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Sexual Harrassment/Title IX

Title IX Team

Pam McVay is designated as the Title IX Coordinator for Lake Michigan College. The Title IX Coordinator serves the campus community as a contact point for Title IX communications and grievances. The Title IX Coordinator is responsible for coordination of all the institution’s compliance efforts on gender discrimination, sexual harassment, retaliation, sexual assault, athletics equity and related civil rights investigations.

Lake Michigan College's Title IX Team receives training through ATIXA - learn more on their website.

Title IX Coordinator

Pam McVay
Director, President's Office and Culture and Talent Success
Benton Harbor Campus, Main Building, A-303

Deputy Title IX Coordinator

Melissa Grau
Athletic Director

Nicole Hatter
Academic Advisor

Denise Eberth
Executive Director, Human Resources
(269) 927-8704

Definition of Sexual Harassment

Read the Title IX Sexual Harassment Policy.

The College has adopted the following definition of sexual harassment. Note that acts of sexual harassment may be committed by any person upon another person, regardless of the sex, sexual orientation, and/or gender identity of those involved.

Sexual harassment, as an umbrella category, includes the actual or attempted offenses of sexual harassment, sexual assault, dating violence, domestic violence, and stalking, defined as follows.

As used above, the following definitions apply:

  • Force means the use of physical violence and/or physical imposition to gain sexual access. Force also includes threats, intimidation (implied threats), and coercion that is intended to overcome resistance or produce consent.
  • Coercion means unreasonable pressure for sexual activity. When someone makes clear that they do not want to engage in certain sexual activity, that they want to stop, or that they do not want to go past a certain point of sexual interaction, continued pressure beyond that point can be coercive.
  • Consent means a voluntary, informed, un-coerced agreement through words or actions that freely given, and which could be reasonably interpreted as a willingness to participate in mutually agreed upon sexual acts. Consensual sexual activity happens when each partner willingly and affirmatively chooses to participate. Important points regarding consent include:
    • Consent to one act does not constitute consent to another act.
    • Consent on a prior occasion does not constitute consent on subsequent occasions.
    • The existence of prior or current relationship does not, in itself, constitute consent.
    • Consent can be withdrawn or modified at any time.
    • Consent is not implicit in an individual’s manner or dress.
    • Silence, passivity, or lack or resistance does not necessarily constitute consent.
  • Incapacitation means a state when an individual’s perception or judgement is so impaired that the individual lacks the cognitive capacity to make or act on conscious decisions. The use of drugs or alcohol can cause incapacitation. An individual who is incapacitated is unable to consent to sexual activity. Engaging in sexual activity with an individual who is incapacitated (and therefor unable to consent), where an individual knows or should have reasonably understood that the individual is incapacitated, constitutes Title IX Sexual Harassment as defined in this policy. This policy also covers a person whose incapacity results from a temporary or permanent physical or mental health condition, involuntary  physical restraint, and/or the consumption of incapacitating drugs.
Sexual Harassment

Defined as unwelcome sexual conduct determined by a reasonable person to be so serve, pervasive, and objectively offensive that it effectively denies an individual(s) equal access to the College’s education program or activity.

Sexual harassment may be repeated acts or be a single act that is sufficiently severe to have a systemic effect of denying a Complainant equal access to an education program or activity.

Elements of severity, pervasiveness, and objective offensiveness must be evaluated in light of the known circumstances and depend on the facts of each situation and must be determined from the perspective of a reasonable person standing in the shoes of the Complainant.

Sexual Assault

Defined as any sexual act directed against another person, without the consent of the victim, including instances where the victim is incapable of giving consent. This includes:

  • Rape: The carnal knowledge of a person, without consent.
  • Sodomy: Oral or anal sexual intercourse with another person, without consent.
  • Sexual Assault with an Object: To use an object or instrument to unlawfully penetrate, however slightly, the genital or anal openings of the body of another person without consent.
  • Fondling: The touching of the private body parts of another person for the purpose of sexual gratification, without consent.
  • Incest: Sexual intercourse between persons who are related to each other within the degrees wherein marriage is prohibited by law.
  • Statutory Rape: Sexual intercourse with a person who is under the statutory age of consent. In Michigan, the age of consent is 16.

