Support for Respondents

Being accused of sex or gender related discrimination, including sexual harassment or sexual assault, can be a worrisome and confusing experience. There are campus resources available to answer your questions and offer you support throughout the investigation process. Please don’t be afraid to utilize these resources during the process.

You’ll note that if you are accused of sexual misconduct, you are referred to throughout this website as the “respondent.” Under Title IX, the respondent and the complainant both have the right to a fair and equitable adjudication process.

The Title IX Coordinator can answer any questions you may have about your rights and responsibilities during the process and make referrals to other resources. Visit this website's pages for more information about confidential on-campus resources and additional off-campus and community resources where you can seek counseling and assistance throughout the process.

What to Expect?

Affirmative Action & Equal Opportunity can assist you with understanding OHSU policies.  If applicable, respondents will receive a timely notice of the allegations against them and will be provided with a meaningful opportunity to respond to those charges.

The Title IX investigation process is guided by the OHSU Equal Opportunity Complaints PolicyAAEO Prohibited Complaint Procedures, and OHSU Discrimination Claim Investigation Protocol.  An investigation may be formal or informal, depending on the nature of the claim.

During a formal investigation, the standard of evaluation that will be used is the preponderance of evidence standard, which means that the evidence obtained during the investigation must demonstrate that it is “more likely than not” that the respondent has violated OHSU policy.

All parties (complainant and respondent) to a formal investigation are entitled to the same rights, including, but not limited to:

  • The right to be treated with respect and dignity by OHSU officials and to be provided the same level of support as the complainant
  • The right to a fair, thorough, neutral and impartial investigation of the incident
  • The right to an advisor who can offer passive assistance during an interview as well as any OHSU meeting related to the adjudication that involves the complainant or the respondent
  • The right to provide relevant evidence and witnesses
  • The right to be silent in response to questions
  • The right to notification, in writing, of the outcome of the investigation

Your primary resource is your advisor. An advisor is any person of your choosing who serves as a passive support person during an official meeting that is part of the investigation process. This person provides emotional support and may help as you navigate the process but may not speak on your behalf.

Respondents who need academic assistance or other interim measures should contact the Title IX Coordinator, Laura Stadum ( or 503-494-0258).


  • Listen from your friend’s point of view
  • Accept your friend as a person, even if you have questions about your friend’s behavior.
  • Provide an atmosphere where your friend can express honest feelings.
  • Be honest with your friend about how much support you can provide.
  • Help your friend generate alternatives and options for dealing with emotions and the situation.
  • Let your friend make the ultimate decision about what to do.
  • Direct your friend to campus resources, including the Department of AAEO, their HR Business Partner, the Employee Assistance Program or JBT Health & Wellness Center
  • Realize that you may also be affected, and seek counseling if necessary.


  • Don’t try to tell your friend what to do.
  • Don’t offer insincere help or support.
  • Don’t blame your friend for what happened.
  • Don’t blame the student who has brought the complaint.
  • Don’t assume you know how your friend wants to be treated.
  • Don’t rely on your friend to deal with your own feelings about what might have happened.
  • Don’t break your friend’s trust by telling others what might have happened in conversation or on social media.