Title IX states that:
No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.
CCSNH and its Colleges, including River Valley Community College, are committed to creating and maintaining a positive and productive learning environment. In furtherance of this objective, CCSNH prohibits discrimination in the administration of its education programs and activities based on sex including conduct that constitutes sexual harassment. CCSNH also prohibits retaliation against anyone who is involved in the making or reporting of a complaint or investigation or hearing of a formal complaint of sexual harassment.
Scope of Policy and Jurisdiction
This policy applies to and protects any person participating in or attempting to participate in the education program or activity of any CCSNH college. This policy applies to all college programs and activities including all locations within the United States, events, or circumstances over which the college exercises substantial control over both, the respondent and the context in which the sexual harassment occurs, whether such programs or activities occur on-campus or off-campus. CCSNH Human Resources Policy 323.01 also prohibits sexual harassment and retaliation and will govern investigations of reports where an employee is the complainant and/or respondent.
Inquiries regarding Title IX may be directed to:
Vice President for Academic & Student Affairs and Title IX Coordinator
1 College Drive
Claremont, NH 03743
Human Resources Officer
1 College Drive
Claremont, NH 03743
Inquiries may also be directed to:
Office for Civil Rights,
US Department of Education,
5 Post Office Square
Boston, MA 02109-3921
Definitions for Formal Grievance Procedures
Sexual Harassment: Includes any of the three types of misconduct on the basis of sex, all of which jeopardize the equal access to education that Title IX is designed to protect:
- Any instance of quid pro quo harassment by an employee of CCSNH
- Any unwelcome conduct that a reasonable person would find so severe, pervasive, and objectively offensive that it denies a person equal educational access
- Any instance of sexual violence, which includes sexual assault (as defined in the Clery Act), domestic violence, dating violence, or stalking as defined in the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA)
RVCC and CCSNH define consent in the following manner:
Consent, for purposes of this policy, means: an affirmative decision to
engage in mutually acceptable sexual activity given by clear actions or
words. It is an informed decision made freely, willingly, and actively by
all parties. Consent is knowing and voluntary. Consent is active, not
passive. Accordingly, silence or absence of resistance cannot be
interpreted as consent. Consent can be given by words or actions so
long as those words or actions may be reasonably understood to give
permission regarding sexual activity. Individuals cannot give consent if
they are incapacitated due to alcohol or legal or illegal drugs, or under
the age of 16.
Still unsure about consent? Check out ‘Consent is Everything’ created through a partnership between Oxford University and Thames Valley Police:
Any person may report sexual harassment without regard to whether the person reporting is the person alleged to be the victim of conduct that could constitute sexual harassment.
Title IX Coordinator
Reports to the Title IX Coordinator may be made in person or by calling Jennifer Cournoyer at 603- 543-7744 x5331 or in writing by email to email@example.com or mail to:
River Valley Community College
1 College Drive
Claremont, NH 03743
Reports may also be made to any other college employee. Upon receiving a report of sexual harassment, all CCSNH employees are required to notify the Title IX Coordinator
When a report of sexual harassment is received, the Title IX Coordinator will provide written information about college processes and supportive measures. Supportive measures may be implemented whether or not a formal complaint is filed.
All reports of sexual harassment shall be maintained by the college as confidential except as may be permitted by FERPA regulations, 99 CFR part 99, or as required by law, or to carry out the purposes of Title IX, 34 CFR part 106, including the conduct of any investigation, hearing, or judicial proceeding arising thereunder.
A report of sexual harassment, which also constitutes sexual violence, may be submitted to the Title IX Coordinator or police (either with state police or local law enforcement).
Title IX Coordinator
When a report of sexual violence is received by the Title IX Coordinator, the reporting party will be given written information about college processes, supportive measures and support services and will also be informed of the right to file a formal complaint with the Title IX Coordinator and a criminal complaint with the police.
All college employees (except for healthcare providers acting in their professional capacity as a healthcare provider) who receive reports of sexual violence are required to notify the college’s Title IX coordinator of the report.
Reports to the Title IX Coordinator may be made in person or by calling:
Vice President for Academic & Student Affairs and Title IX Coordinator
1 College Drive
Claremont, NH 03743
Campus Safety Office
Reports may also be made with RVCC Security Office. These reports will be forwarded to the Title IX Coordinator, but are not reported to local law enforcement without consent of the Complainant.
