University Senate                                                       

Proposed: March 30, 2012
Adopted: Passed pending further revisions

 

RESOLUTION TO APPROVE A NEW
CONSENSUAL ROMANTIC AND SEXUAL RELATIONSHIP POLICY

 

Whereas Columbia University’s educational mission is promoted by the professionalism of its faculty*-student relationships; and

Whereas consensual romantic and sexual relationships between faculty and students pose a threat to academic professionalism in situations where they compromise, or appear to compromise, faculty members’ judgment of students and may lead, or may be perceived to lead, to preferential treatment of one student over another to the detriment of the affected individuals, including students outside of the relationship; and

Whereas consensual romantic and sexual relationships between faculty and students, because of the power differential,  are susceptible to being characterized as non-consensual or coercive, opening up the possibility of a charge of sexual harassment or sexual assault; and

Whereas the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) consulted with stakeholders for their advice on the proposed policy; and

Whereas approval of the new policy was sought and obtained from the Provost of the University, the Executive Vice President for Research, the University Librarian, and the Vice Provost for Academic Planning;

Therefore be is resolved that the University Senate approve the proposed new Consensual Romantic and Sexual Relationship Policy; and

Be it further resolved that the University Senate reaffirm the importance of educating the community on the new Policy; and

Be it further resolved that the University Senate empower the Office of Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action (EOAA) to implement and administer the new Policy; and

Be it further resolved that the CSW consult with the Associate Provost, EOAA, a year after passage on the effectiveness of the new policy and report back to the University Senate in the CSW annual report. 

Proponents:

Commission on the Status of Women (CSW)
Faculty Affairs Committee
Student Affairs Committee

 

*The use of the term “faculty” covers all Officers of Instruction (including students who teach at the University), Officers of Research and Officers of the Libraries.