(Toledo News Now) - Dear Colleagues and Students,
As you may have seen in local and national media, four students today filed Title IX complaints against their universities and UT was one of the schools named.
One of the most important aspects of any investigation into sexual misconduct or sexual assault is an absolute respect for the privacy of the survivor. The result is that due to federal privacy laws – and more importantly, because of what human decency requires of us – this University cannot speak publicly to any details regarding any specific case, allegation or complaint.
I can, however, speak to this institution's unwavering commitment to sexual assault awareness and prevention, the resources available to survivors and the many men and women who are dedicated to helping eliminate an underreported problem that occurs with far too much frequency at colleges and universities across the country.
On a case-by-case basis, University officials work with survivors regarding their options following allegations of a sexual assault. The survivors may choose to pursue criminal charges, charges through the Student Code of Conduct disciplinary process, both options, or neither.
They have access to counselors at UT's Counseling Center as well the ability to engage a Sexual Assault Advocate, a member of the UT community specially trained for helping a survivor navigate the complex medical, legal, academic and personal issues following an assault.
Additionally, UT's Office of University Inclusion works with survivors to provide immediate assistance such as changing courses, residence halls or other needs. This office also oversees UT's Title IX compliance efforts, working to ensure UT policies and procedures incorporate the best practices of federal and state agencies as well as universities across the country.
UT also partners with the YWCA Hope Center and the Toledo Police Department should survivors wish to make initial contact with an organization outside of UT.
Just as important as these University offices is the role each and every one of you play in putting an end to sexual assault. If you know of a student who has been assaulted, make sure you are engaging one of the key University offices below to ensure we are able to provide the help a student needs:
• UT Counseling Center – 419.530.2426
• UT Sexual Assault Education and Prevention Program (24-hour availability) – 419.530.3431
• UT Police Department – 419.530.2600
• UT Office of Student Conduct – 419.530.8585
• UT Office of Inclusion – 419.530.4053
• YWCA Hope Center Rape Crisis Hotline (24-hour availability) – 866.557.7273
Thank you all for your help in this most important matter.
Nagi G. Naganathan, PhD, ASME Fellow