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Title IX Compliance

"No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subject to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving federal financial assistance." Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, and its implementing regulation at 34 C.F.R. Part 106 (Title IX).

Each university receiving federal financial assistance must designate at least one professional employee as the Title IX Coordinator to oversee compliance efforts.

Mailing Address
Georgia Southwestern State University
Attention: Gaye Hayes
800 GSW State University Drive 
Americus, Georgia 31709

Physical Address
Student Success Center
Third Floor

Adoption of procedures to provide prompt and equitable resolution of complaints is a critical function of the Title IX Coordinator. The Coordinator can assist persons alleging sexual misconduct in filing their complaints and/or overseeing the step-by-step procedures to be sure that appropriate time frames are met.

The Title IX Coordinator also assists in answering questions about university policies and resources related to sexual misconduct or discrimination.

Inquiries concerning the application of Title IX may be referred to the Title IX Coordinator listed above, or can be referred to the U.S. Department of Education (contact information below):

U.S. Department of Education
Office for Civil Rights
(800) 421-3481 or


Department of Human Resources

Georgia Southwestern State University
800 GSW State University Drive Americus, GA 31709

Gaye Hayes, Title IX Coordinator

Monday - Friday: 8:00am - 5:00pm

Department Home

Policy and Procedures

Policy and Procedures

Sexual Misconduct Policy

Students, faculty, staff, and administrators are entitled to an educational and working environment free of discriminatory harassment on the bases of sex and gender. Georgia Southwestern State University (GSW) is committed to ensuring a safe learning and working environment for all members of the GSW community in accordance with Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 (“Title IX”). GSW does not tolerate discrimination on the basis of sex in any of its education programs or activities or in employment.

Definitions and Prohibited Conduct
  • Community: Students, faculty, and staff, as well as contractors, vendors, visitors and guests.

  • Complainant: An individual who is alleged to have experienced conduct that violates this Policy.

  • Consent: Words or actions that show a knowing and voluntary willingness to engage in mutually agreed-upon sexual activity. Consent cannot be gained by force, intimidation or coercion; by ignoring or acting in spite of objections of another; or by taking advantage of the incapacitation of another where the respondent knows or reasonably should have known of such incapacitation. Minors under the age of 16 cannot legally consent under Georgia law.

    Consent is also absent when the activity in question exceeds the scope of consent previously given. Past consent does not imply present or future consent. Silence or an absence of resistance does not imply consent.

    Consent can be withdrawn at any time by either party by using clear words or actions.

  • Dating Violence: Violence committed by a person who is or has been in a social relationship of a romantic or intimate nature with the alleged victim. Dating violence includes, but is not limited to, sexual or physical abuse or the threat of such abuse. Dating violence does not include acts covered under the definition of domestic violence.

  • Domestic Violence: Violence committed by a current or former spouse or intimate partner of the alleged victim; by a person with whom the alleged victim shares a child in common; by a person who is cohabitating with, or has cohabitated with, the victim as a spouse or intimate partner, or by a person similarly situated to a spouse of the alleged victim.

  • Incapacitation: The physical and/or mental inability to make informed, rational judgments. It can result from mental disability, sleep, involuntary physical restraint, status as a minor under the age of 16, or from intentional or unintentional taking of alcohol and/or other drugs. Whether someone is incapacitated is to be judged from the perspective of an objectively reasonable person.

  • Nonconsensual Sexual Contact: Any physical contact with another person of a sexual nature without the person’s consent. It includes but is not limited to touching (or penetrating) of a person’s intimate parts (such as genitalia, groin, breasts, or buttocks); touching (or penetrating) a person with one’s own intimate parts; or forcing a person to touch his or her own or another person’s intimate parts. This provision also includes “Fondling” as defined by the Clery Act. 

  • Nonconsensual Sexual Penetration: Any penetration of the vagina, anus, or mouth by a penis, object, tongue, finger, or other body part; or contact between the mouth of one person and the genitals or anus of another person. This provision also includes “Rape, Incest, and Statutory Rape” as defined by the Clery Act.

