Know Your Rights - Know Your Options

Know Your Rights, Know Your Options

Dartmouth College is committed to providing information on services, resources, and available remedies to any member of our community who has been affected by sexual assault, sexual or gender-based harassment, sexual or gender-based discrimination, dating/domestic violence, or stalking. Visit the Title IX website to review the Sexual and Gender-Based Misconduct Policy and Procedures and explore helpful resources.  The Title IX Coordinator and/or their designee are the only individuals empowered to resolve complaints and reports of Prohibited Conduct.

If you are currently feeling physically or emotionally unsafe, please contact:

Department of Safety and Security – 603 646 4000

Hanover Police Department – 603 643 2222 or 911

Dartmouth Health Services – 603 646 9442

WISE (24/7) – 1 866 348 9473

Supportive Measures

Supportive Measures are non-disciplinary, non-punitive individualized measures offered as appropriate, as reasonably available, and without fee or charge. Supportive measures can be implemented without filing a Formal Complaint. The Title IX Coordinator will coordinate appropriate Supportive Measures including, but not limited to:

  • Facilitating access to counseling and medical services.
  • Guidance in obtaining a sexual assault forensic examination.
  • Academic support, such as rescheduling exams and assignments and extending deadlines.
  • Changes in class schedule, work schedule, or job assignment, including teaching, research, and service responsibilities.
  • Change in campus housing.
  • When appropriate, issue a "no-contact order."

No-Contact Orders

If the person you identified in your report is a member of the Dartmouth community, you have the right to request the issuance of a "No-Contact Order" that will prohibit contact. The Title IX Coordinator will assess this request and issue a "No-Contact Order" if appropriate. 

For reports that identify an alumnus/alumna, visitor, or vendor, in certain circumstances, Dartmouth may issue a "No Trespass Letter," which prohibits the person from returning to campus or being on College property.

No matter the person's relationship with Dartmouth, you have the right to request a restraining order or similar lawful order issued by a criminal, civil, or Tribal Court. Dartmouth Staff or the WISE Campus Advocate can assist you with this process, but the College cannot obtain these orders on your behalf. 

Immunity from Disciplinary Action for Personal Ingestion of Alcohol or Other Drugs

Dartmouth generally will grant immunity from disciplinary action to a reporting Student, whether as a Complainant or a Reporting Party, for the personal ingestion of alcohol or other drugs in violation of Dartmouth's Standards of Conduct that is part of a report of Prohibited Conduct. Students should be aware that any such grant of immunity from disciplinary action by Dartmouth does not affect actions by law enforcement agencies.  Dartmouth will not initiate conduct charges against a Complainant or Respondent arising from the same set of facts or circumstances to interfere with any right or privilege secured by Title IX or the Title IX regulations.

Reporting Options

Dartmouth recognizes that deciding whether to make a report of Prohibited Conduct is a personal decision. Dartmouth takes all reports of Prohibited Conduct seriously. A person may choose to report an incident to the College and/or local law enforcement. These options are not mutually exclusive; both internal and criminal reports may be pursued simultaneously. Making a report is your decision. 

The College encourages individuals to make a report or file a complaint with the Title IX Coordinator. If an individual chooses to proceed with a Formal Complaint, the Title IX Coordinator will work with you to determine the appropriate path for resolution. Reports can be made by meeting with a member of the Title IX Coordinator in-person, over the phone, or via Zoom. For Complainants seeking Formal or Informal Resolutions, a Formal Complaint must be filed to initiate a resolution process. Meeting with the office before filing a Formal Complaint is encouraged to explore possible supportive measures and resolution options. You can file a Formal Complaint by visiting the Title IX Formal Complaint Form.

Individuals can also report to the Department of Safety and Security, Office of Community Standards and Accountability, Human Resources, or any other Responsible Employees. Under Dartmouth policy, Responsible Employees must promptly notify the Title IX Coordinator, which results in outreach being sent to the impacted party.

The College encourages reporting to local law enforcement for those interested in pursuing a criminal resolution. The Hanover Police Department (HPD) is a 24-hour agency that maintains on-call investigators. HPD can meet with a Reporting Person to answer questions about the criminal reporting process.

To learn your reporting options or to initiate a criminal investigation, contact HPD by calling (603) 643-2222. You can find more information on the Hanover Police Department's reporting process here. If the incident occurred outside Hanover, please get in touch with your local police department. WISE can assist as a confidential resource when engaging in this process.

The criminal process is separate from the Dartmouth student disciplinary process. An impacted party can pursue one, both, or neither option. The Title IX Coordinator can help further explore these options and provide support and assistance. 

Clery Act Reporting

Under the Clery Act, Dartmouth includes statistics about Clery Act crimes in its daily crime log and Annual Security Report. The information is reported in a manner that does not include personally identifying information about persons involved in an incident. Dartmouth may issue a timely warning to the community for reports of Clery-defined conduct if it institutes a serious and/or ongoing threat.

Preservation of Evidence

Evidence of sexual assault, sexual or gender-based harassment, sexual or gender-based discrimination, dating/domestic violence, or stalking should be preserved as soon as possible, even if you are unsure you will report to Dartmouth or local law enforcement. Preserving evidence is helpful, especially if you request a Formal Resolution or report to law enforcement. 

Write down, or have a friend write down, everything you can remember about the incident, including a physical description of the assailant, location, and timestamps leading up to and after the incident, etc. You should attempt to do this even if you are unsure about reporting the incident in the future.  

