Q: What sort of sexual misconduct does Policy SC17 cover?

Policy SC17: Sexual Misconduct is any non-consensual and unwanted act targeting an individual’s sexuality, gender identity or gender expression including sexual touching, sexual harassment or direct or indirect communications of a sexual nature. Some examples may include, but are not limited to: voyeurism, stalking and cyberstalking (physical or psychological), indecent exposure and the sharing of sexually explicit photos/videos/communications as well as any and all forms of sexual assault.

Q: What is the difference between Disclosing and Reporting?

Disclosing ” is sharing information with UBC or a member of the UBC Community about an incident or incidents of Sexual Misconduct. An individual may choose to Disclose sexual misconduct without making a Report. Reporting is providing a statement of allegations to the Director of Investigations about an incident or incidents of Sexual Misconduct. A report (complaint) can be submitted online at https://io.ubc.ca/making-a-report/

Q: What supports are available to persons who are Disclosing or Reporting?

Please see our Resources page for a full list of support options.

Q: What if I witnessed – but did not directly experience – sexual misconduct?

Witnesses, in addition to Complainants, may also submit a report (complaint) to the UBC Investigations Office.

Q: What will the Director of Investigations do upon receiving my written report (complaint)?

The Director of Investigations will review the report (complaint) and make a determination as to whether UBC has the jurisdiction to investigate. If the “jurisdiction to investigate” threshold has been met, the Director will contact you to clarify details in your written submission. Once the report (complaint) is complete, the Director will provide a copy of it to the respondent (person accused of committing the sexual misconduct) and advise him/her of their rights and available supports. The Director will also ask the respondent to respond to allegations. The response will determine whether an investigation is necessary.

Q: Why is the respondent entitled to receive the report (complaint)?

In keeping with the principles of procedural fairness, persons accused of committing sexual misconduct are entitled to know fully the contents of the report (complaint) which details the allegations so that he/she can respond accordingly. As such, no portion of the report (complaint) can be redacted or otherwise withheld from the respondent.

Q: What sort of safety measures will UBC put in place to protect me or my witnesses from actual threat of retaliation?

UBC will not tolerate any retaliation directed against a complainant or witness involved in an investigation. Although Policy SC17 does not authorize the Director of Investigations to impose restrictions on a respondent, there are other UBC policies, such as the Retaliation Policy (SC18), which allow certain authoritative bodies the discretion to impose interim restrictions on a respondent where direct or indirect threats of harm have been made.

Q: Will I have to participate in a meeting with the respondent during the course of an investigation?

Absolutely not. To ensure the safety and well-being of all parties, the complainant’s interview(s) will be undertaken separate and apart from the respondent’s interview(s).

Q: How long does the investigation process take?

Investigations will be completed 60 days from the day an investigator is assigned to the file. This time frame may be extended in extraordinary circumstances. If during the course of the Investigation the Investigator believes that this timeline cannot be met, the Investigator will contact the Complainant, the Respondent, and the Director of Investigations as soon as possible to inform them.

Q: What happens after the investigation process is complete?

At the completion of the investigation, the investigator will make a finding of fact, and a determination as to whether Sexual Misconduct occurred. If the investigator finds that, on a balance of probabilities, the sexual misconduct did occur and that conduct amounts to a breach of the policy, disciplinary measures will be imposed by the appropriate authority, and not the investigator or the Director of Investigations. For more information on outcomes and disciplinary measures, see section 6 of Procedures associated with the Sexual Misconduct Policy on page 15.

Q: I am interested in Alternative Resolution (AR) rather than an Investigation. Is this an option?

Complainants can indicate on the Report filed with our office if they want to consider using Alternative Resolution (AR). If the file is accepted, the viability of AR will be explored with both parties.

Q: What is a trauma-informed approach?

It means understanding the impacts of sexual misconduct and sexualized violence on individuals and responding in a manner that promotes empowerment and recovery, and minimizes re-traumatization. IO investigators use a trauma-informed approach in their investigations.