Understanding Compliance Designations

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Friday, September 25, 2015

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Under various laws, such as the Clery Act, Pennsylvania Child Protective Services Law and Title IX, the University is required to identify and designate certain individuals for specific roles. Those most common for our employees relate to required compliance training and can be easily confused. Here is a look at the various designations and their requirements:

Campus Security Authority (CSA) — Individuals at the University who, because of their function for the University, have an obligation under the Clery Act to notify the University of alleged Clery Crimes that are reported to them in good faith, or alleged Clery Crimes that they may personally witness.

  • Governed by: Policy AD74, 20 U.S.C. § 1092(f).
  • Examples: police and security personnel, an administrator of students, athletic directors or coaches, faculty advisers to student organizations, resident assistants or advisers; 
  • Pertinent training: Penn State Clery Act Training;
  • Training requirements: Required annually for CSAs only.

PA Mandated Reporter (formerly Authorized Adult) — University employees, volunteers and/or independent contractors who are directly responsible for the care, supervision, guidance or training of minors in a youth program, activity or service.

  • Governed by: Policy AD72, 23 Pa. C.S. § 6303(a);
  • Examples: camp counselors, youth program directors;
  • Pertinent training: Building a Safe Penn State: Reporting Child Abuse;
  • Training requirements: Required annually for Pennsylvania mandated reporters and every three years for all others.

Confidential Employee — A University employee who is exempt from reporting to the Title IX Coordinator incidents of sexual violence, sexual harassment or any other misconduct covered by this policy in a way that identifies the victim. This includes professional and pastoral counselors and non-professional counselors or advocates. The University designates confidential employees, and those individuals are notified of their designation.

  1. Professional and pastoral counselors are not required to report any information under Title IX. This group includes licensed mental health counselors, pastors, priests or any other pastoral counselor whose official responsibilities include providing mental health counseling to the campus community. It also includes individuals who are supervised by these people.
  2. Non-professional counselors or advocates must report aggregate data, but are not required to report incidents in a way that identifies the victim, unless they have his or her consent. This group includes individuals who are not professional or pastoral counselors, but work or volunteer in on-campus sexual assault centers, victim advocacy offices, women’s centers or health centers, including front desk staff and students, social workers, doctors, medical staff or any other person with a professional license requiring confidentiality.
  • Governed by: Policy AD85, 20 U.S.C. §§ 1681–1688;
  • Examples: licensed mental health counselors, health care workers, pastoral counselors;
  • Pertinent training: Recognizing and Reporting Sexual Harassment and Other Forms of Sexual Misconduct (confidential employee version);
  • Training Requirements: Required in 2015 for all confidential employees.

Responsible Employee — A University employee who has the authority to take action to address sexual violence; who has been given the duty of reporting incidents of sexual violence or any other misconduct to the Title IX Coordinator; or who a student could reasonably believe has this authority or duty. At Penn State, all employees who are not Confidential Employees are Responsible Employees.

  • Governed by: Policy AD85, 20 U.S.C. §§ 1681–1688;
  • Examples: most Penn State employees;
  • Pertinent training: Recognizing and Reporting Sexual Harassment and Other Forms of Sexual Misconduct (responsible employee version);
  • Training Requirements: Required in 2015 for all responsible employees.

Original story found on Penn State News.

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