Sexual assault does not require a showing of severity, pervasiveness, or objective offensiveness.

Dating Violence
Defined as violence committed by an individual who is or has been in a social relationship of a romantic or intimate nature with another individual. The existence of such a relationship will be determined based on the reporting individual’s statement and with consideration of the length of the relationship, the type of relationship, and the frequency of interaction between the individuals involved in the relationship. This includes, but is not limited to, sexual or physical abuse or the threat of such abuse. Dating violence does not cover acts covered under the definition of domestic violence. Dating violence does not require a showing of severity, pervasiveness, or objective offensiveness.
Domestic Violence

Defined as felony or misdemeanor crimes of violence committed by a current or former spouse or intimate partner of the victim, by a person with whom the victim shares a child in common, by a person who is cohabitating with or has cohabitated with the victim as a spouse or intimate partner, by a person similarly situated to a spouse of the victim under the domestic or family violence laws of the jurisdiction receiving grant monies, or 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 laws of the State of Michigan.

Domestic violence does not require a showing of severity, pervasiveness, or objective offensiveness.


Defined as engaging in a course of conduct directed at a specific individual that would cause a reasonable person to: (a) fear for the individual’s safety or the safety of others; or (b) suffer substantial emotional distress.

Course of Conduct means two or more acts, including 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 an individual, or interferes with an individual’s property.

Stalking does not require a showing of severity, pervasiveness, or objective offensiveness.

Lake Michigan College recognizes that all survivors of sexual assault, stalking, dating and domestic violence have the right to have any and all assaults against them treated seriously and the right to be treated with dignity. Lake Michigan College prohibits any offenses of sexual assault, stalking, dating or domestic violence.

The College further recognizes the right of a sexual assault, stalking, dating or domestic violence victim to be free from undue coercion of any kind from the institution’s personnel for the victim not to report an assault committed against him or her to civil or criminal authorities or the institution’s law enforcement authorities or disciplinary officials, or for the victim to report a sexual assault, stalking, dating or domestic violence as a lesser offense than the victim perceives it to be.   

The College recognizes the right of a sexual assault, stalking, dating or domestic violence victim to decide, without pressure or coercion, what action he/she will take following an assault. The College encourages students to report all crimes to the police and to pursue sanctions against offenders through the College judicial process. The College makes information available to students about sexual assault, stalking, dating and domestic violence victim rights, options, and resources for help.  

Lake Michigan College recognizes that sexual assault, stalking, dating and domestic violence are a serious social problem that occurs among college students just as it does within other segments of our society. The college makes a strong commitment to work toward preventing sexual assault, stalking, dating, and domestic violence within our community, to provide support and assistance to assault survivors, and to impose sanctions on those who have been found guilty of committing a sexual assault, stalking, dating and domestic violence.  

Our goal is to foster and protect within an environment of mutual respect and concern and to provide a safe community in which learning and growth can occur.


The College will offer and implement appropriate and reasonable supportive measures to the parties upon notice of alleged sexual harassment and/or retaliation. At the time the supportive measures are offered, the College will inform the Complainant, in writing, that they may file a formal complaint with the College either at that time or in the future, if they have not done so already.

Supportive measures are non-disciplinary, non-punitive individualized services offered as appropriate, as reasonably available, and without fee or charge to the parties, before or after the filing of a formal complaint or where no formal complaint has been filed, to restore or preserve access to College educational programs or activities, including measures designed to protect the safety of all parties or the College’s educational environment, and/or deter sexual harassment and/or retaliation.

The Title IX Coordinator works with each party to ensure that their wishes are taken into account with respect to the supportive measures that are planned and implemented.

