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Sexual Violence/Harassment

If You've been a Victim of Sexual Violence:

  • Know that you're the victim and it is not your fault.
  • Find a safe environment and a trusted friend to stay with you.
  • If you have been drinking and you're underage, reporting assault does not mean that you will get in trouble with Ridgewater for violating the Code of Conduct.

Any individual who believes she or he has been or is being subjected to conduct prohibited by Board Policy 1B.1 is encouraged to report the incident to the designated officer. The report/complaint should be brought as soon as possible after an incident occurs.

Any student, faculty member or employee who knows of, receives information about or receives a complaint of discrimination/harassment is strongly encouraged to report the information or complaint to the designated officer of the system office, college, or university.

You can also use our online confidential reporting form.

  • Student contact
    Jay Morrison
    Disability Services Coordinator/Academic Advisor
    A119 – Willmar Campus
    jay.morrison@ridgewater.edu
    320-222-8040
     
  • Employee contact
    Keith Balaski
    Chief Human Resources Officer
    H125 – Willmar Campus
    keith.balaski@ridgewater.edu
    320-222-5211
  • If possible, go directly to an Emergency Room at a local hospital (see below).
  • It is best not to bathe or wash and keep your clothing in a paper bag to preserve evidence.

If you or someone you know has experienced sexual violence, you may contact counseling and schedule an appointment at 320-234-8508 for the Hutchinson campus and 320-222-5981 for the Willmar campus.

Additionally, you may find the resources listed below helpful. Please note, this is not an exhaustive list and appearance on the list does indicate a recommendation by Ridgewater College.

Local Assistance

Ridgewater College Counselors, 320-234-8504 (Hutchinson), 320-222-5983 (Willmar)

State Employee Assistance Program, 651-259-3840 or 1-800-657-3719

Community Assistance

HUTCHINSON

Hutchinson Community Hospital
1095 Highway 15 South Hutchinson, MN 55350
320-234-4600

Hutchinson Police Department
320-587-2242 (non-emergency calls)
911 for emergencies

Shelter House –Renville and McLeod Counties
Business Phone: 320-523-1015
24-Hour Toll-Free Crisis Phone: 1-800-792-4210
PO Box 65, Olivia, MN 56277

WILLMAR

Rice Memorial Hospital
301 Becker Avenue SW
Willmar, MN 56201 320-235-4543

Willmar Police Department
320-235-2244 (non-emergency calls)
911 for emergencies

Safe Avenues-Kandiyohi County
Business Phone: 320-235-0962
24-Hour Toll-Free Crisis Phone: 1-800-792-4210
PO Box 568, Willmar, MN 56201

STATE/NATIONAL ASSISTANCE

Minnesota Coalition Against Sexual Assault
(http://www.mncasa.org/)
651-209-9993
Toll-Free: 1-800-964-8847

National Sexual Violence Resource Center
717-909-0710
Toll-Free: 1-877-739-3895

Ridgewater College offers sexual violence awareness training through Desire 2 Learn.

Ridgewater College is also utilizing the NO MORE campaign to promote awareness and stop sexual violence. NO MORE is a public awareness and engagement campaign focused on ending domestic violence and sexual assault.

What is sexual violence?

Sexual violence is, as defined by Ridgewater College and MnSCU, “a continuum of conduct that includes sexual assault, non-forcible sex acts, dating and relationship violence, stalking, as well as aiding acts of sexual violence.”

What is sexual assault?

Sexual assault includes a number of sexual acts or attempted acts done, without consent. It also includes acts that don’t require touching such as indecent exposure and voyeurism.

What is consent?

Consent is informed, freely given and mutually understood. Among other things, there is no consent if the victim is coerced, intimidated, threatened or physical force is used. Likewise, there is no consent if the victim is mentally or physically incapacitated or impaired (including impairment due to alcohol, drugs, sleep or unconsciousness).

The full policy is available here.

Sexual Harassment

Sexual Harassment is covered in the college’s non-discrimination policy. Read the full policy.

Ridgewater College Policy Statement

Sexual violence is an intolerable intrusion into the most personal and private rights of an individual, and is prohibited at Minnesota State Colleges and Universities. MnSCU is committed to eliminating sexual violence in all forms and will take appropriate remedial action against any individual found responsible for acts in violation of this policy. Acts of sexual violence may also constitute violations of criminal or civil law, or other Board Policies that may require separate proceedings.

To further its commitment against sexual violence, MnSCU provides reporting options, an investigative and disciplinary process, and prevention training or other related services as appropriate. Ridgewater Sexual Violence 1.B.1 Policy

Harassment on the basis of race, sex, color, creed, religion, age, national origin, disability, marital status, status with regard to public assistance, sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression is prohibited.

Harassment can happen in a variety of relationships, including faculty and student, supervisor and employee, student and student, staff and student, employee and employee, and other relationships with persons having business at, or visiting the educational or working environment.

Conduct Covered by the Policy

This policy is directed at verbal or physical conduct that constitutes discrimination/harassment under state and federal law and is not directed at the content of speech. In cases in which verbal statements and other forms of expression are involved Ridgewater College will give due consideration to an individual's constitutionally protected right to free speech and academic freedom.

However, discrimination and harassment are not within the protections of academic freedom or free speech.

Ridgewater College shall maintain and encourage full freedom, within the law, of expression, inquiry, teaching and research. Academic freedom comes with a responsibility that all members of our education community benefit from it without intimidation, exploitation or coercion.

Retaliation

Retaliation against anyone filing a complaint or participating in a complaint investigation, is prohibited by Ridgewater College and MnSCU policy. Individuals who violate this policy shall be subject to disciplinary or other corrective action. Read the full policy.

Policies apply to:

All individuals affiliated with Ridgewater College, including but not limited to:

  • Students
  • Employees
  • Applicants
  • Volunteers
  • Agents
  • Board of Trustees

Title IX Sex Discrimination in Educational Institutions

Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 prohibit discrimination on the basis of sex in an educational institution. It applies in all aspects of education including academic programs, financial assistance, athletics and more. The sex discrimination prohibition includes sexual harassment and sexual violence. It states in part: No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance. 20 U.S.C. § 1681.
This page provides information and resources regarding the important issues of sexual violence and sexual harassment. It also contains contact information for persons who can assist in the unlikely event that you should experience or observe this on a Ridgewater College campus. Ridgewater College, Minnesota State Colleges and Universities (MnSCU), and the U.S. Government take the issues of sexual violence and sexual harassment very seriously. On March 7, 2013, President Obama signed into law the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act (VAWA). This new law requires that colleges and universities provide students and staff with sexual violence awareness training.

Sexual Violence

One (1) in four (4) women and one (1) in 17 men will be victims of attempted or completed sexual violence while in college (National Institute of Justice).

Things we wish everybody knew*:

  • Sexual assault happens
  • Offenders are often “regular guys”
  • False reports are not common
  • Alcohol will more likely than not be involved
  • Victims may not call it rape
  • Trauma responses vary
  • There is no typical victim

*Adapted from Minnesota Coalition against Sexual Assault (MnCASA), Sexual Violence Justice Institute, Understanding the Dynamics of Sexual Assault on Campus.