All members of the University community share a responsibility for maintaining an environment where actions are guided by mutual respect, integrity, and reason. All members of the University are governed by University policies outlined below, local ordinances, and state and federal laws.
It is the purpose of the University of Maine System Student Conduct Code to promote the pursuit of activities that contribute to the intellectual, ethical, and physical development of the individuals under the auspices of the University of Maine System (hereinafter referred to as "University") and the individual campuses. It is also the purpose of this Code to ensure the safety of persons engaging in those pursuits; to protect the free and peaceful expression of ideas; and to assure the integrity of various academic processes. It is expected that students will conduct their affairs with proper regard for the rights of others and of the University. The severity of the imposed sanctions will be appropriate to the violation and circumstances of the situation.
The University of Southern Maine (USM) endeavors to develop and provide access to collections, services, facilities, equipment, and programs which meet the information and educational needs of the University community, and to advance the research, instruction, and service missions of the University.
In fulfillment of this purpose, and in response to advances in technology and the changing needs of the community, USM supports open access to information resources, including the Internet, to the greatest extent possible. In return, the University expects users of information resources to be aware of and act in compliance with all relevant federal and state laws, local ordinances, and University policies. It further expects its users to be familiar and to behave consistently with the several general principles which together constitute appropriate, responsible, and ethical behavior in an academic environment, particularly in regard to the use of the University's information resources. Those principles include: Freedom of Expression, Respect for Privacy, Respect for Property Rights, Respect for Personal and Cultural Differences, Freedom from Harassment, Respect for and Compliance with Intellectual Property Rights and Copyright Law.
The University affirms that it will be a partner with users in promoting education and understanding of the appropriate, efficient, and successful use of information resources.
All users of University of Southern Maine information resources are expected to behave responsibly, legally, and ethically in their use of electronic resources. To that end, it is the responsibility of those users to:
- honor all state and federal laws, copyright provisions, Board of Trustees policies, and software licensing agreements to which the institution is a party;
- be aware of and comply with University and the University's agencies' procedures and regulations for accessing and operating computer and related hardware, software, and other information resources;
- cooperate with legitimate requests by University staff;
- take precautions to protect accounts and passwords by selecting obscure passwords, changing them frequently, and not sharing such information or the use of the accounts with others;
- download information from computers to disk whenever possible, photocopy multiple copies, and otherwise limit printing to what is directly needed in order to conserve paper and to make the most efficient use of resources;
- properly logoff or logout whenever leaving a computer in an area which is accessible to others; treat others with dignity and respect; respect the privacy and confidentiality rights of others, including their files and accounts; use USM's information resources only for purposes which are legal and consistent with the University's mission.
Consistent with the above, unacceptable uses and behaviors include, but are not limited to:
- damaging or attempting to alter computer equipment;
- violating, or attempting to violate, computer system security;
- violating, or attempting to violate, software license agreements;
- incurring unauthorized or unreasonable costs for the University;
- accessing files, data, or passwords of others without authorization;
- disrupting or monitoring electronic communications without authorization;
- harassing other computer users or University staff;
- violating the privacy of others;
- libeling or slandering others;
- using any University workstation for any illegal purpose;
- copying or distributing copyright-protected material without legal right or authorization;
- intentionally and unnecessarily exposing others to material they may find personally unsuitable.
Results of Inappropriate Behavior
It is important to recognize that inappropriate behavior has an adverse effect on the work of others, on the ability of University staff to provide good service, and/or on information resources themselves. Thus it is expected that users of information resources at USM will be constructively responsive to others' complaints, and receptive to University staff's reasonable requests for changes in behavior or action.
University staff will attempt to resolve differences and problems among information users by asking for the cooperation of those involved, and for compliance with University policies.
The University will pursue infractions or misconduct that cannot be resolved informally with the general means it has available to it within the University and with law enforcement, as appropriate.
Serious infractions or misconduct may result in temporary or permanent loss of access privileges.
The University of Southern Maine supports the democratic principle of freedom of access to information for every citizen. The University endorses: the American Library Association (ALA)'s Library Bill of Rights ; ALA's Access to Electronic Information, Services, and Networks: An Interpretation of the Library Bill of Rights , adopted by ALA in 1996; and the EDUCOM Guide to the Ethical and Legal Use of Software .
The University does not attempt to limit access to, or otherwise protect, users of information resources from any particular materials available in any format, beyond the choices it makes in selecting materials or providing electronic links to information sources of particular merit.
USM does not monitor, and has no control over, information accessible through the Internet. The University disclaims any warranty for any information found on the Internet as to its accuracy, authority, timeliness, usefulness, or fitness for a particular purpose. Likewise, the University disclaims any control over, or knowledge about, changes in content to the sources for which it has established links, or for the content of sources accessed through secondary links.
Use of the Internet and all other information resources will be managed in a manner consistent with other USM service policies. This includes: the University's Student Conduct Code; the USM Library's Rules and Expectations of Appropriate Conduct (rev. March, 1998); and the UMS Sexual Harassment Policy .
The Internet contains much information that is personally, academically, professionally, and culturally enriching. It also provides material that may be factually incorrect, offensive, disturbing to some individuals, and/or illegal. Moreover, the Internet may not be an adequate substitute for many other kinds of information resources which may be limited by copyright or other restrictions to local use. Users of information resources are encouraged to ask a librarian for assistance in finding the best sources for their research.
While the University is committed to serving the general public to the greatest extent possible, it reserves the right to give priority in service to the USM campus community (students, faculty, and staff), especially in the case of a high level of demand for limited equipment and materials. This may include limiting the amount of time patrons may have to use certain information resources and supporting equipment. Moreover, access to some information resources must be limited to campus patrons, notably in cases of licensing or other contractual agreements with vendors.
The University accepts its responsibility as a United States Government Document Depository Library to make the documents it selects on depository status available to the general public regardless of the format in which the document is distributed.
© Copyright 1999
University of Southern Maine
96 Falmouth Street
Portland, ME 04104
University of Southern Maine Alcohol and Other Drugs Policy
Applies to: Students and guests
Last Revised: 08/24/2018
Responsible Office: Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs
Table of Contents:
- Good Samaritan Policy
- University Alcoholic Beverage & Drug Guidelines
- Local, State, and Federal Alcohol & Drug Laws
The primary goal of the alcohol and other drugs policy is the health and safety of all members of the University of Southern Maine (USM) community. We value and promote an environment of legal and lower risk alcohol use and support alcohol-free environments. We recognize alcoholic beverages may be available at some campus events however such events must be consistent with the University's values and being under the influence of alcohol in no way lessens accountability to the University community.
The University complies fully with local, state, and federal laws regarding the sale, possession and consumption of alcoholic beverages. The unlawful manufacture, possession, use, sale, or distribution of drugs or controlled substances is strictly prohibited. All students and guests are held responsible for behavior in violation of this policy. The University provides education on alcohol and other drug use through programs, support, and resources.
2. Good Samaritan Policy
Use of alcohol and other drugs can create life-threatening situations that require an immediate response from emergency services personnel. In all instances, the main concern of USM is that those in need receive prompt medical attention.
USM cannot guarantee absolute immunity from sanctions associated with violations of the Student Conduct Code. However, efforts may be made to mitigate sanctions under the University of Maine System (UMS) Student Conduct Code associated with alcohol and other drug offenses for “Good Samaritans.” Sanction mitigation may be considered for any “Good Samaritan” who actively sought medical attention at the time of the incident for themselves or others.
3. University Alcoholic Beverage & Drug Guidelines
This policy, the UMS Student Conduct Code, and all applicable laws apply to students while on-campus and on University related trips and University sponsored events off-campus. Additionally, violations of the law and/or USM/UMS policies that occur off-campus and at activities not directly sponsored by USM may be resolved through the Student Conduct Process and could result in University sanctions.
The sale, possession, and use of alcohol on the campuses of the University of Maine System must comply with the local, state, and federal laws and regulations and with campus policy and procedures. The acquisition, possession, transportation, sale, and consumption of alcohol by anyone under 21 years of age is prohibited by UMS policy. It is a violation for anyone under 21 years of age to be intoxicated on campus or at any University sponsored event off-campus regardless of where the consumption occurred. In addition, kegs and other common sources of alcohol, drinking games, funnels, shot skis, and other similar paraphernalia, or any other activities that encourage the excessive consumption of alcohol are not permitted on-campus or at any University sponsored activity off-campus.
Alcohol may be possessed or consumed in low risk ways on University property only by persons 21 years of age or older at University events approved under the Alcohol at Events Guidelines (included below) or under the following conditions:
- In a suite, apartment, or bedroom in the residence halls where alcohol consumption is permitted so long as a resident of the room is present who is 21 or older and all guests are 21 or older
- The room door is closed and there are no kegs or other common sources of alcohol
- Drinking games and funnels are not permitted
For the complete Residential Life Alcohol Policy usm.maine.edu/reslife/residence-hall-policies
Coerced or Forced Consumption of Alcohol or other Drugs incapacitates the person and renders them vulnerable to a drug-facilitated sexual assault (DFSA), including rape.
In instances, where a person(s) forces another to consume alcohol or other drugs, or conspire(s) to force another to consume alcohol or other drugs, immediate and strict sanctions (including suspension or dismissal) may be imposed on the responsible individual(s) and/or sponsoring organization or anyone who fails to take direct action to stop the incident (personal intervention, calling authorities).
Alcohol at On-Campus Events Guidelines
University policy permits alcohol consumption at on-campus events however the consumption of alcohol should never be the primary purpose or focus of an event. Alcohol-free social events are encouraged. In keeping with the philosophy noted above, the following policies and procedures for serving alcohol at on-campus events are in effect:
- A request for alcoholic beverage service must be made for each function where alcohol will be served by contacting Conference Services at (207) 780-5960 or Dining Services at (207) 780-4039 at least 21 days prior to the event. All alcohol service must be provided by Dining Services, as the holder of the Liquor License at USM. University community members and guests are prohibited from dispensing alcohol. Dining Services has the right to deny requests for alcohol service. Any requests to use a licensed and insured alternative alcohol provider must be submitted in writing to the VP for Corporate Engagement and Auxiliary Services and the Chief Student Affairs Officer at least 21 days prior to the event. Non-alcoholic beverages and food/snacks must be available and provided by the caterer in the same location as the alcoholic beverages during the entire time alcoholic beverages are being served.
- All events that include alcoholic beverage service must have a USM Police Officer unless otherwise waived by the Director of Public Safety. A Request for Police Services Form must be submitted to USM Public Safety for each event at least 14 days prior to the event. USM Public Safety has the prerogative to deny approval of alcohol service.
- A representative from the sponsoring organization/department must be at the site of the event, before, during, and after the event. The onsite representative is responsible for receiving any deliveries, ensuring the room is set up, greeting guests, overseeing the event, troubleshooting, and making certain that University policies are followed. Outside groups being sponsored by a University department or student group must be in compliance with the Sponsoring External Programs policy.