The College will implement measures in a way that does not unreasonably burden the other party. These actions may include, but are not limited to:

  • Referral to counseling, medical, and/or other healthcare services
  • Referral to the Employee Assistance Program
  • Referral to community-based service providers
  • Student financial aid counseling
  • Altering campus housing assignment
  • Altering work arrangements for employees or student- employees
  • Safety planning
  • Providing campus safety escorts
  • Providing transportation accommodations
  • Implementing contact limitations (no contact orders) between the parties
  • Academic support, extensions of deadlines, or other course/program-related adjustments
  • Issuing a No Trespass notice
  • Class modifications, withdrawals, or leaves of absence
  • Increasing security and monitoring of certain areas of the campus

The College will maintain as confidential any supportive measures provided to the Complainant or Respondent to the extent that maintaining such confidentiality would not impair the ability of the College to provide the supportive measure. All individuals are encouraged to report concerns about the failure of another to abide by any restrictions imposed by supportive measures. The College will take immediate action to enforce a previously implemented measure and disciplinary sanctions can be imposed for failing to abide by the College-imposed measures.

The Title IX Coordinator is responsible for coordinating the effective implementation of supportive measures.

Complaints of sexual harassment and/or retaliation may be made using any of the following options:

  • File a complaint with, or give verbal notice to, the Title IX Coordinator. A report may be made at any time (including non-business hours) using the telephone number, email address or by mail to the office address listed for the Title IX Coordinator.
  • Report online, using the reporting form

Anonymous reports are accepted; however, anonymous reports limit the ability of the College to provide the complainant supportive measures.

Any student, employee or third party who believes that they have been subject to discrimination and/or harassment, as defined above, or state and federal law, may file a complaint with a Title IX Coordinator. 

The College will take reasonable steps to ensure that any reporting forms, information, or training about sexual discrimination/harassment will be provided in a manner accessible to students or employees who are English language learners. 

A complaint may be filed against the College, against an employee of the College, against a student of the College, against a third party, or against a group. 

A complaint may be filed against more than one Respondent or by more than one Complainant against one or more Respondents so long as the allegations of sexual harassment arise out of the same facts or circumstances and are so intertwined that the allegations directly relate to all of the parties. 

Any Complainant who believes that they have been subject to sexual harassment may also file a complaint with local law enforcement. 

Upon receipt of a formal complaint, the Title IX Coordinator will then conduct an initial assessment for the sole purpose of determining whether the alleged conduct, if substantiated, would constitute sexual harassment under this policy. Following the initial assessment, the Title IX Coordinator may take any of the following steps: 

  • If the allegations forming the basis of the formal complaint would, if substantiated, constitute sexual harassment as defined in this policy, the Title IX Coordinator will implement appropriate supportive measures. In addition, the Title IX Coordinator will initiate an investigation of the allegations. However, if the Title IX Coordinator thinks the formal complaint appropriate for the informal resolution process, upon the consent of both parties, the Title IX Coordinator may instead refer the matter to the informal resolution process. 
  • If the allegations forming the basis of the formal complaint would not, if substantiated, constitute sexual harassment as defined in this policy, the Title IX Coordinator will dismiss the complaint as a Title IX Complaint. The Title IX Coordinator may also refer the allegations for resolution under other policies. 

In addition, at any time prior to the hearing, the College may dismiss a formal complaint if: 

  • The Respondent is no longer enrolled or employed at the College. 
  • Specific circumstances prevent the College from gathering sufficient evidence to reach a determination as to the formal complaint or the allegations therein. 

Upon dismissal, the Title IX Coordinator will promptly send written notice of the dismissal and reason(s) therefor simultaneously to the parties via electronic format. Both parties will have equal right to appeal the dismissal.

The Title IX Coordinator will assign trained Investigator(s) to investigate the complaint. Lake Michigan College Policy The investigation will include interviewing the Complainant, the Respondent, and any witnesses identified. Both the Complainant and the Respondent are entitled to identify witnesses, including expert witnesses, to be interviewed in the investigation. 

