What is a Bias Incident?
Bias incidents are acts or behaviors motivated by the offender's bias against any combination but not limited to identities such as age, ancestry, color, disability, gender identity or expression, genetic information, HIV/AIDS status, military status, national origin, race, religion, sex, sexual orientation, or veteran status.
Can I make a report anonymously?
Yes. If you want remain anonymous be sure you are not logged into your UW NetID on the computer or device you use. The committee does not collect data outside what is submitted on the form, so if you do not include your name or contact information, it will not be known to the committee. If you do not choose to include personal information, then you will not be contacted about any actions that may result from your report.
Who sees my report?
The reports are first reviewed by select staff who ensure serious crimes and violations that require mandatory reporting, such as sexual harassment, are given immediate and appropriate attention. Once that first review is conducted, reports are sent to the Bias Incident Review Committee (BIRC), which will review the report and decide best actions.
How secure is my report?
The information submitted to this form is kept in the same place as Admissions data - it is highly secure. Only the reviewing staff and members of the BIRC will view it directly. If the concerns submitted require outside consultation, the descriptions of the incident will be shared with those outside groups. This may include faculty, administration, staff liaisons to programs, or any group needed to formally investigate and resolve reports.
What will happen as a result of my report?
The Institutional response may include, but are not limited to
- Notice to the community about the incident.
- Individual outreach to affected party.
- Offers of support and assistance to affected individuals/communities (typically in form of counseling).
- Educational workshops or seminars.
- Removal of graffiti or flyers.
- Connecting affected parties to relevant resources.
- Cataloging of incident(s).
- The University may start proceedings under the student conduct code, the general campus conduct code, or processes under other UW policies
In our mission to foster a safe and inclusive campus, UW Tacoma encourages all students, staff, faculty, and community members to report any incidents they experience or witness so we can better understand the current climate on campus and take proactive steps in the future.
What if I want to talk to someone in person?
You have a number of options for speaking to someone in person. You may contact any member of the BIRC or reviewing staff. You may also talk to advisors, faculty members, staff, supervisors, counselors, or the Office of the Ombud. You may also contact Safe Campus, which is available 24/7, has access to a variety of sources, and can direct you to support.
What about conflicts of interest? What if I feel someone on the Bias Incident Response Committee has committed an act of bias?
No single member of the committee and no single person reviewing the data has the ability to tamper with or destroy reports. At each level of review, multiple staff have access to a report, and no one can alter a report once it’s been submitted. If the Committee were to receive a report about one of their members, that member would be required to recuse themselves of the review process.
Could someone be fired or suspended because of something I submit?
No student, faculty, or staff member at UW can be fired or suffer punitive actions based solely on an anonymous report. There are existing procedures for formal punitive action, and they typically require those filing the report to supply their name, and in some cases, testify to what they saw or experienced. If you believe this is the course you wish to follow, you should know that your name and information may not remain anonymous.