Definitions

The State University of New York at Potsdam has programs in place to protect all members of the SUNY Potsdam community from sexual assault, sex discrimination, sexual harassment, and sexual violence including programs for prevention and prosecution of these crimes that occur within the jurisdiction of SUNY Potsdam University Police. 

Harassment on the Basis of Protected Characteristic(s) Other Than Sex/Gender

Harassment on the basis of protected characteristic(s) other than sex/gender is harassment based on race, color, age, religion, national origin, disability, sexual orientation, or other protected characteristics that is sufficiently severe, pervasive, or persistent so as to interfere with or limit the ability of an individual to participate in or benefit from the educational institution’s programs or activities. 

Preponderance of the Evidence

Preponderance of the evidence is the standard of proof in sexual harassment and sexual assault cases, which asks whether it is “more likely than not” that the sexual harassment or sexual violence occurred. If the evidence presented meets this standard, then the accused should be found responsible.

Sexual Assault

Sexual assault is any physical sexual act or acts committed against a person’s will and consent or when a person is incapable of giving active consent, incapable of appraising the nature of the conduct, or incapable of declining participation in, or communicating unwillingness to engage in, a sexual act or acts. Sexual assault is an extreme form of sexual harassment. Sexual assault includes what is commonly known as “rape,” whether forcible or non-forcible, “date rape” and “acquaintance rape.” Nothing contained in this definition shall be construed to limit or conflict with the sex offenses enumerated in Article 130 of the New York State Penal Law, which shall be the guiding reference in determining if alleged conduct is consistent with the definition of sexual assault.

Sex Discrimination

Sex discrimination is any behaviors and actions that deny or limit a person’s ability to benefit from, and/or fully participate in the educational programs or activities or employment opportunities because of a person’s sex. This includes, but is not limited to, sexual harassment, sexual assault, sexual violence by employees, students, or third parties.  Sex discrimination should be reported to: Susan A. Stebbins,Title IX Coordinator/Affirmative Action Officer, (315) 267-3372, or at stebbisa@potsdam.edu.

Sexual Harassment in the Educational Setting

Sexual harassment in the educational setting is any unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature.
Sexual harassment can include unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal, nonverbal, or physical conduct of a sexual nature. Sexual harassment of a student denies or limits, on the basis of sex, the student’s ability to participate in or to receive benefits, services, or opportunities in the educational institution’s program.

Sexual Harassment in the Employment Setting

Sexual harassment in the employment setting is any unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, or verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature when any of the following occurs:

  • Submission to such conduct is made a term or condition of an individual’s continued employment, promotion, or other condition of employment.
  • Submission to or rejection of such conduct is used as a basis for employment decisions affecting an employee or job applicant.
  • Such conduct is intended to interfere, or results in interference, with an employee’s work performance or creates an intimidating, hostile, or offensive work environment.

Sexual Violence

Sexual violence is any physical sexual acts perpetrated against a person’s will or where a person is incapable of giving consent.