Privacy and Confidentiality

Western Michigan University is committed to protecting the privacy of all individuals involved in a report of sexual and gender-based harassment and violence, intimate partner violence or stalking. All WMU employees who are involved in the University's Title IX response, including the Title IX Coordinator, investigators and discipline authorities, receive specific instruction about respecting and safeguarding private information.

The policy distinguishes between privacy and confidentiality.


Information related to a report of misconduct will only be shared with a small circle of individuals. The use of this information is limited to those University employees who are directly involved in the resolution of a report under this policy. While not bound by legally-privileged confidentiality, these individuals will be discreet and respect the privacy of all individuals involved in the process.


Information shared by an individual with designated campus or community professionals cannot be revealed to any other individual without express permission of the individual. Those campus and community professionals who can hold legally-privileged conversations recognized by law include medical providers, mental health providers, ordained clergy/pastoral counselors and rape crisis counselors.

These individuals are prohibited from breaking confidentiality without express permission of the individual seeking services, unless there is an imminent threat of harm to self or others, or the conduct involves suspected abuse of a minor.  When a report involves suspected abuse of a minor under the age of 18, these confidential resources are required by state law to notify child protective services and/or local law enforcement. 

Confidential resources

Confidential resources are licensed or specially trained professionals who, by law, cannot share information without the consent of the individual seeking assistance.

The following confidential resources are available to individuals seeking confidential assistance:

  • Counselors at Counseling Services in Sindecuse Health Center or the Center for Counseling and Psychological Services in Sangren Hall and at the Grand Rapids clinic.

    Counseling Services at Sindecuse Health Center: (269) 387-1850
    Counseling and Psychological Services in Sangren Hall: (269) 387-5105
    Counseling and Psychological Services in Grand Rapids: (616) 771-4171
  • Medical/clinical staff at Sindecuse Health Center: (269) 387-3287.
  • WMU's Employee Assistance Program:(269) 372-4500 or (800) 523-0591.
  • Off-campus resources, including rape crisis counselors, domestic violence resources, local state assistance agencies or ordained clergy/pastoral counselors.

University employees who are confidential resources may submit anonymous statistical information for Clery Act purposes, but will not otherwise share identifying information without the permission of the complainant. Confiding in a confidential resource does not trigger an investigation or another action by the University.