  • Confidential Employees: Institution employees who have been designated by the GSW Title IX Coordinator to talk with an alleged victim in confidence. Confidential Employees must only report that the incident occurred and provide date, time, location, and name of alleged respondent (if known) without revealing any information that would personally identify the alleged victim. This minimal reporting must be submitted in compliance with Title IX and the Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Crime Statistics Act (“Clery Act”). Confidential Employees may be required to fully disclose details of an incident in order to ensure campus safety.

  • Privileged Employees: Individuals employed by the institution to whom a complainant or alleged victim may talk in confidence, as provided by law. Disclosure to these employees will not automatically trigger an investigation against the complainant’s or alleged victim’s wishes. Privileged Employees include those providing counseling, advocacy, health, mental health, or sexual-assault related services (e.g., sexual assault resource centers, campus health centers, and campus mental health centers) or as otherwise provided by applicable law. Exceptions to confidentiality exist where the conduct involves suspected abuse of a minor (in Georgia, under the age of 18) or otherwise provided by law, such as imminent threat of serious harm.

  • Respondent: Individual who is alleged to have engaged in conduct that violates this Policy.

  • Reporter: An individual who reports an allegation of conduct that may violate this Policy but who is not a party to the complaint.

  • Responsible Employees: Those employees who must promptly and fully report complaints of or information regarding sexual misconduct to the Coordinator. Responsible Employees include any administrator, supervisor, faculty member, or other person in a position of authority who is not a Confidential Employee or Privileged Employee. Student employees who serve in a supervisory, advisory, or managerial role are in a position of authority for purposes of this Policy (e.g., teaching assistants, residential leaders, and student managers).

  • Sexual Exploitation: Taking non-consensual or abusive sexual advantage of another for one’s own advantage or benefit, or for the benefit or advantage of anyone other than the one being exploited.

    Examples of sexual exploitation may include, but are not limited to, the following:

    • Invasion of sexual privacy;
    • Prostituting another individual;
    • Non-consensual photos, video, or audio of sexual activity;
    • Non-consensual distribution of photo, video, or audio of sexual activity, even if the sexual activity was consensual;
    • Intentional observation of nonconsenting individuals who are partially undressed, naked, or engaged in sexual acts;
    • Knowingly transmitting an STD or HIV to another individual through sexual activity;
    • Intentionally and inappropriately exposing one’s breasts, buttocks, groin, or genitals in non-consensual circumstances; and/or
    • Sexually-based bullying.
  • Sexual Harassment (Student on Student): Unwelcome verbal, nonverbal, or physical conduct based on sex (including gender stereotypes), determined by a Reasonable Person to be so severe, pervasive, and objectively offensive that it effectively denies a person equal access to participate in or to benefit from an institutional education program or activity.

  • Sexual Harassment (Other Than Student on Student): Unwelcome verbal, nonverbal, or physical conduct, based on sex (including gender stereotypes), that may be any of the following:

    1. Implicitly or explicitly a term or condition of employment or status in a course, program, or activity;
    2. A basis for employment or educational decisions; or
    3. Is sufficiently severe, persistent, or pervasive to interfere with one’s work or educational performance creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive work or learning environment, or interfering with or limiting one’s ability to participate in or to benefit from an institutional program or activity.

    GSW also prohibits unwelcome conduct determined by a Reasonable Person to be so severe, pervasive and objectively offensive that it effectively denies a person equal access to a GSW education program or activity in violation of Title IX.

  • Sexual Misconduct: Includes, but is not limited to, such unwanted behavior as dating violence, domestic violence, nonconsensual sexual contact, sexual exploitation, sexual harassment and stalking.

  • Stalking: Engaging in a course of conduct directed at a specific person that would cause a reasonable person to fear for their safety or the safety of others or suffer substantial emotional distress.

    For the purposes of this definition:

    1. Course of conduct means two or more acts, including, but not limited to, acts in which the stalker directly, indirectly, or through third parties, by any action, method, device, or means, follows, monitors, observes, surveils, threatens, or communicates to or about a person, or interferes with person’s property.
    2. Substantial emotional distress means significant mental suffering or anguish that may but does not necessarily, require medical or other professional treatment or counseling.


