Reporting Options

If you have experienced sexual violence including sexual assault or rape, domestic or dating violence, stalking, or sexual harassment, you have several reporting options, and you can pursue more than one option at the same time or choose not to participate in any of the options stated on this page. You have been through a traumatic experience. It is especially important for you to know and to believe that what happened to you was NOT your fault, and that you have choices. You can report by starting with a phone call or email, by stopping by one of the reporting locations, or even online. You can even report anonymously. See "Where Can I Report?" or "What About Anonymous Reporting?" below.

It is your right to be treated with dignity by each and every person you may deal with in this process. It is your right to choose with whom you speak and what you wish to share. If, at any point, you feel uncomfortable or pressured, in any way, you have the right to discontinue the conversation and to seek other support. There are many individuals available who are trained to help victims/survivors of sexual assault and are sensitive to the issue. These include counselors, health care professionals, residence life and housing staff, student conduct staff, law enforcement, campus Title IX contacts, as well as community professionals.

If you are in immediate danger, get to a safe place and call the police at 9-1-1

On campus, University Police Department (UPD) can be reached at ext. 2111 or by dialing 911. Off campus, dial 911 to reach law enforcement. To best preserve evidence after a sexual assault, it is recommended that victims/survivors avoid showering, washing, changing clothes, combing hair, drinking, eating, or doing anything to alter physical appearance until after a physical exam has been completed. This can be important to preserve evidence should you choose future action. [You can also contact the New York State Police 24-hour hotline at 1-844-845-7269 to read the NYS Troopers Sexual Assault Victims Unit.] The University Police Department is located in Whitaker Hall, Room 110.

For medical attention

Guthrie Cortland Medical Center, 134 Homer Avenue, Cortland, NY, 607-756-3500 (*Confidential Resource)

SUNY Cortland Health Service, Van Hoesen B-26, 607-753-4811 (*Confidential Resource)

Cortland County Health Department Jacobus Center, 60 Central Avenue, Cortland, NY, 607-753-5027 (*Confidential Resource)

Where can I report?

If you are a student, you are encouraged to speak to any of the following:  Counseling Center*, Student Health Service*, University Police (UPD), Title IX Office, Residence Hall Director (RHD), Resident Assistant (RA), Student Conduct Office, Pastoral Counselor* (Those indicated with an asterisk* are privileged/ confidential disclosure options).

If you are an employee, you are encouraged to report concerns or knowledge of sexual harassment or violence to your supervisor, Human Resources or Title IX Office

Visit the Resources or Contacts for telephone numbers and web site URLs for disclosure and reporting locations.

To report a bias related incident to the Chief Diversity Officer, visit the Bias Related Incident Reporting Form.

Hotline information - for help along the way

Aid to Victims of Violence (AVV), 14 Clayton Avenue, Cortland, NY (YWCA), 24/7 Local Crisis Hotline: 607-756-6363 or toll free: 1-800-336-9622. If you would like help at any point during the process, you can also call an advocate from the Aid to Victims of Violence (AVV) at any time 24/7. An advocate can meet with you on campus or you can go to the AVV office at the YWCA during regular hours, 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. Advocates can help survivors through any part of the process -- legal, mental, referrals, support, and even the forensic rape exam (aka FRE or "rape kit"). Advocates can accompany survivors to the hospital and be there to walk them through the process, as much or as little as they'd like. All services from AVV are free. The cost of the rape kit can be covered completely with no insurance needed. (*Confidential Resource)

RAINN (Rape, Abuse, & Incest National Network) 24/7 national victim assistance hotline, 1-800-656-HOPE (4673) (*Confidential Resource)

When should I report?

Immediate notification to one of the many listed resources is critical to SUNY Cortland fulfilling its commitment to you. We understand that sexual discrimination, harassment, assault, misconduct or violence may be difficult to disclose or report, but immediate reporting allows for the best possible efforts to support victims, and to investigate and address the claim. You may certainly report when you are ready. Please understand that delays in reporting may limit the type or effectiveness of responses from the College, law enforcement and external resources. Delays may impact physical evidence and access to witnesses that may assist us in investigating and responding to your claim.

