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PDFWAC 132U-305-025

Confidentiality and right to privacy.

(1) Whatcom Community College will seek to protect the privacy of the complainant and respondent to the fullest extent possible, consistent with the legal obligation to investigate, take appropriate remedial and/or disciplinary action, and comply with the federal and state law, as well as Whatcom Community College policies and procedures. Although Whatcom Community College will attempt to honor requests for confidentiality, it cannot guarantee complete confidentiality. Determinations regarding how to handle requests for confidentiality will be made by the Title IX coordinator/designee.
(2) Confidentiality requests and sexual violence complaints: The Title IX coordinator/designee will inform and obtain consent from the complainant before commencing an investigation into a sexual violence complaint. If a sexual violence complainant asks that his or her name not be revealed to the respondent or that the college not investigate the allegation, the Title IX coordinator/designee will inform the complainant that maintaining confidentiality may limit the college's ability to respond fully to the allegations and that retaliation by the respondent and/or others is prohibited. If the complainant still insists that his or her name not be disclosed or that the college not investigate, the Title IX coordinator/designee will determine whether the college can honor the request and at the same time maintain a safe and nondiscriminatory environment for all members of the college community, including the complainant. Factors to be weighed during this determination may include, but are not limited to:
(a) The seriousness of the alleged sexual violence;
(b) The age of the complainant;
(c) Whether the sexual violence was perpetrated with a weapon;
(d) Whether the respondent has a history of committing acts of sexual violence or has been the subject of other sexual violence complaints;
(e) Whether the respondent threatened to commit additional acts of sexual violence against the complainant or others; and
(f) Whether relevant evidence can be obtained through other means (e.g., security cameras, other witnesses, physical evidence).
(3) If the college is unable to honor a complainant's request for confidentiality, the Title IX coordinator/designee will notify the complainant of the decision and ensure that complainant's identity is disclosed only to the extent reasonably necessary to effectively conduct and complete the investigation.
(4) If the college decides not to conduct an investigation or take disciplinary action because of a request for confidentiality, the Title IX coordinator/designee will evaluate whether other measures are available to limit the effects of the harassment and prevent its recurrence and implement such measures if reasonably feasible.
[Statutory Authority: Chapter 28B.50 RCW. WSR 21-18-098, ยง 132U-305-025, filed 8/31/21, effective 10/1/21.]
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