Protocols for Bias Incidents and Hate Crimes

Mount Holyoke College

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    Policies on Bias and Hate Speech
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Bias incidents are any act, conduct, or communication that reasonably is understood to demean, degrade, threaten, or harass an individual or group based on an actual or perceived identity characteristic such as race, color, national or ethnic origin, ancestry, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, age, genetics, physical or mental disability, and veteran/military service status or other protected status. Bias can occur whether intentional or unintentional and may not violate college policy or state or federal law to be defined as a bias incident. In a bias incident the actor/perpetrator may be known or unknown. Whether an incident meets this definition or not The College is committed to responding to bias/insensitivity incidents by addressing accountability, providing support to those impacted and by creating educational moments for community engagement. Whenever appropriate the College will investigate reported incidents and hold community members accountable for actions that violate college policies or the law


Hostile or hateful speech or other discriminatory behavior may be considered a bias incident, but under certain conditions may also be a hate crime.


What is the range of outcomes for reported incidents involving Mount Holyoke community members?

The range of outcomes depends on the outcomes of the investigation into the case and which courses of action the target chooses to pursue (i.e. none, informal grievance, formal grievance, Council on Student Affairs, Student Disciplinary Process through the Dean of Students Office, legal remedies). Outcomes may include, but are not limited to: a letter of reprimand, mandatory educational project, social probation, suspension, required withdrawal, and inconclusive findings.