The investigation will also include reviewing any appropriate documentation and/or policies, reviewing law enforcement investigation documents, if applicable, reviewing student and/or personnel files, and gathering and examining other relevant documents or evidence, and any other action(s) the Investigator deems necessary to completing the investigation. 

The Complainant and the Respondent have the right to have an Advisor present during any interview(s) or other meetings associated with the Grievance Process. The Advisor may not participate in the interview process and must remain silent during this phase of the Grievance Process. 

Prior to commencing the investigation the Investigator(s) must disclose any conflict of interest between him/herself and either party, and in the event of any conflict, a qualified and trained unbiased replacement will be appointed. A party objecting to the Investigator on the basis of a conflict of interest must raise the objection during this phase of the Grievance Process; otherwise, the objection is deemed waived. 

Notices of interviews or meetings sent to parties and witness will include the date, time, location, participants and purpose of the interview or meeting. The notice must be provided sufficiently in advance to allow the party or witness to prepare. 
Investigators will not access, consider, disclose or otherwise use a party’s records that are maintained by a physician, psychiatrist, psychologist of other recognized professional or paraprofessional acting in professional capacity and are made/maintained in that capacity without voluntary written consent. Consent for a minor under FERPA is required from a parent. 

The Investigator will document in writing his/her findings and determination in an Investigation Report. Ten days before the Investigation Report is completed, the Investigator will provide access to all evidence directly related to the allegations to the Parties and the Advisor, if any. Parties may provide a written response to the evidence no later than 10 days after being provided access. Within 20 days after parties are provided access to evidence the Investigator will issue the Investigatory Report which will summarize the Investigatory process, the facts gathered during the investigation, and any response to the facts provided by a party as well as state the Investigator’s finding of facts. 

If the College learns of discrimination/harassment in the absence of a direct complaint being filed by the student, such as from a member of the local community, social networking sites, or the media, the College will investigate or otherwise determine what Lake Michigan College Policy occurred. 

If an investigation reveals that sexual violence created a hostile environment, the College will take prompt and effective steps reasonably calculated to end the sexual violence, eliminate the hostile environment, prevent its recurrence, and, as appropriate, remedy its effects. Hearing Prior to commencing the Grievance Hearing process the Hearing

Sanctions will be imposed upon a finding that a student or employee has violated this policy. A student or employee who fails to complete the sanction will be considered to have committed another violation of this policy. Violations involving impairment from the voluntary use of alcohol and/or use of drugs (other than medically necessary) will be considered an aggravating, and not a mitigating, factor in sanctioning. All sanctions become part of a student's file or employee's personnel file. The College may withhold awarding a degree or any other academic achievement, otherwise earned, until the completion of the process set forth in this policy, including appeals and the completion of any and all sanctions imposed. 
Potential sanctions for students found by the College to have violated this policy may include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Account Hold 
  • Disciplinary Probation 
  • Educational Assignment 
  • Expulsion 
  • No Contact 
  • Restitution 
  • Restricted Access Lake Michigan College Policy 
  • Suspension 
  • Written Warning 

Potential sanctions for employees found by the College to have violated this policy may include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Corrective Plan of Action 
  • Discharge 
  • No Contact 
  • Suspension 
  • Training 
  • Verbal Warning 
  • Written Warning 

Potential sanctions for third-parties found by the College to have violated this policy may include, but are not limited to: 

  • Loss of Privileges 
  • Termination of Business Relationship 

Should a student decide not to participate in the resolution process, the process proceeds absent their participation to a reasonable resolution. Should a student Respondent permanently withdraw from the College, the resolution process ends, as the College no longer has disciplinary jurisdiction over the withdrawn student. The student who withdraws or leaves while the process is pending may not return to the College; a hold will be placed on their student account, and the student may be barred from College property and/or events. The College will, however, continue to address and remedy any systemic issues that may have contributed to the alleged violation(s) and any ongoing effects on the alleged sexual harassment and/or retaliation. 
Should an employee Respondent resign with unresolved allegations pending, the resolution process ends. The College will, however, continue to address and remedy any systemic issues that may have contributed to the alleged violation(s) and any ongoing effects on the alleged sexual harassment and/or retaliation. 

An employee who resigns with unresolved allegations pending is not eligible for rehire by the College and the records retained by the Title IX Coordinator will reflect that status. All College responses to future inquiries regarding employment references for that individual will include that the former employee resigned during a pending disciplinary matter.


Title IX Coordinator269-927-8752
Director of Public Safety269-927-7060


National Domestic Violence Hot Line800-799-SAFE
Child & Family Services of Southwestern Michigan269-925-1726
Safe Shelter888-237-1891
Domestic Violence Coalition888-655-9008
MI Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Violence517-347-7000 
Spectrum Regional Health System 269-927-5350 

Counseling Information

Andrews Community Counseling Center269-471-6238
Providing free psychological services under the supervision of licensed psychologists. Mental health services to children, adolescents, and adults who reside in the Michigan area, or who are members of the community near the university. Office is located in
Berrien Springs.

Centered on Wellness269-926-6199
Offering behavioral counseling, coaching, consulting, education and prevention for children, families, couples, and adults. Offices are located in Benton Harbor and Niles.

Freedom Counseling Center269-982-7200
Freedom Counseling Center provides high-quality counseling and psychological evaluations to individuals, parents, couples, adolescents and children.

Riverwood Center800-336-0341 (24-hour hotline)
Riverwood partners with children, families and adults in their journey toward recovering from behavioral health and substance use challenges, and helps individuals with intellectual disabilities succeed in community living. Offices located in Benton Harbor.

Southwestern Medical Clinic Christian Counseling and Psychological Services269-429-7727
Counseling services for treating abuse and trauma, addictions and co-occurring disorders, anxiety, depression, AHHD, eating disorders, coping with loss and grief and behavioral services for children and adolescents. Offices located in Berrien Springs, St. Joseph, Stevensville, Coloma, and Niles.

HelpNet - Employee Assistance Program
The college’s Employee Assistance Program, available to all full and part-time employees, is administered through HelpNet. Information can be found in the Human Resources offices or on SharePoint under the staff and faculty benefit links. 

All Personal Protection Order questions can be addressed to the Clerk’s Office at the Courthouse

Berrien County Clerk’s Office
811 Port Street, St. Joseph
Phone: (269) 983-7111, extension 8736
Fax: (269) 982-8642  

A personal protection action involves seeking an order from the court to protect you from harassment, assault, beating, molesting, wounding, or stalking by another person.  The order can also prohibit a person from entering your premises and from removing minor children, unless the removal is part of court-ordered parenting time.  The person filing the petition for personal protection is called the petitioner.  The person to be restrained by the personal protection order is called the respondent.  

Types of Personal Protection Actions  

There are two types of personal protection actions: domestic and nondomestic. A domestic personal protection order can be obtained if you have or had an established relationship with the other party or have a child in common. A nondomestic personal protection order can be obtained if you want to prevent threatening or violent behavior by someone with whom you have not had any form of domestic relationship; this type of order is also referred to as an order against stalking.  

How Personal Protection Orders are issued  

There are two ways personal protection orders can be issued. The court can issue an order after the other person has been notified that you have filed for a personal protection order and after the court has held a hearing. The court may also issue a personal protection order without notifying the other person and without a hearing.  This is called an ex parte order. In Michigan, most personal protection orders are issued ex parte.

The following programs are the most recent that were open to persons on campus; faculty, staff and students.