- The acquisition, distribution, possession, or consumption of alcohol must be in compliance with all local, state, and federal laws, strict controls must be enforced in order to prevent underage drinking, and risk management procedures must be in place. The sponsoring organization/University department is responsible for assisting the caterer in ensuring that attendees’ behavior is consistent with University policies and the law and creating an atmosphere where norms of responsible alcohol use prevail.
- Possession and consumption of alcoholic beverages is only permitted in the locations approved in the request for Police Services Form. All event venues must be in compliance with fire, safety, and crowd-control regulations.
- University units purchasing alcoholic beverages and/or alcoholic beverage services must comply with the Use of University Funds Policy. The University may entertain dignitaries, donors or alumni to promote the advancement of the institution; however alcohol is considered an allowable expense only for the guests’ beverages, unless prior approval from the Chief Financial Officer or designee is obtained. Alcohol may also be served at some official University business events or functions with pre-approval from the Vice President of Student Affairs or designee. The business purpose must be clearly indicated and submitted in writing at least 21 days in advance of the event to the Vice President of Student Affairs. Examples of business related events include Board of Trustee and Board of Visitors meetings or senior level interviews spanning a day or more.
- The Student Activity Fee and other funds under the control of student organizations may not be used to purchase alcoholic beverages.
- There must be a primary purpose for a gathering other than the availability of alcohol. Alcohol should not be used as an inducement to attend.
- No campus event involving alcoholic beverages is permitted where alcohol is consumed as part of a competition, such as drinking games or chugging contests.
Promotion of Alcohol
The University does not permit permanent sponsorship or advertising in its public spaces that promote alcohol. Sponsorship by companies or distributors who purvey alcohol is not permissible without the approval of the Chief Student Affairs Officer prior to acceptance. When permitted, the Sponsorship or Promotion must be portable and removed at the end of the event. In addition the sponsorship may not encourage underage drinking or the misuse of alcohol. This applies to events and activities directly organized or sponsored by the University on or off-campus, as well as to events sponsored by others who may be leasing, renting, or using University facilities.
The following behaviors are a violation of law and/or University Policy:
- Illegally possessing, using, manufacturing, dispensing or selling drugs
- Intentionally or recklessly inhaling or ingesting substances (e.g., nitrous oxide, glue, paint, etc.) that will alter a person’s mental state
- Misuse of legal prescription drugs, using someone else’s prescription drugs, or the distribution or sale of prescription drugs
- Possessing drug paraphernalia containing illegal drug residue, including but not limited to bongs or glass pipes
- Exhibiting signs of being under the influence of illegal drugs (such as smell of having used marijuana, bloodshot eyes, vomiting, difficulty standing, agitation, etc.) anywhere on campus or at a University sponsored activity off-campus, regardless of where the consumption occurred
- Permitting any person to violate the drug policy on-campus
Federal law and the Drug Free Schools and Workplace Acts make possession and use of marijuana on-campus illegal, even in states with medical marijuana laws. Thus, the University of Maine System does not permit medical use or possession of marijuana anywhere on campus. Furthermore, students who are under the influence of medical marijuana or in possession of marijuana for medical reasons are not exempt from normal conduct and job performance standards. Although the use or possession of medical marijuana is not permitted on-campus, students on the medical marijuana registry may make a request for other reasonable accommodations with the Disability Services Center.
4. Local, State, and Federal Alcohol & Drug Laws
It is a violation of law to do any of the following (provided as a general summary of the major applicable laws):
- Purchase, order, pay for, or share the cost of alcoholic beverages if you are under 21 Possess alcohol if you are under 21
- Consume alcohol if you are under 21, except in a home in the presence of your parent, guardian or custodian Transport alcohol if you are under 21
- Sell alcohol to, buy alcohol for, or furnish alcohol to anyone under 21
- Allow anyone under 21 who possesses or is consuming alcohol to remain in your home or in other property that you own or occupy.
- Show or give false information about your name, age, or other identification to purchase or obtain alcohol
- Have an open container of alcohol in your possession in any unlicensed public place
- Have an open container of alcohol in your possession while driving or riding in a motor vehicle Operate a motor vehicle under the influence of alcohol or other drugs
- Knowingly obtaining, possessing, using, or distributing a controlled substance
The Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act and the Drug-Free Workplace Act require the University to provide students, faculty, and staff with information on an annual basis regarding the unlawful use of drugs and alcohol, potential sanctions, health risks, and available assistance and treatment. Students convicted of a federal or state drug conviction can be disqualified from receiving financial aid funds.
Any student or guest found to be in violation of local, state, and/or federal law, or who violates the University’s guidelines contained herein, will be subject to the UMS Student Conduct Code Process and/or referral to the appropriate authorities for legal action. Student-athletes are also subject to the USM Student-Athlete Code of Conduct.
Education and Prevention
Alcohol and other drug use can interfere with the learning environment, affect the health and safety of students and guests, and is often a factor in campus crime. In keeping with USM’s commitment to foster a safe, healthy learning community, the University provides alcohol and other drug education and prevention resources.
Counseling, Treatment, and Support
Students who have concerns about their use of alcohol or other drugs are urged to seek assistance. University Health & Counseling Services offers individual and group counseling funded by the Health Fee on all three campuses. A professionally trained, licensed drug & alcohol counselor is available. For more information including the numbers to call for an appointment please visit usm.maine.edu/uhcs.
The Recovery Oriented Campus Center (ROCC) at the University of Southern Maine is about establishing peer support to build a supportive community for students in recovery from substance use and other mental health conditions. The ROCC is a place where students enter to reconnect with themselves, each other, and their community; while also exploring their academic potential and the boundless opportunities that await them in a life of recovery.
Responsible Official: President, Provost, Vice President EMSA
Effective Date: March 19, 2018
This Policy incorporates the existing USM Use of Facilities & Grounds Policy established on March 1, 1994 and revised on August 27, 2014. Policy Attached. This Policy is also subject to University of Maine System Board Policy 212: Free Speech, Academic Freedom, and Civility.
Statement of Purpose
The University of Southern Maine’s mission of education, research and public service is dependent upon the free flow of ideas. The institution is dedicated to free speech and free expression, exercised with civility and mutual respect for all viewpoints. This Policy sets forth the procedure by which all recognized student organizations and other institutional groups may host speakers on University controlled property.
The purpose of this policy is to balance the safety of the entire campus community while ensuring the free exercise of First Amendment rights of those who wish to participate in events hosted at USM.
Scope of Policy
This policy applies to presenters, speakers, or performers (“speakers”) invited by, or on behalf of, USM academic or administrative units and their administrators, or recognized USM groups and organizations, including all recognized faculty, staff and student organizations. It covers speakers regardless of whether remuneration or other consideration is offered to the speaker for the requested appearance. This policy does not apply to faculty or USM employees who engage outside speakers for classroom presentations in credit or non-credit USM courses.
USM reserves the right to regulate the time, place, and manner of any speech sponsored under this Policy to prevent interference with other University activities and to ensure that the event complies with applicable safety and security requirements, such as occupancy limitations and maintaining access to or egress from buildings in the event of fire or another emergency.
An invited speaker must have a recognized USM sponsor. A sponsor is a USM academic or administrative unit, or a recognized USM group or organization.
A recognized group or organization is one sanctioned by resolution of the UMS Board of Trustees, approved by the USM President, Provost or Chief Business Officer, granted such status as a matter of law (e.g. unions, certified as employee representatives by the State of Maine), or approved as such by the USM Student Government Association (SGA). Student groups are recognized by the USM SGA in accordance with the criteria outlined in the USM SGA Constitution and Bylaws.
A sponsor must, no less than 14 business days in advance of the event, file an Event Information Request Form with USM Conferences. The request must include the speaker’s name, a general description of the topic or nature of the presentation, the proposed date of the appearance, and the means of publicity contemplated for the event. Conference staff will promptly forward a copy of the Event Information Request Form to the office of the responsible Vice President or Provost and the Executive Director of Public Affairs.
USM reserves the right to take appropriate action to protect speakers, their audiences, and the campus at large from unlawful conduct. USM will respond to situations involving disruption of university activities, violence, or other illegal activity, which results either from the remarks of outside speakers or from comments made or actions taken by outside speakers which are themselves illegal.
Based initially on information contained in the Event Information Request Form, the Vice President for Enrollment Management & Student Affairs (VPEMSA) or Provost, in consultation with the Chief of University Police, will determine whether security measures are necessary to ensure the safety of all persons and property potentially impacted by the event. The VPEMSA may request a meeting with the sponsoring organization/individual(s) to discuss security planning further; the event may not proceed if the sponsoring organization/individual(s) unreasonably refuse to communicate with the VPEMSA and/or USM Public Safety for this purpose.
If security arrangements and other preparations cannot reasonably be made in time for the requested event date, USM will discuss with the sponsoring organization/individual(s) an appropriate alternative schedule that ensures the event can safely take place without unreasonable delay and without inappropriately disrupting USM’s operations.
Should the event sponsor and the VPEMSA or Provost be unable to agree on the implementation of security measures or recommendations, the event sponsor may submit an appeal to the President. The President may determine the security measures required for the event based on security assessment and goals to:
- Minimize any imminent threat to health and safety of the event participants and audience or campus property and surrounding community;
- Maximize the ability of the event sponsors to successfully hold the event; and
- Protect the exercise of rights of free speech and expression by the event sponsor, participants and community.
USM will make every reasonable effort to ensure that review and decisions on security planning and appeals, if any, do not unreasonably delay a proposed event. Assuming there is adequate time to plan for necessary security, approval to proceed with a requested event will not be unreasonably withheld absent clear evidence of a certain and imminent threat of (i) harm to or violence against the campus community, (ii) unreasonably disruption of its operations, or (iii) interference with its ability to offer its academic programs.
Events must end no later than 10:00 pm unless a different time is determined to be necessary for security purposes. Event time determinations will not be set to curtail the free speech rights of the sponsoring organization/individual(s) and their invited speaker(s).
If during the event an imminent threat to safety and property arises, avoidance or minimization of which requires termination of the event, authority to terminate the event rests with the senior administrator or designated administrator on site to oversee law enforcement/security operations.
CONFIDENTIALITY OF STUDENT RECORDS POLICY
On December 31, 1974, the President of the United States signed into law amendments to the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act. This act is designed to protect the privacy of parents and students with regard to access of records, and the opportunity for a hearing to challenge records when they are alleged to be inaccurate, misleading, or inappropriate. These amendments provide the basis for USMs Policy on the Confidentiality of Student Records.
This act applies to students presently enrolled at USM, former students and alumni, but not to applicants seeking admissions to the institution.
Once a student reaches the age of 18 or matriculates in a postsecondary institution his/her parents no longer have an automatic legal right to examine his/her educational records. It is USM’s policy however, to grant a parental right to access the educational record if the student is considered dependent for tax purposes.
Definition of Terms
A student who has attained 18 years of age or is attending an institution of postsecondary education.
