Policy 1006 — Sexualized Violence Policy

Policy section:
Section 1000 - 1099 Discrimination & Harassment
Policy number:
Sexualized Violence Policy
Approved By:
Board of Regents
Approved date:
May 7, 2016
Effective date:
May 7, 2016
July 27, 2020
February 3, 2023
Administered by:
Vice-President, International and Student Affairs


This policy applies to:

  • All members of the Mount Allison Community including Employees, Students, contracted employees working on University property or on behalf of the University, visitors and guests of the University, and visitors and guests of the Mount Allison Community.
  • All University-related programs including but not limited to classes, non-credit courses, work placements, and practicum placements.
  • All University property, including property owned or leased by the University, and university-owned or operated equipment and networks including, but not limited to, telephones, email, computers, and computer networks.
  • All events hosted, sponsored by, controlled by, or associated with Mount Allison University, including University-sanctioned activity that takes place off campus and extending to off-campus events where the university may have an interest or that impact ability to live and learn on campus.
  • University travel including, but not limited to, practicum and co-op placements, athletic teams, extracurricular activities directly controlled by the University, classes, research, and administrative and service work. 

This policy and its procedures may continue to apply even if a person's relationship with Mount Allison University has changed or ended.If a Respondent ends their relationship with the University, the University may continue processing, suspend, close or end the Complaint(s) against them depending on factors which include health and safety, the nature of the allegations, and whether there is sufficient information available to proceed. The University reserves the right to resume processing a Complaint if the Respondent’s relationship with the University changes or resumes at a future date and to enforce any restrictions on access to and the use of its resources and property.


Sexualized violence is a serious issue and affects individuals of all gender identities and expressions; sexual orientations; ages, abilities, and economic status; racial, cultural, and religious backgrounds. Sexualized Violence has significant impacts on Survivors, their friends and families, and their communities. Sexualized Violence is an expression of power and control. Harm is caused not only by Sexualized Violence but by cultures of Sexualized Violence: a culture that normalizes Sexualized Violence through accepted practices, norms, attitudes, and lack of adequate responses. Within this context, Mount Allison University is committed to maintaining a safe working, learning, and living environment for all Mount Allison Community members. The purpose of this policy is to:

  1. Prohibit all forms of Sexualized Violence and Gender-Based Violence.
  2. Respond to Violence with procedures that are Survivor-Centered and Trauma-Informed.
  3. Receive and handle all Disclosures and reports of Sexualized Violence with respect, seriousness, and due process.
  4. Put Accountability Measures in place for those individuals responsible for Sexualized Violence.
  5. Reduce and prevent Sexualized Violence by cultivating a Consent Culture that prioritizes Consent, respect, and support through policy, training, and education. This includes implementing mandatory training for all University Employees and Students.
  6. Ensure policy and procedures are accessible to the Mount Allison Community.
Part One: Consent, Education, and Prevention

1.1 Consent

Mount Allison University will promote a Consent Culture in which every person’s decision and bodily autonomy are respected and supported based on the following parameters of Consent:

a. Consent is mutual and voluntary agreement. It is active, continuous, informed, and affirmative. Passivity, silence or the absence of “no” is not consent. There is no Consent when a person, by words or conduct, expresses a lack of agreement to engage in or continue to engage in the activity.

b. Consent to one sexual act does not constitute or imply Consent to any other activity or sexual act. Consent can be withdrawn at any time when a person expresses, by words or conduct, a lack of agreement to continue to engage in the activity.

c. Consent cannot be given by a person who is incapacitated, unconscious, or otherwise lacks the capacity to give Consent.

d. Consent must be freely given. It cannot exist under conditions of coercion. Consent cannot be obtained through implicit or explicit threats of violence, abuse of power, trust or authority, threat of losing one’s job, or threat of releasing sensitive information.

e. As per 1.1.d, Consent cannot be given to participate in or be subjected to Hazing rituals.

f. It is the responsibility of the person who wants to engage in physical contact or sexual activity to ensure that they have informed Consent from the other person(s) involved.

g. Consent is required regardless of the participants’ relationship status or sexual history together.

h. Impaired judgment on the part of the person alleged to have engaged in Sexualized Violence that leads them to think or believe there was Consent is not an excuse for an act of Sexual Violence.

i. Consent cannot be given by a third party or on behalf of the participants.

j. Consent cannot be given by someone under the legal age of consent.

