April 16, 2020
To: All campus community
April 16, 2020
To All Members of the UC Merced Community:
UC Merced Office for the Prevention of Harassment and Discrimination (OPHD), CARE, and UC Merced Police recognize that staying at home and experiencing physical isolation can create situations or circumstances which may be harmful for some members of our community, especially those experiencing relationship or family violence. Concerns about virus transmission introduce new approaches that may be used to impose control or manipulate a partner. Similarly, physical distancing restrictions may create additional challenges related to safety, health, privacy and confidentiality. External factors such as economic and health insecurity can add stress and create circumstances that further compromise safety.
UC Merced takes reports of sexual and domestic violence or any conduct that falls within the scope of the Sexual Violence and Sexual Harassment policy seriously and responds promptly to reports of such conduct. We are committed to continuing to support our students, staff and faculty who are affected by sexual and domestic violence and are quarantined at home with an abuser. All services continue to be available, including assistance with workplace, academic, and housing accommodations consistent with current COVID-19 guidance.
Our campus community practices bystander intervention. We encourage those who are able to do so safely to continue practicing bystander intervention, even though it may be more challenging given our remote environment. We can all play the role of active bystanders to stop behaviors or incidents from occurring. Thank you for your partnership in creating a safe and harassment-free community.
Finally, sexual harassment and sexual violence are prohibited by law and by university policy. This includes domestic and relationship violence. All employees, unless they are specifically designated by policy as confidential employees, are Responsible Employees and are required to report such incidents to the Title IX Officer Michael Salvador in the Office for the Prevention of Harassment and Discrimination. He can be reached at 209-285-9510 or via email.
Listed below are resources available at UC Merced. If at any time you are concerned for your immediate health or safety, the UC Merced Police Department is available at 209-228-2677.
Confidential Resources: (reaching out to a confidential resource does not constitute a formal report to UC Merced)
For students, staff and faculty:
CARE (Campus Advocacy, Resources & Education) Office:
- Campus Advocate Cell (Monday - Friday 9am - 5pm): 209-386-2051
- Valley Crisis Center (After hours and weekends): 24-Hour Hotline 209-722-4357
- Director (available during normal hours and for questions after hours): 209-233-1746 or email Yesenia Curiel .
- CARE welcomes students, staff and faculty of all gender identities, sexual orientations, races/ethnicities, classes and abilities.
- Advocacy services may include, emotional support, and identifying options for reporting or medical treatment.
Office of the Ombuds: 209-228-4410
- The Office of the Ombuds is designed to serve as a safe, alternative channel for confidential, neutral and informal dispute resolution services. Faculty, lecturers, postdoctoral scholars, staff, students and anyone else with a campus-related concern may use the Office of the Ombuds to discuss workplace issues, interpersonal conflicts, academic concerns, bureaucratic slow-downs and other problems.
Insight Employee Assistance Program (EAP): 800-422-5322
- Counselors available to provide emotional support
Administrative Reporting Options:
Office for the Prevention of Harassment & Discrimination (EEO/Title IX): 209-285-9510
- Staff, faculty, students, student employees, and applicants for employment who believe they may have been discriminated against or sexually harassed can bring their concerns to the EEO/Title IX officer to investigate and attempt to resolve the situation.
Human Resources - Employee & Labor Relations (ELR):
- Through various forms of intervention, including problem-solving, training and counseling, Labor Relations offers services to management and individual employees to help address employment-related concerns
We know the current situation is extremely challenging. We will continue to monitor evolving concerns and remain as a resource to our students, staff, and faculty impacted by sexual and domestic violence and other forms of harassment during this time.
Director of the Office for the Prevention of Harassment and Discrimination
Chief of UC Merced Police
Director of CARE