Those records, files, documents, and other materials which contain information directly related to a student, and are maintained by an institution or by a party acting for such an institution.
Educational Records do not include:
1. Records of instructional supervisory, and administrative personnel and educational personnel who are ancillary to the above when the records are in the sole possession of the maker and which are not accessible or revealed to any other person except a substitute.
2. Records that pertain to the staff of an institution serving in their professional capacity and whose records are not available for use for any other purposes.
3. Records on a student who is attending a posts secondary institution which are created or maintained by a physician, psychiatrist, psychologist, or other recognized professional or para-professional acting in a professional capacity and which are created, maintained, or used only in connection with the provision of treatment to the student and not available to anyone other than persons providing such treatment. Such records, however, can be personally reviewed by a physician of the students choice.
USM offices containing education records are listed below:
|Type of Record||Description||Campus Location|
|Academic Record||Permanent academic record and supporting documents (Registrar transcripts, admission application, biographical data)||Registrar Dean, Department, Faculty Advising|
|Financial Record||A student’s current financial aid status or University bill. (Exception: Financial records of parent of student)||Business Office
|Placement Record||Placement folder (student vita, letters of recommendations, Student teaching evaluation)||Career Services and Professional Life|
|Disciplinary/Conduct Record||Discipline Proceedings, actions or sanctions||Office of Community Standards and Mediation|
|Counceling and Health Record||See No.3 Educational Records do not include:|
|Police and Safety Record||Police Department|
A natural parent, adoptive parent, or the legal guardian of a student.
Information or data recorded in any medium including, but not limited to handwriting, print, tapes, film, microfilm, and microfiche.
The University does not maintain a single education record or file in any one location consisting of all material and information pertaining to students. Students may file a request in writing at each office maintaining a portion of the education record for access. Each request must, by law, be responded to within 45 days.
Exceptions to Access
Following are the only exceptions to access for students:
- The financial records of parents shall not be released to students. Such information is considered to be confidential and not to be released to any third party without specific permission from the parents involved.
- Access to medical and health records are handled somewhat differently and students are advised to contact the directors of each of the services for details.
- Individuals who are not enrolled as students are not covered by FERPA and do not have access to their admission files.
- Confidential letters and confidential statements of recommendation placed in the student’s education records if:
A. The student has waived his or her right to inspect and review those letters and statements in writing and the University does not require the waiver as a condition for admission to or receipt of a service or benefit from the University; and
B. Those letters and statements are related to the student’s admission, application for employment or receipt of an honor or honorary recognition.
The University of Southern Maine has designated certain information contained in the education records of its students as Directory Information for purposes of FERPA. Such directory information may be publicly shared by the University unless the student has taken formal action to restrict its release. Directory information includes: name, home address, local address, phone numbers, major, class level, date and place of birth, major, student activities (including athletics), weight/height for athletic team members, previous institution(s) attended, dates of attendance, date of graduation, enrollment status (full-time or part-time etc..), and degree(s) or award(s) received. Students wishing to prohibit the release of the directory information must file a written notification with the Registrar’s Office. In the event that such written notification is not filed, the University assumes that the student does not object to the release of the directory information.
Access to Information from Outside the University
The public may receive directory information on students from the appropriate education records custodian unless the student prevents disclosure through prior written notification filed with the Registrar’s Office. The public may receive information from a student’s education record which is not part of the directory information only from the appropriate education records custodian and only on the basis of a written and dated request by the student.
Access to Information from Within the University
Access to a students education records is restricted to that portion of the records necessary to carry out official University business. Information from such education records should be shared only with appropriate University officials such as: University faculty, advisors, counselors, placement personnel, deans, department chairs, directors, and other administrative officials responsible for some part of the academic enterprise or one of its supporting activities; administrative and faculty sponsors of officially recognized organizations, members of official University committees; and clerical personnel employed to assist university officials. These school officials must have a legitimate educational interest in the record which is essential to the general process of higher education.
A more detailed description of FERPA and forms for preventing disclosure of directory information can be obtained from the Registrar’s Office, Bailey Hall, Gorham Campus, (207) 780-5230.
Access Rights of Persons or Agencies Other Than Students
Institutions shall not permit access to or release of education records or personally identifiable information contained therein other than directory information of students without written consent of their parents or the eligible student to any party other than the following:
- Faculty and staff members determined by the appropriate record-keeper who require access on an internal, need-to-know basis for legitimate educational purposes.
- Authorized Federal officials auditing federally supported education programs and State officials to whom information from student records is required by statute to be disclosed.
- Records released in connection with the student’s application for, or receipt of, financial aid.
- Organizations conducting studies on behalf of educational agencies in connection with predictive tests, student aid programs, and the improvement of instruction provided that the identity of students is not revealed to other than representatives of such organizations. Such information will be destroyed when no longer needed for the purpose for which it is conducted.
- Recognized accrediting organizations in order to carry out their accrediting functions.
- Parents of a student who is dependent upon such parents for federal income tax purposes.
- Records released on the basis of judicial order or subpoena and on condition that the student is notified of the subpoena in advance of the records being released.
- The University may release information from educational records to appropriate persons in connection with an emergency if knowledge of such information is necessary to protect the health and safety of the student.
- Information the University has designated as directory information.
- Parents of a student who claim the student as a dependent on their most recent Federal Tax return.
- An alleged victim of any crime of violence, as that term is defined in section 16 of title 18, United States Code, of the results of any disciplinary proceeding conducted by an institution of post secondary education against the alleged perpetrator of that crime with respect to that crime.
- The disclosure is, subject to certain notice, copying and hearing requirements, to officials of another school, school system, or institution of post secondary education where the student seeks or intends to enroll.
Records released to any individual or group shall be transmitted on condition that the individual or group is informed that they may not permit any other party to have access to such information without the written consent of the student. The recipient shall also be notified in writing that if compliance with this requirement is not acceptable, all records shall be returned, unused, to the institution.
Challenge to the Content of Records
After reviewing a record, a student has the right to challenge the content of the record as being inaccurate, misleading, or in violation of the student’s right of privacy or other rights. A student may not challenge the judgment of a grade which has been assigned to his or her performance in a course but may challenge the accuracy of the recording of a grade.
The procedure to be followed should a student consider some aspect of his or her record as inappropriate is as follows:
- The student should discuss his or her objection (submitted in writing) with the designated person in the office where his or her records are maintained and try to resolve the problem.
- If no agreement is reached through the above, the student should submit his or her objection in writing to the official to whom that person reports.
- If the student is still not satisfied, he or she should submit his or her objection in writing to the appropriate Dean or Director.
- If no satisfactory solution is forthcoming, the student should file a written request for a formal hearing with the Vice President of Enrollment Management. In cases where the student has already objected to the V.P. Enrollment Management, the Provost should receive a request.
Upon receipt of a written request for a formal hearing, the V.P. shall appoint a panel of three members to hear the objection. The V.P. will appoint one of the panelists to serve as chairperson. Responses to the student’s objections must be made within a reasonable time, eligible students or parents of non-eligible students must be given notice of the right to a hearing, notice of the time and place of the hearing and an opportunity to present evidence at the hearing. The decision must be based solely on the evidence presented at the hearing, and must include a summary of the evidence and the reasons for the decision.
Other General Guidlines
Questions of interpretations of the Confidentiality of Student Records Policy should be reported to the Chief Administrator responsible for the department in question. The University archives shall be permitted to collect information about students to be related for history and shall adhere to the guidelines set forth in the Policy of Confidentiality of Student Records.
Violations of the Confidentiality of Student Records Policy should be reported to the Chief Administrator responsible for the department in question.
Each office that maintains educational records shall maintain an inventory of access for each student. The record shall list all individuals (except institution officials described above), agencies or organizations which have requested or obtained access to the student’s education record and also a list of the purpose of access.
Procedure to follow for access to a record:
- A request by a student or agency to inspect a record shall be made in writing to the office which maintains the record. Each office maintaining records has its own published procedures to receive and process such requests.
- Every office is obligated to inform the student when the requested record will be made available. The office has up to 45 days to respond. In most instances, the response will be made promptly.
- Every office is obligated upon request to show a student the access inventory of his or her records.
- Students are obligated to properly identify themselves (Student I.D.) before being shown their records.
- Students are obligated not to interfere with the normal operation of the office in which the record is being maintained.
- Students are obligated to examine the record during regular hours maintained by the particular office.
- Prior to giving a student his or her record for examination, all information waived by the student will be removed.
- The examination of the record shall be supervised.
- The University cannot charge the student for copying where such charges would have the effect of preventing access.
The official academic record of a student is maintained in perpetuity by the institution. The Registrar’s Office is the custodian of this record. No other record is officially designated as a permanent record and will be expunged at the discretion of the custodian of the record, unless there is an outstanding request to review the record.
University of Southern Maine
Effective January 1, 2003
USM recognizes the advantages of providing electronic mail (email) services to the university community and that students and staff will, increasingly, require access to such services for learning, teaching and administrative processes. It allows information/business transactions to be delivered in a more timely manner to staff, faculty and students. As resources become increasingly limited, it is the most cost-effective and environmentally-friendly means for the University to communicate. The university community is advised to use this Electronic Mail Policy in conjunction with the University of Southern Maine Acceptable Use of Information Resources Policy as well as other University policies and procedures already in place. The Electronic Mail Policy, like the Acceptable Use of Information Resources Policy, "expects users to be familiar and behave consistently with the several general principles which together constitute appropriate, responsible, and ethical behavior in an academic environment, particularly in regard to the use of the University's information resources" and expects users to abide by the federal laws encompassing the Federal Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act (GLBA) and the USM Confidentiality Statement.
Electronic mail services are provided by the University in support of the teaching, research and public service mission of the University, and the administrative functions that support this mission. It is important that the users of these services be limited primarily to the University students, faculty, and staff. Users must abide by the following conditions when using these services:
University e-mail users must identify themselves. This identification can be either departmental or individual. False identification applies to both user and/or sender and recipient. For example, (user A) cannot log onto the system as (user B) someone else, even if user A has permission from user B. False identification will result in loss of electronic mail service privileges.
University electronic mail services may be used for incidental personal purposes provided that such use does not: directly or indirectly interfere with the operation of other University computing facilities or electronic mail services; burden the University with noticeable incremental cost; or interfere with the e-mail user's employment or other obligations to the University.
Disruption of Service to the Community
University electronic mail services cannot be used for purposes that could reasonably be expected to cause excessive strain on any computing facilities, or unwarranted/unsolicited interference with others' use of e-mail or e-mail systems. Prohibited uses include, but are not limited to: sending or forwarding chain e-mail; and "spamming", that is, sending large quantities of e-mail to individual mailboxes (see Administrative Principles). Deliberate attempts to degrade system performance and capacity is a violation of this policy.