What should I report?

SUNY Cortland encourages individuals to report sexual harassment, sexual assault, dating violence, domestic violence, and/or stalking as well as other discrimination. Sexual discrimination, harassment, assault, misconduct or violence can take many forms, including any sexual contact that lacks mutual consent, or domestic or dating violence. Sexual harassment may take the form of stalking or the distribution, the display or discussing of any written, graphic, visual or auditory material that is sexual in nature and has the purpose or effect of threatening, intimidation or interfering with a person or person’s ability to study or work. It would constitute a violation of College policy, New York State and/or federal law and should be reported immediately. Retaliation against anyone who reports in good faith or participates in the investigative process is prohibited. Individuals who engage in retaliation may be subject to sanctions as determined by the College. Additional information on the expectation of conduct or prohibited conduct can be found in the Code of Student Conduct, Collective Bargaining Agreements, the Discrimination Complaint Procedure, or on the Human Resources website.

Is my report confidential?

We understand how difficult it can be to come forward with a concern or claim. The College will make every effort to keep the confidentiality of any person(s) reporting a claim and when possible will keep the identity of an unwilling victim or witness confidential. However, we cannot guarantee unqualified confidentiality as we must also balance the safety of other members in our community. If we determine that there is the threat of imminent harm to an individual or to the community, information may need to be shared and then only with appropriate individuals. Complainants will be advised if information pertaining to a claim is shared with individuals outside of the College’s investigative process. 

There are certain individuals who, under the law and under specific circumstances, are bound by rules of confidentiality and are therefore not obligated or are prevented from reporting on your behalf. Those disclosure sources such as counselors, medical professionals and clergy are considered "confidential and privileged."

Other college officials, such as the Title IX Coordinator, Deputy Title IX Coordinator, University Police, Residence Life and Housing professionals or Student Conduct staff can offer privacy to the extent the law allows and can assist in obtaining resources. Please note that an official who can offer privacy may still be required by law and college policy to inform one or more college officials about the incident, including but not limited to the Title IX Coordinator). Members of these departments are trained to gather information on your complaint. These offices must provide notice of your complaint to the Title IX Coordinator within 24 hours or as soon as practicable.

If you choose to report a claim to any of the college resources listed, you may ask whether your conversation with them is privileged under the law. We encourage candid and honest participation in our process so that we can identify the right options and correct course of action. 

For more information visit the Options for Confidentially Disclosing Sexual Violence page.

What about anonymous reporting?

You may report sexual violence anonymously to the SUNY Cortland Title IX Office by visiting the Sexual Violence Anonymous Report Form. All anonymous reports submitted via this link will be kept confidential. SUNY Cortland prohibits sexual harassment, violence, coercion, and intimidation, including domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, and stalking. Information reported anonymously to SUNY Cortland will be used in compiling campus statistics. In some circumstances, the College may be obligated to investigate these reports. Individuals wishing to disclose without potentially triggering an investigation should contact a confidential resource found on the Options for Confidentially Disclosing link.

PLEASE NOTE: Anonymous reporting may limit SUNY Cortland’s ability to address a sexual violence situation. If you wish to formally report this incident, you may do so at any time. If you choose to formally report this incident, you may withdraw your complaint or involvement from the SUNY Cortland process at any time. For more information on reporting options and confidentiality please visit Reporting Options, or Options for Confidentially Reporting

To report a bias related incident to the Chief Diversity Officer (anonymously or with identifying information), please visit: Bias Related Incident Report Form.

I am worried about reporting because…

. . . I am afraid of retaliation.

Any person who in good faith and belief of the facts, reports an incident of sexual harassment, misconduct, violence or discrimination or participates in the investigative process will be treated respectfully and with equitable access to the resources and processes of Title IX on campus. Retaliation against anyone who reports in good faith or participates in the investigative process is prohibited and may be viewed as harassment itself and may be subject to sanctions as determined by the College.

