order to address the special environment of an academic community, which consists not only of employer and employees but of students as well.
Sexual harassment is unwelcome, and includes sexual and/or gender-based verbal, written, online and/or physical conduct.
Anyone experiencing sexual harassment in any college program is encouraged to report it immediately to the college’s Title IX coordinator, co-coordinators or deputy coordinators. Remedies, education and/or training will be provided in response.
Sexual harassment may be disciplined when it takes the form of quid pro quo harassment, retaliatory harassment and/or creates a hostile environment.
- A hostile environment is created when sexual harassment is sufficiently severe or persistent or pervasive and objectively offensive that it unreasonably interferes with, denies or limits someone’s ability to participate in or benefit from the college’s educational and/or employment, social and/or residential programs.
Quid pro quo harassment is unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature by a person having power or authority over another person constitutes sexual harassment when submission to such sexual conduct is made either explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of rating or evaluating an individual’s educational or employment progress, development, or performance. This includes when submission to such conduct would be a condition for access to receiving the benefits of any educational or employment program.
Nonconsensual Sexual Intercourse
- Any sexual penetration or intercourse (anal, oral or vaginal) however slight with any object by a person upon another person that is without consent and/or by force.
Sexual penetration includes vaginal or anal penetration by a penis, tongue, finger or object, or oral copulation by mouth-to-genital contact or genital-to-mouth contact.
Nonconsensual Sexual Contact
- Any intentional sexual touching however slight with any object by a person upon another person that is without consent and/or by force.
Sexual contact includes intentional contact with the breasts, buttock, groin or genitals, or touching another with any of these body parts, or making another touch you or themselves with or on any of these body parts, or any other intentional bodily contact in a sexual manner.
Sexual exploitation occurs when one person takes nonconsensual or abusive sexual advantage of another for his/her own advantage or benefit, or to benefit or advantage anyone other than the one being exploited, and that conduct does not fall within the definitions of sexual harassment, nonconsensual sexual intercourse or nonconsensual sexual contact. Examples of sexual exploitation include, but are not limited to:
- Invasion of sexual privacy;
- Prostituting another person;
- Nonconsensual digital, video or audio recording of nudity or sexual activity;
- Unauthorized sharing or distribution of digital, video or audio recording of nudity or sexual activity;
- Engaging in voyeurism;
- Going beyond the boundaries of consent (such as letting a friend hide in the closet to watch you having consensual sex);
- Knowingly exposing someone to or transmitting an STI, STD or HIV to another person;
- Intentionally or recklessly exposing one’s genital in nonconsensual circumstances; inducing another to expose their genitals;
- Sexually-based stalking and/or bullying may also be forms of sexual exploitation.
Consent is clear, knowing, and voluntary words or actions that give permission for specific sexual activity.
- Consent is active, not passive.
- Silence, in and of itself, cannot be interpreted as consent.
- Consent can be given by words or actions as long as those words or actions create mutually understandable permission regarding willingness to engage in (and the conditions of) sexual activity.
- Consent to any one form of sexual activity cannot automatically imply consent to any other forms of sexual activity.
- Previous relationship or prior consent cannot imply consent to future sexual acts.
- Consent can be withdrawn once given as long as that withdrawal is clearly communicated.
- In order to give consent, one must be of legal age.
- Sexual activity with someone you know to be or should know to be incapacitated constitutes a violation of this policy.
Incapacitation can occur mentally or physically from developmental disability, by alcohol or other drug use or blackout.
The question of what the responding party should have known is objectively based on what a reasonable person in the place of the responding party, sober and exercising good judgment, would have known about the condition of the reporting party.
Incapacitation is a state where someone cannot make rational, reasonable decisions because they lack the capacity to give knowing consent (e.g. to understand the “who, what, when, where, why or how” of their sexual interaction).
This policy also covers a person whose incapacity results from mental disability, sleep, unconsciousness, involuntary physical restraint, or from the taking of rape drugs.
Force is the direct or indirect use of physical violence and/or imposing on someone physically to gain sexual access. Force also includes threats, intimidation (implied threats) and coercion that overcomes free will or resistance or that produces consent.
- Coercion is unreasonable pressure for sexual activity. When someone makes clear to you that they do not want sex, that they want to stop or that they do not want to go past a certain point of sexual interaction, continued pressure beyond that point can be coercive.
- Note: There is no requirement for a party to resist the sexual advance or request, but resistance is a clear demonstration of non-consent. The presence of force is not demonstrated by the absence of resistance. Sexual activity that is forced is by definition nonconsensual, but nonconsensual sexual activity is not by definition forced.