Campus Security Officer
1 College Drive
Claremont, NH 03743
Anonymous/Online reporting is also available; however, this may limit the College’s ability to investigate and address the report.
You can submit a report here.
Sexual misconduct that may be criminal in nature can be reported to local law enforcement. If an individual reports sexual misconduct at their college, the college will inform the individual about the option to pursue criminal action for incidents of sexual misconduct that may also be crimes under New Hampshire law. If requested, NHTI will assist the individual in making a criminal report and cooperate with law enforcement agencies to the extent permitted by law.
Reports to police that occur on or near the college campus may be made to:
State of New Hampshire Police Headquarters
33 Hazen Drive
Concord, NH 03301
603-271-3636 or 603-273-4381
For all emergencies dial 9-1-1
A report may be filed in person, by mail, or electronic mail, by using the contact information listed by the college for the Title IX Coordinator. When a report filed in writing by a complainant, it shall not be treated as a formal complaint unless the complainant also requests that the college investigate the report of sexual harassment. Similarly, when a Title IX coordinator receives an oral report of sexual harassment from a complainant, the report will not be treated as a formal complaint unless the complainant also requests that the college investigate the report of sexual harassment. Such a complaint and the request to investigate the report of sexual harassment must be reviewed and approved by the complainant prior to the Title IX Coordinator signing the written complaint. In such cases, the Title IX Coordinator is not a complainant or otherwise a party in the proceedings.
- The Title IX Coordinator shall take no further action on a formal complaint under this policy If the allegations contained within the formal complaint 1) would not constitute sexual harassment as defined in this policy, 2) did not occur in the college’s education program or activity, or 3) did not occur against a person within the United States
- The Title IX Coordinator may take no further action on the complaint under this policy if at any time during the investigation or hearing: 1) a complainant notifies the Title IX Coordinator in writing that the complainant would like to withdraw the formal complaint or any allegations therein, 2) the respondent is no longer enrolled or employed by the college, or 3) specific circumstances prevent the college from gathering evidence sufficient to reach a determination as to the form complaint or allegations therein.
- The Title IX Coordinator’s decision to take no further action shall be communicated in writing to the complainant. A complainant may appeal such determination as set forth in section h below.
Upon receiving or signing a formal complaint of sexual harassment, the Title IX coordinator shall issue a written notice to both parties. The notice shall include:
- an overview of the allegations with sufficient details including the identities of the parties, if known, the conduct allegedly constituting sexual harassment, and the date and location of the alleged incident, if known,
- the name, if known, of the investigator assigned to investigate the formal complaint and that the investigator will contact the complainant and respondent to schedule interviews,
- a statement that the fact that a formal complaint has been filed creates no presumption that the respondent has committed the alleged conduct and the respondent will not be held responsible for the conduct until a determination regarding responsibility is made at the conclusion of the grievance process,
- a statement that the parties have the right to an advisor of choice, who may be, but is not required to be, attorney, and who may advise each party during the investigation and throughout the grievance process,
- a statement that the parties and their respective advisors may review evidence gathered during the investigation prior to the hearing, and
- the range of sanctions that may be imposed upon a respondent who is found responsible following a hearing.
The written notice must also inform the parties of provisions in the student code of conduct that prohibit knowingly making false statements or knowingly submitting false information during the grievance process and the prohibition against retaliation.
In certain circumstances, a college President, or their designee, may issue an order for emergency removal of a student from campus prior to a hearing. Emergency removal may be imposed only 1) to ensure the safety and well-being of an individual related to the allegations of sexual harassment; or 2) to ensure the normal operations of the college. Notification of the imposition of emergency removal must be communicated to the respondent and the Title IX Coordinator as soon as is practical. The respondent shall have an opportunity to challenge the decision immediately by filing a request for a video hearing before a hearing officer. The respondent shall comply with the emergency removal order until the order is vacated or otherwise lifted.
All reports of sexual harassment prohibited by this policy will be investigated as expeditiously as possible (usually within 60 days), with reasonable thoroughness and particular care to preserve the confidentiality of all persons involved.
- All students and employees who are contacted by an investigator are expected to be truthful, forthcoming and cooperative in connection with the investigation.
- The investigator’s report shall fairly summarize all relevant information and the sources of such information gathered during the investigation and shall be submitted to the Title IX coordinator.
