What is the role of the confidential advocate?
The role of the confidential advocate on campus is to serve as a confidential resource for students that might have experienced unwanted situations or behavior from another person (i.e. harassment, stalking, interpersonal violence, rape, sexual assault, etc.).
The advocate can listen, provide a space for students to sort through information or ideas, or offer advice...whatever is most helpful at the time.
Because the advocate is confidential, there is no sharing of student information with anyone (similar to a counselor, clergy or medical doctor). The advocate will not share information with other staff or students. The advocate is not required to report anything a student says to the university or law enforcement.
What are the ways the confidential advocate can offer help?
The primary concern is to make sure the students involved are safe and cared for. The advocate works with students to help sort through the options and resources available at Willamette and in the community that might be helpful.
Some of the ways that an advocate can assist students is to:
- Explain reporting options (to the university or law enforcement).
- Understand what happens next with a Title IX/sexual misconduct report and any related processes.
- Talk through what happened, and provide a space for the student to share concerns.
- Assist with housing changes or temporary housing (both on and off campus options).
- Assist students with their academic success (getting extended deadlines, communicating with professors, changing class schedules, etc.).
- Explain options available through Human Resources, and the HR process for handling matters like this as they relate to employees.
- Navigate medical/counseling or other support resources (on and off campus).
- Answer questions students may have, or help them find information needed for their unique circumstances
Is meeting with the confidential advocate required?
Meeting with the advocate is not a requirement, additionally, the advocate can meet with students once, or as an ongoing basis, depending on the unique situation and need of the student.
Do students have to pay to meet with the confidential advocate?
There is no cost to meet with the advocate. The confidential advocate is a free student resource.
If students don’t want to meet with the confidential advocate right now, can they meet at a
Students may choose to meet with the advocate or any campus resources at any point in time
going forward. When the student is ready, the advocate will be here for them.
Are there other resources available at WU or in the Salem community?
If students would like to learn more about other resources available at Willamette and in the Salem community, they may visit www.willamette.edu/notalone.
What are the next steps of the sexual misconduct reporting process?
If the confidential advocate has made contact with a student because of the submission of a sexual misconduct report in which they were named, it should be anticipated that in the next few business days, the student will receive a separate outreach email from a member of the university’s Title IX team (most likely Domanic Thomas or Shana Sechrist) offering an opportunity to report additional information and discuss the university’s reporting procedures in a non-confidential setting.
Do students have to meet with the confidential advocate as part of the reporting process?
Meeting with the advocate is not connected to the university Title IX/sexual misconduct reporting process.
If you choose to meet with the advocate, they will not share any communication they have with a student with the Title IX team (keeping your information confidential) without a specific release from the student.
It is solely the student’s choice about whether to contact either the advocate or the representative of the Title IX team.
Where is the confidential advocate located and how can a student get in contact with the
The confidential advocate’s office is located in the Gender Resource & Advocacy Center (GRAC) in the Loft in Montag. Students may drop in to see if they are available, if needed immediately. Otherwise, most appointments are scheduled via phone or email. Contact the advocate via email at email@example.com or call 503-375-5361.