Program Name Description  Target Audience Topic Annual Frequency
Safety and Security Update Explaining Emergency Procedures Faculty and Staff Safety Awareness 1
Right-to-Understand New Hazard Communication Shared Faculty and Staff Safety Protection 2
Maxient’s Conduct Manager System Detail on reporting incidents Faculty and Staff How to Use 2
De-Escalation Assertive communication skills Faculty and Staff Warning signs 1
Mental Health Disorder Understanding the symptoms Faculty and Staff Awareness and warning signs 1
Rave Alert Details on how to update personal information to receive news Students, Faculty and Staff  Drills 27
Lockdown Drills Practice following protocols Students, Faculty and Staff Safety during an emergency 2
Student Orientations Safety and security issues Students Student Life 23
Active Shooter Response Training How to react and protect yourself & others Faculty and Staff Safety Awareness 2
Campus Security Authority Film and review responsibilities CSAs Responsibilities 3
VAWA/Campus SaVE Act Overview and Question and Answer session Faculty and Staff Awareness 1
Dating Abuse: How to Recognize a Healthy Partnership Raise Awareness Faculty, Staff and Students Awareness and warning signs 1
Healthy Relationships Raise awareness RAs Responsibilities 1
Victim Advocate and Prevention Educator Awareness and warning signs to abuse Faculty, Staff and Students Safety Awareness 1
Addiction Alcoholism is the illness Faculty, Staff and Students Awareness 1
Self Defense Techniques Faculty, Staff and Students Awareness 1
Addiction Drug Use Faculty, Staff and Students Awareness 1
Title IX Know your Title IX rights (right to make a report) Students  Awareness/ 
Clery Act Disclosure of timely & annual information about campus crime and security policies Students Awareness 23


The following preventive measures will help minimize your chances of being attacked: 

  • Accept the fact that you are a potential assault victim.  Many people operate under the illusion that “it will never happen to me.”  It may. 

  • Above all else…trust your instincts.  If you feel uncomfortable or uneasy, leave immediately. 

  • When you go out, tell someone where you are going and when you will return.
  • Always lock your house/apartment door and don’t lend the key. Keys can be duplicated.
  • Don’t walk alone a night. Take a friend with you.
  • Stay in well-lit areas.
  • Photocopy all important papers that you carry in your purse or wallet, including your driver’s license. Keep the photocopies in a safe place. This information will be invaluable if you lose your license or cards.
  • Be alert. Look around you. Be aware of others on the street. Make it difficult for anyone to take you by surprise. Walk with your keys in hand.
  • If you think someone is following you, turn around and check so that you are not caught off guard. Cross the street or change direction. Walk or run toward people, traffic, or lights. Consider confronting the aggressor and saying in a loud, firm voice, “Don’t follow me.”
  • If a car follows you or stops near you for directions, do not approach the car. Change directions if you feel threatened and walk or run towards stores, a lighted house, or other people.
  • Park in well-lit areas. Check the street before leaving the car. Park in full view of the front of stores and houses.
  • Walk to your car with keys ready.
  • As you approach your car, look all around it, including underneath the car.
  • If you have a flat tire, seek help inside the College, or from a nearby business if off-campus. Beware of someone instantly appearing to offer help—attackers often disable cars to make their owners vulnerable.
  • Check the interior of your car, particularly the back seat before entering; someone could be hiding there.
  • Keep the car doors locked at all times, even when driving in daylight, so no one can jump in at a red light.
  • Keep enough gas in your tank for emergencies.
  • If you are followed by another car, drive to a police station or business that has lights on and people in it. You may not want to go directly home with someone following you. “Driveway” robberies are becoming more common.
  • If your car breaks down, lift the hood, put on the flashers, and wait inside with the doors locked for help. Ask people who stop to call the police or AAA for you. Don’t go with anyone.
  • Don’t stop for stranded motorists. You are of greater help to them by calling the police or sheriff.
  • Try to jog with a partner. Try to avoid running alone, even in daylight. You could become injured from a fall and might need help.
  • Stay in well-lit areas. Vary your route. Be suspicious of people you pass many times.
  • Stay away from parked cars, especially those occupied by suspicious persons.