1.2 Education and Prevention

a. Education is critical in preventing Sexualized Violence as well as nurturing a culture on campus where Survivors are believed and supported. Sexualized Violence Services (SVS) will collaborate with on- and off-campus partners to develop an annual education strategy that includes training and workshops, campaigns, programs, and events on a range of topics related to sexualized and Gender-Based Violence.

b. SVS will develop Trauma-Informed and Survivor-Centered strategies for ensuring all Mount Allison Community members know how and where to seek support, how and where to make Disclosures, pertinent crisis and emergency supports, and where to find the Sexualized Violence Policy and procedures as well as how to navigate them.

c. SVS will develop and offer education and resources designed for those who have committed Harm in order to not only encourage but provide the tools for the acceptance of accountability, genuine expressions of remorse, and participation in therapeutic options.

d. All Mount Allison Community members are invited to consult with SVS for resources and education related to Cultures of Sexualized Violence in programming, course material, or curriculum, including content warnings, appropriate responses to Disclosures, and care for those who have experienced Sexualized Violence.

1.3 No Wrong Door

a. No Wrong Door at Mount Allison University is a Trauma-Informed, Survivor-Centered principle of care in which the community works collaboratively to connect Survivors to resources and supports. No Wrong Door is designed to enhance access, empower Survivors to make decisions that are right for them, and create a compassionate environment in which Survivors can exercise agency over their short and long-term needs.

b. To promote a community of care as well as safe working, learning, and living environments all Mount Allison Community members, including contract employees, visitors, and guests, will have access to Seeds of Change; Bystander Intervention Skills that Transform Cultures of Sexualized Violence.

c. All Mount Allison University Employees, Residence Leadership, and Students are required to complete Seeds of Change; Bystander Intervention Skills that Transform Cultures of Sexualized Violence.

d. All Mount Allison University Employees and Residence Leadership are required to complete Sexual Violence Disclosure training within six weeks of their hire date and annually thereafter. All Employees are encouraged to complete Workplace Harassment Education training offered by Human Resources.

1.4 Connect to Care

a. All Mount Allison University Employees and Residence Leadership who receive Disclosures of Sexualized Violence from a Student are required to offer to “Connect to Care” the individual makes a Disclosure to them. Connect to Care is a simple request for the Sexual Violence Response Consultant to check in with a Student who has made a Disclosure of Sexualized Violence. No details of the Disclosures are shared, and Students who receive a Connect to Care are not required to respond to it. Connect to Care is not a reporting system, it is a commitment to our community responsibility to ensure all Survivors are aware of and have access to the support they need. Processes and templates can be found in the Sexualized Violence Procedure Document.

1.5 Sexual Violence, Gender-Based Violence, and Identity

a. Mount Allison University recognizes that all efforts to respond to and prevent Sexualized Violence must be grounded inIntersectionality, the understanding that individual experiences of Sexual Violence are shaped by multiple and intersecting factors. These factors include but are not limited to community, race, sex, gender, ancestry, ethnicity, language, ability, faith, age, socioeconomic status, sexual orientation, and gender identity/expression.

b. Sexualized Violence is part of a broader context of systemic oppression, including but not limited to sexism, misogyny, racism, colonialism, ableism, homophobia, and/or transphobia. People who are Indigenous, racialized, disabled, gender non-conforming, 2SLGBTQIA+ as well as people and communities with historical and lived experience of systemic inequality and oppression have:

  • Increased risk of experiencing Sexualized Violence or Gender-Based Violence.
  • Increased Barriers to disclosing or reporting Sexualized Violence or Gender-Based Violence.
  • Increased risk of being blamed or disbelieved.

c. People who identify as men and boys experience Sexual Violence, however, social attitudes and stereotypes about men and masculinity create Barriers to disclosing experiences of Sexual Violence.

To mitigate these Harms, Mount Allison University has employed Anti-Oppressive Practices informed by intersectional understandings of Sexualized Violence and Gender-Based Violence in developing its policies and procedures. The University acknowledges that anyone can experience Sexual Violence and that all Survivors of Sexual Violence deserve to be heard and supported.

1.6 Sexualized Violence, Gender-Based Violence, and colonialism

a. Mount Allison University is located in Mi’kma’ki, the homeland and unceded territory of the Mi’kmaq. Post-Secondary Institutions, including Mount Allison University, were and continue to be shaped by colonialism.

b. As a result of historical and continued colonialism in Canada, Indigenous people face higher rates of all forms of violence, especially Indigenous women, girls, Two-Spirit, and non-binary people. The realities of Historical Trauma and intergenerational trauma and contemporary colonialism are outlined in Power and Place: The Final Report of the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls (2019) and the NWAC Action Plan to End the Attack Against Indigenous Women, Girls, and Gender-Diverse People (2021).

