Skip to main content

State Law and Related Data FY2022

The University of Houston-Downtown encourages individuals who have experienced sexual misconduct to seek support services. All employees are required to report incidents of sexual misconduct. Read more below to learn more about your reporting obligations under Texas Senate Bill 212 (SB 212). If you have any other questions about SB 212 or related policies, please contact:

Lauri S. Ruiz
Title IX/Equal Opportunity Officer

SB 212 Frequently Asked Questions

  • In the 86th Texas legislative Session, the Texas Legislature passed SB 212 which establishes mandatory requirements for reporting incidents of sexual harassment, sexual assault, dating violence, and stalking. The bill applies to employees of postsecondary institutions, which includes all UH System campuses, and it outlines the consequences for University employees who fail to report or knowingly make false reports of alleged incidents of sexual misconduct.
  • All employees must promptly report to the Title IX Coordinator observations they witness or information they receive while in the course and scope of their employment that they reasonably believe may constitute a violation of the Sexual Misconduct Policy and are committed by or against a member of the University community, a student enrolled or employee employed, at the time of the incident.
  • This includes information witnessed, received first- or second-hand, and overheard even if you think the information may be "just a rumor."
Yes. If the incident was committed by or against a member of the University community at the time of the incident, you are required to report even if the incident occurred off-campus.
Yes. The Title IX Office will follow up on available information to determine if there are any supporting facts for the rumor after receiving your report.
To make a report, you may submit an online report or contact the Lauri Ruiz, Interim Title IX/Equity and Diversity Officer. You may also utilize the Fraud and Non-Compliance Hotline.
SB 212 requires that you "promptly report" incidents of sexual misconduct. Please make every effort to make your report within 24 hours of observing or receiving information that you believe may constitute sexual misconduct. The Title IX office will use the reasonable person standard to determine whether your report was made promptly.
  • All known details must be reported regardless of when or where the incident occurred, including whether the complainant expressed a desire for confidentiality.
  • Include names of the parties and their University affiliation; the names of other people who may be involved; any relevant facts including date, time, and incident location; and any supportive measures, such as academic accommodations, housing changes, etc., you may have implemented, if known.
You will not be penalized for mistaken information if you provided the details in good faith based on the specifics available to you at the time you reported.
Unless the Title IX Coordinator has additional questions, you probably will not receive a response to your report. If you want to confirm that the Title IX office received your report or would like to discuss the matter further, please feel free to contact your campus Title IX Coordinator.
Please report even if you are not sure the incident falls into one of the required categories. The Title IX Coordinator will determine whether the information you provided constitutes sexual misconduct under the UHS Sexual Misconduct Policy and state law.
If the person who made a disclosure of sexual misconduct to you requested confidentiality, you can let them know that you are required to report the matter to the Title IX Coordinator by the Policy and state law. You can also let them know that the Coordinator will reach out to them to offer support services.
  • If after an investigation, the University determines that an employee knowingly failed to make a report, made a false report, or intended to conceal the incident, state law requires the University to terminate the employee, regardless of tenure status.
  • An employee who is required to make a report and knowingly fails to make the report, or with the intent to harm or deceive knowingly makes a report that is false, may also be charged with a Class B misdemeanor, which is punishable by a maximum of 180 days in jail and/or a maximum fine of $2,000.
  • If it is shown at the trial of the offense that the employee intended to conceal the incident, the offense may be escalated to a Class A misdemeanor, which is punishable by up to one year in jail and/or a maximum fine of $4,000.
Yes, please report to the Title IX Officer even if you think someone else has already reported the incident.
Yes, employees are required to report incidents they learn of in class assignments, via e-mail or other electronic means, etc., even if the information available is limited.
Yes, there are limited reporting exceptions. Employees who hear information at a public awareness or "speak out" event, employees who are the victims of the incident(s) of sexual misconduct, and student employees have exceptions. However, some students may still be mandatory reporters under System Policy. Employees designated by the University as Confidential Resources Employees provide de-identified report data.
Mental health counselors, healthcare professionals, and clergy are considered Confidential Resources Employees when providing individualized services to community members in a protected setting (e.g. counselor-client or doctor-patient treatment).
If you are accused of failing to make a report or knowingly making a false report, a review will be conducted and if disciplinary action is taken, you will be provided the same rights your campus provides for any disciplined employee.
If you are a Campus Security Authority, you must also submit a Clery Incident Report form to your campus Clery Compliance Officer. Adults in the state of Texas must also report abuse of children, elderly persons or persons with disabilities to law enforcement or the Department of Family and Protective Services.
  • SB 212 is not triggered by failing to report something that occurred before a student was a member of the University community. However, some incidents can have a recurring nature such as harassment, dating violence or stalking.
  • Report historical incidents you learn of so that the Title IX Office can provide resources and determine if the student is still being personally impacted by the incident or if there may be a threat of recurrence.
Yes, you are required to report incidents you learn of even if you receive the information by overhearing a conversation.
SB 212 was effective September 1, 2019 and the penalties went into effect on January 1, 2020. Please report any incident of sexual misconduct you hear(d) about even if you received the report some time ago.
SB 212 is not triggered when a student was not enrolled at the University. However, please report so that the Title IX Office can provide resources. If a person is disclosing something that happened in the past, it can be because they are still being impacted by the incident.
Yes, even if you do not know a party's name or University affiliation, please make a report so that the Title IX Office can determine whether additional information is available.
Yes, the law applies to both students and employees. If your colleague discloses an incident of sexual misconduct to you, you are required to report the incident even if they ask you not to, the incident was off-campus, and/or the other party is not affiliated with the University.
Call 911 immediately in an emergency. Campus police can be contacted for non-emergencies where appropriate. For sexual misconduct, contact Erika Harrison, UHD Title IX/Equity and Diversity Officer, or complete an online report to fulfill your reporting responsibility.