Sexual assault can happen virtually anywhere, but the largest single grouping of reported incidents is either in the home of the victim or the home of the offender.  It is important to be aware of all potentially hazardous areas: 

  • Remote parking lots 

  • On the street 

  • Stairwells 

  • Shopping centers 

  • Public parks 

  • Hitchhiking 

  • Beaches at night 

  • Laundromats 

  • Jogging courses 

  • Deserted buildings 

  • School playgrounds 

  • Vehicles 

Sexual assaults often occur in conjunction with other crimes such as burglary, so the more effective preventative measures and common-sense precautions you take, the less your chances of becoming a victim.  But regardless of how many or how few precautions you take, you are not provoking the attack.  A locked door gives you time to call the police (911). 

Lake Michigan College encourages all students to participate in maintaining a safe environment on campus.  The power of bystanders, those that witness inappropriate behavior, is a powerful tool to help reduce all types of misconduct on campus.  Bystander intervention techniques are safe and positive options that may be carried out by an individual or individuals to prevent harm or intervene, especially when there is a risk of dating violence, domestic violence, sexual assault, or stalking.  Bystander intervention includes recognizing situations of potential harm, understanding institutional structures and cultural conditions that facilitate violence, overcoming barriers to intervening, identifying safe and effective intervention options, and taking action to intervene.  Bystander intervention includes but is not limited to: 

  • Making a report to Campus Safety and Security or local law enforcement when you observe inappropriate behavior. 

  • Ask if you can help if you see someone that looks like they are in trouble. 

  • Be respectful of yourself and others around you; ask others to be respectful when they are not. 

  • Stop someone from driving if they are impaired. 

  • If you see a friend or acquaintance doing something inappropriate, say something. 

  • Speak up if you see or hear offensive, derogatory, or abusive remarks or actions. 

  • If a friend is impaired, offer to assist them in getting home and don’t let them go off with people they do not know. 

In accordance with the “Campus Sex Crimes Prevention Act” of 2000, which amends the Jacob Wetterling Crimes Against Children and Sexually Violent Offender Registration Act, the Jeanne Clery Act and the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974, Lake Michigan College is providing a link to the Michigan State Police Sex Offender Registry.  This act requires institutions of higher education to issue a statement advising the campus community where law enforcement information provided by a State concerning registered sex offenders may be obtained.  It also requires sex offenders already required to register in a State to provide notice of each institution of higher education in that State at which the person is employed, carries a vocation, or is a student. In the State of Michigan, convicted sex offenders must register with Sex Offender and Crimes Against Minors Registry maintained by the State police. 

The Sex Offenders Registration Act, MCL 28.721 et seq., directs the Michigan State Police to develop and maintain a public registry and provides guidelines on the type of offender information available to the public.  The registration requirements of the Sex Offenders Registration Act are intended to provide the people of this state with an appropriate, comprehensive, and effective means to monitor those persons who pose such a potential danger. 

In accordance with the Wetterling Act, Megan’s Law and the Campus Sex Crimes Prevention Act of 2000, it is now mandatory that all registered sex offenders report to the law enforcement agency having jurisdiction in which the institution of higher learning is located.  The Michigan Public Sex Offenders Registry can be accessed online (opens in a new window).

LMC is committed to the prevention of sexual misconduct and harassment through education and awareness programs. Throughout the year, LMC offers educational programs to promote awareness of sexual misconduct and harassment, Prevention programs include an overview of LMC’s policies and procedures, relevant definitions, including prohibited conduct, discussion of the impact of alcohol and drug use, effective consent, bystander intervention, and information about risk reduction. LMC’s Title IX Coordinators oversees the education and prevention calendar and tailors programming to campus needs and climate. All educational programs include a review of resources and reporting options available for students, faculty, and staff.