c. Research on the general issue of Sexualized Violence in the postsecondary setting has found that Indigenous students faced higher rates of racial discrimination than other students and are overrepresented as victims of hate crimes;  Indigenous students experience higher rates of sexual harassment; and that while the rate of unwanted sexual behaviour is highest for both Indigenous and non-Indigenous women-identifying students, male-identified Indigenous students face higher rates of Sexualized Violence than that of their non-Indigenous male-identified counterparts.

d. Mount Allison University is dedicated to ensuring that Indigenous community members have access to culturally appropriate supports, resources, and accommodations. All staff and faculty involved in provision of Sexualized Violence services, supports, resources, and accommodations will receive ongoing training and education in areas including, but not limited to colonialism and systemic oppression; bias, Anti-Oppressive Practices, and anti-racism; local language and culture; and health and healing practices.

e. Sexualized Violence Services will work with the Indigenous Affairs Coordinator to:

  • Educate community members about resources such as Indigenous spaces on campus, Elders, and ceremony.
  • Ensure appropriate support pathways and advocacy are available and accessible.
  • Encourage campus-wide learning about the true history of Canada and Indigenous history.
  • Take steps to address stereotypes that hypersexualize and demean Indigenous women, girls, and 2SLGBTQQIA people.
  • Ensure that all Sexualized Violence services for Indigenous community members include supports for healing from unresolved trauma, including intergenerational, multigenerational, and complex trauma.
Part Two: Disclosure and Complaints

2.1 Provision of Support, Resources and Accommodations

a. Mount Allison Community members who have experienced or are affected by Sexualized Violence are entitled to support, resources, and accommodations whether they decide to make a formal Complaint or not. Survivors only need to make a Disclosure of their Survivor status to access support, resources, and accommodations. It is the right of Survivors to disclose what, when, and how much they choose.

b. Sexualized Violence Services will work with Survivors and those affected by Sexualized Violence on a case-by-case basis to determine how to fulfill their unique individual needs, in collaboration with the relevant departments and services. The University is committed to ensuring pathways of Disclosure and Complaints, and their attendant procedures, are accessible to all.

2.2 Disclosures and Complaints

a. All members of the Mount Allison Community can make a Disclosure or submit a Complaint to the University. The University will provide efficient and Trauma-Informed pathways for making Disclosures and filing Complaints. Sexualized Violence Services, in collaboration with trained staff from across Mount Allison University, will assist Survivors in navigating their options, ensuring that they have the information and resources necessary for their decision-making and healing process.

b. There is no deadline to make a Disclosure or Complaint. A Disclosure does not automatically result in a Complaint by the disclosing individual, nor does it necessarily initiate investigative or non-investigative pathways. Once a Disclosure has been made, the disclosing individual will have the option of filing a Complaint on their own behalf.

c. A disclosing individual or Complainant can subsequently choose to withdraw their Complaint, discontinue accommodations/services provided or stop participating in the processing of their Disclosure or Complaint. As outlined in section 2.3 below, the University may investigate or continue processing a Disclosure/Complaint, even where the Complaint is withdrawn or the disclosing individual/Complainant stops participating in the processing of their Disclosure or Complaint.

d. The Sexualized Violence Policy does not preclude the right to pursue legal action, including through the criminal justice system or the Human Rights Act of New Brunswick. In cases where the Sexual Violence is perpetrated by a non-Mount Allison Community member the procedures in this policy may not apply; however the University may still provide support to the Survivor and may implement safety measures such as taking steps to prohibit the person alleged to have engaged in Sexualized Violence from attending campus. Information about options and what to expect for all Parties can be found in the Sexualized Violence Procedure.

2.3 Response and Investigation without a Survivor Complainant

a. The University may investigate Sexual Violence even when the Survivor has chosen not to make a Disclosure or file a Complaint (such as Anonymous Reports or third-party reports) or where they have chosen to withdraw their Complaint or discontinue or stop participating in the processing of their Disclosure or Complaint. Examples of such circumstances include, but are not limited to:

  • Where there is risk to the safety of individuals and/or community. For example, when a repeat perpetrator has been identified.
  • Where required by law.
  • Where there is evidence of Sexual Violence in the public realm. For example, a video, image, or narrative posted on social media.

b. If one of the above circumstances applies, affected individuals will be informed. They are entitled to information and support throughout the process but may choose not to participate or receive additional support. The University’s response will be determined by several factors including legal obligations, the information available, Procedural Fairness, and the Survivor’s decision regarding whether they will participate.