GSW encourages complainants to report their complaints in writing, though oral complaints are accepted, taken seriously, and investigated, to the extent possible. While complaints should be made as quickly as possible following an alleged incident of sexual misconduct, all reports will be accepted regardless of when the alleged incident(s) took place.


GSW Title IX Policy and Procedures are guided by University System of Georgia – Board of Regents Policies 6.7 and 4.6.5.

Updated 2/21/2023

Sexual Misconduct Report

Georgia Southwestern State University is committed to responding promptly and effectively to all forms of sexual misconduct. The safety and security of our campus community is important. If you have experienced sexual misconduct, there are resources are available to you. You may choose to take any or all of the following actions:

File a Report with GSW

Report the incident to GSW's Title IX Coordinator at the one of the following:

Mailing Address
Georgia Southwestern State University
Attention: Laura Boren
800 GSW State University Drive
Americus, Georgia 31709

(229) 928-1387



File a Report with Law Enforcement

Because sexual misconduct may constitute criminal activity, a complainant also has the option, should he or she so choose, of filing a report with campus or local police at one of the following:

GSW Public Safety
Nicholas Smarr and Jody Smith Memorial Building
(229) 931-2245

Americus Police Department
119 S. Lee Street
Americus, GA 31709
(229) 924-3677

Emergency Medical Services
Dial 911

File an Anonymous Report

  • Anonymous reports of sexual misconduct may be reported to Ethics and Compliance Reporting Hotline. Individuals should understand, however, that it will be more difficult for the institution to respond and to take action upon anonymous reports.

Other resources are available on-campus and off-campus mentioned below.

On-Campus Resources

Health Services

Health Center

Phone: 229-931-2235

Web: Health Services

Public Safety

Nicholas Smarr and Jody Smith Memorial Building

Phone: 229-931-2245

Web: Public Safety

Counseling Services

Health Center

Phone: 229-931-2708

Web: Counseling Services

Student Engagement & Success

3rd Floor, Student Success Center

Phone: 229-928-1387

Web:  Student Engagement

Human Resources/Title IX

1st Floor, Sanford Hall

Phone:  229-931-2000

Web:  Human Resources


Christie Campus Health

Call 1-833-855-0079

A 24/7/365 mental health support line for in-the-moment support.

Off-Campus Resources

Emergency Medical Services

Dial 911


Phoebe Sumter Medical Center

126 HWY 280 West

Americus, GA 31719

Phone: 229-924-6011



Middle Flint Behavioral Healthcare

415 North Jackson Street

Americus, GA 31709

Phone: 229-931-2470

Hotline: 800-342-7843 (24 hour emergency services)


Provides mental health, substance abuse and developmental disability services.


LightHouse Children's Advocacy Center


800 GSW State University Drive

Americus, GA 31709

Phone: (229) 931-4486


Provides sexual assault exams for anyone reporting assault, regardless of age. Provides assistance in cases involving sexual abuse, severe physical abuse, witness to violence and sexual exploitation.

Liberty House of Albany
PO Box 2046
Albany, GA 31702
Hotline: (229) 439-7065 or (800) 334-2836
Phone: (229) 439-7094
Fax: (229) 883-2635

Provides shelter and services for Domestic Violence victims and their children. Serves Dougherty, Baker, Early, Miller, Clay, Calhoun, Lee, Crisp, Dooly, Macon, Schley, Webster, Stewart, Quitman, Randolph, Terrell, and Sumter Counties.


Sumter County District Attorney Victim Assistance Program

Phone: 229-924-5411


The Lily Pad, Inc (Rape Crisis Help Center)

Albany, GA 31708

Phone: 866-319-5459





Southwest Georgia Victim's Alliance (SOWEGA)

PO Box 702

Americus, GA 31709

Phone: 229-331-0315

Fax: 229-584-8636

24-hour Statewide Hotline: 1-800-334-2836


Provides help, aid and resources for domestic violence, sexual assault, and stalking across the southwest judicial district of Georgia. Covers Lee, Macon, Schley, Stewart, Sumter and Webster counties.

Training Resources

We have provided copies of all training materials in accordance with §106.45(b)(10)D, which states that "all materials used to train Title IX Coordinators, investigators, decision-makers, and anyone who facilitates an informal resolution process must be publicly available". The applicable training for each category can be found below: