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Reporting Bias Incidents/Hate Crimes

Frequently Asked Questions

Edmonds College is committed to fostering a safe, welcoming and inclusive campus community for all students and staff to learn and work. We need your help in creating an environment in which others can thrive without fear of hate or bias so that we can all excel.

  • Bias-Based Incident: A behavior or act - verbal, written or physical - which is personally directed against or targets an individual or group based on perceived or actual characteristics such as age, citizenship, color, creed, disabilities, ethnicity, gender identity or expression, genetic information, HIV/AIDS status, immigrant status, marital status, national origin, pregnancy, race, religion, sex, sexual orientation, use of service animal, veteran/military status, and other aspects of an individual or group’s identity which includes but are not limited to physical appearance, homelessness status or political views.
  • A bias act demeans, intimidates, and/or threatens individuals, members of the group, and community. Behavior or an act reflecting bias committed by students may constitute a violation of the Edmonds College policies and the Student Code of Conduct. A behavior or act reflecting bias committed by employees may constitute a violation of Edmonds College Nondiscrimination and Harassment Policy and Edmonds College Workplace Civility and Respect Policy.

Incidents that may constitute a bias incident, include but are not limited to, intimidating or threatening telephone calls, emails (including US and campus mail), texts, social media platforms, harassment, graffiti, bullying, threats, vandalism, damage or destruction of property, the use of oral or written expression of bias involving degrading language or stereotypes, if there is evidence that the target or victim was chosen because of a characteristic such as those listed above.

What might a bias incident look like? Bias incidents vary in what they ‘may look like’ and there is not a way to describe all the ways bias may show up on campus. Examples of bias incidents are:

  • Comments that express harmful stereotypes about the above categories, e.g., racial jokes
  • Graffiti or literature that expresses bias against the above categories, e.g., sexist or racist language or images (Note: If the graffiti constitutes criminal vandalism or property damage, it can constitute a hate crime.)
  • Language and imagery that objectify women
  • Intimidating or threatening telephone calls, emails (including US and campus mail), texts, social media platforms

A hate crime is a criminal offense against a person or property motivated in whole or in part by an offender’s bias against a race, religion, disability, sexual orientation, ethnicity, gender, or gender identity. Hate Crimes — FBI

RCW 9A.36.080: Hate crime offense—Definition and criminal penalty.

Reporting incidents of bias, hate, harassment, or discrimination creates awareness and influence change on campus. It also provides individuals with a space to share their experiences and determine what next steps are available to them. The College is committed to creating a safe learning environment for all of its members.

Yes. In order to increase the likelihood that students, staff and faculty will submit reports, we created an online report form that can be submitted anonymously. We want to obtain as complete a picture as possible regarding the experiences of our students, staff and faculty, and this tool is a mechanism for accomplishing that goal. We cannot respond to anonymous reporters to provide feedback or information, but we welcome the contribution to our collective knowledge.

When reporting online or by telephone, please give as much information as possible.

The right to privacy is strictly upheld for all parties. We will not freely share your identity with anyone without prior permission, but cannot guarantee absolute anonymity. We will not disclose student records without prior written consent, with few exceptions, as defined in CFR § 99.31(a)(8), § 99.31(a)(10), § 99.31(a)(15), or any other provision in § 99.31(a). Please take into consideration that data collected by the College is subject to public records requests and students have the right to review their own educational records (See Release of Records: WAC 132U-280-030).

Retaliation by, for, or against any participant (complainant, respondent, or witness) is expressly prohibited. Retaliatory action of any kind taken against individuals as a result of seeking redress under WAC 132U-300-030 or serving as a witness in a subsequent investigation dealing with harassment/discrimination is prohibited and is conduct subject to discipline.

A member of the Bias Response Team will review the report and determine next steps. The individual who submitted the report will receive a reply stating that we have received the report. The information will be maintained in our database, providing us with an overall picture of what our students, staff and faculty are experiencing. If the reporting individual wants to discuss the matter further and provides contact information, we will reach out to that individual to gather more information and provide resources as needed. The committee or designee will determine what kind of follow up activity may be called for, such as asking facilities services to remove graffiti, reaching out to the affected individual, department or community to provide support.

It is important to note that the Bias Response Team is neither an investigative nor an oversight body. In the vast majority of cases, it will be entirely up to the person making the report to decide if they want to have a formal investigation initiated. If you submit a report and provide contact information, the team or designee can let you know your options for having the matter investigated and provide information about relevant resources. In rare instances, we may be compelled by law to report a matter to the appropriate investigative body (Student Conduct, Title IX). This would be most likely if the safety of a minor appears to be at risk or a direct threat of violence has occurred.