Title IX and Sexual Misconduct

iwv campus at dusk

Title IX is a Federal civil rights law passed in 1972 that prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex. Title IX provides protection from all forms of sexual harassment, sexual violence and gender-based discrimination that limits a student's ability to participate in educational programs and activities from any educational institution receiving federal funding.

No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subject to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance. Title IX (20 U.S.C. § 1681(a))

In accordance with the requirements of the Civil Rights Act, Cerro Coso Community College provides services and benefits to students regardless of race, color, ethnic group identification, ancestry, religion, national origin, sex (gender), sexual orientation, age, and/or physical or mental disability. The lack of English language skills will not be a barrier to administration and participation in vocational education programs. (Title VI and VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended; Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972; and Section 503 and 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990.) All persons have the right to seek admission to and complete an educational program at Cerro Coso Community College. Interference with students' access and successful completion of their education by any person through unlawful discriminatory conduct will not be tolerated. The college will initiate disciplinary action against persons found to have interfered with a student's education through any means of illegal or immoral intimidation.

Sean Hancock, President, Cerro Coso Community College

Understanding Title IX - Key Definitions

Click on term to see definition

Affirmative consent is mutual agreement to engage in sexual activity. It is informed, affirmative, conscious and voluntary. Each person involved has the responsibility to ensure that s/he has the Affirmative Consent of the other participant(s) to engage in the sexual activity. Lack of protest, resistance, silence or incapacitation does not mean consent. A person is incapacitated and unable to give Affirmative Consent if they asleep, intoxicated, drugged, unconscious, a minor or mentally impaired. Affirmative Consent can be withdrawn or revoked at any time.

Sexual Misconduct includes but not limited to:

  • Sexual Harassment
  • Sexual Violence
  • Non-Consensual Sexual Contact (or attempts to commit same)
  • Non-Consensual Sexual Intercourse (or attempts to commit same)
  • Sexual Exploitation

Unwelcome, gender-based verbal or physical conduct that is sufficiently severe, persistent or pervasive. It unreasonably interferes with, denies or limits someone's ability to participate in or benefits from the colleges educational program and/or activities.

Three types of Sexual Harassment:

  • Hostile Environment
    In which there is harassing conduct this is sufficiently severe and pervasive
  • Quid Pro Quo
    Unwelcome requests for sexual favors that result in adverse educational or employment action
  • Retaliation or Retaliatory Harassment
    Adverse employment or educational action taken because of the person's participation in an investigation or resolution of discrimination or sexual misconduct.

Sexual contact or behavior that occurs without explicit consent of the victim. Some forms of sexual assault assault include:

  • Attempted rape
  • Fondling or unwanted sexual touching
  • Forcing a victim to perform acts, such as oral sex or penetrating the perpetrator's body
  • Penetration of the victim's body, also known as rape

When a person takes non-consensual 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 behavior does not otherwise constitute one of the other sexual misconduct offenses. Examples of sexual exploitation include, but are not limited to:

  • Invasion of sexual privacy
  • Prostituting another person
  • Non-consensual video or audio-taping of sexual activity
  • Going beyond the boundaries of consent (such as letting your friends hide in the closet to watch you having consensual sex)
  • Engaging in voyeurism
  • Knowingly transmitting an STI or HIV to another person
  • Exposing one's genitals in non-consensual circumstances; inducing another to expose their genitals
  • Sexually-based stalking and/or bullying may also be forms of sexual exploitation

Includes felony or misdemeanor crimes of violence committed by a current or former spouse or intimate partner of the victim, by a person with whom the victim shares a child in common, by a person who is cohabitating with or has cohabitated with the victim as a spouse or intimate partner, by a person similarly situated to a spouse of the victim under the domestic or family violence laws of the jurisdiction in which the crime of violence occurred;; or by 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.

Violence committed by a person who is or has been in a social relationship of a romantic or intimate nature with the victim and where the existence of such a relationship shall be determined based on a consideration of the following factors: the length of the relationship; the type of relationship; and the frequency of interaction between the persons involved in the relationship.

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

  • Fear for the person's safety or the safety of others; or
  • Suffer substantial emotional distress

Course of conduct means two or more acts, including but not limited to, acts in 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.

Substantial emotional distress means significant mental suffering or anguish that may, but does not necessarily, require medical or other professional treatment or counseling. Reasonable person means a reasonable person under similar circumstances and with similar identities to the victim.

Treating someone unfavorably because of that person's sex. Also includes discrimination against an individual because of gender identity, including transgender status, or because of sexual orientation.