Anti-Bullying Policy

It is the policy of the University that no student, faculty or staff member should be subjected to bullying or harassing behavior by any other student, faculty or staff member.  Furthermore, no person should engage in any act of reprisal or retaliation against a victim, witness or anyone with information about an act of bullying or harassing behavior.

Definitions

“Bullying or harassing behavior” is defined as any pattern of gestures or written, electronic or verbal communications, or any physical act or any threatening communication, or any act reasonably perceived as being motivated by any actual or perceived differentiating characteristic, that takes place on any property owned or controlled by The University of Southern Mississippi, or during any activity in whatever place sponsored by, directed or controlled by The University of Southern Mississippi, and that also fulfills one of the following conditions:

•   Places a student, faculty or staff member in actual and reasonable fear of harm to his or her person or damage to his or her property

•   Creates or is certain to create a hostile environment by substantially interfering with or impairing a student’seducational performance, opportunities or benefits

“Hostile environment” is defined as the condition wherein the victim subjectively views the conduct as bullying or harassing behavior and the conduct is objectively severe or pervasive enough that a reasonable person would agree it is bullying or harassing behavior.

“Suitable party” is defined as a person with responsibility to prevent bullying or harassing behavior within or during a particular activity, class, building or function.  In the case of a student being subjected to bullying or harassing behavior, a suitable party might be an instructor, residence hall staff or a counselor.  In the case of a faculty or staff member being subjected to bullying or harassing behavior, a suitable party might be a dean, academic chair or a superior.