2.4 Outcomes

a. The outcome of a Complaint Process will vary and may include Accountability Measures, remedies, and sanctions; including Survivor-requested or directed outcomes, depending on their wants and needs. Specific disciplinary measures for Employees may also be outlined in their respective collective agreements (see collective agreements). Outcomes may include but are not limited to:

  • Survivor impact statement.
  • Letter of apology or apology process.
  • Facilitated discussion.
  • Mandated educational workshops or counselling.
  • No contact direction.
  • Behavioral contract.
  • Probationary measures.
  • Letter of reprimand.
  • Restrictions related to accessing buildings or parts of campus.
  • Restrictions related to or removal from certain activities, services, and facilities.
  • Removal from social, athletic, or other extra-curricular activities.
  • Community service activities
  • Removal from academic classes, course sections, labs, or tutorials.
  • Relocation or eviction from University owned and/or operated housing.
  • Change in work assignment.
  • Suspension from work for a set time with or without pay.
  • Dismissal from employment.
  • Suspension from the University for a specific period.
  • Expulsion from the University permanently.
Part Three: Principles Governing the Response and Investigative Process

This policy and its attendant procedures integrate Trauma-Informed practices, Harm Reduction, and Procedural Fairness for all Parties. This approach fosters an enhanced environment for all Parties which accounts for safety, meaningful participation, and human rights. These principles will lessen the likelihood of any party experiencing Re-traumatization, Sanctuary Trauma, or Institutional Trauma/Institutional Betrayal.

Therefore, the designated university official may exercise discretion in authorizing support, resources, accommodations, outcomes and/or sanctions on behalf of the University, including in such cases where the decision may contravene existing policies, processes and/or regulations. In such instances, where not otherwise required by law, the Sexualized Violence Policy will be considered to have taken precedence.

Where the confidentiality of those involved in a Complaint is a fundamental tenet of Mount Allison’s practices, the designated University official will exercise good judgment and reasonableness in carrying out their duties, and will treat information related to a compliant confidentially; as will any other University official or individual involved in the compliant process.

3.1 Procedural Fairness

a. The University has a duty to provide fair processes by which Disclosures and reports are made, investigations are conducted, and decisions are made and communicated. Procedural Fairness applies to all Parties and to a lesser extent, witnesses. Procedural Fairness includes the right to a timely process, an unbiased Decision-Maker, and the right to make submissions and provide responses or counterarguments.

b. Providing Trauma-Informed processes to all Parties is an additional element of Procedural Fairness. Individual responses to and manifestations of trauma are diverse. The University recognizes that any person may carry a history of trauma that can be Triggered.

c. Procedural Fairness includes recognition of the emotional, physical, and material impacts not only of Sexualized Violence, but of trauma responses and Harms that may arise during Complaints Processes. To ensure Procedural Fairness, those who make a Disclosure or Complaint of Sexual Violence will not be asked irrelevant questions about their sexual history (including with the Respondent), their sexual interests, their sexual expression identity, or any questions based on Victim Blaming or myths/stereotypes about Sexualized Violence.

3.2 Timeline of the Process

The University recognizes that this may be a difficult process and will work to provide reasonable timelines without compromising Procedural Fairness as well as ensuring that all Parties are informed of expected timelines throughout the process. Further information about timelines is available in the Sexualized Violence Procedure.

3.3 Transparency of the Process

a. Parties will be advised of their rights and responsibilities related to the process.
b. Parties will be advised of what to expect from the process.
c. Parties will be kept informed about the process and outcome.
d. Parties will receive updates on the progress of their case, including any delays.

3.4 Support for Parties Involved in the Process

a. All Parties are entitled to be accompanied by a support person. If no support person is available, the University may provide one. All Parties will be offered referral to appropriate personal support resources.

b. Those who have experienced trauma or Secondary Trauma by virtue of witnessing or knowing about incidents of Sexualized Violence or Gender-Based Violence may also receive support from the University in the form of counselling resources.
3.5 Confidentiality

a. To create a secure environment within which those who have experienced Sexual Violence can confidently make Disclosures or Complaints, privacy and confidentiality must be respected and maintained. Standards of confidentiality not only protect the rights of those involved in a Sexual Violence Disclosure but are also key to preserving the integrity of any investigation that is undertaken. 

b. Those who are involved in the Complaints Process, including Complainants, Respondents, and witnesses, are expected to keep the details of any case confidential. This does not limit Complainants, Respondents, or witnesses from sharing details with their Circle of Support which can include their medical provider, counsellor, social worker, family, and trusted friends.

c. Confidentiality is not limitless, and the University must balance its legal obligations to ensure learning, working, and living environments that are free from Sexual Violence. The University may not be able to maintain confidentiality when:

