What is bias?
A bias incident is an act of bigotry, harassment, intimidation, coercion, or damage to property by known or unknown perpetrators that occurs on the Florida International University campus or within an area that impacts the FIU community. These can be associated with negative feelings and beliefs with respect to others race, ethnicity, national origin, religion, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, age, social class, political affiliation, disability, veteran status, club affiliation or organizational membership.
What is a hate crime?
A hate crime is a committed or attempted criminal act by any person or group of persons against a person or the property of another person or group, which in any way constitutes an expression of hatred toward the victim because of their personal characteristics, including race/color/gender identity, religion, ethnicity/ancestry/national origin, sexual orientation, age, mental/physical disability and homeless status.
How will the University respond to a hate crime?
A hate crime is a violation of the law and will be investigated by University Police and/or other law enforcement agencies as necessary and appropriate. To report a hate crime, contact university police at 305-348-2626.
You may access the Ethical Panther Hotline online or by calling 1-888-520-0570 (24 hours a day, 365 days a year).
Challenge people to say what they mean. For example, when someone says, “that’s so gay,” you could ask them if they really mean “gay” or if they were using that word to mean “stupid” or “weird.”
Avoid comments like “You’re so well-spoken for a ____ person”, “You don’t act like a normal ____ person”, “You sound so white!”, “Where are you really from?”, “I couldn’t even tell you were gay.”
Engage others in dialogues and be willing to share your personal experiences in order to help others learn more about something they may not know much about.
Practice active listening by listening to others with an open mind.
Step outside of your comfort zone by attending programs and events that highlight topics or issues that make you uncomfortable or that you are unfamiliar with.
Some comments may seem harmless to but can make individuals feel uncomfortable, frustrated or out of place. As FIU faculty, staff, and students our goal should be to make sure that all students feel welcome on our campuses.
Having civil discussions about our different experiences, ideologies and interests is essential to creating harmony in our community.
Speak up when you see or hear something that is bias-related. No student should be discriminated against on our campuses. Report and encourage others to report bias-related incidents.
Can individuals who engage in bias-related acts be disciplined by the university?
Bias-related acts that are also covered by the University’s Student Conduct and Honor Code and Nondiscrimination, Harassment and Retaliation (Title VII) (e.g. bias-motivated vandalism, harassment, assault, etc.) will be subject to the processes and accountability through these policies.
Bias that does not violate a university policy will generally be addressed through educational interventions.
Students, staff and faculty who report bias-related acts can expect that their report will be acknowledged. In situations where the accused may be personally identified, privacy laws and confidentiality of student and employee records may prevent the university from disclosing specific details about the resolution of a complaint.
What about sexual harassment, sexual misconduct, and other forms of discrimination?
Please reach out to the Office of Inclusion, Diversity, Equity and Access (IDEA). That is the office responsible for addressing and responding to all reports of discrimination involving students, faculty, and staff, including sexual harassment and sexual misconduct, whether within or outside the jurisdiction of Title IX.
IDEA also oversees FIU’s efforts to prevent and respond to discrimination and harassment on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, gender expression, pregnancy or parenting, age, religion, disability, or other bases under federal laws and regulations.
Report a concern
If any student, employee or applicant has a good faith belief that they have been discriminated against or harassed based on age, color, disability, gender, marital status, ethnic or national origin, race, religion, retaliation, sex or any other protected category, the Office of Civil Rights Compliance and Accessibility (CRCA) encourages them to use the resources below to report the incident.