University policy outlines a range of behaviors that are prohibited. These behaviors may also be a violation of the law in Colorado. People who are impacted by these kinds of abuses have options for reporting to the university, law enforcement, or both.
What is consent?
People often think that consent is something that you "get" or "give" in a sexual situation, but this is limited. Consent is more of an agreement that people arrive at together. Consent can include words or actions that create mutually understandable, clear willingness and acceptance of the conditions of any sexual activity. Read more about what consent actually looks like.
Incapacitation is when a person is unable to give consent due to the effects of alcohol or other drug use, or other factors such as sleep, illness, or disability.
Incapacitation is a state where a person cannot make a rational, reasonable decision because they lack the capacity to understand the who, what, when, where, why, or how of sexual activity. The use of alcohol or drugs, in and of itself, does not render a person incapacitated, nor is it a defense against an allegation of sexual misconduct.
Signs of incapacitation that would indicate a person is unable to consent:
- Disorientation, which could include a person losing track of where they are or who they are with, being confused or unable to remember basic information, or repeating themselves (lack of short-term memory)
- Loss of motor control, which means a person may not be able to do basic things like inserting a key in a lock, not be able to get something out of a wallet, not be able to dress or undress or walk on their own
- Unconsciousness, including being asleep or passed out
These factors are used to determine a person's capacity to consent to sexual activity.
What is Sexual Misconduct?
Any unwelcome, non-consensual conduct of a sexual nature, sexual contact, or sexual penetration. Examples can include:
- Vaginal or anal penetration and any contact between a mouth and genitals without affirmative consent.
- Non-consensual recording of sexual activity or photographs of another person's intimate parts, or invasion of sexual privacy.
- Unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other unwelcome verbal, non-verbal, or physical conduct of a sexual nature.
- Here are 5 things everyone should know about sexual assault.
- Learn more about supporting a male friend who is sexually assaulted.
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When is someone required to report?
All employees who have the authority to supervise, grade, formally advise, or direct faculty, staff or students are considered "responsible employees" and are required to report to OIEC when incidents involving discrimination, harassment, sexual misconduct, intimate partner violence, and stalking are disclosed to them.
- A responsible employee who becomes aware of sexual misconduct (including sexual assault, exploitation and harassment, intimate partner violence, and stalking), discrimination, or harassment involving any member of the CU community must report it to OIEC.
- This applies whether the member of our community is the person who was subjected to the misconduct or the person accused of the misconduct.
- This applies regardless of where or when an incident occurred, including if it occurred off campus and/or before they were a member of the campus community.
- This applies regardless of how the information was conveyed to a responsible employee (whether spoken, written, or through a third party).
The purpose of mandatory reporting is to ensure safety, offer support and resources (such as the Office of Victim Assistance), understand the scope of the concern, and to get the behavior to stop.
When in doubt, contact OIEC for further guidance at 303-492-2127 or report at email@example.com.