- Upon receipt of the report, the Title IX coordinator shall notify both parties in writing. Each party and their chosen advisor may review the report and submit in writing within 10 days any additional information that is relevant for inclusion in the final report. The final report will be made available prior to a hearing.
- The investigation shall be limited to the allegations in the formal complaint.
Within 30 days of receiving the investigation report, the Title IX coordinator shall schedule a live hearing before the hearing officer (or panel) to take place no sooner than 10 days after the final investigation report is made available to the parties.
- The hearing may take place in person or via video conference based on College operations (in-person or remote) and availability. At the request of either party, the live hearing will be scheduled to occur via video conference.
In accordance with Title IX regulations, the hearing will be recorded by the College and will be either an audio or audiovisual recording. No other recordings are permitted.
If a party does not have an advisor present at the hearing, an advisor must be assigned by the Title IX coordinator to assist the party during the hearing.
- At the live hearing, each party’s advisor must be permitted to ask the other party and any witnesses all relevant questions and follow-up questions including those questions challenging credibility. Such cross-examination must be conducted directly, orally, and in real time by the party’s advisor and never by a party personally.
- If a party or witness does not submit to cross-examination at the hearing, the hearing officer (or panel) must not rely on any statement of that party or witness in reaching a determination regarding responsibility. The determination regarding responsibility, however, cannot be drawn based solely on a party’s or witness’ absence from the hearing or refusal to answer cross-examination or other questions.
- Only relevant questions shall be permitted. Before a complainant, respondent, or witness answers a question, it must first be determined whether the question is relevant and explain any decision to exclude the question as not relevant.
- Questions and evidence of either party’s character or character trait is not admissible to prove that on a particular occasion that party acted in accordance with the character or trait.
- Questions and evidence about the complainant’s sexual predisposition or prior sexual behavior are not relevant unless such questions and evidence about the complainant’s prior sexual behavior are offered to prove that someone other than the response committed the conduct alleged by the complainant, or the questions and evidence concern specific incidents complainant’s prior sexual behavior with respondent and are offered to prove consent.
- Questions or evidence that constitute or seek disclosure of, information protected under a legally recognized privilege, are not allowed unless the person holding such privilege has waived the privilege.
Standard of Proof
The hearing officer’s (or panel’s) determination of the respondent’s responsibility shall be made on the basis of whether it is more likely than not that the respondent committed the alleged conduct and thereby violated this policy.
The hearing officer (or panel) shall issue a written determination regarding responsibility, the written determination must include:
- Identification of the allegations potentially constituting sexual harassment as defined in this policy;
- A description of the procedural steps taken from the receipt of the formal complaint through the determination of responsibility, including any notification to the parties, interviews with parties and witnesses, site visits, methods used to gather other evidence, and hearings held;
- Findings of fact supporting the determination;
- Conclusions regarding application of this policy to the facts;
- A statement of, and rationale for, the result as to each allegation, including a determination regarding responsibility.
- Prior to issuance of the decision to the parties, the determination shall be promptly forwarded to the college vice president of student affairs, or other designated disciplinary officer for a determination of sanctions.
- Upon determining that the respondent committed the alleged conduct and thereby violated this policy, the college vice president of student affairs, or other designated disciplinary officer, may impose one or more of the following sanctions:
- WARNING – a notice in writing to the student that the student is violating or has violated institutional regulations;
- PROBATION – a written reprimand for violation of specified regulations. Probation is for a designated period of time and includes the probability of more severe disciplinary sanctions if the student is found during the period of probation to be violating any institutional regulations;
- LOSS OF PRIVILEGES – denial of specified privileges for a designated period of time (e.g., social probation, vehicular privileges, deactivation of a group, limited access to facilities, Persona Non Grata);
- LOSS OF CONTACT – restriction prohibiting an individual from harassing, threatening, accosting, or even approaching or contacting a specified individual;
- FINES – previously established and published fines may be imposed;
- RESTITUTION – compensation for loss, damage, or injury. This may take the form of appropriate service and/or monetary or material replacement;
- CLASS/ COLLEGE SUSPENSION – separation from class(es) or the college for a definite period of time, after which the student, group, or organization is eligible to return. Conditions for readmission will be specified;
- COLLEGE DISMISSAL/EXPULSION – permanent separation from all CCSNH colleges which may include loss of campus visitation privileges.