  • Employees require information to carry out their authorized duties under the Sexual Violence Policy. For example, conduct investigations, implement a decision, or impose Immediate Measures.
  • There is imminent risk of life-threatening Harm. For example, expressed suicidal intention or the expression of intent to mortally Harm another person.
  • There is imminent risk of Harm to another person or group. For example, if there is reasonable grounds to believe that someone is targeting a person or group for Harm.
  • There is imminent risk to the Mount Allison Community. For example, there are reasonable grounds to believe a person or group is planning to commit mass Harm to the community
  • It is deemed reasonable by the University that sharing information will reduce Harm in the community, aid a Complainant in accessing services and support, or support a Respondent through mandatory education or counselling. For example, if a repeat or chronic perpetrator is identified, the University may act on its own accord to limit their potential to Harm.
  • Evidence of Sexual Violence is available in the public realm. For example, if a video is shared publicly on social media.
  • Action or reporting is required by law. For example, if the University is subpoenaed. And, if minors or adults 18 and under are involved Social Services must be contacted.

If one of the above circumstances applies, individuals will be informed and supported throughout the process.

3.6 Rights and Responsibilities of Involved Parties

3.6.1 Rights of Complainants, those who have experienced Sexual Violence but choose not to file a formal Complaint, people who have experienced Sexual Violence and who disclose, make a Disclosure or report an experience of Sexualized Violence, have the following rights:

a. to have their confidentiality and privacy protected;
b. to have any limits of confidentiality explained prior to Disclosure, where possible;
c. to be treated with dignity and respect;
d. to be informed about on- and off-campus services and resources;
e. to be informed about the procedures in place to address Sexualized Violence and reporting options;
f. to decide whether or not to access available services;
g. to make an informed decision regarding whether to report the incident to campus authorities and/or local police;
h. to have an investigation with the University’s full cooperation;
i. to not have their sexual history questioned in any way, including prior sexual activity with the Respondent;
j.  to have a safety plan in place;
k. to have necessary actions taken to prevent unwanted contact with the Respondent;
l. to receive a summary of the investigation results, Investigation Decision, reasons for the Investigation Decision and any applicable sanctions;
m. to Appeal the Investigation Decision and any disciplinary or remedial measures following the investigation.

3.6.2 Rights of Respondents as well as those who may have committed or are alleged to have engaged in Sexualized Violence but have not had a formal Complaint filed against them, people who have committed or who are alleged to have engaged in Sexualized Violence have the following rights:

a. to have their confidentiality and privacy protected;
b. to have any limits of confidentiality explained prior to providing response to Complaint, where possible;
c. to be treated with dignity and respect;
d. to be informed about on- and off-campus services and resources;
e. to be informed about the procedures in place to address Sexualized Violence;
f. to decide whether or not to access available services;
g. to participate fully in an investigation with the University’s full cooperation;
h. to receive a summary of the investigation results, Investigation Decision, reasons for the Investigation Decision and any applicable sanctions;
i. to Appeal the Investigation Decision and any disciplinary or remedial measures following the investigation.

3.7 Amnesty Provisions

Those who disclose or make a Disclosure or Complaint of Sexual Violence will not be subjected to discipline for violations of Mount Allison Policies 4000-4099 at the time(s) the violence occurred. They will not be asked irrelevant questions about their substance use or prior history of substance use.

3.8 Protection from Retaliation or Threats of Retaliation

Retaliation against someone who discloses or reports Sexual Violence, makes a Disclosure or a Complaint is prohibited by any member of the Mount Allison Community. It is also prohibited to retaliate or conspire to retaliate against that individual’s support networks, friends, families, or acquaintances.

3.9 Trained Personnel

Everyone involved in the processes of Disclosures, Complaints, investigation, decision-making, and service provision will be trained in their roles, in addition to receiving mandatory relevant training.

Part Four: Maintenance of Statistics and Reporting

4.1 Policy Review

This policy will be reviewed one year after it is implemented after which it will be reviewed every three years, or earlier, if necessary, by the Board of Regents Student Affairs Committee, the Office of the Vice-President, International and Student Affairs, and Sexualized Violence Services and in meaningful consultation with members of the Mount Allison community via a cross-campus group made up of Students, faculty, and staff members.

4.2 Records and Data Collection

a. The University will securely maintain complete records. These records will be kept for at least 10 years following the Complaint. They shall include:

  • The number of Disclosures & Complaints
  • The nature of the Disclosures & Complaints (what they involve)
  • Demographic information (gender, age, if available)
  • The number of anonymous and third-party/bystander Disclosures and/or Complaints
  • Location of incident(s) if known (on/off campus)
  • Pathway outcomes of Disclosures and Complaints (investigative, non-investigative)
  • Procedural outcomes (Immediate Measures, sanctions)
  • Supports, services, and accommodations provided to Students

b. Annual report will be compiled by the Sexual Violence Prevention and Education Coordinator and presented to the Vice-President, International and Student Affairs yearly. Annual reports will be posted on the University website and made available upon request. The information provided in the annual report will not disclose personal or identifying information in accordance with the Right to Information and Protection of Privacy Act.

