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Bias Incident Response

What is bias?

bi•as /ˈbīəs/

noun prejudice in favor of or against one thing, person, or group compared with another, usually in a way considered to be unfair. "there was evidence of bias against international applicants"
verb cause to feel or show inclination or prejudice for or against someone or something. "all too often, their recruitment processes are biased toward younger candidates"

SXU's Commitment to Diversity

In line with its mission, Core Values, and its Catholic, Mercy identity, Saint Xavier University is committed to fostering diverse and inclusive community in which students can learn and grow. As part of that commitment, the Office of the Dean of Students encourages our campus community to report behavior that discriminates, stereotypes, excludes, or harasses anyone in the community.

Anyone who has been the targets of, or who witness, a bias incident may choose to make the University aware of these incidents through an official Bias Incident report. Upon receipt of such a report, the University will investigate and address the alleged bias incident and work toward a resolution that will end such behavior. The reporter will receive a prompt response.

The University's Bias Incident Response Team (BIRT) is comprised of faculty and staff who are in key positions to investigate, address, and educate the community in relation to reported incidents of bias in the campus community. They partner with other members of the campus community to ensure that the effects of such behavior can be restored, and that the community can be educated on the negative effects -- and, hopefully, positive growth and education -- that may result from such experiences.

Report an Incident

Reporting, Support and Resolution of Student Bias Concerns


  • Student believes a bias related incident has taken place and files a Bias Incident Report or brings concerns to the attention of the Dean of Students Office or the Office for Inclusive Excellence. 
  • Bias Incident Response Team (BIRT) screens the concerns or report within 48 hours.
  • Bias in defined in the Notice of Nondiscriminatory Policy.
  • If a concern or report raises possible bias issues, BIRT appoints a Response Coordinator from the team.


  • The BIRT Response Coordinator then follows up with the Reporting Party. The purpose of the follow-up us to:
    1. Learn more about incident or concerns
    2. Explain the bias reporting and resolution process
  • BIRT will reach out to the Reporting Party within (1) one week of initial report to communicate next steps including who will be responsible for assembling and reviewing information and recommending a resolution to the University.


  • The BIRT appointed reviewer or team of reviewers collects all information and consults with BIRT about the process while reviewing the matter.
  • Typically the reporting party and responding party or parties will meet with the reviewer or team to offer their perspectives.
  • The review process may include BIRT's implementing a plan for interim actions to assist the parties during the review process or to maintain an appropriate status quo during a Bias Incident review.


  • The BIRT appointed reviewer or team recommends possible outcomes, which may include:
    • Academic or other accommodations or modifications for either both, or all parties
    • A written resolution of the concerns or report, including recommended findings as to whether policy or conduct violations were substantiated or whether other issues should be addressed.
    • Education and engagement for parties and for greater community.
  • BIRT Response Coordinator communicates this recommendation to all parties, which includes the University decision makers.
  • The University decision makers review the information collected and determines an outcome.

SXU may also exercise its discretion to appoint and outside reviewer to resolve reports and concerns.

The timelines, deadlines, and procedures reflected in this Policy are subject to modification by SXU when necessary to promote a full and fair resolution of the Bias Incident Response Process.

Questions about this Policy may be sent to deanofstudentsFREESXU or inclusiveexcellenceFREESXU.

Possible Outcomes

In the case of a bias incident report, BIRT may:

  • Consult and/or coordinate with other units including the Office of the Dean of Students, Office of Inclusive Excellence, College Deans, Division Directors or the Academic Provost.
  • Educate the individual responsible for a bias incident so they can know about the harm a particular action caused and offering advisement on avoiding harmful behavior in the future.
  • Offer support and connected impacted parties to relevant University resources.
  • Give a referral to the student conduct process.
  • Give a referral to the Office of Inclusive Excellence.
  • Coordinate spaces for community support and healing.
  • Facilitate dialogue.