Northern Virginia Community College
Victims’ Rights Provisions – 2014
Sexual misconduct is not tolerated at Northern Virginia Community College. Reports of sexual assault, dating/domestic violence, or stalking are taken seriously. It is important to NOVA that victims (complainants) are informed, protected, and respected. The complete Northern Virginia Community College Sexual Misconduct Policy is available online at www.nvcc.edu. More information about the College’s responsibilities under Title IX to address complaints of sexual violence can be found online.
The following rights are afforded to any NOVA student, staff, or faculty member who experiences such an incident. It is NOVA’s hope that these rights will provide you with adequate information from which to choose your options.
- CONFIDENTIALITY. Above all, confidentiality of victims must be protected. Identifying information of a victim will be protected as much as possible. This means that a victim’s name will not be published or otherwise publicized without her/his permission. When a person makes an official complaint to authorities, all possible protections will be afforded this individual, whether or not she/he participates in any investigation. When the College needs to act to protect the safety of others, absolute confidentiality may not be possible. For absolute confidentiality, contact NOVA Sexual Assault Services (see below for contact information).
TIMELY WARNINGS. Any timely warning that is broadcast through NOVA websites or emails for the safety of our community will not identify a victim by name.
- REPORTING OPTIONS. It is your choice whether or not you decide to report your victimization. At NOVA, there are several offices to report an incident if you choose to do so. See list below.College Police – 703-764-5000To report the incident and begin a criminal investigation
Local Police Department – 911
To report the incident and begin a criminal investigation with minimal college involvement
Campus Dean of Students – Contact the Dean Of Students at your own campus or center
To report the incident and begin a Student Code of Conduct investigation
Human Resources – 703-323-3110
To report the incident and begin a staff or faculty investigation
Sexual Assault Services – firstname.lastname@example.org or 703.338.0834 24 hour availability
***To access confidential support, advocacy and intervention for those affected by these issues
Title IX Coordinator – Mr. Therman Coles – 703-323-3266
To report the incident and begin an administrative Title IX investigation
- NO CONTACT or PROTECTIVE ORDERS. The College will honor any protective order that you may have acquired through the local courts. Please bring a copy of such a court order to the College Police for their information and enforcement. In addition, a NOVA administrative no contact order may be created by the Dean of Students or Title IX Coordinator once the incident is reported to that office.
- PRESERVING PHYSICAL EVIDENCE. If you are considering a criminal prosecution, it is extremely important to preserve all evidence of an assault. If you go to a hospital as a result of a penetrating sexual assault, you are entitled to a free evidence collection examination called a SANE exam. SANE stands for Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner. In Northern Virginia, the preferred hospital for such an exam is INOVA Fairfax, where they have specially trained nurses on call 24 hours a day for such purposes. INOVA Fairfax Hospital provides care to sexual assault victims no matter where in Northern Virginia the crime occurred. The nurse will collect the evidence and ask the police in the jurisdiction where the crime occurred to pick it up and store it for at least six months. The evidence will be in a box marked only with a number, not your name. You are not required to make an official police report for this evidence to be collected. If you later decide to make such a report, the hospital will give your name to the police and the evidence kit will be tested for possible use in a court case. For more information about how to preserve evidence, contact NOVA Police at 703.764.5000 or NOVA Sexual Assault Services at 703.338.0834.
- STUDENT CONDUCT PROCESS. If you are a student and your perpetrator was also a student, then you may choose to report the incident (as the complainant) to your Dean of Students to begin a conduct process. This is not a court trial; you may or may not choose to contact the police to use this process. A hearing will be held on campus to determine whether the perpetrator is responsible for the act that you have reported. Sanctions for this process are confined to the College only and range from probation to expulsion, depending on the severity of the incident. For more details, see the current NOVA Code of Student Conduct within the NOVA Student Handbook, accessed online or in hardback copy.
- HUMAN RESOURCES PROCESS. If you are an employee, then you may choose to report the incident to NOVA Human Resources, specifically to the Director of Human Resources, Employee Relations Specialist or the designated HR Campus Consultant. Additionally, you may also choose to contact College Police to use this process or to begin a criminal investigation.
- REQUESTS FOR CHANGES. You may request a change in academic setting (class or campus) or work assignment in order to be more clearly separated from the accused perpetrator. Such a request will be granted to the greatest extent possible. These requests should be made to the Campus Dean of Students or Title IX Coordinator (if you are a student) or the Director of Human Resources or Title IX Coordinator (if you are an employee). Requested changes will be made as soon as alternative arrangements can reasonably be made and regardless of whether you choose to pursue an investigation into your incident..
- FAIR AND IMPARTIAL INVESTIGATION AND RESOLUTION. You can expect a fair and just process as your complaint is handled, either through the Dean of Students, Human Resources, or Title IX Coordinator. You can obtain more information about these processes by accessing the Student Handbook, Faculty Handbook or Classified Staff Handbook, which can all be found online at www.nvcc.edu.
- RETALIATION CONCERNS. Threats, intimidation, and any form of retaliation for bringing a complaint of sexual misconduct are prohibited by the Sexual Misconduct Policy as well as Federal law and may be grounds for disciplinary action. If any retaliation occurs, it is important to contact either the Campus Dean of Students, the College Police, the Title IX Coordinator, and/or Human Resources.
- COMMUNITY RESOURCES. Since NOVA does not offer mental health counseling to students or employees, it is important to be aware of community resources that are both free and confidential. All offer 24 hour services. It is best to choose the service listed below that is closest either to your home or your campus. Every student or employee can use NOVA SAS, however, no matter where you live, work, or study.