We are here to provide you with information and support so that you can make an informed decision. Our hope is to raise awareness of behavior and risk of behavior and help to keep all community members safe. If you have any questions about Title IX, or need help understanding resources available to you please contact the Title IX Coordinator at 607-753-4550 or at the Title IX Coordinator's email or contact the Deputy Title IX Coordinator at 607-753-2956 or at the Deputy Title IX Coordinator's email.

What happens if someone else reports this naming me as a victim? Must I make a formal charge?

Any and all incidents reported are taken seriously and will be investigated and addressed in a timely fashion and with sensitivity to confidentiality. The Title IX Coordinator or Deputy Title IX Coordinator will reach out to an individual upon a third-party report that the individual may have been a victim of sexual assault, violence, harassment or discrimination.

The purpose of reaching out to the individual is to provide guidance as to the processes and support resources available. However, no individual will be forced to file a claim or otherwise participate in the College’s investigative process. Unwilling victims or witnesses will be asked to sign an acknowledgement if they do not wish to engage in any resolution process. Even if you decline to engage in any resolution process, you can return to the Title IX Office at a later time. In the interim, you are encouraged to seek support and assistance from any of the listed campus resources.

PLEASE NOTE: The College as well as external law enforcement may be limited in their ability to fully investigate or resolve a complaint if the victim is unwilling to engage in the investigative process. Likewise, delays in formally reporting a complaint can limit the type or effectiveness of our response. More broadly, delays in reporting can prevent the College from understanding if a pattern of risk or behavior is developing. The College must take steps to end or otherwise address the behavior that violates policy or law. Every effort will be made to keep the identity of an unwilling victim or witness confidential in taking steps to protect the larger community.

Can I get support from external sources?

Yes. The College takes Title IX claims very seriously and will take appropriate steps to assist the victim and provide a timely response. You may elect our internal process while maintaining your right to pursue options with external law enforcement agencies, which may include local law enforcement or the District Attorney’s office, Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, The New York State Division of Human Rights, or the United States Department of Education’s Office of Civil Rights (OCR). The College can continue its investigative process as long as it does not conflict with the jurisdiction of these outside agencies. The Title IX Coordinator can provide you with information on accessing these external resources.

What if the accused is an employee?

When the accused is an employee, a victim/survivor may also report the incident to the Human Resources Office or may request that one of the above referenced confidential or private employees assist in reporting to Human Resources. Disciplinary proceedings will be conducted in accordance with applicable collective bargaining agreements. When the accused is an employee of an affiliated entity or vendor of the college, college officials will, at the request of the victim/survivor, assist in reporting to the appropriate office of the vendor or affiliated entity and, if the response of the vendor or affiliated entity is not sufficient, assist in obtaining a persona non grata letter, subject to legal requirements and college policy. Human Resources is located in Miller Building, Room 301, and may be reached at 607-753-2302.

Preserving evidence should you decide to proceed with a criminal process...

It is recommended that you DO NOT: shower, wash, change clothes, comb hair, drink or eat, or do anything to alter your physical appearance until after a physical examination has been completed. It is also recommended that you do not disturb the area where the crime occurred until a police investigation can take place. Preserve all physical evidence of the assault. If you have already changed your clothing, save all of the clothing you were wearing at the time of the assault and do not wash it. Place each item of clothing in a separate paper bag, if possible. It is not recommended that you use plastic bags. 

Other New York State resources for confidential reporting

To confidentially disclose an incident and obtain services from the New York State, New York City or county hotlines, visit Office for the Prevention of Domestic Violence

Additional disclosure and assistance options are catalogued by the Office for the Prevention of Domestic Violence and presented in several languages: http://www.opdv.ny.gov/help/index.html (or by calling 1-800-942-6906), and assistance can also be obtained through:

- SurvJustice

Legal Momentum

NYSCASA

NYSCADV

Pandora’s Project

GLBTQ Domestic Violence Project

RAINN

Safe Horizons

(NOTE: These hotlines are for crisis intervention, resources, and referrals, and are not reporting mechanisms, meaning that disclosure on a call to a hotline does not provide any information to the campus. Victims/survivors are encouraged to additionally contact a campus confidential or private resource so that the campus can take appropriate action in these cases).

Visit the Resources page for more information.

Updated June 19, 2019