Sexual Assault Information
Keep it Consensual: Only Yes Means Yes
If you have been sexually assaulted or if something has happened that you feel uncomfortable about and believe may have been assault, we want to be supportive of you. You have options. We are here to help you think through and understand your options, but you get to decide what happens next. You may need guidance on a number of things- seeking medical help, processing your emotions, telling others what happened, and/or whether to report the assault, among other things. It’s important to know that even if you ask for help, you are still in charge of what happens next. And remember that throughout this process you will always have confidentiality as long as you want it.
Frequently Asked Questions
I’m confused about what “giving consent” means – can you clarify that for me?
The Guilford College definition of consent is shared permission for sexual activity. Students have the responsibility to ensure that all sexual interaction occurs only with mutual consent. If consent is given for one sexual act, it does not mean that consent is given for all future acts. Students must confirm that mutual consent is given for all sexual acts within a sexual interaction. A student can withdraw consent at any given time during a sexual encounter. Non-communication is not consent. Consent can only be given when a student is able to freely make an informed choice between two options: yes and no. Consent cannot be given if someone is impaired by alcohol/drugs, asleep, unconscious, coerced, threatened, intimidated or forced, or under the age of 16. A previous or current sexual relationship between the parties may not be taken as an indication of consent.
I think I’ve experienced sexual assault or rape — what should I do now?
The first thing we want you to do is take care of yourself. Make sure that you are in a safe place. If you feel that you are in imminent danger, please call 911. Otherwise, call a friend or family member, call the Rape Crisis/Sexual Assault Line (336-273-7273), call Public Safety, contact the Counseling Center (336-316-2163), and/or contact your RA or Hall Director. These are all people who can help you figure out what to do next.
What if I need medical attention?
You have many options available to you regarding response and reporting. The Rape /Sexual Assault Hotline (336-272-7273) is answered by people trained to help you think through these options. Someone will answer that line 24/7. You can also discuss your options with someone at the Counseling Center on campus (336-316-2163). One option immediately following a sexual assault is to proceed to the Emergency Department at either Wesley Long Hospital (336-832-1000) or Moses Cone Hospital (336-832-7000) and have a rape kit administered in a private room by a specially trained Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner. This exam provides evidence should you decide to take legal action, but this exam is always optional. If you choose this option you should take along a complete change of clothing and you should not shower or change before having the kit administered. If you do not choose to have a rape kit administered, you may access other health care through our student health services at Eagle Physicians (336-282-0376) or at any local emergency room if it is after Eagle Physicians’ hours.
What else should I do right away?
In the aftermath of any trauma, it can be very difficult to think through what the next steps should be. For help with making these decisions, such as whether to report the assault, whether to seek medical attention, etc, you may contact the campus Counseling Center (336-316-2163) or Family Services of the Piedmont’s Rape Crisis line (336-273-7273). Ongoing counseling related to the assault will be available through the Counseling Center on campus for traditional students. For CCE students, counseling is available through the CCE counselor (36-316-2242) or through Family Services of the Piedmont (336-387-6161).
I don’t have a car – how can I get to the hospital?
There are several choices – you can ask a friend to drive you or you can ask Public Safety or the Counseling Center to call a taxi or you can call a taxi on your own. If you bring the receipt to Sandy Bowles in the Campus Life Office (ext. 2297) you will be reimbursed by the College.
Will the charges for services appear on my parent’s insurance bill?
Counseling: Students can receive counseling on campus free of charge. Traditional students should contact the Counseling Center on campus (336-316-2163) and CCE students should contact the CCE counselor (336-316-2442) or Family Services (336-387-6161).
Eagle Physicians: The billing is detailed. You will need your Guilford ID and medical insurance card and you should be prepared to pay a co-pay or deductible if required. Discuss with them exactly what will appear on your bill.
Moses Cone and Wesley Long hospitals: There is state funding to cover the cost of administration of a rape kit. Speak to your nurse or doctor about billing for any other services.
Planned Parenthood (1704 Battleground, 336-373-0678): An anonymous source of STD and pregnancy testing. Some fees apply and there is no insurance record.
Guilford County Health Department (110 E. Wendover, 336-641-7777): Another anonymous source of STD and pregnancy testing. Some fees apply and there is no insurance record.
I think I want to speak with a counselor about what happened. Where should I go for counseling services?
On campus: The Guilford College Counseling Center (336-316-2163) is available for counseling traditional students. CCE students should call the CCE counselor at 336-316-2442 or Family Services at (336) 387-6161.
Off-campus: If you would prefer to seek counseling off-campus, the staff of the counseling center can refer you to off-campus resources. Family Services of the Piedmont offers counseling on a sliding scale depending on income and insurance. To make an appointment, call (336) 387-6161.
What about reporting the incident to the authorities?
You have the option of reporting the assault to the police and/or the College. Guilford’s Public Safety officers, Guilford’s Counseling Center, or an RA or Hall Director can help you decide what is best in your situation. If you decide to report to the College, you should contact Sandy Bowles (ext. 2297) in Campus Life. Campus Life staff will not contact the police without your permission. You can also report to the police independent of Campus Life staff.
If the person I believe is responsible for my assault is also a Guilford student, do I have to report right away for the College’s judicial process to occur?
The College will not take action on your behalf until you indicate that is what you would like to have happen. There is no statute of limitations for reporting an incident of sexual assault on campus, so you can report immediately or take some time to consider the options you have. Once you decide to disclose details about the incident (including the accused student’s name), the College has seven days to notify the accused student of charges.
Is there a way I can tell the College about the incident without saying any names?