The College encourages victims of sexual assault to take the following steps following an assault:  

  1. Preserve physical evidence.
    The sexual assault, stalking, dating and domestic violence victim has the right for full and prompt cooperation from College personnel and law enforcement authorities in obtaining, securing, and maintaining evidence that may be necessary to the proof of criminal sexual assault, stalking, dating or domestic violence in legal proceedings, including, but not limited to, a medical examination of the victim.

    A special physical examination performed at the hospital collects evidence that will be helpful if the victim later decides to prosecute the assailant. To preserve evidence, the victim should not wash, brush teeth, use the toilet, douche, destroy clothing, or straighten up the area where the assault occurred.

  2. Report the assault to the police at (269) 926-8221 or dial 911. 
    It is the victim’s decision whether or not to report the assault to the police. Reporting a sexual assault, stalking, dating or domestic violence to the police may protect the victim and others from possible future victimization by helping public safety officers apprehend the assailant. A police report also maintains the victim’s future option of criminal prosecution, and helps support a College disciplinary action or a civil lawsuit against the perpetrator. Making a police report does not obligate the victim to prosecute the assailant. Whether or not the case will be prosecuted is a decision that is made later, based on a number of factors. The police do not reveal the victim’s or the suspect’s name or any identifying information to the media for printing or to the general public.  If the victim chooses campus security authorities will assist in notifying law enforcement.
  3. Get medical attention.
    The rape evidence exam should be performed as soon as possible. The exam is available only at Lakeland Regional Health System.

    If the victim decides not to have the rape evidence exam, she/he should still be examined for possible injury, pregnancy, and sexually transmitted infections. An exam for these purposes is available at Planned Parenthood, or with a physician of choice.

    Injuries as a result of sexual assault, stalking, dating or domestic violence should be treated and photographed as soon as possible.

  4. Ask for information, support and assistance.
    To ensure that victims of sexual assault, stalking, dating and domestic assault have accurate and complete information about their rights, options, and available resources for help, as well as any assistance they need in carrying out decisions about what to do following an assault, the victim may wish to call the 24-hour crisis line at 269-925-9500. Child & Family Services of Southwestern Michigan provides information and support by phone or on-site at the hospital or police stations. The assault victim has the right to be made aware of, and assisted in exercising, any option provided under state and federal law regarding mandatory testing of sexual assault suspects for communicable diseases and notification to the victim of the results of the testing. The victim also has the right to be informed of rights and remedies accorded to crime victims generally.
  5. Report the assault to the Title IX Coordinator. 
    Sexual assault, stalking, dating and domestic violence are expressly prohibited by the College’s rules and regulations. The College has the right to discipline students who violate these rules and regulations. It is not necessary for the victim to file a police report in order to pursue sanctions through the College; however, it is strongly recommended as beneficial to the victim. Pursuing sanctions through the College does not preclude the victim from also pursuing criminal prosecution or a civil lawsuit.

    The victim has the right after the assault has been reported to appropriate campus authorities to require the institution’s personnel to take any reasonable feasible actions as are needed to prevent any unnecessary or unwanted contact or proximity with an alleged assailant, including, but not limited to, the issuance of an No Contact Order, to classroom adjustments/arrangements, providing an escort, moving he individual’s residence, adjusting the individual’s work schedule, allowing the individual to withdraw from or retake a class without penalty, providing access to tutoring or other academic support, to interim suspensions of the alleged perpetrator if necessary.

    The College’s judicial process is initiated by the victim making a report. A detailed description of the process is included in the student handbook, copies of which are available at many locations on campus as well as the college webpage.

    Evidentiary Standard: Preponderance of the Evidence.  

An employee or student may be accountable for sexual misconduct under applicable local, state, and/or federal law, as well as under LMC policy. A criminal investigation may be conducted concurrently with the Title IX investigation. Disciplinary action by LMC may proceed while criminal proceedings are pending and will not be subject to challenge on the grounds that criminal charges involving the same incident have been dismissed or reduced.  

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