Compliance and Restrictions
Individuals who use University electronic mail services are expected to do so responsibly, that is, to comply with state and federal laws, with this and other policies and procedures of the University, and with normal standards of professional and personal courtesy and conduct (see Guidelines of Ethics and Appropriate Practices). Access to University electronic mail services is a privilege that may be restricted by the University without prior notice and without the consent of the e-mail user when required by and consistent with the law, when there is substantial reason to believe that violations of policy or law have taken place, or when the number of business transactions are at their highest peak within a cycle, for operational needs to take precedence over electronic mail services. Such restriction is subject to the approval of the Director of University Computing Technologies.
Guidelines of Ethics and Appropriate Practices
- Electronic mail may not be used for commercial purposes and must be consistent with the relationship that the individual user has to the University.
- The sender, whether institutional or individual, must be clearly identifiable in all transmitted messages.
- Sending electronic mail should only occur where the recipient can be identified as having a high probability of having interest in the subject matter. Sending unwanted and repeated communication via electronic mail is prohibited and considered harassment.
- Electronic mail should not be sent in such a way as to harass users. If a recipient indicates that they do not wish to receive further messages from a group, topic or individual, then no further messages should be sent. Departments are responsible for excluding such recipients from future messages.
- Materials that could be considered obscene or offensive may not be sent through the University's electronic mail system.
- Any user aware of misuse of electronic mail has a responsibility to report it to the Director of University Computing Technologies.
Violators of this Policy will be subject to the regular disciplinary processes and procedures of the University for students, faculty and staff administrators and may result in sanctions including loss of computing privileges, up to and including dismissal, as provided for under other University policies, procedures, guidelines, collective bargaining agreements or contracts. In some situations, it may be necessary to suspend account privileges to prevent ongoing misuse while the alleged violation is under investigation. Illegal acts involving University computing resources may also subject violators to prosecution by local, state, and/or federal authorities. In the case of immediate loss of computing privileges, appeals may be made to the violator's Vice President of their division or designee.
The University reserves the right to review and consider, from time/request to time/request, the levying of a charge for the distribution of e-mail to large targeted audiences (see Resource and Performance).
The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA)
The University of Southern Maine abides by the federal laws encompassing the Federal Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) and has defined certain information contained in the education records of its' students as directory information. A complete listing of what USM has defined as directory information can be found in USM's Policy on the Confidentiality of Student Records. Although our systems are on secure servers, e-mail users are cautioned and advised not to send non-directory information, such as social security numbers, via e-mail. Student e-mail addresses are also considered non-directory information, therefore, when e-mailing the same message to more than one student, the "blind copy" feature must be used to protect the faculty or staff administrator (university) from accidentally (or unintentionally) giving out student e-mail addresses when sending to multiple students. Prior written permission from the student is necessary when transmitting any information regarding the students" educational record or non-directory information.
Request for Email Addresses for Internal Use
Transmission of mail to multiple users must be controlled so that users do not receive large quantities of unwanted and unsolicited mail as this can reduce the effectiveness of the electronic mail service as a viable means of communication. The Office of the Registrar has been designated as the central processing unit for student email requests, and Human Resources has been designated as the central processing unit for employee e-mail requests. Employees who have Student status will fall under FERPA regulations. The coordinator in each office has full discretion as to whether the information presented should be sent electronically, and if necessary, will seek the approval of an appropriate University Vice President.The following guidelines, in conjunction with the "Appropriate/Inappropriate E-mail Request Uses", will be adhered to when asked to provide e-mail addresses for unsolicited mail to student/employee groups:
- Unsolicited mail may only be sent to multiple users where the mailing is related to their university function and the sender has an appropriate work relationship.
- Previous semester requests for email addresses will be taken into consideration when sending unsolicited mail to all members of the University or a substantial subset.
- Student requests must be received in the Office of the Registrar at least one week prior to the distribution deadline allowing sufficient time for seeking additional approval if necessary. In the event that additional approval is necessary, you are responsible for obtaining and forwarding the approval to the coordinator before your request will be processed.
- Content of the information being distributed must be in final form and in the format of a text file (.txt). The coordinators will not edit or change any information within the request of the submitted e-mail request. If changes are necessary to any part of the request, you must resubmit the entire request.
- Student requests must meet all of the following criteria:
- submitted as final form and in the format of a text file (.txt);
- no longer than one page of written text;
- contain no attachments;
- abide by state and federal regulations (FERPA and GLBA);
- specifically state: To Whom, From Whom, and are provided with a Subject line for the message;
- send a message that is consistent with the mission of the University (teaching, research and public service, and the administrative functions that support this mission);
- provide a direct service to the majority of the targeted group and provide a benefit for all included in the targeted group.
Request for E-Mail Addresses for External Use
The Office of the Registrar has been designated as the central processing unit for student email requests, and Human Resources has been designated as the central processing unit for employee email requests. Employees who have Student status will fall under FERPA regulations.
Appropriate/Inappropriate E-mail Request Uses
Examples of appropriate requests include, but are not limited to:
- Financial Aid may send information to financial aid recipients.
- The Registrar may send information to all students enrolled.
- Student Life may send information to those students living in the residence halls.
- A professor may send information to those students taking her/his class.
- A school/college/department may send information to their students, i.e. the Biology department to Biology majors, or the School of Business to Accounting majors.
- A graduate program may send information to a specific undergraduate major if they are providing a direct service to the majority of the targeted group and providing a benefit for all included in the targeted group.
Examples of inappropriate requests include, but are not limited to:
- The Sociology department may not solicit Biology majors.
- A graduate program may not solicit all matriculated undergraduate students.
- The Athletic Department may not solicit all students registered.
- Faculty or Administrators may not solicit any student or number of students for personal commercial gain, other commercial purpose, or other non-University related business without University approval.
Resource and Performance
Performance and cost of the electronic mail systems for all users can be adversely affected by misuse and abuse of its users. The University reserves the right to set limits on:
- The total number of electronic mailings sent.
- The size of individual electronic mail items sent.
- The total number of electronic mailings sent to large distribution lists within a semester by any one department or individual (see Request for E-mail Addresses for Internal/External Use).
- The amount of electronic mail retained on central electronic mail servers.
The University's information and computing resources are limited. As demands increase on our computing resources, University-related activities will have first priority. The University encourages users not to solicit large volumes of incoming mail with no, or marginal, relevance to their role within the University. The University reserves the right to request that users unsubscribe from external mailing lists where unacceptable cost or limiting of resources are incurred.
Users should be aware that, during the performance of their duties, network and system administrators need from time to time to observe certain transactional addressing information to ensure proper functioning of University e-mail services, and on these and other occasions may see the contents of e-mail messages.The University attempts to provide secure and reliable e-mail services. Administrators are expected to follow sound professional practices in providing for the security of electronic mail records, data, application programs, and system programs for which they are responsible but have no control over the security of e-mail that has been downloaded to a user's computer.Systems may be "backed-up" on a routine or occasional basis to protect system reliability and integrity, and to prevent potential loss of data. The back-up process results in the copying of data onto storage media that may be retained for periods of time and in locations unknown to the originator or recipient of electronic mail. Users of electronic mail services should be aware that back-up copies do typically exist.
Use of Email Cautions
Although the benefits outweigh the risks, USM would like to caution users of some of the risks. Users should take into consideration the following in regards to communicating electronically:
- Information could be opened or read by someone other than the intended recipient. Unlike the United States Postal System, there is no federal law to deter opening electronic mail that belongs to someone else.
- As stated above, email is not a secure form of communication. Privacy and confidentiality are not guaranteed. Users should exercise extreme caution in using email to communicate confidential or sensitive matters.
- Users could easily overload individuals with information, sometimes unwanted information, regarding issues that may not be of interest to the recipients, thereby, limiting the usefulness of e-mail as a communication tool.
- Communication(s) via electronic mail could possibly become part of "the educational record" increasing the difficulty in record-keeping.
- Keep in mind that not everyone in the university has ready access to a computer.
- Viruses spread via electronic mail and are usually sent by someone that you know. Be sure that your virus detecting software has been installed on your computer, scans incoming e-mails and is running the most recent data file. You can view the "latest version date" by right clicking on the software program icon and going to the "About" drop-down menu.
Prior written permission from the student is necessary when transmitting any information regarding the students' educational record or non-directory information as defined by USM in the Confidentiality Statement (FERPA).
Abuse of alcohol and other drugs can create life-threatening situations that require an immediate response from emergency services personnel. In all instances, the University's main concern is that those in need receive prompt medical attention.
The University cannot guarantee absolute immunity from sanctions associated with violations of the Student Conduct Code. However, efforts may be made to mitigate sanctions under the Student Conduct Code associated with alcohol and other drugs offenses for "Good Samaritans." These considerations apply to the person in need of medical attention and the individual who may have contributed or participated in the use and abuse of alcohol or other drugs. Only those individuals who have actively sought medical attention at the time of the incident for themselves or others as a "Good Samaritan" may receive consideration for mitigation of sanctions.
Responsible Office: Academic Affairs
In accordance with the policy of the State of Maine as set forth in Chapter 159 of the Public Laws of 1983 (20-A M.R.S.A. 10004), the Board of Trustees of the University of Maine System reaffirms its policy that the injurious hazing of any student enrolled at any institution of the University of Maine System is prohibited. In order to implement that policy and comply with State Law, the Board of Trustees of the University of Maine System adopts these rules:
- No person or organization shall create, or permit to exist, any situation that recklessly or intentionally endangers the mental or physical health of a student enrolled at any institution of the University of Maine System.
- Each organization affiliated with any institution of the University of Maine System shall adopt and include these rules as part of its by-laws or other governing document. Each such organization shall advise the Office of the President of each campus with which it is affiliated, in writing, within sixty days after the adoption of this policy, of such adoption and inclusion; and shall thereafter notify the Office of the President, in writing, forthwith, of any change or amendment relating to these rules or to such adoption and inclusion.
- Any organization affiliated with any campus of the University of Maine System that violates these rules shall lose all right to conduct activities on any campus of the University of Maine System and all right to receive any other benefit of affiliation with any campus of the University of Maine System.
- Any person associated with any institution of the University of Maine System as a student, administrator, faculty member or in any other capacity, whose conduct violates these rules, shall be subject to suspension, expulsion, or other appropriate disciplinary action.
- Any person, not associated with the University of Maine System, whose conduct violates these rules shall be ejected from, and shall thereafter be banned from re-entering, any campus of the University of Maine System.
- Any disciplinary action, penalty, or sanction enforced under these rules for conduct violating these rules shall be in addition to, and not in limitation of, any other civil law or criminal law process, procedure or penalty arising from the conduct concerned.
- The administration and enforcement of these rules within each institution of the University of Maine System shall be the responsibility of those persons and administrative officers at each campus of the University of Maine System who have responsibility for the administration and enforcement of the Student Conduct Code. Such administration and enforcement shall be pursuant to the Student Conduct Code and in accordance with the policies and procedures including, without limitation, the appeal procedures of that Code.
