Today, the University of New Mexico entered into a formal three-year Agreement with the U.S. Department of Justice to refine UNM’s policies regarding campus sexual harassment and misconduct on the campus; its procedures to investigate such harassment and misconduct; and its procedures to mitigate the effects of campus sexual harassment and misconduct and remediate any hostile environment that may arise as a result thereof.

The provisions in the Agreement with the Department of Justice are challenging, especially considering the current fiscal hurdles UNM faces. However, complying with these provisions is a top priority. UNM is taking immediate steps to fulfill its obligations under the Agreement with the intent of meeting all of its milestones on schedule.

Below is a brief summary of some of the significant tasks delineated in the Agreement with the Department of Justice.

  • Within the next several months, UNM will develop an infrastructure to provide intensive training on the prevention of sexual harassment and misconduct and our policies and procedures regarding Title IX complaints. Existing and incoming undergraduate and graduate students who are regularly present on campus and who are enrolled in a degree granting program for six credit hours or more per semester will be expected to complete this training, with limited exceptions. UNM already provides this type of training to incoming students during New Student Orientation. After the Department of Justice reviews and approves the training module, UNM will provide it to the remainder of its student body. The student training sessions will be in-person and interactive.

* Every college and school on Main campus and at the Health Sciences Center, as well as branch campuses, will play a role in ensuring that current and future students receive the specified training. The Dean of Students and the President’s Office will work with all affected entities to coordinate a plan of action for the trainings.

  • Starting in the 2017-2018 academic year, all new and incoming students will be given in-person training at the beginning of the academic year and during New Student Orientation.  Continuing students and exclusively online students will receive the annual online training entitled “Campus Clarity: Think About It,” which covers sexual harassment and violence, consent, bystander intervention, rape myths and gender discrimination as well as how to report incidents, confidentiality on campus, and retaliation. People who are only enrolled in Continuing Education classes will not be required to take the training.
  • Providing appropriate training to faculty and staff is also a provision in the Agreement. UNM currently requires faculty, staff and student employees to take an online course, “Intersections: Preventing Discrimination and Harassment,” on an annual basis.  The training is designed to raise awareness about workplace harassment including sexual harassment, various types of discrimination, Title IX, and Campus SaVE Act information. The training includes the role of an employee in reducing or preventing incidents of sexual harassment, UNM’s policies prohibiting sexual harassment, and available resources for those who have experienced sexual harassment. UNM will work with the Department of Justice to determine if additional training is needed.
  • The Dean of Students Office, UNM Police Department and the Office of Equal Opportunity have already received intensive training regarding Title IX. UNMPD and OEO have also received intensive training regarding trauma-informed investigations, and will participate in additional training opportunities over the next three years.
  • The review and revision of University policies relating to sexual harassment is a major component of the Agreement.  Prior to the start of the Department of Justice investigation, UNM drafted a new comprehensive policy on sexual violence, which was issued as UAP 2740 on May 15, 2015. As part of the Agreement, University policy-generating entities, including the UNM Policy Office, will work with the Department of Justice to continue to examine University policies regarding sexual harassment and will work with other policy-generating entities to ensure that our policies are clear and consistent.
  • As part of the Agreement, UNM will also refine its procedures to provide adequate, reliable, prompt and impartial investigation, adjudication and appeal of all complaints of sexual harassment.  The Office of Equal Opportunity has already substantially revised UNM’s discrimination claims investigation procedure and attendant materials.  The new documents can be viewed at:  Additional work is underway to refine and supplement that procedure as well as UNM’s adjudication procedures.  The revised procedures and attendant materials will be submitted to the Department of Justice for review.
  • The Agreement emphasizes the importance of assessing the UNM community using campus climate surveys on sexual misconduct. UNM already conducted a campus-wide climate survey in the Spring 2016 semester: In the Spring semesters of 2017 and 2018, UNM will conduct additional climate surveys. These surveys will  1) assess students’ attitudes and knowledge regarding what constitutes prohibited sexual harassment and retaliation; 2) gather information regarding students’ experience with sexual harassment while attending the University; 3) determine whether students know when and how to report such harassment; 4) gauge students’ comfort level with reporting sexual harassment; 5) identify any barriers to reporting; and 6) assess students’ familiarity with the University’s outreach, education, and prevention efforts to identify which strategies are effective.  The Office of Equal Opportunity will also conduct an assessment and solicit student input on how the University can encourage reporting of prohibited sexual harassment and retaliation, and better respond to such reports.

For additional information, contact:

UNM Office of Equal Opportunity
Francie Cordova, JD, Director
MSC05 3150
1 University of New Mexico
Albuquerque, NM 87131-0001
Phone: (505) 277-5251
Fax: (505) 277-1356

UNM Title IX Coordinator
Heather Cowan
Phone: (505) 277-5251

UNM Police Department
Kevin McCabe, Chief of Police
Christine Chester, Deputy Chief of Police
MSC02 1540
2500 Campus Blvd. NE
Albuquerque, NM 87131
For Emergencies:  911
For all other calls: UNM PD dispatch (505) 277-2241
Safety Escorts: (505) 277-2241

UNM Dean of Students Office
Nasha Torrez, Dean of Students
Lisa Lindquist, Director of the LoboRESPECT Advocacy Center
MSC 06 3600
1 University of New Mexico
Albuquerque, NM 87131
Phone: (505) 277-3361
Fax: (505) 277-0370

UNM Policy Office
Pamina Deutsch, Director
MSC05 3357
Scholes Hall, 114 A and B
1 University of New Mexico
Albuquerque, NM 87131
Phone: (505) 277-2069

Main Campus Compliance Office
Libby Washburn, Chief Compliance Officer
1 University of New Mexico
Albuquerque, NM 87131
Phone: (505) 277-3979