The University of Michigan Policy and Procedures on Student Sexual and Gender-Based Misconduct and Other Forms of Interpersonal Violence states that “the university will respond to reports of student sexual misconduct with support and resources and proceed in a way that seeks to honor the rights of the students affected by the report.” This includes offering support services and appropriate information to the Respondent involved in a case.
A Respondent Support Advisor is available to serve as a process advocate for the Respondent; can assist in the development of an understanding and navigation of the process; and will assist a Respondent in navigating family and community impacts and effects and support; and can connect a Respondent with campus and off-campus resources. While the Respondent Support Advisor will honor the privacy considerations of the situation, internal to the University, the information is not confidential; information shared with the Respondent Support Advisor may need to be shared with other campus offices. Confidential offices on campus include: University Ombudsperson, Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) and the Employee Assistance Program for Student Employees (FASPA and UMHS EAP). Legal advice may be obtained through an attorney.
Respondent Support Advisors are coordinated through the Dean of Students Office who reaches out to identified Respondents directly to offer support, talks about the role of a support person, and discusses available campus resources. A Respondent Support Advisor is available to:
- Attend meetings including investigative conversations (e.g. campus housing removal and relocation discussions, resolution agreement discussions) as a support person
- Review documents and materials from investigations, final reports, and sanctioning agreements as requested
- Provide general support
- Manage academic, housing, access to dining facilities, and other immediate and on-going separation needs as necessary
- Provide information and referral to university and community-based resources for additional support needs
The Respondent Support Advisor is not involved in the investigation or agreement phases of the process, which are coordinated by the Office for Institutional Equity and the Office of Student Conflict Resolution, respectively.
Request an appointment with a Respondent Support Advisor by contacting the Dean of Students Office. An advisor will arrange to promptly meet with you.
Topics to Discuss with a Respondent Support Advisor:
Clarifications about University policies, procedures, or personnel related to sexual misconduct cases
- Making adjustments due to Interim Measures
Managing stress during an investigation
Requesting academic notifications – email notices sent to faculty to explain any temporary changes in a student’s level of participation
Understanding sanctions and adjusting academic or personal plans
Assistance with contacting University housing or landlords about separation requirements
Coaching or assistance with contacting school or college program leads to notify
Court-issued Restraining Orders or Personal Protection Orders
Completion of sanctions and preparation for reintegration