- EDUCATIONAL OR SERVICE SANCTIONS – imposed in addition to or in lieu of the above sanctions; examples of such sanctions include but are not limited to work assignments, service to the college, written letter of apology, mandatory meetings with a college official. Such sanctions require the approval of any person(s) whose participation is required for the completion of the sanction(s).
- In imposing sanctions, the following goals must be considered and balanced: 1) engaging students in taking responsibility for their conduct, 2) repairing harm caused by the conduct, and 3) rebuilding trust with the individuals directly impacted and the college community.
- A written statement of, and rationale for, any disciplinary sanctions the college imposes on the respondent.
- A written statement of, and rationale for, any remedies designed to restore or preserve equal access to the college’s education program or activity provided by the college to the complainant. The Title IX Coordinator is responsible for effective implementation of any remedies.
Notice of Decision
The Title IX coordinator must provide the written determination to the parties simultaneously and not less than 7 business days after the determination of responsibility. The notice of decision must also include an explanation of the college’s procedures and permissible bases for the complainant and the respondent to appeal and notice that the determination becomes final either on the date that the college provides the parties with the written determination of the result of the appeal, if an appeal is filed, or if an appeal is not filed, the date on which an appeal would no longer be considered timely.
- Either party may appeal the determination by filing a written appeal to the Title IX coordinator within 5 business days of being informed of the determination. Grounds for appeal shall be limited to:
- Procedural irregularity that affected the outcome of the matter;
- New evidence that was not reasonably available at the time of the determination regarding responsibility was made that could have affected the outcome of the matter;
- The Title IX officer, investigator or hearing officer had a conflict of interest or bias that affected the outcome of the matter.
- Inappropriate gravity of the sanction in relation to the conduct.
- The other party shall be notified in writing when an appeal is filed.
- Both parties shall be provided a reasonable, equal opportunity to submit a written statement in support of, or challenging, the outcome.
- The appeals officer shall issue a written decision describing the result of the appeal and rationale for the result.
- The appeals officer’s decision shall be provided simultaneously to both parties.
- If the appeals officer determines that the appeal falls within the limited grounds and the outcome may have been affected, the matter will be remanded within 10 days for a new hearing or other appropriate proceeding depending upon the nature of the grounds for the appeal. If the grounds for the appeal is inappropriate gravity of the sanctions in relation to the conduct, the proceeding shall be limited to a hearing before the disciplinary officer on the appropriateness of the sanction.
The first thing to do is to get to a safe place. Contact a friend, family member, the police department or the hospital to ensure your safety. This does not mean that you have to “report” the details of the incident unless you choose to. This is about your safety.
- Take care of your immediate personal safety
- Call 911 if you are in immediate danger
It is extremely important that you seek medical attention as soon as possible, preferably within 72 hours, because depending on the nature of the assault, you might be injured internally as well as externally. Prompt medical examinations can test for pregnancy, STDs, HIV, and venereal disease. A medical/forensic examination can also secure valuable evidence that could be used later if you wish to have the assailant prosecuted. The patient is in charge of this exam and every step of the medical/forensic examination is optional. The choice to report to law enforcement is yours, but physical evidence is difficult to collect unless you seek medical attention promptly. Sometimes your initial instincts to drink, bathe, brush your teeth, comb your hair, even change your clothes, while natural, will eliminate evidence.
Emergency medical services may be accessed directly at:
Claremont: Valley Regional Hospital
243 Elm Street Claremont, NH 03743
Keene: Cheshire Medical Center
580 Court Street Keene, NH 03431
Lebanon: Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center
18 Old Etna Road Lebanon, NH 03766
Victims of sexual misconduct/sexual harassment may pursue assistance and/or support confidentially by contacting a New Hampshire Domestic and Sexual Violence Crisis Center. Confidential support services are available to anyone who has been impacted by sexual misconduct, sexual harassment, domestic violence, dating violence or stalking. Services are open and affirming to all, and an individual need not be in crisis to call.
