Sexual Harassment and Misconduct Policies

North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University (hereafter “University”) strives to provide an all-inclusive and welcoming culture that values diversity, and fosters tolerance and mutual respect among members of the campus community. The University values safety, diversity, education, and equity. There shall be no unlawful discrimination at North Carolina A&T against any person on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, age, disability, genetic information, or veteran status.

N.C. A&T is committed to providing a learning, working, and living environment that reflects and promotes personal integrity, civility, and mutual respect. Members of the university community have the right to be free from all forms of abuse, assault, harassment, and coercive conduct, including sexual misconduct, as defined in this policy. N.C. A&T considers sexual misconduct to be one of the most serious violations of the values and standards of the university. Unwelcome sexual contact of any form is a violation of students’ personal integrity and their right to a safe environment and therefore violates N.C. A&T’s values. N.C. A&T will not tolerate sexual misconduct in any form. All members of the university community have an obligation to act responsibly in the realm of sexuality and to recognize and challenge any sexual misconduct.

Consent Is Key

What is Lack of Consent?

Lack of consent occurs when the acts are committed either by force or intimidation or by taking advantage of the person’s mental incapacity or physical helplessness. Someone who is incapacitated in any way cannot give consent.

Incapacitation includes but is not limited to being asleep, drugged, intoxicated, or unconscious.

Consent cannot be compelled or coerced. Coercion is any attempt to cause another person to act or think in a certain way by use of pressure, threats, or intimidation.

Consent will not be considered given by someone who is harassed, threatened, or forced into sexual activity.

Consent cannot be given by a minor as defined by law.

What is Effective Consent?

Effective Consent is the basis of this policy because effective consent maintains the value that all persons have the right to feel respected, acknowledged, and safe during sexual activity.

Effective Consent is informed, freely and actively given, and is based on rational and reasonable judgment. It requires clear communication between all persons involved in the sexual encounter.

Consent must be communicated verbally. In whatever way consent is communicated, it must be mutually understandable.

Consent is mutually understandable when a reasonable person would consider the words that you and your partner(s) have expressed demonstrate a desire to do the same thing, at the same time, in the same way, with one another.

In the absence of mutually understandable words, the initiators of sexual contact are responsible for making sure they have obtained effective consent from their partner(s). The initiators must fully understand what their partner(s) wants and does not want sexually.

Consent to one form of sexual activity does not imply consent to another form of sexual activity. Each new sexual act requires new consent. Effective consent has time boundaries.

Consent at one time does not imply consent at any other time.

The existence of a dating/romantic relationship between the persons involved or the fact of a previous sexual relationship does not automatically establish effective consent for future sexual activity.

Consent is not the absence of resistance.

Silence is an inactive behavior and may indicate that something is wrong and the potential for sexual misconduct exists. If a partner is inactive (for example, silent or physically still) sexual activity must stop until both partners have communicated clearly with each other about what, if any, sexual activity is mutually desired.

Effective Consent can never be given by minors, mentally disabled individuals, or by incapacitated persons. A person may be incapacitated as a result of alcohol or other drug use. A person who is unconscious, unaware, or otherwise physically helpless cannot give effective consent to sexual activity.

Effective consent cannot result from force, or threat of force, coercion, fraud, intimidation, or incapacitation. The use of force to obtain sexual access or to induce consent violates this policy whether the force is physical in nature, violent, or involving threats, intimidation or coercion.