- A copy of these rules and of the Student Conduct Code shall be given to all students enrolled at each institution of the University of Maine System. Appropriate announcements of the existence of these rules, of the Student Conduct Code, and of the availability of copies shall be made at least annually through appropriate and usual campus notification procedures. The failure of any student, administrator, faculty member or any other person associated with the University to have received such copies or to have actual knowledge thereof shall not be justification for, or excuse, any failure to comply with the said policy or these rules.
The USM HIV/AIDS policy has been established to protect both the rights of individuals infected with HIV (Human Immunodeficiency Virus) as well as the health and safety of all others at the institution. Current research indicates that AIDS (Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome) may develop from HIV infection. Individuals infected with HIV may not always be diagnosed or have symptoms of AIDS; HIV infection is not transmitted by casual contact.
The University of Southern Maine will not discriminate in any manner against any person with is infected with HIV. This includes admissions, facilities access, hiring, housing, promotion, tenure and/or termination.
The University of Southern Maine will not require HIV testing for either its students or employees. Persons who want more information on HIV testing may contact a health care provider either at the University of off-campus.
All University personnel should think carefully before any information about known or suspected HIV infection is included in any student or employee record. Information about a person's HIV status may only be included in medical or health care records and not in student or employee records of a general nature. Furthermore, it is against the law to disclose HIV test results to anyone without written consent of the person tested. This means that no one, under any circumstances, may discuss or share records of HIV test results with anyone other than individuals designated in writing by the tested person.
Disclosing a person's HIV test results without written consent may result in disciplinary measures under University policy. Also, Maine law states that anyone who does tell another's test results may be sued for actual damages and costs, plus a civil penalty of up to $5,000.
Safety in the event of exposure to potentially infectious body fluids (blood, semen, vaginal secretions) surfaces should be cleaned with a commercial disinfectant or household bleach (diluted with 10 parts water). Gloves should be worn while cleaning the area.
It is against policy to access, use, copy, or make available to others any copyright-protected digital material and computer software except as permitted under copyright law or by specific license.
Who Reports Violations to USM:
- Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA)
- Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) Software Association
- Individual Companies (e.g. NBC, Paramount Studios, Symantec)
Types of Violations
Violators are identified by the IP address for the computer or digital device they have registered with the University. Violators are responsible for what is on any computer or digital device they registered with the University, regardless of how the illegal material was placed in a share folder. You can still be in violation even under these circumstances:
“I legally purchased iTunes. I did not know the songs were in a shared folder.”
“The CD was a gift, I loaded on my computer. I did not know it was in a shared folder.” “I do not listen to that kind of music. My brother put his songs on the computer.”
“I did not put that on my computer, I let my roommate use my computer.” “That is not my machine; I just helped my friend register his machine.”
Conduct action taken for a violation of the Student Conduct Code. Sanctions imposed are:
- Loss of Network Access Privileges.
a. First Offense: One Week.
b. Second Offense: One Semester.
c. Third Offense: Permanent loss of access.
- Must Remove all Unauthorized Copyrighted Material from Computer or Mobile Device and Turn off File Sharing Program.
- Must View Campus Downloading Video and Write a Reflective Paper.
If the RIAA notifies the University of a violation and the University takes the above corrective action, that does NOT exempt a student from receiving a pre-litigation letter and/or being sued. Penalties for copyright
infringement may also include civil and criminal penalties. In general, anyone found liable for civil copyright
infringement may be ordered to pay either actual damages or “statutory” damages affixed at not less than $750 and not more than $30,000 per work infringed. For “willful” infringement a court may award up to $150,000 per work infringed. A court can, in its discretion, also assess costs and attorneys’ fees. For details, see Title 17, United States Code Sections 504, 505.
Willful copyright infringement can also result in criminal penalties, including imprisonment of up to five years and fines of up to $250,000 per offense. For more information, please see the website of the U.S. Copyright Office at copyright.gov.
Each year, numerous students receive pre-litigation letters. The letter does not have the student’s name on it, since the RIAA only has the persons IP address. USM is expected to identify the student and arrange for the student to get the letter.
The letter is telling the student that the RIAA has identified them as possessing copyrighted music without authorization and offers the student a chance to pay $3,000 within 40 days of the date of the letter to settle their illegal violation.
Subpoena's for Names
If after 40 days the person has not paid, then the RIAA may send a subpoena to the University to obtain the person’s name. At that point the person still has a chance to settle their violation prior to being sued. To settle their violation at this stage the person must pay $4,500.
If the person does not settle at this stage and the RIAA files a lawsuit, the minimum amount the person must pay is $750 for each song, movie, TV show being “shared” (in the person’s share folder).
While the average Illegal Downloader has 2,300 songs in their share folder, having only 50 songs can be costly:
- 50 songs X $750 each = $37,000 + Attorney Fees + Court Costs
On July 31, 2009 a Boston University Student was fined by a Boston Federal Court in the amount of $675,000 or $22,500 for each of the 30 songs he was identified as having.
Impact on USM Community
From August 1, 2014 to July 30, 2015 forty (40) students were held accountable for a violation by the Dean of Students Office.
Please take the time to reread our policy and understand that significant personal monetary damages can be imposed. If you have music and/or movie files on your computer that you did not obtain legally, or the software that enables you to share these types of files, please remove these from your computer. If they are discovered and we are notified, we will impose our sanctions and will, subject to University Counsel approval, provide these organizations any identifying information they may request.
Effective Date: September 17, 2013
The purpose of this policy is to promote the safety and welfare of members of the University of Southern Maine (USM) community through compliance with the requirements of the Higher Education Opportunity Act of 2008 (the HEOA). This protocol includes the official notification procedures of USM for missing students who reside in on-campus housing, in accordance with the requirements of HEOA.
It is the policy of USM to provide students who are residing in on-campus housing the option of identifying an individual (confidential contact person) on their Residence Hall Application and Contract for housing & meals to be contacted (in addition to their emergency contact) by USM in the event that the student is determined to be missing for a period of more than 24 hours.
A. Missing Student: For purposes of this policy, a student is determined to be missing when USM Public Safety (USM-PS) or other law enforcement agency determines that the student has been missing for more than 24 hours, without any known reason, that the reported information is credible, and that circumstances warrant declaring the person missing.
B. On-Campus Housing: A residence hall or other residential facility for students that is located on USM’s campus. (34 CFR §668.41(a))
C. Campus: For purposes of this policy, “campus” is defined as:
- Any building or property owned or controlled by USM within the same reasonably contiguous geographic area and used by USM in direct support of, or in a manner related to, the USM’s educational purposes including residence halls; and
- Any building or property that is within or reasonably contiguous to the area identified in paragraph 1 of this definition, that is owned by the University but controlled by another person, is frequently used by students, and supports institutional purposes (such as a food or other retail vendor). (34 CFR §668.46(a))
IV. Protocol: Missing Residential Students
A. If a member of the USM community has reason to believe that a student who resides in oncampus housing is missing, or receives a report of a missing student, he/she shall immediately contact their supervisor and/or University of Southern Maine Public Safety (USM-PS) at: (207) 780-5211.
B. USM-PS will then initiate its Missing Student Policy.
C. Nothing in this policy/protocol is intended to preclude USM from determining that a student is missing before the student has been missing for a full 24 hours or initiating notification procedures as soon as it determines that the student is missing.
D. A student who wishes to identify a confidential contact may do so through on their Residence Hall Application and Contract for housing & meals or any time at the Gorham Student Life Office in 100 Upton Hall. A student’s confidential contact information shall be accessible only by authorized campus officials, and will not be disclosed except to law enforcement in connection with a missing person investigation.
E. A missing student report must be referred immediately to USM-PS. If the student who is missing is under 18 years of age and not emancipated, USM must notify a custodial parent or guardian within 24 hours of determining that the student is missing, in addition to notifying the confidential contact person designated by the student. USM will notify the local law enforcement agency within 24 hours of the determination that the student is missing, unless the local law enforcement agency was the entity that made the determination that the student is missing.
V. Contact Information
Residential students are to read and adhere with all policies concerning living on campus. Residents and guests are expected to comply with all federal and state laws, city ordinances and University policies. Violations of any policies can result in losing the privilege to live in or visit residential housing.
HUMAN RESOURCES AND LABOR RELATIONS
Section 402 Sex Discrimination, Sexual Harassment, Sexual Assault, Relationship Violence, Stalking and Retaliation
Last Revised: 11/16/98; 11/17/14; 5/18/15
Responsible Office: Human Resources
Table of Contents
I. Policy Statement
III. What to do if you are Sexually Assaulted or are the Victim of Domestic Violence, Dating Violence or Stalking
IV. Terms Used in this Policy
VI. How to File a Complaint and How the University Will Respond
VIII. Support Services and Interim Measures
IX. Options Regarding Law Enforcement
X. Enforcement of Protection-from-Harassment or Protection-from-Abuse Orders
XI. Student Amnesty
XII. Free Speech and Academic Freedom
XIII. Off-Campus Conduct
XIV. Educational Programs
XV. External Complaints
XVI. Review and Revision of this Policy
**Please note: The reader will find red text sections within this document. These sections are specific to each campus; each campus will have a version of this policy that contains more detailed information specific to that campus. Contact the Title IX Coordinator (for USM, this is Sarah Holmes, Assistant Dean of Students and Deputy Title IX Coordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org or (207) 780-5767) on the campus of interest for this information.
I. Policy Statement
The University of Maine System (“the University”) is committed to providing a safe environment which promotes the dignity and worth of each member of the community. In complying with the letter and spirit of applicable laws and in pursuing its own goals of diversity, the University does not discriminate on the basis of sex in employment, education, and all other programs and activities. For this reason, the University will not tolerate sex discrimination, sexual harassment, sexual assault, dating violence, domestic violence, stalking, or retaliation in any form. All conduct of this nature is considered a violation of this policy.
The University will respond promptly and effectively to complaints and reports of violations of this policy. The University has an obligation to address incidents of sexual harassment that it knows or should know about, even when a complaint or report is not filed. The University will take steps to end and prevent recurrence of violations and to correct their discriminatory effects on the complainant and others. In responding to all complaints and reports, the University will act to ensure the safety of students, guests, and employees while complying with state and federal laws and provisions of applicable collective bargaining agreements and employee handbooks.
It is important that members of the University community understand that the law does not just prohibit violations of this policy against employees by employers. The law also prohibits violations between members of the University community more generally: for example, between an instructor and a student, between two students, or between a student and an applicant or campus guest.
This policy applies to all members of the University community and to third parties, regardless of gender, sexual orientation or gender identity. It applies to all University programs and activities, both on campus and off campus, including, but not limited to, instruction, grading, housing, athletics, electronic communication, and employment.
This policy does not substitute for or supersede related civil and criminal law. It is the policy of the University to strongly encourage individuals to report all incidents and violations to law enforcement officials or agencies with appropriate jurisdiction and to avail themselves of all the services and rights to which they are entitled.
Any individual may file a complaint under this policy at any time. However, the University strongly encourages individuals to file complaints promptly in order to preserve evidence for a potential legal or disciplinary proceeding. A delay in filing a complaint may compromise the subsequent investigation. Reporting in a timely way also allows the University to provide all persons involved with information regarding their rights, options, and resources available under this policy and federal or state laws.