NOVA CC- Sexual Assault Services (SAS)– email@example.com or 703.338.0834
ALEXANDRIA – Sexual Assault Center – 703.683.7273
FAIRFAX COUNTY – Domestic and Sexual Violence Services (DSVS) – 703.360.7273
PRINCE WILLIAM COUNTY – Sexual Assault Victims’ Advocacy Services (SAVAS) – 703.368.4141
LOUDOUN COUNTY – Abused Women’s Shelter (LAWS) – 703.777.6652
In an emergency, call 911. Consider reporting any of these crimes to the police.
NOVA Police can be reached at 703.764.5000.
Announcing a new addition to our team!
Please help us welcome Ms. Negar Ehsani to the NOVACares Team. Ms. Ehsani has accepted the Sexual Assault Services (SAS) Coordinator position. Negar has a Master’s of Social Work from George Mason University. She has experience from her position as Sexual Assault Outreach Specialist at the Fairfax County Office for Women and Domestic Sexual Violence Services. Negar comes to us with extensive community resource information for accessing community resources and programs in the NOVA area. Negar is bilingual (English and Farsi).
Negar, we are so happy that you have chosen to join the NOVACares team!
The Office of Student Mental Health and Behavior (AKA: NOVACares) is growing again. We welcome our new intern, Ms. Shayla Harris to our team. Shayla will be spending the spring semester with us. Shayla is a Criminology Major at George Mason University.
Janine Latus: I Didn’t Save Amy – High Definition Version (click here to view)
Published on Aug 21, 2013
Janine Latus, author ‘If I Am Missing or Dead: a sister’s story of love, murder and liberation,’ talks about why she speaks out for victims of domestic violence.
If you are interested in having Janine Latus come speak to your organization or to help raise funds for your shelter or social service program, send her an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org. To see testimonials from those who have heard her speak, visithttp://www.janinelatus.com/speaker/te…
Keep Yourself Safe at NOVA NOVA campuses are very safe, but our record of safety doesn’t mean it is not important to take steps to protect yourself at all times. There is an assault in this country every minute, and several serious crimes have occurred on or near NOVA campuses.
The most important thing you can do to protect yourself is to be aware of your surroundings at all times. Do not walk around texting or wearing earbuds while listening to music. Predators prey on inattentive people who are easily surprised. The risk is not only from predators. There are numerous cases of people texting or wearing earbuds and falling or stepping into traffic.
Here are some other tips:
- Avoid walking in isolated areas on campus and, when possible, walk with a group of people. If you’d like an escort to your vehicle or need a jump start, call college police dispatch. An officer will be sent to your location.
- If possible, park at night in lighted areas of nearby parking lots.
- If you encounter someone in a hallway or on campus, present a confident image. Do not slouch or look way. Rather, keep walking and look the person in the eye as you pass.
- Walk to your vehicle with your keys in your hand.
- Check the interior of your vehicle before entering it.
- If confronted by an assailant, do not fight unless your life is in jeopardy. No property is worth your personal injury.
- Keep your valuables such as computers, cell phones and textbooks under your direct control at all times. Leaving them unattended invites theft.
- Do not carry large amounts of cash, and keep your cash, ID and credit cards in your pocket.
- Learn the locations of call boxes on campus and how to use them.
- Be familiar with panic dialers in classrooms and in offices.
- In the event of an active shooter, evacuate if possible and do not carry your backpacks, handbags or any parcels which arriving police could suspect of hiding a weapon. If you must shelter in place, remain quiet and be prepared to fight for your life.
- Get a good description of any assailant (gender, race, height, weight, hair color, accent, odor, clothing, tattoos, etc.) and report same immediately to police.
- If you see something that concerns you or seems out of place, call the college police. Do not attempt to intervene directly.
- Sign up for NOVA Alert to be informed of campus safety and security issues.
- Program NOVA Police Dispatch into your cell phone. You may reach us 24/7 at 703-764-5000.
- Remember to stay alert at all times. If you have safety or security concerns, report them to your campus police or call Dispatch. Working together, we can make NOVA even safer!
September is CAMPUS SAFETY Month!
Help keep our campus safe! If You See Something, Say Something! Report it using NOVACares! www.nvcc.edu/novacares
- All training will be held from 12 pm-1 pm.
Make the Pact to End Sexual Assault – Together we can make a difference!
1. I am aware that sexual assault can happen to anyone at any time.
2. I believe we can end sexual assault through education.
3. I will always be sure of genuine consent before any sexual activity.
4. I will take action if I see a situation that could lead to sexual assault.
5. I commit to learning more and promoting the PACT.
Sign up here:
PACT5 Mission Statement
PACT5 is a national movement to prevent sexual assaults and rapes in colleges. What is different about PACT5 is that it believes the documentary form, when produced by students, can create powerful stories that can change potentially tragic behavior patterns. Students are the ones who can make a difference in the minds of other students.
These student-produced documentaries and other related media resources will become important tools for all areas of college life, including orientations, residence life advising, campus police, fraternities, sororities, counseling centers, rehab centers, and hospitals.
PACT5 is a humanitarian collaboration started by students and faculty in 5 universities: Rowan University (NJ), California State University at Northridge, Western State Colorado University, Northern Illinois University, and Framingham State University (MA).
The 5 universities want other colleges to join them. Want other colleges to Make the PACT to become a safe campus and a source of preventative media that young people, their families, relatives, and friends will listen to.