Privacy generally means that information related to a report of sexual harassment will only be shared with a limited circle of individuals. This information is limited to College employees who “need to know” to assist in the report’s active review, investigation, or resolution. While not bound by confidentiality, these individuals will be discreet and respect the privacy of all individuals involved.
Confidentiality means that information shared by an individual with designated campus or community professionals cannot be revealed to any other individual without the individual’s express permission. These campus and community professionals include mental health providers, medical providers, ordained clergy, rape crisis counselors, and attorneys, all of whom have legally protected confidentiality.
These individuals are prohibited from breaking confidentiality unless there is an imminent threat of harm to self or others or a suspicion of child abuse. When a report involves suspected abuse of a minor under 18, these confidential resources are required by Maryland law and the College’s Suspected Child Abuse/Neglect Reporting Policy to notify child protective services and/or local law enforcement.
An individual who seeks completely confidential assistance may do so by speaking with professionals who have legally protected confidentiality. Confidential resources available to students include counselors in the Counseling Wellness Center, medical staff in the Health Center, and the staff therapist/advocate. Employees may access confidential assistance through the Employee Assistance Program.
Information shared with these resources will remain confidential. It will not be shared with the College or anyone else without the express permission of the individual seeking services unless maintaining such confidentiality would harm oneself or others. While the College will maintain the confidentiality specified in this section, the College will not limit the ability of the parties to discuss the allegations in a particular case. However, parties are advised that how they communicate about or discuss a particular case may constitute Sexual Harassment or Retaliation in certain circumstances and be subject to discipline under the processes specified in the SMCM Policy on Sexual Harassment.
Certain types of Sexual Harassment are considered crimes for which the College must disclose crime statistics in its Annual Security Report, which is provided to the campus community and available to the public. These disclosures will be made without including personally identifiable information.