All members of the University community are expected to cooperate fully in investigations and other proceedings necessary for the effective execution of this policy.
This policy covers the following information:
• What to do if you are sexually assaulted or are the victim of domestic violence, dating violence or stalking;
• Common terms used in this policy;
• How and where to file a complaint;
• How the University will respond to a complaint;
• Support services and measures that are available;
• Options regarding reporting to Law Enforcement;
• Protection orders;
• Student Amnesty;
• Free Speech and Academic Freedom;
• Off-campus conduct;
• Educational programs;
• External complaints;
• Review and revision of this policy.
III. What to do if you are Sexually Assaulted or Experience Domestic Violence, Dating Violence or Stalking
• Get to a safe location. If you are a student and are unsure where to go or can think of nowhere that is safe at this time, please consider calling USM Public Safety at (207) 780-5211 and/or local law enforcement at 911. Campus Residence Life or Student Affairs staff can help with housing arrangements as well.
• Consider asking a trusted friend or relative to be with you for support.
• Seek medical care as soon as possible. You may need basic medical treatment for injuries, and you may have injuries of which you are unaware. You also may be at risk of acquiring a sexually transmitted infection, and women may be at risk for pregnancy. Trained staff at your campus Health Center or the local emergency room can speak with you about all of the medical options available and provide information about a sexual assault forensic examination.
• You may choose to file a report with the local law enforcement agency. Your report puts in place support systems that you may choose to use. The University will provide someone to assist you in filing a report with Law Enforcement if you wish.
• Preserve all evidence of the incident. If you choose to file a report with the police, it is important that you:
• Do not bathe, wash your hands, brush your teeth, drink, eat, or even use the restroom—all these things can destroy evidence that may be helpful in a criminal investigation; however, if you have done any of these things since the incident, evidence can still be collected;
• Do not clean or remove anything from the location where the incident occurred;
• Write down as much as you can recall about the incident and the people involved.
• Seek some form of emotional support. While taking care of your physical needs may be the first step in taking care of yourself, it is important not to neglect the emotions you may be experiencing as a result of the assault, violence or stalking. University counseling services have employees who are specially trained to assist students with recovery and healing.
• It is your choice to determine when and in what manner you recover from your trauma. Give yourself the time you need and know that it is never too late to get help.
• KNOW THAT WHAT HAPPENED WAS NOT YOUR FAULT AND YOU ARE NOT ALONE.
• For details about all of the available resources on your campus and in your community, visit the Campus Safety Project webpage.
IV. Terms Used in this Policy
A. Sexual Harassment
Sexual harassment includes unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature, including sexual assault and sexual violence. Sexual harassment, including sexual assault, can involve persons of the same or opposite sex. Consistent with the law, this policy prohibits two types of sexual harassment:
1. Tangible Employment or Educational Action (quid pro quo): This type of sexual harassment occurs when the terms or conditions of employment, educational benefits, academic grades or opportunities, living environment or participation in a University activity are made an explicit or implicit condition of submission to or rejection of unwelcome sexual advances or requests for sexual favors, or such submission or rejection is a factor in decisions affecting an individual’s employment, education, living environment, or participation in a University program or activity. Generally, a person who engages in this type of sexual harassment is an agent or employee with some authority conferred by the University.
2. Hostile Environment: Sexual harassment that creates a hostile environment is based on sex and exists when the harassment:
i. Is severe, pervasive, or persistent, and objectively offensive such that it denies or limits a person’s ability to participate in or benefit from the University’s programs, services, opportunities, or activities; or
ii. Unreasonably interferes with an individual’s academic or work performance.
A hostile environment can be created by anyone involved in a University program or activity, such as an administrator, faculty or staff member, student, or campus guest. Offensiveness alone is not enough to create a hostile environment. Although repeated incidents increase the likelihood that a hostile environment has been created, a single serious incident, such as a sexual assault, can be sufficient.
Determining whether conduct creates a hostile environment depends not only on whether the conduct was unwelcome to the person who feels harassed, but also whether a reasonable person in a similar situation would have perceived the conduct as objectively offensive. The following factors will also be considered:
a) The degree to which the conduct affected one or more students’ education or individual’s employment;
b) The nature, scope, frequency, duration, and location of the incident(s);
c) The identity, number, and relationships of persons involved;
d) The nature of higher education.
B. Sexual Assault
Sexual assault means an offense that meets the definition of rape, fondling, incest, or statutory rape.
Rape is the penetration, no matter how slight, of the vagina or anus with any body part or object, or oral penetration by a sex organ of another person, without the consent of the victim.
Fondling is the touching of the private body parts of another person for the purpose of sexual gratification, without the consent of the victim, including instances where the victim is incapable of giving consent because of his/her age or because of his/her temporary or permanent mental incapacity.
Incest is sexual intercourse between persons who are related to each other within the degrees wherein marriage is prohibited by law.
Statutory rape is sexual intercourse with a person who is under the statutory age of consent. All forms of sexual assault and sexual contact prohibited by Maine law are also included.
C. Dating Violence
Dating violence is violence committed against a person by an individual who is or has been in a social relationship of a romantic or intimate nature with that person. Whether a dating relationship exists is determined based on the reporting party’s statement and with consideration of the length of the relationship, the type of relationship, and the frequency of interaction between the persons involved in the relationship. Dating violence includes, but is not limited to, sexual or physical abuse or the threat of such abuse. Dating violence does not include acts covered under the definition of domestic violence. All forms of dating violence prohibited by Maine law are also included (see Assault).
D. Domestic Violence
A felony or misdemeanor crime of violence committed—
(A) By a current or former spouse or intimate partner of the victim;
(B) By a person with whom the victim shares a child in common;
(C) By a person who is cohabitating with, or has cohabitated with, the victim as a spouse or intimate partner;
(D) By a person similarly situated to a spouse of the victim under the domestic or family violence laws of the jurisdiction in which the crime of violence occurred, or
(E) By any other person against an adult or youth victim who is protected from that person’s acts under the domestic or family violence laws of the jurisdiction in which the crime of violence occurred.
All forms of domestic violence prohibited by Maine law are also included (see Domestic Violence Assault, Domestic Violence Criminal Threatening, Domestic Violence Terrorizing, Domestic Violence Stalking, and Domestic Violence Reckless Conduct).
Stalking is engaging in a course of conduct directed at a specific person that would cause a reasonable person to—
(A) Fear for the person’s safety or the safety of others; or
(B) Suffer substantial emotional distress.
(ii) For the purposes of this definition—
(A) Course of conduct means two or more acts, including, but not limited to, acts in which the stalker directly, indirectly, or through third parties, by any action, method, device, or means, follows, monitors, observes, surveils, threatens, or communicates to or about a person, or interferes with a person’s property.
(B) Reasonable person means a reasonable person under similar circumstances and with similar identities to the victim.
(C) Substantial emotional distress means significant mental suffering or anguish that may, but does not necessarily, require medical or other professional treatment or counseling.
Retaliation is action taken by the University or any individual or group against any person for opposing any practices forbidden under this policy or for filing a complaint, testifying, assisting, or participating in an investigation or proceeding under this policy. This includes action taken against a bystander who intervened to stop or attempt to stop a violation of this policy. Retaliation includes intimidating, threatening, coercing, or in any way discriminating against an individual because of the individual’s complaint or participation. Action is generally deemed retaliatory if it would deter a reasonable person in the same circumstances from opposing practices prohibited by this policy.
G. Sexual Misconduct
Sexual misconduct includes, but is not limited to, prostituting another person, nonconsensual image capturing of sexual activity, presentation or unauthorized viewing of a nonconsensual videotaping of sexual activity, letting others watch you have sex without the knowledge or consent of your sexual partner, possession of child pornography, peeping tommery, and/or knowingly transmitting an STD or HIV to another person. Sexual misconduct may constitute sexual harassment. All forms of sexual misconduct prohibited by Maine law are also included (see Violation of Privacy, Possession of Sexually Explicit Material, and Sex Trafficking).
Consent is agreement to engage in sexual contact. Consent must be informed, freely and actively given, and consist of a mutually agreeable and understandable exchange of words or actions. Consent is clear, knowing and voluntary. Consent is active, not passive. Consent may be withdrawn at any time. Silence, in and of itself, cannot be interpreted as consent. Consent can be given by words or actions, as long as those words or actions create mutually understandable clear permission regarding willingness to engage in (and conditions of) sexual activity. Past consent does not imply future consent. Consent to engage in one form of sexual activity does not imply consent to engage in any other sexual activity. Consent to engage in sexual activity with one person does not imply consent to engage in sexual activity with any other person.
It is not consent when the exchange involves unwanted physical force, coercion, intimidation, and/or threats. If an individual is mentally or physically incapacitated or impaired such that one cannot understand the fact, nature or extent of the sexual situation, and the incapacitation or impairment is known or should be known to a reasonable person, there is no consent. This includes conditions resulting from alcohol or drug consumption, or being asleep or unconscious. Consent is not valid if the person is too young to consent to sexual activity under Maine law.
VI. How to File a Complaint and How the University Will Respond
The University strongly encourages anyone who has experienced sex discrimination, sexual harassment, retaliation, sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence or stalking to report the incident to the appropriate contact at the University (see VI (A)). A report can be made under this policy at any time, regardless of when the incident happened. Reporting the incident to the University does not mean that you have to file a formal complaint or bring criminal charges. Reporting the incident, however, will allow the University to provide individuals involved with information about available support and services, both on campus and off campus.
Any individual may make a third-party complaint about a violation of this policy. Individuals are encouraged to contact the appropriate office identified below as soon as possible. After receiving a complaint, the University will determine what further action, including contacting the alleged victim, is warranted. If a concern is reported by someone other than the alleged victim and the alleged victim is unwilling or unable to cooperate with an investigation, the University’s ability to respond may be significantly limited.
The Director of Equal Opportunity (email@example.com) is the person on your campus, or in the System Office, responsible for the University’s overall compliance and response to incidents of sexual assault, sexual harassment and sex discrimination in general.
A. How and Where to File a Complaint
1. Complaints or Reports of Employees’ Conduct
All complaints or reports relating to violations of this policy by a University employee should be made to Sarah Harebo, Director of Equal Opportunity at firstname.lastname@example.org or (207) 581-1226.
Upon receiving a complaint or report of a violation of this policy by a University employee, the Director of Equal Opportunity will assess the complaint or report and will follow the procedures described in the University of Maine System Equal Opportunity Complaint Procedure. The Director of Equal Opportunity will provide the complainant with information about options for informally resolving a complaint and formal investigation of a complaint. Mediation is never appropriate in sexual assault cases. The Director of Equal Opportunity or the Title IX Coordinator will provide the complainant with a written explanation of the complainant’s rights and options. When a complaint is investigated, the University will use a preponderance of the evidence standard – whether it is more likely than not that the alleged violation occurred. For more information about the complaint procedure, follow these links:
2. Complaints or Reports of Students’ Conduct
All complaints or reports relating to violations of this policy by a University student should be made to the Deputy Title IX Coordinator or the Office of Community Standards, who will notify the Title IX Coordinator of the complaint or report.
