Building a Community of Respect
Lehigh is committed to sustaining an inclusive living and learning community where differences are celebrated, each member of the campus is valued and where an atmosphere of civility and respect is a fundamental expectation. At Lehigh, we take the health, safety and well-being of our students, faculty and staff very seriously.
Acts of hostility or harassment based on race, color, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, age, national or ethnic origin, disability or veteran status are not acceptable and are inconsistent with the fundamental values of the university.
Such actions will not be tolerated and will be addressed swiftly. Violations of the Student Code of Conduct (Article 3: Section 2) will result in disciplinary action. Behavior that rises to the level of a crime will result in legal consequences.
Ultimately, every individual on our campus has a shared responsibility for contributing to a culture of respect. Anyone who either experiences or witnesses acts of harassment or hostility is encouraged to report them to either the Dean of Students Office at 610.758.4156 or the Lehigh University Police Department at 610.758.4200.
If it is determined that a crime has been committed, the Lehigh University Police Department will undertake a full and timely investigation. Violations of the university’s Student Code of Conduct will be addressed by the Dean of Students Office.
Harassment Policy Officer
The Harassment Policy Officer serves as a resource regarding Lehigh's Policy on Harassment and helps members of the Lehigh community determine whether a situation involves harassment and possible courses of action. The Harassment Policy Officer is also an official intake point for formal harassment complaints against faculty and staff, and subsequently engages in fact finding investigations with a co-investigator. He/She is not involved in formal harassment complaints against students. These should be referred to the Dean of Students Office.
Lehigh's Ombudsperson serves as a neutral, independent and informal conflict resolution resource and helps members of our community determine what are appropriate courses of action and assess who should be involved and at what stage. The ombudsperson is not an official intake point for complaint processes of the University and does not engage in fact-finding or make determinations about right and wrong. He/She also does not have administrative authority to impose disciplinary, remedial, or any other actions, on university faculty, staff, students or departments, nor to make specific changes within the institution.
- Counseling & Psychological Services 610.758.3880
- Dean of Students Office 610.758.4156
- Harassment Policy Officer 610.758.3270
- Joint Multicultural Program 610.758.4821
- Lehigh University Police Department 610.758.4200
- LGBTQA Programs and Outreach 610.758.4126
- Office of Residence Life 610.758.6598
- Office of Student Conduct 610.758.4159
- Office of Multicultural Affairs 610.758.5973
- Ombudsperson 610.758.3308 or 610.758.5532
- Women's Center 610.758.6484
For more information on bias motivated incidents, hate crimes, discrimination, and harassment, visit these websites:
- Hate Crimes on Campus: The Problem and Efforts to Confront it (PDF)
- U.S. Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights
- Stop the Hate
- Pennsylvania Inter-Agency Task Force on Civil Tension
1. What is considered an act of hostility or harassment?
An act of hostility or harassment is any conduct or act that targets a person or group based on race, color, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, age, national or ethnic origin, disability or veteran status and may include bias motivated incidents, hate crimes, harassment, or discrimination. Such acts are not acceptable at Lehigh and jeopardize our commitment to a pluralistic community based on openness, respect, learning and shared responsibility.
2. What is the definition of harassment?
At Lehigh, under our Policy on Harassment, we define two types of harassment: (1) the creation of a hostile environment where a member of the Lehigh family may be subjected to unwelcome statements, jokes, gestures, pictures, touching or other conduct that offend, demean, harass, or intimidate based on personal characteristics protected against discrimination; and (2) the other is sexual harassment (“quid pro quo harassment”) where a member of the university community explicitly or implicitly, promises or withholds job or education-related benefits, based upon the employee's or student's acquiescence to sexual advances or behavior.
For more information, read about Lehigh's Policy on Harassment.
3. How does a student report harassment?
Lehigh encourages the reporting of all acts of harassment. Students should report incidents as soon as possible to the Dean of Students Office by calling 610.758.4156 or the Lehigh Police by calling 610.758.4200.
Preserve any evidence (graffiti, phone call recording, e-mail message, letter, etc.).
4. How does a staff or faculty member report harassment?
Lehigh encourages the reporting of all acts of harassment. Staff and faculty should report incidents as soon as possible to the appropriate contact person in their specific area.
Consult with your contact person to learn how to file a formal complaint. Preserve any evidence (graffiti, phone call recording, e-mail message, letter, etc.).