Northeastern defines sexual harassment as any unwanted or offensive sexual behavior that has the purpose or effect of creating a hostile living, learning, or working environment, or whenever toleration of such conduct or the rejection of it is the basis for a personal or academic decision affecting the individual. Sexual harassment may be found in a single episode, as well as in persistent behavior.

Examples of sexually harassing behavior include, but are not limited to: sexual advances; request for sexual favors; any form of retaliation or threat of retaliation against an individual who rejects such advances; sexual epithets, jokes, or comments; comment or inquiry about an individual’s body or sexual experiences; unwelcome leering, whistling, or name calling; sexual gestures; displaying sexually suggestive photos, cartoons, or videos

Check out these public service announcements from #thatsharrassment to see some examples of sexual harassment (based on real events) and how it may play out in various work environments.

What are my options if I’m being sexually harassed?

The Office for University Equity and Compliance (Title IX) is charged with investigating and responding to allegations of sex and gender-based misconduct at Northeastern. If you wish to file a complaint or have questions or concerns, please contact them via phone or email to arrange a meeting. Alternatively, reports can be submitted online at northeastern.edu/titleix (anonymous option available). To understand more about on-campus reporting options including a step by step description of the investigation and adjudication process, please see the Title IX policy.

You may also contact the Northeastern University Police Department (NUPD) to make a university report or to discuss options for pursuing criminal charges. NUPD is a 24-hour service. If someone’s health or safety is at risk, call immediately. If desired, NUPD can act as a liaison with other police departments to investigate incidents that occur off campus. Reporting sex or gender- based misconduct to NUPD does NOT commit you to future legal action.

What if I’m being sexually harassed while on co-op?

You can report incidents of sexual harassment occurring on co-op to the Office for University Equity and Compliance (Title IX) (see Q&A above for more information on reporting). They can work with you and your co-op to ensure a safe work environment.

You can find more information about sexual harassment in the work place on the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) website.