The University of California, Hastings College of the Law (“Hastings”) is a community of students and professionals committed to upholding the principles of academic integrity and honesty and the highest standards of professional conduct in teaching, learning, research, and service. In expression of this commitment, and in strict compliance with federal, state, and local laws, Hastings has adopted a policy prohibiting acts of discrimination, bias, protected-status harassment, sexual harassment, and sexual assault and violence against students, and establishing procedures for responding to violations against students by students, employees, other students, or third parties. The complete policy is available here. An electronic copy of the policy is e-mailed to each student at the time of orientation.
Every student at Hastings has the right to pursue his/her academic or professional career in an atmosphere that is safe and free from prohibited acts of discrimination, harassment, or violence, including sexual abuse, rape, sexual assault, domestic violence, intimate-partner violence, stalking, sexual coercion, or other forms of sexual violence by or against students. Bigotry, harassment, or intimidation is particularly insidious when directed at a member or group of the Hastings community on the basis of actual or perceived age, color, creed, physical or mental disability, ethnicity, gender, gender identity or expression, marital status, national origin, race, religion, sexual orientation, military or veteran status, or any combination of these or related factors; and, to the degree it constitutes prohibited bias activity, such conduct will also not be tolerated. The occurrence of prohibited activity violates the trust that is essential to the thriving of Hastings’ academic and professional environment, threatens the well-being of UC Hastings students and ultimately undermines Hastings’ core mission.
Contained in the policy is a detailed description of the different types of prohibited conduct and the duties that arise under the policy, including Hastings’ policy on mandatory reporting. The policy also details the procedures for filing a complaint and the options that are available prior to or in lieu of a formal complaint, including the option to seek advice or informal resolution, or to anonymously report as a “Silent Witness.” (Silent-Witness form coming soon) Information is provided about the possibility of limited immunity for related misconduct. Further detailed in the policy is the period of limitations for the filing of a complaint, the evidentiary standard applied in the formal investigatory process, rights of the various parties during and throughout the investigatory and appellate process, and all other aspects of the protocol governing investigation and resolution of a complaint. Finally, the policy contains a detailed list of the responsibilities of the various parties in connection with the policy, and a list of resources for survivors and perpetrators of sexual assault/violence.
The Policy is binding upon all students of Hastings and describes processes by which redress and remediation can be provided to individuals or groups who believe they have been the victims of prohibited conduct. Where sexual misconduct is involved, the policy is presumed to supersede all other procedures and policies set forth in other Hastings policies. The Policy establishes standards and procedures for the reporting and investigation of complaints, the dispensation of disciplinary action, and the provision of information pertaining to the pursuit of criminal or other legal action, where appropriate. Members of the Hastings community who have relevant information are expected to cooperate with any investigations conducted pursuant to the Policy. Ignorance of the Policy is not an excuse for its violation. Acts in retaliation for complaints filed pursuant to the policy will not be tolerated.
Hastings will respond to the fullest extent of its authority to violations of the Policy. The Policy applies to allegations of misconduct made by or against students regardless of where the misconduct may have occurred, to the degree that the conduct giving rise to the complaint is related to Hastings’ social, cultural, academic, extracurricular, educational, or professional activities. Additionally, although there is no geographical limitation to applicability of the Policy, sexual misconduct that is alleged to have occurred at a significant distance from Hastings’ property may be more difficult for Hastings to investigate.
Complaints regarding inappropriate workplace conduct that is not covered by the Policy should be directed to the UC Hastings Department of Human Resources. Complaints by faculty of unlawful discrimination in reappointment, promotion, and tenure are governed by procedures set out in the UC Hastings Faculty Rules and Regulations. Complaints alleging misconduct by students that is not covered by the Policy are governed by the UC Hastings Student Conduct Code and should be directed to the Office of the Associate Academic Dean.