Part Five: Terminology and Definitions

Accountability Measures: an umbrella term for sanctions, disciplinary actions, outcomes, and other remedies imposed by the University as a result of a determination that a member of the Mount Allison Community has committed a breach of the Sexualized Violence Policy.

Anonymous Report: a report made to the University by a Mount Allison Community member/group without revealing their identity for the purposes of initiating Accountability Measures.  

Anonymous REES Report: provides an option for Survivors to have their anonymous data about campus-related Sexual Violence provided to the Post-Secondary Institution without making a formal Disclosure or Complaint. This data can be used to inform policy, develop prevention education, enhance security on campus and meet reporting requirements.

Anti-Oppressive Practice: strategies, theories, actions and practices that seek to dismantle the effects of institutionalized power and privilege and to equalize power imbalances.

Appeal: a procedural mechanism for a Respondent or Complainant to challenge the Investigation Decision and any disciplinary or remedial measures following the investigation made under this policy.

Barrier: anything physical, architectural, technological or attitudinal, anything that is based on information or communications or anything that is the result of a policy or a practice that hinders full and equal participation in the policies and processes of a community.

Circle of Support: A group of identified individuals that a person relies on to provide support. A Circle of Support can include a medical provider, counsellor, social worker, family, and trusted friends.

Complainant: an individual who makes a verbal or written Complaint of Sexualized Violence or Gender-Based Violence.

Complaint: a written or spoken statement in which someone says that someone has Harmed somebody else, done something illegal, or violated institutional policies. A formal account of an incident of Sexualized Violence for the purposes of initiating Sexualized Violence Policy and Procedures on or off campus.

Complaints Process(es): a Complaints Process begins with a formal report to the University official designated under this Policy’s procedures, which leads to an investigation, findings, and possible Accountability Measures, outcomes, or remedies under the SexualizedViolence Policy.

Connect to My Campus (REES): enables Survivors to reach out to the designated staff contact at their Post-Secondary Institution for information about supports and resources available to them both on and off campus. REES provides the option to send their Record and/or Narrative of the incident online directly to the staff contact.

Consent: is mutual and voluntary agreement. Consent in the context of sexual activity is a voluntary agreement to engage in sexual activity. Section 273.1(1) of the Criminal Code defines consent as a person’s voluntary agreement to “engage in the sexual activity in question.” Consent for any sexual activity must be freely given. Consent cannot be assumed. Passivity, silence or the absence of “no” is not Consent. Consent cannot be given by someone who is intoxicated, unconscious, or otherwise considered incapable of giving their Consent. Consent can also not be freely given if it follows coercion or threats to personal safety, or threats to Harm others. Consent can be withdrawn at any time, with either words or actions.

Consent Culture: a culture that does not force anyone into anything, respects bodily autonomy and is based on the belief that a person is always the best judge of their own wants and needs. Consent to any activity is ongoing, freely given, informed and enthusiastic. Consent culture is not limited to sexual activity.

Cultures of Sexualized Violence: An environment in which Sexual Violence is normalized and excused and Survivors are blamed for their assaults. Cultures of Sexual Violence can be perpetuated by the use of misogynistic language, objectification of bodies, and glamorization of Sexual Violence, thereby creating a society that disregards or downgrades human rights and safety. Cultures of Sexual Violence may be found in jokes, TV, music, advertising, legal jargon, laws, words, and imagery that make Sexual Violence and sexual coercion seem normal.

Decision-Maker: the individual or individuals designated to determine whether the SexualizedViolence Policy has been breached as well as the appropriate outcomes.

Disability: any condition including physical, mental, intellectual, cognitive, learning, communication or sensory—or a functional limitation—whether permanent, temporary or episodic in nature, or evident or not, that, in interaction with a Barrier, hinders a person’s full and equal participation in society.

Disclosure: when an individual shares that they have experienced Sexual Violence. Survivors make Disclosures for many reasons, including wanting to tell their own story. Survivors may also disclose their experience so that they can receive support, accommodations, and resources from the University.

Employee: any person who has an employment relationship with Mount Allison University or who had an employment relationship with Mount Allison University at the time an incident occurred.

