Sexual Harassment/Misconduct Procedures

Also see: Campus SaVE Act

Lee College is committed to maintaining an academic environment in which its members can freely work together, both in and out of the classroom, to further education. Unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal and physical conduct of sexual nature constitute sexual harassment.

Sexual harassment is illegal whether it is initiated by a supervisor, a manager, a coworker, a student or an instructor.

Sexual Violence

Lee College is committed to maintaining an academic environment in which students can learn and work without fear of sexual harassment. Every member of the college community must recognize that sexual harassment compromises the integrity of the College, its tradition of academic freedom, and the trust placed in its members. It is, therefore, the policy of the college to take all necessary actions to prevent, correct, and where indicated, discipline perpetrators of sexual harassment.

Disciplinary actions for sexual harassment committed by employees include, but are not limited to, written warning, demotion, transfer, suspension, or dismissal. Disciplinary actions for sexual harassment committed by students include, but are not limited to, written warning, removal from class, or expulsion.

For more information on the college’s policy on sexual harassment, go to http://www.lee.edu/hr/resources-for-employees/sexual-harassment/.

Legal Authority: Sexual harassment is a form of sex discrimination which is prohibited by Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, by Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, and by the Texas Commission on Human Rights Act. Sexual harassment by a public servant is also a criminal offense under section 39.02 of the Texas Penal Code.

Definition: Sexual harassment may involve the behavior of a person of either sex against a person of the opposite or same sex, and occurs when such behavior constitutes unwelcome sexual advances, unwelcome requests for sexual favors, and other unwelcome verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature where:

  1. Submission to such conduct is made either explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of a person’s employment or academic advancement;
  2. Submission to or rejection of such conduct by a person is used as the basis for decisions affecting a person’s employment or academic standing;
  3. Such conduct has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with a person’s work or academic performance or creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive work, learning, or social environment.

Examples of Prohibited Behavior: Prohibited acts that constitute sexual harassment may take a variety of forms. Sometimes sexual harassment involves a single serious incident, whereas, at other times, multiple incidents are required to meet the standards of the definition. Examples of the kinds of conduct that may constitute sexual harassment under the definition above include, but are not limited to:

  1. Threats or insinuations that a person’s employment, wages, academic grade, promotional opportunities, classroom or work assignments, or other conditions of employment or academic life may be adversely affected by not submitting to sexual advances.
  2. Unwelcome verbal expressions, sexual innuendoes and comments, including comments on a person’s body, dress, appearance or sexual activities; humor or jokes about sex or females/males in general; pestering a person for dates, whether directly or indirectly by telephone, on or off campus.
  3. Unwelcome sexually suggestive sounds or gestures, including throwing kisses or whistling.
  4. Sexually suggestive objects, pictures, videotapes, electronic mail, audio recordings, or literature unrelated to educational purposes, placed in the work or study area that may embarrass or offend individuals.
  5. Unwelcome or inappropriate touching, patting, or pinching including giving unrequested neck or shoulder massages.
  6. Consensual sexual relationships where such relationships lead to favoritism of a student or subordinate employee with whom the teacher or superior is sexually involved and where such favoritism adversely affects other students and/or employees.

Reporting Sexual Harassment: A recommended course of action for students who feel that they are being subjected to sexual harassment is for them to tell or otherwise inform the harasser that the conduct is unwelcome and must stop. However, this is not required and, in some circumstances, this course of action may not be feasible, may be unsuccessful, or the individual may be uncomfortable dealing with the matter in this manner. Copies of the sexual harassment procedures are available in the Counseling Center and http://www.lee.edu/hr/resources-for-employees/sexual-harassment/.

These procedures call for students who feel that they have been subjected to sexual harassment to discuss their complaints with counselors, faculty members, college administrators, or others whom they trust. Students can contact the Associate Dean of Student Affairs for more information.

Campus Save

“kNOw MORE” is Lee College’s campus initiative to end sexual violence. More information can be found online at www.lee.edu/know-more.

Reporting Sexual Misconduct

Any Lee College student or employee may anonymously report suspected sexual misconduct through a confidential online reporting tool. Convercent reporting system is not part of the college, but it notifies appropriate personnel while protecting the identity of the person who filed a report. It is available 24/7/365 online or by calling toll-free 1.800.461.9330 https://app.convercent.com/en-us/LandingPage/6138ad5a-bd3f-e611-80cb-000d3ab06827

To get more information about a situation or to get assistance in reporting an incidence of sexual misconduct:

Students should contact:

  • Dr. Rosemary Coffman, Associate Dean Student Affairs at rcoffman@lee.edu or 281.425.6386

Employees should contact:

Dating Violence

Dating violence occurs when one partner in a dating relationship, either past or present, uses physical, sexual, verbal or emotional abuse to harm, threaten, intimidate, or control the other partner to the point that it affects one’s ability to participate in an educational program or creates an intimidating, threatening, hostile, or offensive educational environment. Examples of dating violence include, but are not limited to, physical or sexual assaults, stalking, name calling, threats to the partner or family members, isolating the partner from friends or family, destruction of property, or threats to commit suicide or homicide if the partner ends the relationship. Actions of dating violence may be subject to disciplinary action under the sexual harassment policy, as well as disciplinary action regarding conduct and/or disruption of the educational process.

Preventing Sexual Harassment/Misconduct Training for Employees

Because of the importance we place on these types of issues, Lee College has instituted a policy and specific procedures for investigating harassment complaints. It is our policy to investigate and resolve these issues in a prompt manner. If you have been harassed, or if another’s conduct creates an intimidating, hostile, or offensive work environment, please notify the sexual harassment coordinator: