Confidentiality and Sexual Misconduct, Dating Violence, Domestic Violence and Stalking
The university encourages victims of sexual misconduct, dating violence, domestic violence or stalking to talk to someone about what happened - so they can get the support they need, and so the university can respond appropriately.
Privileged and Confidential Communications
Physicians, Psychotherapists, Professional Licensed Counselors, Licensed Clinical Social Workers, and Clergy - Physicians, psychotherapists, professional, licensed counselors, licensed clinical social workers, and clergy who work or volunteer on or off campus, acting solely in those roles or capacities as part of their employment, and who provide medical or mental health treatment or counseling (and those who act under their supervision, including all individuals who work or volunteer in their centers and offices) including those who act in that role under their supervision) may not report any information about an incident of sexual misconduct to anyone else at the university, including the Title IX Coordinator, without the victim's consent. A victim can seek assistance and support from physicians, psychotherapists, professional, licensed counselors, licensed clinical social workers and clergy without triggering a university investigation that could reveal the victim's identity or the fact of the victim's disclosure. However, see limited exceptions below regarding when health care practitioners must report to local law enforcement agencies. Health care practitioners should explain these limited exceptions to victims, if applicable.
Sexual Assault and Domestic Violence Counselors and Advocates - Sexual assault and domestic violence counselors and advocates who work or volunteer on or off campus in sexual assault centers, victim advocacy offices, women's centers and health centers and who are acting solely in that role (including those who act in that role under their supervision, along with non-professional counselors or advocates who work or volunteer in sexual assault centers, victim advocacy offices, women's centers, gender equity centers, or health centers), may talk to a victim without revealing any information about the victim and the incident of sexual misconduct to anyone else at the university, including the Title IX Coordinator, without the victim's consent. A victim can seek assistance and support from these counselors and advocates without triggering a university investigation that could reveal his/her identity or that a victim disclosed an incident to them. However, see limited exceptions below regarding when sexual assault and domestic violence counselors and advocates must report to local law enforcement agencies. Counselors and advocates should explain these limited exceptions to victims, if applicable.
The university will be unable to conduct an investigation into a particular incident or pursue disciplinary action against a perpetrator if a victim chooses to (1) speak only to a physician, professional licensed counselor, licensed clinical social worker, clergy member, sexual assault counselor, domestic violence counselor or advocate; and (2) maintain complete confidentiality. Even so, these individuals will assist victims in receiving other necessary protection and support, such as victim advocacy, disability, medical/health or mental health services, or legal services, and will advise victims regarding their right to file a Title IX complaint with the university and a separate complaint with local or university police. If a victim insists on confidentiality, such professionals, counselors and advocates will likely not be able to assist the victim with: university academic support or accommodations; changes to university-based living or working schedules; or adjustments to course schedules. A victim who at first requests confidentiality may later decide to file a complaint with the university or report the incident to the police, and thus have the incident fully investigated. These counselors and advocates can provide victims with that assistance if requested by the victim. These counselors and advocates will also explain that Title IX includes protections against retaliation, and that the university will not only take steps to prevent retaliation when it knows or reasonably should know of possible retaliation, but will also take strong responsive action if it retaliation occurs.
EXCEPTIONS: Under California law, any health practitioner employed in a health facility, clinic, physician's office, or local or state public health department or clinic is required to make a report to local law enforcement if he or she provides medical services for a physical condition to a patient/victim who he or she knows or reasonably suspects is suffering from (1) a wound or physical injury inflicted by a firearm; or (2) any wound or other physical injury inflicted upon a victim where the injury is the result of assaultive or abusive conduct (including sexual misconduct, domestic violence, and dating violence). This exception does not apply to sexual assault and domestic violence counselors and advocates. Health care practitioners should explain this limited exception to victims, if applicable.
Additionally, under California law, all professionals described above (physicians, psychotherapists, professional counselors, licensed clinical social workers, clergy, and sexual assault and domestic violence counselors and advocates) are mandatory child abuse and neglect reporters, and are required to report incidents involving victims under 18 years of age to local law enforcement. These professionals will explain this limited exception to victims, if applicable.
Finally, some or all of these professionals may also have reporting obligations under California law to: (1) local law enforcement in cases involving threats of immediate or imminent harm to self or others where disclosure of the information is necessary to prevent the threatened danger; or (2) to the court if compelled by court order or subpoena in a criminal proceeding related to the sexual misconduct, dating or domestic violence, or stalking incident. If applicable, these professionals will explain this limited exception to victims.