Gender-Based Violence (GBV): an umbrella term that includes Sexual Violence and other forms of abuse perpetrated against someone based on their gender expression, identity, or perceived gender. Forms of Gender-Based Violence include physical violence; online violence/technology-facilitated violence; Sexual Violence including sexual abuse, sexual harassment, sexual assault and sexual exploitation; spiritual abuse; financial abuse; harassment including stalking; and emotional and psychological violence including put-downs, bullying, threats and intimidation.

Harm: in the context of Sexualized Violence on campus,Harm refers to negative consequences of Sexualized Violence incidents, the Disclosure/Complaints Process, or elements of the process.

Harm Reduction: the recognition that Post-Secondary Institutions and the processes they have implemented to address Sexualized Violence can cause Harm. Practices that seek to limit and reduce negative consequences on the involved Parties.

Hazing: any activity expected of someone joining a group or to maintain status in a group that humiliates, degrades or risks emotional and/or physical Harm, regardless of the person's willingness to participate. Hazing can include but is not limited to verbal or written abuse; threats or implied threats; forced alcohol consumption or alcoholic drinking games; illegal activities, inappropriate exposure to the elements; nudity; sexual activity; physical Harm or potential physical Harm; sleep deprivation; and physical restraint.  Mount Allison, Hazing is a violation of the Residence Life Code of Conduct as well as the Student Life Code of Conduct.

Historical Trauma: the emotional and psychological trauma spanning generations, emanating from group trauma. Historical trauma can also describe a previous trauma that occurred prior to attending a Post-Secondary Institution.  

Immediate Measures: conditions or restrictions placed on a person who is alleged to have perpetrated Sexualized Violence or Gender-Based Violence. These measures are imposed to protect the safety of the Complainant or others who are involved in a Disclosure or Complaint.
Investigation Decision: following the completion of an Investigation and review of the Investigation Report, the Decision-Maker’s ultimate conclusion as to whether the Sexual Violence Policy has been breached.

Institutional Betrayal: wrongdoings perpetrated by an institution upon individuals dependent on that institution, including failure to prevent or respond supportively to Sexualized Violence.

Institutional Trauma: institutional action or inaction that worsens the impact of traumatic experiences.

Intersectionality: a term coined by Dr. Kimberlé Crenshaw, Intersectionality refers to an approach that acknowledges the integrative and complex nature of political and social identities and oppressions. Those identities and social categorizations can be understood under racial, gender, sexual, religious, disabled, class, and religious lines, to name a few. An intersectional approach to Sexualized Violence considers the fact that the impact of Sexualized Violence can overlap and interact with experiences of sexism, homophobia, transphobia, racism, classism, ableism and so on. The overlap of any of these identities creates a complex system of discrimination where individuals face multiple oppressions.

Investigator: in context of the Sexualized Violence reporting process, an Investigator is an individual who gathers relevant information, interviews the Complainant, Respondent, and witnesses, and provides the investigation report to the Decision-Maker. The report includes their assessment of policy violations and will recommend possible courses of actions.

Mount Allison Community: includes University Employees, Students, contracted employees working on University property or on behalf of the University, their visitors and guests and visitors and guests of the University.

“Party” or “Parties”: a person who brings or is the subject of a Complaint, who participates and is accorded Procedural Fairness rights in a Complaints Process. Parties can include Respondents, Complainants, or Post-Secondary Institutions depending on the type of Complaint.

Post-Secondary Institution: includes colleges, universities, Indigenous institutes, technical institutes, collèges d'enseignement général et professionnel (CEGEPs), trade schools, and other institutions outside the K-12 systems, that fall under provincial or territorial legislation.

Procedural Fairness: whether the processes that Decision-Makers use are fair. Procedural Fairness requires that individuals who are Party to a Complaint must be accorded rights throughout the process and are applied to all Parties.

Protected Reporting Activity: reporting activity including a Disclosure of Sexual Violence or filing a Sexual Violence Complaint that all community members may engage in without fear of Retaliation.

REES: a secure online platform for reporting Sexual Violence, available 24/7. Mount Allison community members are encouraged to use REES to disclose and report incidents of Sexualized Violence using Connect to My Campus, Repeat Perpetrator Identification, or Anonymous Reporting. REES is an acronym for respect, educate, empower, and survivors. Respect: that Survivors have diverse needs and that a range of reporting options should be available. Providing anonymous data allows a Survivor to be counted and have their voice heard. Educate: Survivors by providing information about Sexual Violence policies and procedures, community resources and supports, evidence collection and retention, healthcare considerations and reporting options. Empower: Survivors by providing options about how, when and to whom they share their story. Survivors: REES is deeply committed to developing reporting tools that are Survivor-Centered and Trauma-Informed.