Upon receiving a complaint or report of a violation of this policy by a University student, the Office of Community Standards will assess the complaint or report and follow the procedures described in the University of Maine System Student Conduct Code. The Office of Community Standards will provide the complainant with information about options for informally resolving a complaint and formal investigation of a complaint. Mediation is never appropriate in sexual assault cases. The Office of Community Standards will provide the complainant with a written explanation of the complainant’s rights and options. When a complaint is investigated, the University will use a preponderance of the evidence standard – whether it is more likely than not that the alleged violation occurred. For more information about the procedure for adjudicating complaint against students, see the UMS Student Conduct Code.
3. Complaints or Reports of Third Parties’ Conduct (Campus Guests, Vendors, Contractors, etc.)
All concerns regarding violations of this policy by third parties such as vendors, contractors and campus guests should be made to the Director of Equal Opportunity at (207) 581-1226. Upon receipt of a report or complaint, the University will respond appropriately depending on the nature of its relationship to the third party. Mediation is never appropriate in sexual assault cases.
B. How the University Will Respond to a Complaint
The University’s investigation and decision-making process is completely independent of any criminal or civil investigation and adjudication regarding the same incident.
The University will provide a prompt, fair, and impartial investigation and resolution of the complaint. The investigation and decision-making shall be conducted by officials who receive annual training on discrimination, harassment, retaliation, domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, and stalking, and how to conduct an investigation and hearing process that protects the safety of all individuals and promotes accountability.
The complainant and the respondent are entitled to the same opportunities to have others present during any investigative interview or disciplinary meeting or proceeding, including the opportunity to be accompanied by an advisor of their choice.
In investigating sexual assault allegations, the investigator and decision-makers will not question the complainant about the complainant’s prior sexual conduct with anyone other than the respondent. Information regarding any prior sexual conduct or dating relationship between the complainant and the respondent by itself shall not imply consent or preclude a finding of a violation. No direct questioning of the complainant by the respondent will be permitted.
The respondent’s use of alcohol and other drugs in connection with a violation of this policy does not mitigate accountability for the behavior or diminish the seriousness of the incident. The respondent’s intentional use of a substance to affect an individual in order to facilitate a violation of this policy will be considered when determining responsibility and appropriate sanctions.
In the investigation and decision-making processes for all complaints of sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence or stalking made under this policy, both the complainant and the respondent shall be simultaneously informed, in writing, of: (1) the outcome of any institutional disciplinary proceeding that arises from the alleged violation including all sanctions and the rationale for the result and sanctions; (2) the procedure for the respondent and the complainant to appeal the results of the institutional disciplinary proceeding; (3) any change to the results that occurs prior to the time that they become final; and (4) when the results are final. The University shall not require a party to abide by a non-disclosure agreement in writing or otherwise regarding the final results of the institutional disciplinary proceeding.
Any student or employee found to have violated this policy may be subject to disciplinary action, up to and including suspension or dismissal/termination from the University. Sanctions for third parties who violate this policy will be in accordance with the circumstances.
For information about sanctions, students should refer to the University of Maine System Student Conduct Code. All of the possible sanctions that the University may impose upon a student following the results of any University disciplinary proceeding for an allegation of dating violence, domestic violence, sexual assault or stalking are:
A. Assigned Educational Projects: This may include research projects, reflective essays, counseling assessments, sanction seminars or other related assignments intended to promote learning.
B. Community Service: The type of service may be related to the nature of the violation.
C. Deferred Sanction: A specific period of time during which a Respondent’s continued enrollment or housing contract at the University is clearly in jeopardy. Any further violation of the Code during that time will minimally result in the imposition of the deferred sanction and any additional sanctions deemed necessary.
D. Disciplinary Dismissal: Permanent separation (subject to the right of review after five years) from the University.
E. Disciplinary Probation: A period of time when a Respondent is under closer scrutiny of the University. It may include the loss of one or more privileges.
F. Disciplinary Suspension: Separation from the University for a stated period of time and/or until a stated condition(s) is met.
G. Fine: Payment of money. Respondents who are unable to pay may discuss alternate payment arrangements.
H. Loss of Contact with a Specific Person(s): With this sanction, the person may not initiate direct or indirect contact with a specified person(s).
I. Loss of Visitation Privileges: This loss of visitation may be to any designated area(s) of campus.
J. Official Warning: Official acknowledgment of a violation and the expectation that it will not be repeated.
K. Removal from University Housing: Removal from a particular hall or all housing.
L. Restitution: Restitution, up to the replacement value of the items damaged, stolen, removed or used without authority and damages incurred.
M. Such other action as the Committee or Officer may reasonably deem appropriate (e.g., suspension of an organization’s official campus recognition or suspension of a student from an extracurricular activity).
For information about possible disciplinary action, represented employees should refer to the appropriate collective bargaining agreement. Non-represented employees should refer to the non-represented employee handbook. All of the possible sanctions that the University may impose upon an employee following the results of any University disciplinary proceeding for an allegation of dating violence, domestic violence, sexual assault or stalking are:
A. Oral Warning
B. Written Warning
E. Such other action as the University may reasonably deem appropriate.
The University and the law prohibit retaliation against an individual for opposing any practice forbidden under this policy, for bringing a complaint, for assisting someone with a complaint, for attempting to stop a violation of this policy, or for participating in any manner in an investigation or resolution of a complaint. It is central to the values of this University that any individual who believes he or she may have been the target of a violation of this policy feels free to report their concerns for appropriate investigation and response, without fear of retaliation or retribution. After making, assisting with or otherwise participating in a report or complaint to the University, any individual who believes he or she has been subjected to retaliation by the respondent, the University or any other person or group should report the alleged retaliation immediately to the appropriate person identified in this policy. The University will take strong responsive action when retaliation is found to have occurred.
Confidentiality: What are the Options?
The University encourages people who have experienced sex discrimination, sexual harassment, sexual assault, dating violence, domestic violence, stalking, or retaliation to talk to somebody about what happened so they can get the support they need, and so the University can respond appropriately. People on campus and off-campus have different abilities to maintain confidentiality depending on their roles and responsibilities.
A. Confidential Communications
1. Professional and Pastoral Counselors
Professional, licensed individuals who provide mental health services as part of their job responsibilities (including those who act in that role under the supervision of a licensed professional) and pastoral counselors (clergy, ministers, priests, rabbis, etc.) who provide religious counseling to members of the school community are not required to report any information about an incident to the Title IX Coordinator without an individual’s permission provided that such information was disclosed in a counseling context. A person can seek assistance and support from these individuals without triggering a University investigation that could reveal the person’s identity or that the person has disclosed the incident. This does not apply to professional, licensed individuals who receive a report outside of their licensed duties, such as when acting in a teaching capacity. Following is the contact information for these individuals: University Health and Counseling Services at (207) 780-4050.
Speaking with a professional or pastoral counselor does not constitute a report or complaint to the University. The University will be unable to conduct an investigation into the incident or pursue disciplinary action against the respondent based on such a disclosure.
NOTE: Professional counselors may maintain a person’s confidentiality within the University, but they may have external reporting or other obligations under state law (such as mandatory reporting to law enforcement in case of abuse of minors; imminent harm to self or others; requirement to testify if subpoenaed in a criminal case). A person who initially requests confidentiality may later decide to file a complaint with the University or report the incident to local law enforcement and have the complaint investigated. Professional and pastoral counselors can assist a person who later decides to file a complaint or report.
2. Licensed Health Professionals
Certain licensed health professionals who receive information about an incident in connection with the provision of health care services may not report that information to the Title IX Coordinator without an individual’s permission provided that such information was disclosed in a healthcare setting. However, some licensed health professionals who are designated as Campus Security Authority’s may be required to report non-identifying statistical information to the University as required by federal law. Speaking with a licensed health care professional does not constitute a report or complaint to the University, and the University will be unable to conduct an investigation into the incident or pursue disciplinary action against the respondent.
NOTE: Licensed health professionals may maintain a person’s confidentiality within the University, but they may have external reporting or other obligations under state law (such as mandatory reporting to law enforcement in case of abuse of minors).
3. Off-campus Counselors and Advocates
Off-campus counselors, advocates, and health care providers will also generally maintain confidentiality and not share information with the University unless the individual requests the disclosure and signs a consent or waiver form.
Following is contact information for these off-campus resources:
Maine Coalition Against Sexual Assault, 24-hour helpline: 1-800-87107741
Maine Coalition to End Domestic Violence, 24-hour hotline: 1-866-83-4HELP (1-866-834-4357)
CIGNA Employee Assistance Program: 1-877-622-4327
NOTE: Off-campus counselors and advocates are not required to disclose information to the University, but they may have external reporting or other obligations under state law.
Research involving human subjects (which require approval by the appropriate campus Institutional Review Board for the Protection of Human Subjects) may ask subjects to provide personal information in a confidential setting. Information about an incident covered under this policy may be disclosed by a research subject as part of participation in that research. Researchers involved in the research project are not required to report the incident to the Title IX Coordinator.
B. Reporting to Another Student or a University Volunteer
If you discuss a violation of this policy with another student or with a University volunteer, that person may be able to maintain your confidentiality, except as described within section C, Mandatory Reporting. All University students and volunteers are strongly encouraged to report all that they witnessed or heard regarding a violation of this policy to the designated University officials identified above.
C. Mandatory University Reporting
All University employees (except as provided within section A) have a duty to report incidents of sexual discrimination, sexual harassment and sexual assault. Because domestic violence, dating violence, stalking and sexual misconduct can also constitute sex discrimination, information received by University employees about such incidents must also be reported. Student employees, peer advocates and volunteers who learn of a violation of this policy in the course of their employment, programming or volunteer responsibilities are also required to report.
When a person tells an employee of the University about a violation of this policy, the University employee shall promptly report to the Title IX Coordinator all relevant details about the alleged incident shared by the complainant that the University will need to determine what happened – including the names of the complainant and respondent(s), any witnesses, and any other relevant facts, including the date, time and specific location of the alleged incident. To the extent possible, information reported will be shared only with people responsible for handling the University’s response to the report. If the University determines that there is a continuing threat to the safety of members of the University community, it may have to issue a timely warning regarding the incident.
D. How the University Will Respond to Requests for Confidentiality
When a complainant reveals any information about a violation of this policy to any University employee, as soon as possible, the employee should make sure that the complainant understands the employee’s reporting obligations. If the complainant wants to maintain confidentiality, University employees should direct the complainant to confidential resources but the employee must still report any information disclosed to the Title IX Coordinator. If the complainant wants to tell the employee what happened but also maintain confidentiality, the employee should tell the complainant that the University will consider the request, but cannot guarantee that the University will be able to honor it. In reporting the details of the incident to the Title IX Coordinator, the employee will also inform the Coordinator of the complainant’s request for confidentiality.
