Harassment is defined as any act or acts done without legitimate purpose and with the intent to intimidate, annoy or alarm another. This policy shall specifically apply to, but not be limited to, harassment on account of disability, sexual orientation, religious affiliation, or any other basis for non-discrimination as stated in the University’s non-discrimination statement. Any act meeting the definition of harassment under Iowa Code §708.7, or the definition of stalking under Iowa Code §708.11, is a violation of this rule. Engaging in First Amendment protected speech activities shall be considered acts done with a legitimate purpose.
Under this policy, sexual harassment can be verbal, visual, or physical. It can be overt, as in the suggestion that a person could get a higher grade or a raise in salary by submitting to sexual advances. The suggestion or the advance need not be direct or explicit—it can be implied from the conduct, circumstances, and relationships of the persons involved. Sexual harassment can also consist of persistent, unwelcome attempts to change a professional or academic relationship to a personal one. It can range from unwelcome sexual flirtations and inappropriate put-downs of individual persons or classes
of people to serious physical abuses such as sexual assault. Examples include, but are not limited to, unwelcome sexual advances; repeated sexually-oriented kidding, teasing, joking, or flirting; verbal abuse of a sexual nature; commentary about an individual’s body, sexual prowess, or sexual deficiencies; derogatory or demeaning comments about women or men in general, whether sexual or not: leering, touching, pinching, or brushing against another’s body; or displaying objects or pictures which are sexual in nature and which create a hostile or offensive work or living environment.
Sexual harassment, in its legal definition, includes unwelcome sexual advances, requests to engage in sexual conduct, and other physical and expressive behavior of a sexual nature where (3) such conduct has the purpose or effect of substantially interfering with an individual’s academic or professional performance or creating an intimidating, hostile, or demeaning employment or academic environment. Determination as to whether the alleged conduct constitutes sexual harassment should take into consideration the totality of the circumstances, including the context in which the alleged incidents occurred.