Evidence such as texts, emails, social media posts, chats, pictures/videos, or other forms of electronic communication should be saved and stored safely. Electronic communication can be helpful in a college investigation and criminal investigation. 

Please consult with the Hanover Police Department/local law enforcement, the Department of Safety and Security, the Title IX Coordinator, and/or Emergency Room Department Staff at a local hospital for assistance. They can highlight what evidence may be important, how to preserve it, and how it may be beneficial should you choose to report. In general, the earlier you have evidence collected, the better chance of obtaining useful information. 

If you are planning to complete an exam by a Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner (SANE) at Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center (DHMC) or another hospital, it is recommended that you postpone showering, consuming food or drink, brushing your teeth, using the restroom, and washing your clothes or linens until after the exam. If you store your clothes or bed linens, it is best to do this separately in paper bags instead of plastic. At DHMC or their affiliates, an Advocate from WISE will be present to provide information and support.    

Resolution of Complaints

All Prohibited Conduct reported to the Title IX Coordinator will be assessed to determine the appropriate resolution. The Complainant's expressed preference for resolution will be considered in determining if an Informal or Formal Resolution will be initiated. Informal Resolutions may not be permitted in certain circumstances, such as matters that include a staff or faculty member sexually harassing a student. 

The Informal Resolution process provides a mechanism for Dartmouth to take prompt action through the imposition of individual and community remedies designed to maintain or restore access to the educational, extracurricular, and employment activities at Dartmouth and to remedy the impacts of conduct on members of the Dartmouth community. The Informal Resolution process may only be initiated after filing a Formal Complaint. The Complainant and Respondent must give voluntary, written consent to the Informal Resolution process.  

An Informal Resolution process is voluntary, and the Complainant or Respondent can ask to end the Informal Resolution process at any time before its completion.  A Formal Resolution may be requested if a matter is not resolved through an Informal Resolution. If an Informal Resolution process ends before resolution, any information obtained may be used in a subsequent Formal Resolution process.

Informal Resolutions are rooted in Restorative Justice, which looks to address the harm caused and find a path forward. There are two options through Informal Resolution: a shuttle agreement is facilitated by the Title IX Coordinator and does not require the parties to have contact with one another. The second is a restorative process, a facilitated conversation between the Complainant and Respondent. Both options result in a plan for the Respondent to address the harm by implementing agreed-upon remedies.  

A matter is considered closed once a Formal Complaint has been resolved through an Informal Resolution process.  

A Formal Resolution, more commonly known as an investigation, will occur when (a) a report of a violation of the Policy is made, and the Complainant files a Formal Complaint or (b) the Title IX Coordinator files a Formal Complaint after determining that a Formal Resolution process is necessary. If a Formal Resolution is initiated by the Title IX Coordinator (option b), the Complainant will be made aware in advance.

The Title IX Coordinator will appoint one or more trained investigators to conduct a prompt, thorough, fair, and impartial investigation. The role of the investigator will be to gather information through interviews of the Complainant, Respondent, and witnesses and synthesize the information in a report that will be provided to the Complainant, Respondent, and the Hearing Panel. The investigator will be impartial and free from conflict of interest or bias.

During the Formal Resolution process, both the Complainant and Respondent have equal rights, including the opportunity to receive a written notice of investigation, to participate in the investigation, to review and present information and evidence, to be accompanied by an advisor of their choice to any meeting; to timely and equal access to all information gathered that is directly related to the allegations in the Formal Complaint, as well as the information contained in the investigation report that will be used in disciplinary proceedings; to timely written notice of meetings at which their presence will be requested or required, including the purpose of the meeting and participants, with sufficient time to prepare; to notice of the hearing; to question the other party during the hearing, either through the party's advisor or through the Hearing Coordinator/Chair; to simultaneous written notice of the outcome, sanction, and rationale; and to appeal the outcome.

Complainants and Respondents have the right to be accompanied and assisted by an advisor of their choosing through the entirety of the Formal Resolution process, including meetings, interviews, evidentiary review, and the hearing. For Formal Resolutions of Title IX prohibited conduct, hearings allow for cross-examination. For a Title IX hearing, if one of both parties does not have an advisor, one will be assigned (at no cost) before the hearing so that they may conduct questioning on behalf of their party at the hearing.

To further details about the options for resolution, you can explore the Sexual and Gender-Based Misconduct Policy and Procedures.    

Possible Disciplinary Outcomes

Dartmouth Faculty, Staff, or Students found responsible for violating the Sexual and Gender-Based Misconduct Policy will be sanctioned. Possible sanctions for students include permanent separation from Dartmouth, suspension for a specified number of terms, probation for a specified period, a written reprimand, or a combination of these options. Additionally, Dartmouth may impose educational requirements appropriate to the circumstances of the case. Dartmouth may also impose limits on the responsible students' presence or activities on campus, to help preserve and restore your access to Dartmouth's educational program and/or activities.

Faculty and Staff found responsible for violating the Sexual and Gender-Based Misconduct Policy will be sanctioned. Possible sanctions include but are not limited to, a written reprimand, a leave of absence for a specified period, or termination of employment. Dartmouth may also impose limits on the responsible Faculty or Staff's presence or activities on campus to help preserve and restore your access to Dartmouth's educational program and/or activities.