Claremont: Turning Points Network
11 School Street Claremont, NH 03743
1-800-639-3130 [crisis line]
603-543-0155 (Claremont office]
603-863-4053 (Newport office]
Keene: Monadnock Center for Violence Prevention
12 Court Street Keene, NH 03431
1-888-511-6287 [crisis line]
603-352-3782 [crisis line]
603-352-3782 [Keene office]
38 Bank Street
Lebanon, NH 03766
1-866-348-WISE (9473] [crisis line]
603-448-5525 [local crisis line]
Immediate, confidential help is also available by calling:
• New Hampshire 24-hour Domestic Violence Helpline: 1-866-644-3574
• New Hampshire 24-hour Sexual Assault Hotline: 1-800-277-5570
• National 24-hour Sexual Assault Hotline: 1-800-656-4673
Conversations with crisis center and crisis line volunteers and advisors (who are also confidential resources) are protected under New Hampshire’s confidentiality statute (NH RSA 173-C).
Additional information concerning counseling, health, safety, academic, and other support services can be obtained by contacting the CCSNH/College Title IX Coordinator, or by contacting the crisis centers listed above.
Individuals accused of sexual misconduct/sexual harassment may seek assistance from a confidential advisor, which may include an advocate or attorney, by contacting the CCSNH/College Title IX Coordinator.
Online Counseling Services – Kepro
Free confidential counseling services available to students
For access visit the RVCC Counseling Website:
River Valley Community College encourages members of our community to download uSafeUS®, a free and confidential app that helps protect yourself and your community – both on and off-campus. Whenever something feels “off” about a situation you’re in, uSafeUS® is always there to help:
- Fake a call or text to make a smooth exit from an uncomfortable situation
- Notify friends when you’re walking alone
- Quick links to support and answers to your questions about sexual assault, relationship violence, & stalking.
Training for Title IX Coordinators, Investigators, and Decision-makers involved in the grievance process
River Valley Community College is committed to providing current and up to date training for all members of its community that are involved in the implementation of our reporting and grievance process.
- Title IX Coordinator Training
RVCC’s Title IX Coordinator participated in training on the new CCSNH policy and Title IX process in July 2021. The training was conducted by Drummond Woodsum Attorneys at Law.
- Investigator Training
Key members of RVCC participated in extensive training through D. Stafford & Associates on Title IX and how to conduct a Title IX investigation in February 2020. These members include the Vice President for Academic & Student Affairs & Title IX Coordinator and our HR Manager. These members undergo recertification training yearly through D. Stafford & Associates.
Due to proprietary ownership of the training by D. Stafford & Associates, a copy of the training is currently not available. Questions regarding the training may be directed to the Title IX Coordinator.
Additional training was provided to investigators by Drummond Woodsum Attorneys at Law during Fall 2021.
- Hearing Board Training
Training is provided annually and includes, but is not limited to:
- Information on working with and interviewing persons subjected to sexual misconduct.
- Information on conduct that constitutes sexual harassment including sexual violence.
- Information on consent and the role drugs and alcohol may play in an individual’s ability to consent.
- The effects of trauma, including any neurobiological impact on a person.
- Cultural competence training regarding how sexual misconduct may impact individuals differently depending on factors that contribute to an individual’s cultural background, including but not limited to national origin, sex, ethnicity, religion, gender identity, gender expression, and sexual orientation.
- Ways to communicate sensitively and compassionately with a reporting party of sexual misconduct including but not limited to an awareness of responding to a reporting party with consideration of that party’s cultural background and providing services to or assisting in locating services for the reporting party. Ways to communicate sensitively with a responding party including an awareness of the emotional impact of being wrongly accused.
- Training and information regarding how dating violence, domestic violence, sexual assault, and stalking may impact students with developmental or
Awareness, Prevention, and Response Programming for All Employees and Students
RVCC employees complete annual training through our insurance provider MEMIC. Employees are also encouraged to complete this training series on Title IX.
Students can learn more about their Title IX rights on the Know Your IX website.
A sexual misconduct climate survey with a series of standard form questions was distributed to all undergraduate and graduate students in the state of New Hampshire as a required component of a new state law aimed at addressing campus sexual misconduct. This survey was administered at RVCC in February and March of 2022, and the survey results can be found here.
When reviewing the summary findings, please note that the definition of sexual misconduct as it relates to this survey is quite broad, so it is important to read the survey questions and responses in their entirety and note the total number of people who answered a specific question to best understand the results. The results will be an important component in our campus’s ongoing work to prevent and respond to all forms of sexual misconduct and interpersonal violence.
Statewide data on the sexual misconduct survey can be found here.
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