Repeat Perpetrator Identification (RPI): a feature of REES that helps to identify a person that has perpetrated Sexual Violence against multiple people. A Survivor can provide specific identifying information about the perpetrator and if there is a match of identifying information provided by two Survivors, the designated campus contact will be informed.

Residence Leadership: a person in a position of authority, whether paid or not. In the context of this policy, “Residence Leadership” includes Dons, Assistant Dons, and Residence Assistants.

Respondent: the person alleged to have committed Sexualized Violence on or off-campus. The subject of a Complaint(s).

Re-traumatization: when someone re-experiences or re-lives a traumatic event. This can occur if a Survivor of Sexualized Violence is forced to “re-tell” their trauma story multiple times. Re-traumatization can Trigger symptoms such as but not limited to flashbacks, nightmares, sleeping issues, anxiety, and worsened physical and mental health. Re-traumatization can also be brought upon by stimulus such as a smell, taste, or sound or by being in the same place where Harm occurred.  

Retaliation: an adverse impact related to a previous engagement in Protected Reporting Activity. Retaliatory actions can be broken down into two types: overt and subtle. Overt Retaliations are direct, openly carried out, and clearly retaliatory. Subtle Retaliations are indirect, concealed, or disguised ways of engaging in actions that are averse to a Party who has participated in Protected Reporting Activity. Retaliatory activity includes but is not limited to biased assessment or supervision, refusal to write letters of recommendation, poor grades, physical or verbal harassment, exclusion from social activities or groups, or spreading rumours.

Sanctuary Trauma: occurs when a person who has experienced Harm goes to what they expect to be a supportive or protective environment but discovers more (and sometimes worsened) Harm.

Secondary Trauma: consequential behaviours and emotions resulting from knowing about or witnessing a traumatizing event.

“Sexual Violence” or “Sexualized Violence”: any violence, physical or psychological, carried out through sexual means or by targeting sexuality. This includes, but is not limited to, sexual harassment, sexual assault, stalking, Stealthing, indecent exposure, voyeurism, degrading sexual imagery, distribution of sexual images or video without Consent, Hazing rituals, or cyber harassment or cyber stalking of a sexual nature. Some acts of Sexual Violence intersect with or may be influenced by systemic oppression related, but not limited, to protected grounds under the New Brunswick Human Rights Act.

Stealthing: the non-consensual act of removing a condom or other protection during sex. One partner stealthily removes the condom without the other noticing. Another form of Stealthing is putting holes in the condoms to attempt non-consensual pregnancy. Stealthing is against the law and is defined as sexual assault.

Student: an individual who is registered in a course of study at Mount Allison University or who was so registered at the time an incident occurred.

Survivor: any individual who has experienced sexual or Gender-Based Violence. An individual may use the term “Survivor” as a way to claim power and highlight the strength it took to survive their experience/experiences of violence. Some individuals prefer to identify with the term victim. This is a deeply personal choice.

Survivor-Centered: a Survivor-Centered approach prioritizes the rights and needs of those who have experienced Violence and Gender-Based Violence. A Survivor-Centered approach places agency, control, and decision-making in the hands of the person who has survived Harm. This approach acknowledges the potential for further Harm and Re-traumatization and attempts to mitigate these possibilities.

Trauma -Informed: acknowledging the Harm endured by Complainants and Survivors along with an understanding of the impacts of trauma on an individual’s emotional, cognitive, physical, and sexual wellbeing. The creation of processes, procedures, resources, and support should be Trauma-Informed. A Trauma-Informed approach is necessary in order to avoid Re-traumatizing individuals and maintaining their dignity throughout any process, procedure, support, or accommodation they may participate in.

Trigger: a stimulus like a smell, sound, or sight that creates feelings of trauma and sets off a memory of a trauma or traumatic experience. Triggers can be known or unpredictable and may produce somatic experiences that include but are not limited to flashbacks, panic, anxiety, depression, sadness, or flight/fight/freeze/fawn reactions.
Trigger Warning: a notice of potential Triggers in future discussion or content. The aim is to let people with mental health concerns avoid or prepare themselves. Using Trigger Warnings is a Trauma-Informed practice that acknowledges the lived experience of people living with trauma. While it is impossible to predict all Triggers, engaging with communication about potential Triggers can create more equitable education and workspaces.

University: the “University” means Mount Allison University.

Victim Blaming: when the default response to Sexualized Violence or Gender-Based Violence is to assume that it is the fault of the victim/Survivor. Rather than the person who caused the Harm, the person who experienced the Harm is held responsible. Victim Blaming is a key component of Cultures of Sexualized Violence.