Yes there is. The anonymous reporting form the college uses can be found online by clicking the Anonymous Sexual Assault Reporting Form. Just complete the form and the College will be notified that something happened. While this form does not report names, it gives the College important information in order to track the number of assaults on campus. There is space on the form that allows you to tell us your name and request that someone contact you, but that is entirely optional.
What will happen to the other student if I tell someone at the College?
Once the College is aware that an incident occurred and names have been released, staff members from the Office for Campus Life will follow up with the accused student and investigate the case. This may mean getting statements from any students involved or witnesses, including the accused and reporting students. Once an investigation has occurred, the College will work with you to determine the next steps.
What are the next steps?
As a reporting student, Campus Life staff members will work with you to assist you in determining what you would like to happen next. Staff members from the Office for Campus Life will investigate the incident further. This may include speaking with additional witnesses before proceeding with the judicial process. In compliance with federal guidelines, all cases of sexual assault will be handled solely through the published judicial process beginning with a judicial hearing.
Judicial hearing: During a judicial hearing, the student facing pending charges meets with a Guilford College staff member. The staff member will look at statements made during the investigation, may investigate further and will determine whether or not the student was responsible for a violation of the student code of conduct and assign sanctions to the accused student. The hearing officer will take into account requests that you may have for sanctions but will make the final determinations. If the accused student is found responsible for a Level 3 sexual misconduct violation the resulting sanction will be suspension. Federal law provides an appeal process for both the responsible student and the student who reported the incident. That information can be found in the Guilford College Student Handbook. Both the accuser and the accused will be informed of the school’s final determination of any school disciplinary proceeding with respect to the alleged sex offense and any sanction that is imposed against the accused.
Will you automatically tell my family?
The only time we will inform a family of an incident of sexual assault is when one or more parties are in serious danger or life-threatening situation. We do encourage you to let your family know what has happened if you feel comfortable doing so. It can be important to have as much support around you as possible. The advocates or counselors on campus can help you think through how to do this if you need assistance.
Why should I choose to report an incident of sexual assault to the College?
While officially reporting the incident is up to you and we respect whatever choice you make, there are several important reasons for letting the College know by making an “official” report. If we know who the accused student is, we can issue a “no-contact” order, we can assist you in finding other housing if needed, and we can assist with making changes in class schedule and communicating with faculty if need be. In short, we can be of more assistance to you. Also, providing the College with the student’s name allows staff to do whatever possible to prevent the student from repeating this behavior, thus protecting other students. In addition, reporting helps the College to better keep track of the frequency and types of sexual misconduct that are happening on our campus, enabling us to make appropriate changes in an effort to reduce the incidence of sexual misconduct. You may also choose to report the assault anonymously by filling out the Anonymous Sexual Assault Reporting Form.
What is a no-contact order?
A “no-contact” order is intended to give you space and help you feel safe. When such an order is signed, the parties agree to have no contact with each other. This includes email, voice mail, verbal contact, IM, third party contact, Facebook contact and written contact. The order will be in place for a period of time determined by the reporting student and Campus Life staff at the time of signing. At the end of this period of time, the College will inquire whether the reporting student would like the order to remain in effect.
I was drunk when the sexual assault happened — if I tell the College will I get in trouble for drinking?
No. The College will not charge reporting students with violation of alcohol or drug policies if such violations occurred in conjunction with an incident of sexual assault.
I want to look at the North Carolina sexual assault law — where can I find information?
The location for up-to-date information on state law is: http://www.ncleg.net/EnactedLegislation/Statutes/HTML/ByChapter/Chapter_14.html
What can I do to keep myself safe or prevent sexual assault from happening to me?
Sexual assault is never your fault. While there are several things you can do to keep yourself as safe as possible, nothing you do or do not do makes it OK for someone to have sexual contact with you without your effective, sober consent.It’s important to remember that most sexual assaults happen between people who are acquainted with each other, not complete strangers. Here are some suggestions to help you stay safe:
- If you know you may be consuming alcohol, make sure you accept only beverages from closed containers and keep your drink with you so you can be assured nothing has been added without your knowledge.
- Over-consumption of alcohol increases the risk of sexual contact without consent. Staying alert and aware will help you remain safe.
- Do not have sexual contact with someone who is impaired by alcohol or other drugs.
- Watch out for each other. If you see someone else in a situation that looks unsafe to you, speak up.
- Do not open residence hall doors for people you do not know or leave doors propped open.
- Make sure you lock your doors and windows at all times.
- Whenever you are walking anywhere at night, make sure you have a companion. You can always call Public Safety for an escort (x2911).
- Stay in well-lit areas at night.
What kinds of educational programs promoting the awareness of rape and other forcible and non-forcible sex offenses are offered on campus?
Programs promoting awareness of the issues and offering educational opportunities to students are on-going throughout the year. Presentations during First Year Orientation, campus-wide distribution of informational wallet cards, offering RAD (Rape Aggression Defense) classes, and a variety of programs through the Residence Life staff all contribute to these efforts. Additionally, there are currently active men’s and women’s groups on campus addressing these issues. The College has partnered with Family Services of the Piedmont in offering sexual assault response training to students, faculty and staff.
How do I get involved?
Contact Gaither Terrell in the Counseling Center, Sandy Bowles in Campus Life or a Hall Director for information on how to get involved in sexual violence prevention efforts on campus.
Don’t wait for an assault to happen to you or to someone you care about before you learn how to respond. Educate yourself, check out some of the links on the website, read the student handbook, attend the sexual assault prevention programs offered every year on campus or meet with a member of the Campus Life staff. We are here to help.