West Virginia University has a clear definition of sexual assault that includes acts other than intercourse. West Virginia University has sexual assault prevention training that is in-person and includes bystander intervention, but it is not required. The university also has an affirmative consent policy, but their definition of affirmative consent only partially matches EROC’s definition. They forbid retaliation against survivors and provide a clear definition of what constitutes retaliation.
Investigations are conducted by an individual investigator who may be a member of the Division of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, another University unit/department, or may be an investigator appointed from outside the University. The investigator reports their findings The investigator reports their findings to the Title IX Coordinator or other designee as appropriate. who can then request further information. These findings will be given to the Complainant and Respondent of those findings and they shall have five business days to respond. Then, the Title IX Coordinator or designee will make a finding of responsibility. The sanctions are determined by "the appropriate departments, offices, units, or employees at the University, in consultation with the Division of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion" who "will take steps toward immediate corrective action." Possible sanctions are listed. Both parties are able to retain an attorney at their own cost, and attorneys can participate in investigative procedures. The Vice President of Student Life or a designee will review the appeal, and can deny the appeal, lessen the sanctions, or direct the beginning of a new proceeding, but they cannot increase the sanctions. Sanctions will not be held off until after the appeal "unless good cause is shown". There is no specified timeline for completing investigations. Investigators are not "trauma informed", "shall be trained in investigating matters of discrimination, and specifically trained in matters arising under Title IX or the Violence Against Women Act." They state that mediation is unavailable in cases of sexual violence.
Survivors are not able to access accommodations without filing an official report. Carruth Center offers counseling and is listed as a resource for survivors, but no specific trained staff are listed. Student Health Clinic at Ruby Memorial Hospital provides health services, but it is unclear which specific services they may offer. They do not have a sexual assault crisis center, and students are referred to a local hospital to receive evidentiary exams. There is a 24/7 emergency line at the Psychological/Psychiatric Center, but it does not appear that other medical services are available after hours. West Virginia University also does not have an on-campus advocacy center. The university provides information on local rape crisis centers, but do not specify whether campus police are trauma informed.
October 28, 2017
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