An employee will not pressure a complainant to request confidentiality, or pressure a complainant to file a report or complaint. An employee will respect the complainant’s wishes to the extent possible. If a complainant discloses an incident to an employee but wishes to maintain confidentiality or requests that no investigation into an incident be conducted or disciplinary action taken, the employee still must disclose the incident to the Title IX Coordinator, and the University will weigh the complainant’s request against the University’s obligation to provide a safe, non-discriminatory environment for all students and employees, including the complainant. If the University honors the request for confidentiality, a complainant needs to understand that the University’s ability to meaningfully investigate the incident and pursue disciplinary action, if warranted, against the respondent(s) may be limited. There are times when the University may not be able to honor a complainant’s request because it would pose a risk to providing a safe, non-discriminatory environment for students and employees. If the University determines that it cannot maintain a complainant’s confidentiality, the University will inform the complainant prior to starting an investigation and, to the extent possible, will share information only with people responsible for handling the University’s response.
Except as required by law, the University shall not include personally identifiable information about a complainant in its campus crime statistics or report, its campus crime log, publicly available police reports or timely warning notices.
The University shall maintain as confidential any accommodations or protective measures provided to the complainant or another party, to the extent that maintaining such confidentiality would not impair the ability of the University to provide the accommodations or protective measures or to the extent otherwise required by law.
The University is committed to the complainant and respondent’s well-being, and will take steps to protect everyone involved from retaliation or harm. Because the University is under a continuing obligation to address violations of this policy campus-wide, reports of violations of this policy (including non-identifying reports) may also prompt the University to consider broader remedial action –such as increased monitoring, supervision or security at locations where the reported incident occurred; increasing education and prevention efforts, including to targeted population groups; conducting climate assessments/ victimization surveys; and/or revisiting its policies and practices.
Public awareness events such as “Take Back the Night,” the Clothesline Project, candlelight vigils, protests, “survivor speak outs” or other forums in which students or employees disclose violations of this policy, are not considered notice to the University of violations of this policy for purposes of triggering its obligation to investigate a particular incident(s). Such disclosures may, however, inform the need for campus-wide education and prevention efforts, and the University may provide information about students’ and employees’ Title IX rights at these events.
F. Anonymous Reporting
Although the University encourages complainants to talk to someone, the University provides an online form through USM Public Safety for anonymous reporting. Providing personally identifying information through an anonymous reporting system may serve as notice to the University for the purpose of triggering an investigation. This is the mechanism for anonymous reporting on your campus.
VIII. Support Services and Interim Measures
Whether or not an individual who has experienced a violation of this policy files a formal complaint, reporting the incident will allow the University to provide all individuals involved with available support and services, both on-campus and off-campus. The University can also take interim measures to promote the safety and well-being of both the complainant and respondent, including, but not limited to, moving the complainant or respondent to a new living, dining or working situation; issuing a no contact order; changing class or work schedules; changing transportation; financial aid accommodations; and other academic and/or employment accommodations and support. The University can assist all individuals involved in obtaining counseling on or off campus and provide information regarding medical care and other resources, such as victim advocacy, legal assistance and visa and immigration assistance. The University will provide written notification to students and employees about existing resources, both within the University and the community. The University will provide written notification to complainants and respondents about how to request the above services and accommodations. The University must make such accommodations or provide such protective measures if the complainant requests them and if they are reasonably available, regardless of whether the complainant chooses to report the crime to campus police or local law enforcement.
IX. Options Regarding Law Enforcement
An individual who has experienced sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence or stalking, or any other conduct which may violate criminal laws, has a right, at his or her own discretion, to:
1. Notify law enforcement authorities, including on-campus and local police;
2. Be assisted by campus authorities in notifying law enforcement; or
3. Decline to notify law enforcement.
University officials may, however, provide law enforcement with details about an incident under some circumstances if a determination has been made that such disclosure is required by law and/or is necessary to secure campus safety. See section VII(D) above. Complainants have a right to proceed simultaneously with a criminal investigation and a University internal investigation. If necessary to the criminal investigation, the University may defer its investigation for a limited time for fact gathering by law enforcement, and then will promptly resume its investigation.
X. Enforcement of Protection-from-Harassment or Protection-from-Abuse Orders
The University will provide assistance or referrals for a student or employee who wishes to obtain a protection-from-abuse or protection-from-harassment order. If a protection-from-abuse or protection-from-harassment order has been issued by a court in a civil or criminal proceeding, a copy of the order should be provided to University Public Safety and the Title IX Coordinator or Deputy as soon as possible to enable enforcement by the appropriate authorities.
XI. Student Amnesty
The University strongly encourages students to report instances of sex discrimination, sexual harassment, retaliation, sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence or stalking. Students who report information about a violation of this policy will not be disciplined by the University for any violation of alcohol possession or consumption policies or other minor violations of the Student Conduct Code in which they might have engaged in connection with the reported incident.
XII. Free Speech and Academic Freedom
Recognizing that many citizens have differing views on the matter of whom and which groups should have an opportunity to express opinions, the University of Maine System affirms its commitments to the rights of free speech and academic freedom.
To that principle, there shall be no restrictions, on any of the System institutions, placed on the fundamental rights of free speech and assembly, except those necessary to preserve the order for the University System to function as an institution of higher learning. Additional information pertaining to Free Speech can be found online.
Academic freedom is essential to the fulfillment of the purposes of the University. The University acknowledges and encourages an atmosphere of confidence and freedom while recognizing that the concept of academic freedom is accompanied by a corresponding concept of responsibility to the University and its students and employees. Academic freedom is the freedom to present and discuss all relevant matters in the classroom, to explore all avenues of scholarship, research and creative expression, and to speak or write without any censorship, threat, restraint, or discipline by the University with regard to the pursuit of truth in the performance of teaching, research, publishing or service obligations.
The University of Maine System is a public institution of higher education committed to excellence in teaching, research, and public service. Together, the students, faculty, and staff form our state wide University community. The quality of life on and about the member Universities is best served by preserving the above described freedoms and civility. This policy shall not be construed or applied to restrict academic freedom within the University, nor construed to restrict constitutionally protected expression
XIII. Off-Campus and Off-Duty Conduct
Reports of violations of this policy that occur off campus and/or off-duty can be the subject of a complaint. Reports of off-campus and/or off-duty sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence and stalking should be brought to the University’s attention as soon as possible. The University will evaluate the incident to determine whether it violates this policy by resulting in continuing effects that create a hostile environment on campus or otherwise has a connection to the University.
XIV. Educational Programs
The University will conduct educational programs to promote awareness of sex discrimination, sexual harassment, sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking. This will include primary prevention and awareness programs for incoming students and new employees, and ongoing prevention and awareness campaigns for students, faculty and staff. All employees and students must participate in all required educational programs.
XV. External Complaints
Individuals who experience a violation of this policy may file a complaint or suit with an outside agency, including the Maine Human Rights Commission, U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, or U.S. Department of Education Office of Civil Rights. The University will still investigate and respond appropriately to any internal complaint.
A complainant who filed a complaint with the University and believes the University’s response was inadequate may also file a complaint with the above agencies.
Complainants should keep in mind, however, that although they may report a violation of this policy to the University at any time; external agencies typically have time limits within which complaints must be filed. To learn more about the procedures for filing complaints with an outside agency, Complainants should contact that entity directly.
XVI. Review and Revision of this Policy
A representative Policy Review Board will be established consisting of university and System participants to review and recommend changes, as appropriate, to this policy and procedures. The Board will meet at least every three years or more often, as needed and in synchronization with the review of the University of Maine System Student Conduct Code. Revisions of this policy require approval of the Board of Trustees.
The University of Southern Maine is committed to providing a healthy working and learning environment for the entire campus community. To that end, a tobacco-free campus shall be established. The purpose of this policy is to reduce harm from tobacco use and secondhand smoke, provide an environment that encourages persons to be tobacco-free, reduce health insurance and health care costs, and promote a campus culture of wellness.
The University of Southern Maine is a tobacco-free campus. This policy applies to faculty, staff, students, contractors, vendors and visitors. The use of tobacco and all smoking products is not permitted on any university-owned property, which includes but is not limited to, buildings, university grounds, parking areas, campus walkways, recreational and sporting facilities, and university or personally-owned, rented or leased vehicles.
Tobacco use by definition includes the possession of any lighted tobacco products, or the use of any type of smokeless tobacco, including but not limited to chew, snuff, snus, electronic cigarettes, and all other nicotine delivery devices that are non-FDA approved as cessation products.
It is the shared responsibility of all members of the campus community to respect and abide by this policy.
Administrators, deans, directors, department chairs, supervisors and event sponsors will communicate the policy within their areas of responsibility.
The University of Southern Maine will provide access to tobacco cessation resources to USM Maine students and employees.
The successful implementation of this policy depends on the courtesy and cooperation of the entire campus community.
Appropriate signage will be posted in campus facilities, on the USM website and elsewhere to inform members of the campus community and visitors, of the TobaccoFree Campus Policy.
The policy will be communicated in appropriate university publications and contracts. University publications include but are not limited to electronic notifications, handbooks, brochures and other university-generated materials.
For more information about the Tobacco Free Campus Policy, contact:
Students: Office of Community Standards and Mediation at (207) 780-5242
Employees: Office of Human Resources at (207) 780-5115
For information on tobacco cessation and services, contact:
Students: University Health and Counseling Services at (207) 780-5411
Employees: Employee Wellness Program at (207) 228-8151
University Benefits Center 1-866-269-9635.
The University of Southern Maine appreciates your compliance with this policy for the benefit of everyone.
Reviewed and Approved by University Counsel
September 27, 2012
Dangerous weapons, including but not limited to, firearms, knives, other sharp-edged weapons, bows, arrows, rockets, sling shots, air guns, and martial arts weapons are not permitted on property owned by or under the control of the University of Southern Maine and off-campus activities sponsored by the University of Southern Maine.
Any exception must be approved by the USM Police chief and shall be subject to such terms and conditions as the chief shall deem reasonable.
Any member of the University community who violates this policy shall be subject to appropriate disciplinary action up to and including dismissal from the University, as well as arrest and criminal prosecution.
Any person who is not a member of the University community who violates this policy shall be notified at once of the violation orally or in writing as soon as possible after the discovery. The person shall be subject to all appropriate procedures and penalties including, but not limited to, the application of the criminal provisions of the law of the State of Maine.
Questions regarding the policy should be directed to the Office of Community Standards and Mediation,
email@example.com or (207) 780-5242.
The primary use of all USM facilities and grounds is for purposes related to the University's mission. University instruction, research, service, and operational needs take precedence over any other use of University facilities and grounds.
Members of the University Community may conduct meetings, assemblies, and spontaneous demonstrations in all unrestricted areas of campus, provided that such meetings, assemblies, and demonstrations adhere to the parameters and requirements outlined.