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Office for Institutional Diversity

University Response To Bias-Motivated Offensive Conduct/Hate Crimes

The process for determining whether an incident is indeed a crime and possibly a hate crime is a complicated legal matter to be determined by the Boston College Police Department. Therefore, department administrators, faculty, staff, or students who receive reports of these incidents shall report them to the BCPD for investigation and referral. Once the initial report of an incident is made, an investigation will begin according to BCPD procedures .  BCPD may refer the matter to an appropriate University official for follow-up and/or to seek prosecution.

THE FOLLOWING CHART MAY BE USEFUL TO OUTLINE THE APPROPRIATE REPORTING AND FOLLOW-UP PROCESS UNDER THIS PROTOCOL


 

Target Perpetrator Report to Follow-up and adjudication may include Target support

Student
*If in residence hall

Student
BC Police or ODSD
*Residence Life
ODSD or Residence Life ODSD  or Support Resources
Student Faculty or Staff BC Police or Academic Dean or HR or Harassment Counselor or Resources Network  HR or Harassment Counselor or Academic Dean ODSD or Support Resources
Faculty or Staff Faculty or Staff BC Police or Academic Dean or HR or Harassment Counselor or Resources Network HR or Harassment Counselor   HR or Support Resources or Academic Dean
Faculty or Staff Student BC Police  or ODSD ODSD or Harassment Counselor HR or Harassment Counselor or Resources Network or Faculty Staff Assistance Program or Academic Dean
Student or Faculty or Staff Outsider BC Police or ODSD Non-BC police agencies ODSD  or HR or Harassment Counselor or Resources Network or Faculty Staff Assistance Program or Academic Dean
Outsider Student BC Police  or ODSD ODSD
Outsider Faculty or Staff BC Police  or HR HR

Student-Related Matters   

Part of police procedures for addressing student-related complaints, including those involving hate crimes and bias-motivated offensive conduct, include communication and referrals to the Student Judicial System and Office for the Dean for Student Development. Students also may choose to initiate a complaint directly through the Student Judicial System by contacting the Office of the Dean for Student Development (552-3470). Allegations will be documented and a report will be submitted to the Dean for Student Development. The student population living in the surrounding community off campus or studying abroad also fall within the jurisdiction of the Boston College Student Judicial System.

  1. ODSD Judicial Procedures (2008-2009 Student Guide: Section 5. Student Judicial System).

    Anyone who has grounds to initiate a complaint regarding any Boston College student may do so by submitting the following information to the Dean for Student Development:
    • The names of the accused (if available);
    • A clear statement explaining the nature and circumstances of the complaint;
    • The names, addresses, and telephone numbers of those filing the complaint.
    A student who has had a complaint lodged against him or her will be called by the Dean for Student Development or designee to discuss the complaint. At the meeting, the case may be held, dismissed, adjudicated, or referred to an administrative hearing board as determined by the dean or designee.

    The University responses will include contact from the administrator on call who will facilitate services such as counseling, campus ministry, health services, or other services as needed to ensure safety and to render assistance and comfort to the victim, or to others in the community as may be necessary.

    The Critical Incident Stress Management Team (www.bc.edu/CISM) will work with affected students to mitigate the negative effects of an incident such as a hate crime.

    Among the roles of the administrator on call is to facilitate services to support students and contact the appropriate personnel to initiate communication with the broader community.
  2. Residence Hall Procedures—If offensive conduct involves hate graffiti or verbal assaults in a residence hall, the matter will be referred to the appropriate Residence Life staff member who will follow the Protocol for Addressing Incidents of Intolerance (see Appendix 3 & Appendix 4).
  3. Discriminatory Harassment—If the offensive conduct involves a form of discriminatory harassment, it should be reported to the Harassment Counselor or to a member of the Harassment Resources Network (information about the Discriminatory Harassment, the Harassment Counselor and the Harassment Resources Network may be found at /offices/diversity/compliance/harassment.html).
  4. Range of Sanctions (for student perpetrators)Student sanctions may range from educational sanctions/community service up to and including suspension of housing privileges or dismissal from the University.
  5. Concerns about bias grading—If bias is perceived to exist in grading or work assignments from the instructor the student should contact the instructor and, failing to get a satisfactory outcome should follow the procedure for appealing a course grade
       
  6. Concerns about bias in the classroom—In the case where there is no individually directed bias against a student, but a faculty member speaks or behaves in a way that creates an uneasy or hostile climate, the student should report the matter to the Dean of the School or to the Harassment Counselor.

Faculty and Staff-Related Matters    

Part of police procedures for addressing faculty-/staff-related complaints include communication and referral to the Office of Human Resources. If you are a faculty or staff member, you may choose to initiate a complaint through the Boston College Police Department, the Department of Human Resources (553-3330), the Office for Institutional Diversity (552-2323), the Boston College Harassment Counselor Mary Ellen Fulton (552-4200) or the academic dean of the appropriate school. Complaints lodged in any of these offices will be referred for further investigation, as appropriate, to the Boston College Police.

  1. Discriminatory Harassment—If the offensive conduct involves a form of discriminatory harassment, it should be reported to the Harassment Counselor or to a member of the Harassment Resources Network (information about the Discriminatory Harassment, the Harassment Counselor and the Harassment Resources Network may be found at /offices/diversity/compliance/harassment.html
  2. Concerns about bias in the office environment—Offensive conduct in the office environment should be reported to your manager/supervisor and to the Department of Human Resources, or if appropriate, to the Harassment Counselor.

Communication    

Although a hate crime or bias-motivated offensive conduct may take the form of a violation against a single individual or a number of individuals, in a close community, such conduct can offend and impact the entire community. For that reason, communication to the broader community about the crime or offensive conduct and the University response may be required. The targeted person will be consulted to determine the appropriate communication to the community.

As a University guided by the Jesuit and Caltholic philosophy of cura personalis (care for the individual), Boston College's first responsibility is to care for its students, faculty, and staff. We value all members of our community, and feel an obligation to protect them in all cases, including their privacy and reputation whenever possible.

Boston College's communication policy mirrors this commitment. As a result, the University will only report information once facts are gathered properly and the release of information becomes appropriate. Administrators from Student Affairs, ODSD, Boston College Police, Public Affairs, and/or other offices, as appropriate, will share information and make a determination regarding the appropriate communications course of action, including the means to disseminate information, such as BCInfo, e-mail, and campus safety posters.

Specifically, in the case of a campus wide safety issue, the University will immediately post a safety notice on the BC website to inform the community of what Boston, Newton, Massachusetts State Police, or BC Police deem a "threat to the community."

Safety notices will provide pertinent information about the incident such as, location of the incident and the numbers of individuals involved.

The University also recognizes the need to manage rumors and misinformation that often accompany hate crimes and bias-motivated offenses. The University will disseminate information, as it becomes known, by the most appropriate and effective means that the situation dictates.

Annually, a report of the Hate Crime/Bias Offensive Conduct statistics will be presented by the Office for Institutional Diversity to the Diversity Steering committee and to the general Boston College community.