Loyola University Chicago

Office of the Dean of Students

Division of Student Development

Title IX FAQs

Sexual misconduct is sexual activity of any kind and between any two persons without consent, and is expressly prohibited by Loyola’s Community Standards. The requirements of this policy apply to all individuals regardless of sexual orientation, sex, or gender expression or identity.

Specific behavior prohibited by this policy includes, but is not limited to, the following categories:
•    Non-consensual sexual penetration (commonly known as rape or sexual assault)
•    Non-consensual sexual contact (also a form of sexual assault, but without penetration)
•    Sexual Harassment
•    Sexual Exploitation

Sexual harassment is broadly defined as unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature (including but not limited to unwelcome sexual advances; requests for sexual favors; and other verbal, nonverbal, or physical sexual conduct) that is serious or pervasive (repetitious) enough to substantially interfere with or limit a reasonable person’s ability to participate in or benefit from the University’s educational programs or services.

According the Community Standards, §409(1)(d):

“Consent,” at a minimum, means freely given, mutually understandable permission to engage in a specific sexual activity. Silence or a person’s lack of verbal or physical resistance does not equal consent. Submission resulting from intimidation, the use of force or the threat of force is not consent. A person’s manner of dress cannot convey consent. A person’s consent to one form of sexual activity or sex act does not automatically grant consent to any other sexual activity or sex act. Past consent does not convey consent to future sexual activity; consent must be gained for every interaction. Consent may be withdrawn at any time, at which point sexual activity must cease. A person’s consent to engage in sexual activity with one person does not constitute consent to engage in sexual activity with another. In the following circumstances, a person is incapable of giving consent (meaning that even if they appear to give consent, it may not be valid):

  1. the person is incapacitated (as defined §409(1)(g));
  2. the person is under age (under 17 in Illinois);
  3. the person is unable to understand the nature of the sexual activity for some other reason; or
  4. the sexual activity is between persons who are related to each other within the degrees wherein marriage is prohibited by law in Illinois.

If the respondent knew, or should have reasonably known, that the complainant was incapacitated by use or consumption of drugs or alcohol, or that the complainant's physical or mental condition would hinder their ability to give consent, the respondent did not receive consent. A respondent being intoxicated or impaired by drugs or alcohol is never an excuse for sexual misconduct, stalking, or dating/domestic violence, and does not diminish the respondent's responsibility to obtain consent or recognize incapacitation.

So to recap, in the following cases, no matter what you are hearing from a person, they simply cannot give consent:

  • When a person is incapacitated. A person is incapable of giving consent if they are incapacitated by alcohol, drugs, or any other physical or mental impairment. (See below for more on incapacitation.)
  • When a person is under 17 years old. In order to give consent, an individual must be of legal age -- which in Illinois is seventeen (17).
  • When the activity would be between related individuals. Consent may not be given between people who are related to each other within the degrees wherein marriage is prohibited by law in Illinois.

Incapacitation by alcohol or drugs is a factor in far too many incidents on college campuses, and Loyola is no exception. Incapacitation can be a confusing concept, especially when pop culture often accepts or even promotes "drunken hook ups." At Loyola, the following standard for incapacitation applies, and is strictly enforced (from the Community Standards, §201(1)(s)):

“Incapacitation” means a state in which an individual cannot understand the nature of an act (meaning they cannot comprehend the “who, what, when, where, why, or how” of an interaction) to the extent that they do not have command over their own decisions. Examples of incapacitation may include, but are not limited to: a person who consumes alcohol or other drugs to the extent that they are severely impaired; a person who has a severe mental or physical disability that hinders their ability to understand the nature of a sexual activity; or a person who is asleep or has passed out. Evidence of incapacitation may include, but is not limited to: stumbling, experiencing a black-out, demonstrating a loss of coordination, vomiting, slurring of words, or other abnormal behavior. Engaging in sexual activity with a person who you know or reasonably should know is incapacitated is sexual misconduct...

Remember, a person being intoxicated or impaired by drugs or alcohol is never an excuse for sexual misconduct, stalking, or dating/domestic violence, and does not diminish that person's responsibility to obtain consent or recognize incapacitation.

For an up-to-date list of on-campus and off-campus counseling options, visit the Wellness Center website, specifically, this one.

Yes, Loyola provides advocacy services.

Sexual assault advocates at Loyola are graduate students and professional staff who have completed the 40-hour training program through Rape Victim Advocates (RVA) to become a certified Sexual Assault Medical Advocate in Illinois.  An advocate's role is to provide nonjudgmental, confidential support to student survivors of sexual assault.  Advocates at Loyola are specially trained to help students navigate options and services on campus.  Access to an advocate after an assault can play a critical role in the healing process of a survivor.

Advocacy services are available Monday–Friday, 8 AM–4:30 PM, and 24 hours on weekends when classes are in session (except for University holidays). If the line is closed and you need to speak to someone right away, please call the Chicago Rape Crisis Hotline at 888-293-2080.

For more information about the services available or information on how to help a friend, download the “Here for You” app on your iPhone or Android.

Loyola will work diligently to safeguard the identities of students who report a violation or seek accommodations.

When a report is made, that information is disclosed only to select campus officials so that the University’s responsibilities can be carried out. As is the case with any educational institution, Loyola must balance the needs of each individual student with its obligation to protect the safety and well-being of the community at large.

If you want to speak confidentially to a person about an incident of gender-based violence, you can contact one or more of the following individuals or departments on campus:

For information on reporting options available, visit How to Report.

  • First and foremost we care about your safety. Notifying us will allow us to protect and care for you to the extent we can.
  • Reporting can be empowering, and may be one way to hold an individual accountable for their actions.
  • Reporting--even if done anonymously--raises awareness in the University about how often gender-based violence happens. This information can assist us in devoting resources effectively to combat and prevent future incidents.
  • Reporting can sometimes prevent others from being harmed.

