Affirmative Consent is a knowing, voluntary and mutual decision among all participants to engage in sexual activity. Consent can be given by words or actions, as long as those words or actions create clear permission regarding willingness to engage in the sexual activity. Silence or lack of resistance, in and of itself, does not demonstrate consent. The definition of consent does not vary based upon a participant’s sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression.
Consent may be initially given but withdrawn at any time. Consent to any sexual act or prior consensual sexual activity between or with any party does not necessarily constitute consent to any other sexual act.
In order to give consent, one must be of legal age (17 years or older). Consent is required regardless of whether the person initiating the act is under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol. Consent cannot be given when a person is incapacitated, which occurs when an individual lacks the ability to knowingly choose to participate in sexual activity. Incapacitation may be caused by lack of consciousness or being asleep, being involuntarily restrained, or if the individual otherwise cannot consent. Depending on the degree of intoxication, someone who is under the influence of alcohol, drugs, or other intoxicants may be incapacitated and therefore unable to consent.
When consent is withdrawn or can longer be given, sexual activity must stop.
Complainant refers to the individual who alleges that she/he has been the subject of sexual harassment, gender-based harassment or sexual violence, and can be a CUNY student, employee (including all full-time and part-time faculty and staff), or visitor. Under this policy, the alleged incident(s) may have been brought to the college’s attention by someone other than the complainant.
Complaint is an allegation of sexual harassment, gender-based harassment or sexual violence made under this policy.
Dating, Domestic and Intimate Partner Violence is a pattern of coercive behavior that can include physical, psychological, sexual, economic and emotional abuse, perpetrated by one person against an intimate partner. Such violence may occur in all kinds of intimate relationships, including married couples, people who are dating, couples who live together, people with children in common, same-sex partners, and people who were formerly in a relationship with the person abusing them.
Forcible Touching/Fondling is intentionally touching the sexual or other intimate parts of another person without the latter’s consent for the purpose of degrading or abusing such person; or for the purpose of gratifying the actor’s sexual desire.
Gender-Based Harassment is unwelcome conduct of a nonsexual nature based on an individual’s actual or perceived sex, including conduct based on gender identity, gender expression, and nonconformity with gender stereotypes that is sufficiently serious to adversely affect an individual’s participation in employment, education or other CUNY activities. The effect will be evaluated based on the perspective of a reasonable person in the position of the complainant. An example of gender-based harassment would be persistent mocking or disparagement of a person based on a perceived lack of stereotypical masculinity or femininity.
Managers are employees who have the authority to either (a) make tangible employment decisions with regard to other employees, including the authority to hire, fire, promote, compensate or assign significantly different responsibilities; or (b) make recommendations on tangible employment decisions that are given particular weight. Managers include vice presidents, deans, directors, or other persons with managerial responsibility, including, for purposes of this policy, department chairpersons and executive officers.
Rape and Attempted Rape is the penetration or attempted penetration, no matter how slight, of any body part by a sex organ of another person, without the consent of that person.
Respondent refers to the individual who is alleged to have committed sexual harassment, gender-based harassment or sexual violence against a CUNY student, employee, or visitor.
Retaliation is adverse treatment of an individual as a result of that individual’s reporting sexual harassment, gender-based harassment or sexual violence, assisting someone with a report of sexual harassment, gender-based harassment or sexual violence, or participating in any manner in an investigation or resolution of a sexual harassment, gender-based harassment or sexual violence report. Adverse treatment includes threats, intimidation and reprisals by either a complainant or respondent or by others such as friends or relatives of either a complainant or respondent.
Sexual Activity is:
Sexual Assault is any form of sexual activity that occurs without consent.
Sexual Harassment is unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature, including but not limited to unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal, nonverbal, graphic and electronic communications or physical conduct of a sexual nature when:
Conduct is considered “unwelcome” if the individual did not request or invite it and considered the conduct to be undesirable or offensive.
While it is not possible to list all circumstances that might constitute sexual harassment, the following are some examples of conduct that might constitute sexual harassment depending on the totality of the circumstances:
For purposes of this policy, sexual harassment also includes acts that violate an individual’s right to privacy in connection with her/his body and/or sexual activity such as:
Sexual Misconduct is sexual harassment, gender-based harassment or sexual violence, as defined in this policy.
Sexual Violence is an umbrella term that includes:
Stalking is intentionally engaging in a course of conduct directed at a specific person with whom the perpetrator currently has, previously has had, or desires to have, some form of sexual or romantic relationship, that:
Visitor is an individual who is present at a CUNY campus or unit but is not a student or an employee.