What is Bias?
Bias is defined as any act that is motivated, in whole or in part, due to an individual’s age, race, ethnicity, disability, gender, gender identity or expression, immigration or citizenship status, marital status, national origin, veteran status, religion or religious practice, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, weight, political affiliation, medical condition, or mental health.
What are Bias-related incidents?
Bias-related incidents are incidents that occur on campus or an area that impacts the university community in which one can reasonably conclude is directed at a student or student organization due to that individual or group’s age, color, creed, disability, ethnicity, gender, gender identity or expression, marital status, national origin, race, religion, sexual orientation, veteran status, or any combination of these or related factors.
What are some examples of Bias-related incidents?
Some examples of bias-related incidents, include, but are not limited to:
- using racial, ethnic, or other slur as a joke or to identify someone,
- posting or commenting on social media combating bigotry,
- racial epithets written on a dry-erase board,
- ridiculing a person’s language or accent,
- racially themed parties,
- language and imagery objectifying women,
- insulting a person’s traditional manner of dress,
- defacement or vandalism (e.g. written slurs, graffiti, hate symbols, etc.), and
- hate messages.
Freedom of Speech and Response to Reports of Bias
In responding to reports of bias, SFA will not violate the First Amendment rights of students, faculty, or staff.
Even when an incident of bias occurs, disciplinary or corrective action may not be taken toward the offender if it is determined that the act of bias was a protected exercise of their freedom of expression.
As a result, in many situations, the Campus Climate Response Team’s response to a bias incident will take the form of supporting the students unfavorably impacted by the bias incident.
The team will facilitate services such as counseling, health services, or other referrals as needed to address safety concerns and to provide assistance and comfort to those impacted.
Hate/Bias Reporting Form
The Hate/Bias Reporting Form is for students, faculty, staff, or members of the university community who wish to report behavior that one can reasonably conclude is directed at a student or student organization due to that individual or group’s age, color, creed, disability, ethnicity, gender, gender identity or expression, marital status, national origin, race, religion, sexual orientation, veteran status, or any combination of these or related factors.
This form may be used to refer a student to the Campus Climate Response Team (CCRT). In responding to hate/bias reports, the CCRT will determine the appropriate action and help improve the inclusion, civility, and safety of the campus community. The CCRT will not violate constitutional first amendment rights. Bias-related incidents often do not rise to the level of a crime or a violation of university policy. However, if the CCRT determines that the reported incident may warrant university disciplinary processes, the report will be forwarded to the appropriate university officials for review and a member of CCRT will communicate with the incident reporter that the report has been forwarded.