Davidson College ("Davidson" or the "College") does not condone and will not tolerate sexual misconduct or sexually exploitative behavior of any kind. The College community is committed to creating and maintaining an environment that is not only free of sexual misconduct, but which promotes a healthy spirit of responsibility, dignity, and respect in matters of sexual conduct. Davidson students share an ethical tradition of abiding by the highest moral standards, taking responsibility for their actions, and treating people with integrity and respect.
Sexual misconduct includes any non-consensual conduct of a sexual nature and sexually exploitative behavior. "Non-consensual" means without either explicit verbal consent or overt action clearly expressing consent. Such signals of consent must be mutual and ongoing, as well as offered freely and knowingly. If at any time during a sexual interaction any confusion or ambiguity should arise on the issue of consent, it is incumbent upon each individual involved in the activity to stop and clarify the other's willingness to continue. Non-communication constitutes lack of consent. A verbal "no," even if it may sound indecisive or insincere, constitutes a lack of consent.
Likewise, incapacitation constitutes a lack of consent. By definition, it is not possible for a person to give consent if incapacitated by drugs, alcohol, or other physical or mental impairment; or if they have been threatened or coerced into giving their consent; or if the person is under the age of 16. Engaging in sexual activity with someone who is incapacitated is considered by law and the College to be sexual misconduct. Such behavior runs contrary to the College community's expectation to respect the inherent worth and dignity of another human being. Indications of consent are irrelevant if the person is incapacitated.
Examples of incapacitation include, but are not limited to, being highly intoxicated, passed out, or asleep. Indicators of incapacitation may include the following:
Sexual misconduct encompasses a broad range of behavior, from inappropriate touching to criminal sexual assault. It includes, but is not limited to, any of the following, if non-consensual:
For purposes of this policy, Sexual Misconduct also includes sexually exploitative behavior, which occurs when a student takes non-consensual or abusive sexual advantage of another for his/her own benefit, or to benefit anyone other than the one being exploited. Examples of sexual exploitation include, but are not limited to, engaging in voyeurism; forwarding of pornographic or other sexually inappropriate material via email or otherwise to non-consenting students/groups; and any activity that goes beyond the boundaries of consent, such as recording of sexual activity, letting friends watch consensual sex, and knowingly transmitting an STI or HIV to another student.
For purposes of this policy, Sexual Misconduct also includes sexual harassment. Harassment is conduct that has the purpose or effect of substantially interfering with a person's work or educational opportunity; creates an intimidating, hostile, or offensive work or educational environment; or otherwise negatively affects an employee's or student's work or educational opportunities. Sexual harassment denies an individual dignity and respect and may take on different forms. It includes, but is not limited to:
If an individual has welcomed sexual advances or other harassing conduct (whether sexual or otherwise) by active participation in or encouragement of such activity, he or she should specifically inform the alleged harasser if such conduct is no longer welcome in order for any subsequent conduct to be deemed unwelcome. However, failure to give such notice in no way prevents the college from taking appropriate corrective and/or disciplinary action against the alleged harasser for his or her behavior.
The Davidson College Student Sexual Misconduct Policy sets forth and governs procedures for charges involving Sexual Misconduct.