Interim ActionsAt times, the University may take action to ensure the safety and security of the Northwestern community and its members while resolution of a student conduct case is pending.
Upon receipt of a report but prior to the resolution of an allegation of misconduct, the Office of Community Standards or designee(s) may take interim action (including protective measures and accommodations) to ensure the safety and security of the University community, University community members, or University property. Interim actions are all placed pending prompt hearing through UHAS. In such instances the University will typically attempt to speak with the respondent and give them an initial opportunity to respond to the allegation of policy violation prior to issuing the interim actions.
These actions may be applied to the reporter, the respondent or the broader University community and include (but are not limited to):
- A no contact directive placed between students or between a student and another member of the University community
- Changes in academic, work, or living arrangements
- Assistance in requesting academic allowances
- A formal request or warning that a student cease current behaviors
- Removal of privileges or suspension of activity (including attendance in a specific class)
- Issuance of a timely warning to the University community
- A forensic threat assessment or fitness for duty evaluation and required follow-through on recommendations at the decision of the Behavioral Consultation Team
Interim Action Review
In the event the University imposes an interim action, it will provide the Respondent with notice and an opportunity to challenge the interim action decision immediately following its issuance. You may also request a review as new material information comes to light, the University reviews these matters on an ongoing basis. In cases involving an interim action for a student organization or group, the University will automatically reevaluate interim actions and issue an updated explanation within 25 business days of the initial interim action notification.
Please note reevaluation of interim actions will be based on both the original and any new information collected related to the safety and security implications for the University community. Should no new or not enough new material information be collected to provide enough clarity around safety and security implications for the University community at the time of a review, the original interim action will stand.
Should enough additional information be collected, the University will review both the original and new material information to determine if any interim actions should be changed.
Please note interim action determinations are not directly related to findings of responsibility, and that an interim action may be lifted, amended, or stayed, and the respondent may later still be found either responsible or not responsible for the policies of concern as determined by an investigation.
Interim relocation or removal from campus housing
The University may issue an interim relocation or removal from campus housing for reasons related to the safety and wellbeing of the parties involved, the residential community, or the residence hall property. An interim relocation or removal from campus housing may be imposed by the Executive Director of Residential Services, or designee, and shall become effective immediately without prior notice. The Residential Services Executive Director and the Director of Operations and Services may take the same action for students who reside in fraternity/ sorority-affiliated on-campus housing.
- Sale, distribution, use, or possession of illegal drugs
- Possession of dangerous weapons
- Sexual misconduct
- Theft of or damage to property
- Obstruction or disruption of teaching, research, administration, hearing procedures, or other University activities
- Action or threat of action that endangers or threatens to endanger the health, safety, or wellbeing or any person (including oneself).
Any student who receives an interim suspension will be required to remove themselves immediately from the residence halls and/or fraternity or sorority residences, will not be permitted to attend class, and will be excluded from University property and University events unless the student’s presence on campus or at University events is explicitly authorized by the Vice President for Student Affairs or designee issuing the interim action.
Any respondent who has received an interim suspension should expect a prompt and fair formal resolution to their alleged misconduct. The University must balance the need for a prompt outcome with the need to protect the integrity of the system and to ensure a fair, thorough, and equitable student conduct process and outcome.
The University retains the right to postpone a hearing and/or appeal through the UHAS if the University determines the respondent’s presence in the University community would pose an unacceptable threat to the University community or would otherwise significantly disrupt the educational or other activities of the University community. In the event the University postpones a formal resolution procedure, it will advise the student of the conditions that must be met, which may include a forensic threat assessment (see “Interim Actions” above) prior to the hearing and/or appeal through the UHAS or other designated resolution procedure.