Bias and Hate Related Incidents

Bias and Hate Related Incidents

Hartwick College values pluralism: a state in which diverse groups co-exist and interact without necessarily losing their individual identities. We seek to critically address and reduce all forms of prejudice, to foster diversity, and to reduce ethnocentrism and intolerance. Our goal is to increase the presence of underrepresented groups on campus, improve the quality of life of students and employees of racially and ethnically diverse backgrounds, and broaden the understanding, awareness, and appreciation of diversity among all members of the Hartwick community.

The Hartwick College community is dedicated to uncovering, exploring, critiquing, and overcoming the societal conditions that undermine the ideal of a pluralistic society. We strive to foster democratic values and responsible national and global citizenship. We strive to create a climate that maximizes each individual’s capacity to learn and work, and an institution in which diversity is embraced, valued, and celebrated.

Hartwick College informs students and employees about bias/hate-related crime and prevention measures through programs that include workshops, seminars, discussion groups, and orientation sessions as well as printed or web-based materials. The purpose of these programs and information resources is to disseminate information about bias/hate-related crime, promote discussion, encourage reporting of incidents of such crime, and facilitate prevention.

I. Definition of Bias/Hate-Related Incidents

Federal, state, and local law define bias/hate crimes as any criminal offense or attempted criminal offense that one could reasonably conclude is motivated, in whole or in part, by the perpetrator’s bias or attitude against an individual victim or group based on perceived or actual personal characteristics. Such characteristics include age, ancestry or ethnicity, disability, economic status, gender, height or weight, immigration or citizenship status, marital status, race, religion or religious practices, or sexual orientation.

Such crimes can involve racial epithets, disparate treatment based on racially or gender-related assumptions, sexually discriminatory behaviors in terms of “hostile environment” (sexual harassment), and intolerance toward openly gay students and employees (in language and action). The categories include, but are not limited to:

  • faculty/staff-to-student incidents;
  • student-to-faculty/staff incidents;
  • faculty/staff-to-faculty/staff incidents; and
  • student-to-student cases.

II. Applicable Laws, Ordinances and Regulations

A person commits a bias or hate crime when they commit a specified offense and either:

  • intentionally selects the person against whom the offense is committed or intended to be committed in whole or in substantial part because of a belief or perception regarding the race, color, national origin, ancestry, gender, religion, religious practice, age, disability or sexual orientation of a person, regardless of whether the belief or perception is correct, or
  • intentionally commits the act or acts constituting the offense in whole or in substantial part because of a belief or perception regarding the race, color, national origin, ancestry, gender, religion, religious practice, age, disability or sexual orientation of a person, regardless of whether the belief or perception is correct. The laws on and penalties for the commission of bias/hate-related crimes, are codified in article 485 of the New York State penal law. Should the victim pursue judicial action through the College, College procedures for adjudication and disciplinary sanctions will apply. The College will also refer the incident to local, state, or federal law enforcement as appropriate based on the wishes of the complainant or the decision of the College.

III.  Identifying and Reporting Bias/Hate-Related Crime

Community members should contact the Office of Campus Safety (607-431-4111) or 911 immediately for any bias/hate related crime in progress or emergency so that immediate assistance can be provided.

Bias/hate related incidents may be reported to the following campus offices:

  • The Office of Campus Safety, Dewar Hall, 607-431-4111
  • The Office of Student Experience, Dewar Hall, 607-431-4532
  • The Office of Human Resources, Shineman Chapel House, 607-431-4315

These offices can provide the complainant an opportunity to explore, in a private, one-on-one discussion, the full range of legal, medical, and counseling supports available.

Community members may also file a bias/hate related incident online through the following reporting link:

Reporting Bias/Hate Related Incidents

Formal reports of bias/hate related crimes or incidents by a Hartwick employee will be referred to the Office of Human Resources and addressed in accordance with the Employee Handbook.

Formal reports of bias/hate related crimes or incidents by a Hartwick student will be referred to the Office of Student Experience and addressed in accordance with the Student Code of Conduct.

The College will review and address any report of bias/hate related crime or incident whether or not the complainant pursues formal charges through the New York State criminal system.

Complainants may file formal charges with law enforcement. If desired, Hartwick’s Office of Campus Safety will provide individuals with information to help them with that decision. Campus Safety officers or representatives of the College are available to assist the complainant with filing formal charges with law enforcement.

Should an individual witness a bias/hate-related incident, they may provide a valuable resource to the College in reconstructing the incident so that an appropriate response can be made or investigation completed. The College values the willingness of witnesses to step forward and assist College authorities in the investigation of such matters.

IV.  Personnel and Support Contacts

Matters related to bias/hate crimes may be addressed to:

  • The Office of Campus Safety, Dewar Hall, 607-431-4111 or ext. 0 or 911
  • The Office of Student Experience, Dewar Hall, 607-431-4532
  • The Office of Human Resources, Shineman Chapel House, 607-431-4315

Resources available include:

  • Counseling Services, Perrella Wellness Center, 607-431-4420
  • Health Center, Perrella Wellness Center, 607-431-4120
  • Office of Global Education, Golisano Hall, 607-431-4423
  • Employee Assistance Program (Contact HR for benefit details) 607-431-4315

Revised August 2021