Any staff member in the Office of the Dean of Students can assist a student in filing formal complaints. If you do not want to file a report, we can assist with emergency housing or changing housing assignments, class assignments or schedules, leaves of absence, withdrawal from the University, and other academic concerns. We can also provide information about how to notify Campus Safety or local law enforcement.

For more information contact Jessica Landis, Assistant Dean of Students and Title IX Deputy Coordinator at 773-508-8840, or visit us in the Damen Student Center, Suite 300.

Gender-based violence is against the law and against Loyola’s Community Standards and it is not a consequence of drinking or taking drugs. Consuming alcohol or other drugs is also not an excuse for an incident occurring. Whether or not a reporter consumed alcohol or drugs is not considered in taking a report seriously.

Loyola provides some degree of amnesty under the Good Samaritan and Medical Amnesty Policy (Section 509 of the Community Standards) for students who may be hesitant to report a sexual assault violation out of fear that they themselves or others may face consequences for drinking or drug use at the time of the incident. Educational options will be explored, but no conduct proceedings, disciplinary sanctions, or conduct record for the consumption alcohol or drugs will result.

If you have been reported for gender-based misconduct of any type, you are the "respondent" under the definitions of the Community Standards. You, too, have rights at Loyola and will be treated with dignity and respect throughout the investigation and conduct process. The Community Standards details some rights available to both parties (§409(6)(a)):

All complainants and respondents involved in the University’s formal conduct process can expect the following:

  • All complaints and reports of gender-based misconduct and the potential impact on both complainants and respondents will be treated seriously, and the University will respond promptly and proceed in a timely manner.
  • Both parties will be treated with dignity and respect, and the privacy of each party will be respected.
  • Both parties will receive timely notice of any required meetings, and will have the opportunity to review any investigative report after the investigation has concluded but before a formal hearing.
  • Both parties will be notified in writing of the preliminary potential policy violations assigned at the beginning of the investigation process.
  • Both parties will be notified via a Notice of Investigation (NOI) letter, of the names of both investigators assigned to the case. If either party believes there is a conflict of interest with either investigator, the party may request a different investigator. Both parties will have the opportunity to make such a request to the Title IX Deputy Coordinator before the investigators initiate contact.          
  • Both parties may elect to participate in the formal conduct process but will not be compelled to do so. However, choosing not to participate limits the student’s ability to respond to questions and information presented in the hearing.
  • Both parties may present evidence throughout the investigation, including proposing witnesses to be considered for interviewing.
  • As with all University conduct processes, each party may choose to be accompanied by one advisor of their choice. The advisor may accompany either party at any point in time throughout the conduct process. For more information about the role of an advisor, see §406(1).
  • Each party has the right to choose whether to be physically present in the hearing room. If either party does choose to be physically present, the party can request accommodations such as separating parties via a screen, coordinating for remote participation from a private location via telephone or video, etc. Requests for such arrangements must be communicated to the OSCCR at least one (1) day prior to the hearing.
  • Both parties will be notified simultaneously and in writing of the hearing outcome, including any sanctions imposed and the rationale for any such decision.
  • Both parties have a right not to have their identities disclosed except as necessary to resolve the complaint, to implement interim protective measures or accommodations, or when otherwise provided by Illinois state or federal law.

No. You can report an incident and/or seek safety or other accommodations regardless of where the incident occurs. Additionally, the behavioral expectations for our community outlined in the Community Standards apply to Loyola students whether their conduct takes place on- or off-campus.

The decision whether or not to seek medical attention after an assault is a personal one, but may help in several ways:

  • Medical attention can help you take care of your own health by checking for and treating possible injuries.
  • You can be tested for sexually transmitted infections (including HIV) and pregnancy. There may be medications available to decrease the chances of contracting certain infections. 
  • Collecting medical evidence of an assault may be of critical importance if you choose to report the assault to the police for prosecution (and you may change your mind on this later).

If you are considering going to the hospital for medical attention, consider contacting an advocacy group, such as Loyola's Sexual Assault Advocacy Line (773-494-3810) or Rape Victim Advocates (888-293-2080). Even without having experienced the trauma of an assault, the process for a medical exam is intrusive by any standard; an advocate can walk you through the entire process step-by-step and with your rights in mind. Advocates are also available upon request at many Chicagoland hospitals.

For more information about what to expect when going to the Emergency Room after a sexual assault, see the Coordinated Community Response Team (CCRT) page dedicated to the topic: What to Expect at the Emergency Room

Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 protects people from discrimination based on sex, gender identity, and gender expression (as well as sexual orientation) in education programs and activities that receive federal financial assistance.

The types of discrimination that are covered under Title IX include sexual harassment, the failure to provide equal opportunity in athletics, and discrimination based on pregnancy. To enforce Title IX, the U.S. Department of Education maintains an Office for Civil Rights, with headquarters in Washington, D.C.

Any inquiries regarding Title IX or the University’s Policy Prohibiting Discrimination, Harassment, and Retaliation should be directed to the Title IX Coordinator identified below. The Coordinator will be available to meet with or talk to students, staff, and faculty regarding issues relating to Title IX and this Policy.

Loyola University Chicago’s Title IX Coordinator is Tom Kelly, J.D. He can be reached at tkelly4@luc.edu.

The Title IX Coordinator is responsible for implementing and monitoring Title IX Compliance on behalf of the University. This includes coordination of training, education, communications, and administration of the complaint and grievance procedures for the handling of suspected or alleged violations of this policy.

Loyola University Chicago’s crime statistics are available from the Department of Campus Safety.