Is defined as treating individuals or groups less favorably in the terms or conditions of their employment or education on the basis of their membership in one or more of the protected categories listed above.
Is defined as verbal, physical, or other conduct such as threats, physical force, slurs, bullying, cyber bullying, stalking, discriminatory treatment, or other conduct related to an individual’s membership in one or more of the protected categories that has the purpose or effect of:
- Causing a reasonable person to feel humiliated or intimidated;
- Unreasonably impeding or interfering with academic status, academic performance, education, work status, or work performance;
- Unreasonably creating an intimidating, offensive, or hostile environment in the residential hall, learning environments such as the classroom, work environment, or cyber environment;
- Interfering substantially with an individual’s participation in the University community; and/or
- Causing a reasonable person to fear for his or her safety or the safety of others or suffer substantial emotional distress.
Means engaging in a course of conduct directed at a specific person (on the basis of the person’s membership in one or more of the protected categories) that would cause a reasonable person to fear for his or her safety or the safety of others or suffer substantial emotional distress. For purposes of this definition:
- 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.
- 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.
Is a type of harassment and a form of discrimination based on gender, defined as unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and all other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature when:
- Submission to or rejection of such conduct is made, either explicitly or implicitly, a term or condition of an individual’s academic advancement, employment, or participation in Lesley’s programs or activities;
- Submission to or rejection of such conduct by an individual is used as a basis for academic or employment decisions affecting such individual, or decisions affecting such individual’s participation in Lesley’s programs or activities; or
- Such conduct has the purpose or effect of creating a hostile environment – that is, unreasonably interfering with an individual’s work, academic performance, education, or participation in Lesley’s programs or activities.
Sexual harassment may occur regardless of the intention of the person engaging in the conduct. Sexual harassment may occur regardless of whether the individuals involved are of the same or a different gender.
While it is not possible to list all circumstances that may constitute sexual harassment, the following are some examples of conduct which may, depending upon the circumstances, constitute sexual harassment:
- Sexual advances – whether they involve physical touching or not.
- Requests or demands for sexual favors, accompanied by implicit or explicit promised rewards or threats concerning an individual’s admission, advancement, academic decisions, grades, job benefits, evaluations and reviews, salary, promotions, health and welfare benefits or continued employment.
- Unwelcome jokes, verbal abuse, comments, conduct, or innuendo of a sexual nature.
- Use of sexual epithets, verbal or written references to sexual conduct, gossip regarding an individual’s sex life, or comments concerning an individual’s body, sexual activity, deficiencies, or prowess.
- Displaying sexual objects, pictures, or cartoons.
- Offensive, suggestive, or obscene letters, notes, emails, and invitations of a sexual nature.
- Leering, patting, grabbing, pinching, and brushing against the body, sexual gestures, or suggestive or insulting comments.
- Inquiries into an individual’s sexual activities.
- Assault or coerced sexual acts.
Romantic or sexual relationships between individuals who are also in employment, academic, or professional relationships are inherently problematic, and in some cases are prohibited. Romantic or sexual relationships between students and employees (including faculty) are prohibited. For detailed information, please refer to Lesley University’s Unequal Consensual Relationships Policy.
Is a form of sexual harassment. Sexual violence means having sexual contact with someone who does not consent to the sexual contact.
Consent means an affirmative, voluntary, mutual agreement to have sexual contact. Consent must be expressed by outward demonstration, verbally or non-verbally, through mutually understandable words or actions. Consent means agreeing to or participating in a particular sexual activity without any coercion, force, fear, or intimidation.
Silence or lack of resistance does not constitute consent. Consent can be revoked at any time; a person can change her or his mind about continuing with the sexual contact. Revocation of consent must be expressed by outward demonstration, verbally or non-verbally, through mutually understandable words or actions. Neither past consent nor prior consensual sexual activity, by itself, constitutes consent to future sexual contact.
Consent can never be given by someone who is
- under the statutory age of consent (in Massachusetts, that means under the age of 16),
- unconscious, or
- incapacitated due to drugs, alcohol, or any other cause.
It is against the law and against University policy to have sexual contact with someone who does not give her or his consent or who is incapable of giving consent.
Sexual violence may occur regardless of the intention of the person engaging in the conduct. Sexual violence may occur regardless of whether the individuals involved are of the same or a different gender.
Massachusetts law states: “Whoever has sexual intercourse or unnatural sexual intercourse with a person, and compels such person to submit by force and against his will, or compels such person to submit by threat of bodily injury and if either such sexual intercourse or unnatural sexual intercourse results in or is committed with acts resulting in serious bodily injury, or is committed by a joint enterprise, or is committed during the commission or attempted commission of an offense…shall be punished by imprisonment in the state prison for life or for any term of years.”
While it is not possible to list all circumstances that may constitute sexual violence, the following are some examples of conduct which may constitute sexual violence:
- Unwanted physical touching
- The threat of sexual violence
- Sexual coercion (harassment, bullying, or coercion of a sexual nature)
- Sexual battery (physical violence such as bruising or forceful detainment)
- Rape or coerced sexual acts (non-consensual penetration of any kind)
- Sexual assault is an offense that meets the definitions of rape, fondling, incest, or statutory rape.
- 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 body parties of another person for the purpose of sexual gratification, without the consent of the victim.
- Incest: Sexual intercourse between persons who are related to each other within the degrees wherein marriage is prohibited by law.
- Statutory rape: Sexual intercourse with a person who is under the statutory age of consent (which is age 16 in Massachusetts).
As used in this policy, the term sexual violence is broader than the statutory definitions for the crimes of sexual assault, sexual battery, sexual coercion, and rape, which are also prohibited by this policy. Consequently, a person found not guilty of a crime of sexual violence, such as rape, could still be found to have violated Lesley's policy against sexual violence.
Means 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 state domestic or family violence laws, 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.
Dating violence means 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 the reporting party’s statement and 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.
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.