Responsible Employee Guidance
University employees designated as “responsible employees” have an obligation to report any information about possible discrimination, harassment and sexual misconduct to OIE. They must promptly report all known relevant information, including but not limited to: (1) the name of the complainant, respondent, and any witnesses; (2) the date, time, and location of the misconduct; and (3) any other pertinent facts. OIE will then determine next steps.
Responsible employees include:
Please note that no employee is authorized to investigate or resolve reports or complaints of this nature without express direction from OIE.
Step 1: INFORM
Inform the student/staff/faculty (hereinafter referred to as the "individual") that you are a responsible employee and have a duty to report information regarding discrimination, harassment and/or sexual misconduct. Be thoughtful and try not to stop the individual from sharing their experience too abruptly.
What should I say if the individual begins to share information about possible discrimination, harassment, and/or sexual misconduct?
- “I think that you are about to tell me something about an unwanted sexual situation/an incident that I may be obligated to report. I am here to listen and I want to help you, but I am a responsible employee and I am required to take the information that you share with me to the Office of Institutional Equity (OIE).”
- “Even if you do not feel comfortable sharing anything more with me, I can still help connect you with on-campus confidential resources.” [For more information about confidential resources, see below and the Sexual Misconduct Response and Prevention website.]
- “If you feel comfortable sharing your experience with me, we can talk about how OIE will reach out to you after I fulfill my responsible employee obligation.”
What should I do if the individual discloses more information?
Please explain that:
- Someone from OIE will reach out to the individual to offer information about their options and various resources;
- While it is up to the individual whether they want to respond to OIE’s e-mail, OIE will also simultaneously assess what risk the reported complaint may pose to the individual and/or the JHU community, and thus if any immediate action is needed;
- OIE will send at least one additional follow-up e-mail if the individual does not respond to OIE’s initial outreach; and
- The individual can connect with confidential and non-confidential resources regardless of whether or not they engage with OIE.
Step 2: SUPPORT
How should I show my support for the individual who disclosed to me?
- Patiently listen, don’t judge, and allow the individual to share what they want.
- Empower the individual to make their own choices about which resources to utilize and what to do next, if anything.
Step 3: REPORT
Promptly contact the Office of Institutional Equity to report the incident (no later than 24-48 hours of speaking with the individual). Call OIE at 410-516-8075, e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org, or file an online report at oie.jhu.edu
What does OIE do after receiving a report from a Responsible Employee?
OIE will reach out to the individual – most often by e-mail – to offer information about their options and various resources. OIE also seeks to understand the individual’s preferences for moving forward. While certain situations and information – such as active safety concerns – may require OIE to take action without first speaking with the individual, OIE generally prefers to speak with the individual before moving forward with formal action, like an investigation.
- Confidential Resources
- Non-Confidential Resources
- Discrimination and Harassment FAQs
- Sexual Misconduct FAQs
- PDF: Responding to Student Disclosures of Discrimination, Harassment and Sexual Misconduct (updated August 2021)
- PDF: Responding to Staff and Faculty Disclosures of Discrimination, Harassment and Sexual Misconduct (updated August 2021)