Center for Culture, Equity, and Empowerment: Reporting Bias

George Mason University

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    Policies on Bias and Hate Speech
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What is a bias Incident?:  A bias incident is an act of discrimination, harassment, intimidation, violence or criminal offense committed against any person, group or property that appears to be motivated by prejudice or bias. Such are usually associated with negative feelings and beliefs with respect to others race, ethnicity, national origin, religion, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, age social class, political affiliation, disability, veteran status, club affiliation or organizational membership. Such bias incidents may be intentional or unintentional and affect the individual or Mason community.


Some bias-motivated, prejudice or otherwise disrespectful acts may be constitutionally protected speech and thus not subject to University disciplinary action or formal investigation. However, at times they are out of congruence with our University’s values and characteristics. The BIRT enables Mason to provide support to community members who file a report, keep records of bias incidents, and analyze trends in efforts to continually improve our campus community with regard to our values. The BIRT does not investigate, arbitrate, or replace other Mason procedures or services. Its purpose is to supplement and work with campus units to connect those who have been a target of an act of bias or those who have witnessed such an act with appropriate support and resources. The new protocol complements but does not substitute for University procedures regarding the reporting of discrimination, including sexual misconduct, to the Office of Compliance, Diversity, and Equity ( 903-773-8730).