Guidance on Reporting

Any student, employee or member of the Geisinger Commonwealth Community who has experienced sexual misconduct is encouraged to immediately seek help. Geisinger Commonwealth encourages all individuals to seek assistance from a medical provider and/or law enforcement immediately after an incident of sexual misconduct, whether or not the individual plans to pursue criminal action.

Geisinger Commonwealth encourages those who have experienced any form of sexual misconduct to report the incident promptly and to pursue college conduct charges and criminal prosecution of the offender. The College takes complaints very seriously and the Title IX Coordinators are prepared to work with complainants to ensure their safety and to remedy the situation. While Geisinger Commonwealth encourages all individuals to make a prompt report to the Title IX Coordinators listed below, the College recognizes that individuals may choose to make a report of sexual misconduct to other Geisinger Commonwealth employees. It should be noted that with the exception of the Resource Advisors listed below, all Geisinger Commonwealth employees have a responsibility for student welfare and are required to report information related to a complaint of sexual misconduct to the Title IX Coordinator who can assist with all aspects of the complaint procedure.

Title IX Coordination

The following persons have been designated to handle inquiries regarding the sexual misconduct policy. The Title IX Coordinator will be informed of all reports of sexual misconduct, and will oversee the College’s centralized review, investigation and resolution of those reports to ensure the College’s compliance with Title IX and the effective implementation of this policy. The Title IX Coordinator will consult with the Director of Safety and Security and others that “need to know” in order to implement procedures under this policy.

  • For complaints against employees or non-students:
    Human Resources Department
    Office – 4th Floor, MSB
    Phone – 570-504-9620
  • For complaints against students:
    Ms. Jackie Ghormoz, Title IX Coordinator, Office of Student Affairs
    Office – Room 3007, MSB
    Phone – 570-504-9073
    Email – jghormoz@tcmc.edu

Levels of Confidentiality

The College encourages victims of sexual misconduct to talk to somebody about what happened so victims can get the support they need, and so the College can respond appropriately.  Different employees on campus have different abilities to maintain a victim’s confidentiality.

Privileged Communication – Some members of the Geisinger Commonwealth community are required to maintain near complete confidentiality; talking to them is sometimes called a “privileged communication.” Health Care providers are considered to have “privileged communication.” Talking with someone in Student Health Services will provide this level of confidentiality. They are not required to report any information about a report of sexual misconduct without the complainant’s permission.

Resource Advisors – Other Geisinger Commonwealth employees may talk to an individual in confidence, and generally only report to the College that an incident occurred without revealing any personally identifying information. Disclosures to these employees will not trigger a College investigation into an incident against the individual’s wishes. While maintaining a complainant’s confidentiality, these Resource Advisors should report the nature, date, time and general location of an incident to the Title IX Coordinator.  This limited report – which includes no information that would directly or indirectly identify the complainant – helps keep the Title IX Coordinator informed of the general extent and nature of sexual misconduct on and off campus so the Coordinator can track patterns, evaluate the scope of the problem, and formulate campus-wide responses.  Before reporting any information to the Title IX Coordinator, these individuals will consult with the complainant to ensure that no personally identifying details are shared with the Title IX Coordinator. A complainant who speaks to a Resource Advisor must understand that, if they want to maintain confidentiality, Geisinger Commonwealth will be unable to conduct an investigation into the particular incident or pursue disciplinary action against the alleged perpetrator.  Even so, these Resource Advisors will still assist the complainant in receiving other necessary protection and support, such as victim advocacy, academic support or accommodations, disability, health or mental health services, and possible changes to educational schedules.  A complainant who first requests confidentiality may later decide to file a complaint with the school or report the incident to local law enforcement, and thus have the incident fully investigated. Resource Advisors will provide the complainant with assistance if the complainant wishes to do so.

Note:  While Resource Advisors may maintain a complainant’s confidentiality vis-à-vis the College, they may have reporting or other obligations under state law such as mandatory reporting to law enforcement in case of minors; reporting of imminent harm to self or others; and/or requirement to testify if subpoenaed in a criminal case.

Also Note:  If Geisinger Commonwealth determines that the alleged perpetrator(s) pose a serious and imminent threat to the College community, the Director of Safety and Security may be called upon to issue a timely warning to the community.  Any such warning should not include any information that identifies the complainant.