Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a hate crime?

According to the U.S. Department of Justice, a hate crime is a “crime of violence, property damage, or threat that is motivated in whole or in part by an offender’s bias based on race, religion, ethnicity, national origin, gender, physical or mental disability, or sexual orientation.”

According to the Oregon Department of Justice, a hate crime occurs when one person intentionally subjects another to offensive physical contact, threatens or inflicts physical injury, or threatens or causes damage to the property of another person because of their race, color, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity or national origin. A hate crime may also target a person's family member.

How can I report a hate crime, bias, discrimination or discriminatory harassment? 

If it is an emergency, dial 9-1-1 to be connected to the police.

If you are a student who has experienced a discrimination-related incident and would like to report it, please call the Office of the Dean of Students at 541-346-3216. Faculty and staff should call the Office of Investigations and Civil Rights Compliance at 541-346-3123. Staff from these offices will offer support and begin to discuss next steps with callers. Students and employees who wish to discuss their reporting options confidentiality should contact one of the offices or services listed below:

Students and employees who believe they have experienced a crime may report it directly to the University of Oregon Police Department by calling 541-346-2919.

What will happen if I report an incident to the university?

By reporting the incident, the university can connect you to a number of support options available on campus including help with academic problems, class schedules, financial aid, housing arrangements, transportation, work place accommodations and assistance in receiving health and counseling services. You are NOT required to provide additional information about the incident or participate in a university investigation in order to receive reasonable support services.

If you report information to a university employee designated confidential, that employee does not have an obligation to report the information to the Office of Investigations and Civil Rights Compliance. To provide accommodation(s) requested by the impacted student, confidential employees may need to share limited information with those involved with implementing the accommodation(s).

When a responsible employee receives information about an incident of discrimination or harassment, the employee is required to share that information with the Office of Investigations and Civil Rights Compliance. The university has a responsibility to take action to stop discrimination or harassment and to prevent its reoccurrence. More information about the university’s response to incidents of prohibited discrimination can be found here.

If the alleged wrongdoer is not affiliated with the University of Oregon or if the underlying action does not rise to the level of discrimination or discriminatory harassment but still negatively impacts the student or employee, the university’s response to the report of an incident will be focused primarily on providing services and accommodations to the impacted person and addressing any potential safety issues on campus.

Is there a way to keep the person who I am accusing away from me?

If this person is another student, the Office of Student Conduct and Community Standards can send the other student a “no-contact letter,” which will direct the other person to end all contact with you. Such no contact letters are always mutual, meaning that both you and the other student are required to avoid contact with one another. A no contact letter does not place any restriction on the ability of either student to take the classes of their choice. Therefore, it is possible for you to be in the same class as the other student. Should this occur, you and the other student are required to sit as far away from one another as possible. And the Office of Student Conduct and Community Standards can work with your professor to ensure that you and the other student are not assigned to work together.

If I tell the university what has happened to me, will my friends, family, professors, etc., find out?

Only a few specially trained individuals will ever know that you reported to the university and their primary goal will be to help provide support and services to you. Students 18 years or older are protected by FERPA (Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act), which means that we cannot disclose information about your report to your family or friends without your written consent. However, it is important to understand that in some instances, the university will need to share information with the accused party in order for that person to have an opportunity to respond to the incident.

What if I live in the same residence hall or apartment as the person I am accusing?

You have the right to feel safe in your living situation. If you have filed a formal complaint but you do not want to move forward with a formal investigation or there are insufficient grounds for the university to open an investigation, it is unlikely that the university can require the other student to move. If you are working with a Confidential Advocate but have not filed a formal complaint, it is also unlikely that the university can require the other student to move. The university can, however, help you find another living arrangement. And, depending on the circumstances, the university may be able to ask the other student whether they would be willing to move. That student could agree to move or could decline to move.

What if I have classes with the person I am accusing?

If you have filed a formal complaint but you do not want to move forward with a formal investigation or there are insufficient grounds for the university to open an investigation, it is unlikely that the university can require the other student to change their class schedule or prevent that student from taking the classes of their choice. If you are working with a Confidential Advocate but have not filed a formal complaint, it is also unlikely that the university can require the other student to change their class schedule or prevent that student from taking the classes of their choice. The university can, however, assist you with creating a schedule that would allow you to avoid classes with the other student.

Can I receive help through the university without having to tell them who discriminated against me?

Yes. A student is NOT required to provide additional information about the incident or participate in a university investigation in order to receive services.

If I report to the university, will I be forced to press criminal charges or give information against the accused student in university conduct proceedings?

If you are over the age of 18 you have the right to choose if you want to press criminal charges. While the university does have a legal obligation to investigate, you do not have to participate in the investigation or provide any additional information. In cases where the impacted student chooses not to provide more information to the university’s investigation, it is unlikely that the investigation will continue. However, there are circumstances where the university has an obligation to proceed with a formal process without the cooperation of the impacted student in order to protect the safety of the campus community. The safety of the student impacted by discrimination is the highest priority of the university.