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Office of Equal Opportunity and Office of Title IX

The Office of Equal Opportunity and The Office of Title IX

Policy Statement

University Commitments | Definition | REPORTING INCIDENTS | Who is BIRT?


This page provides context and resources for preventing, reporting and responding to bias incidents at DU.

WHY? University commitment

"As the University of Denver prepares to meet the exciting challenges of the growing, thriving and remarkably diverse city in which we live as well as the needs of a changing nation, we will continue to be guided by the principles of Inclusive Excellence. We must continue to strive for an inclusive community that embraces all its members, provides equality of opportunity for all and actively encourages all voices to be heard. Everyone must be welcomed and treated with dignity and respect, and every person's story must be honored. An inclusive community celebrates different cultures, engages in clamorous debates and cultivates the individual and collective flourishing of all of us." --from the Chancellor's Statement on Diversity, Equity and Inclusive Excellence

"As a University of Denver Pioneer, I pledge to act with INTEGRITY and pursue academic excellence; to RESPECT differences in people, ideas, and opinions and; to accept my RESPONSIBILITY as a local and global citizen..." --from the DU Pioneer Pledge

In pursuit of these ideals, DU has created this Bias Incident Protocol to provide the University community and affiliated individuals an additional and specific resource in responding to behaviors that threaten the fundamental, inclusive culture that DU is committed to creating and maintaining.

WHAT? Definition

DU defines bias incidents as any behaviors, including speech and gestures, that target individuals or groups based on their actual or perceived group identities, such as race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, socioeconomic background, age, disability, national origin, religion and others. Examples may include, but are not limited to, graffiti, harassment, jokes, direct insults, etc.

The specific forms, content, motivation/intention and impact of bias incidents vary; but all detract from the inclusive community to which DU is committed. Therefore bias incidents are problematic for everyone within the University and for the University as a whole.

On their own and/or in combination with other actions, bias incidents may also constitute violations of:

Thus, beyond the Response Protocol described here, bias incidents may also be subject to investigation and adjudication by other campus offices and/or governmental bodies (e.g., police, EEO, etc).

HOW? Reporting Incidents

This system is not live-monitored. If there is a threat of harm or other immediate risk to personal safety, call 911 or 303.871.3000 (Campus Safety).

Even if perpetrators are not known or discoverable (e.g., unwitnessed, anonymous graffiti), reporting every instance helps document patterns that might lead to identifying those responsible and/or to better supporting individuals or communities being targeted.

Reporting every suspected instance, even if you're not sure whether it's a policy/law violation, helps us document patterns that might lead to identifying those responsible and/or to better supporting individuals or communities being targeted. 

Reports may be made anonymously, though such reports may limit our ability to respond.  You can identify yourself if comfortable, and/or you'd like to be contacted for follow-up.  In any case, making a report does not obligate you to participate in a formal conduct process or legal process. 

THEN WHAT? University Response

1. Reports are received and reviewed by staff of the DU Office of Equal Opportunity & Title IX, who will take action directly, and/or refer to other campus units.

2. When incidents do not rise to the level of legal or policy violations, and/or when persons/ communities impacted by any incident may need support, they will refer reports to the Bias Incident Response Team (BIRT).

While specific responses vary based on the details of the reported incidents, possible University responses include:
  • Referral of reports to Campus Safety, Housing, Student Conduct, etc for investigation and judicial action (if appropriate).
  • Documentation of and prompt removal/repair of property-based damage.
  • Increased Campus Safety patrols and other security measures in the area.
  • Notification of targeted/affected communities (e.g., residents or employees in relevant building, leaders of targeted religious communities, etc).

ALL reports are logged and included as part of the ongoing reviews and reports by involved offices, which in turn are used to inform University program, service and resource decisions.


The University's Bias Incident Response Team (or "BIRT") is an internal working group tasked to coordinate campus response to bias incidents. BIRT does NOT investigate, adjudicate or otherwise participate in judicial/legal processes, but provides support to individuals and populations affected by such incidents.

Additionally, BIRT gathers an advisory group of campus-wide representatives at least quarterly, to

  • monitor and report on incident patterns impacting campus climate, and
  • make recommendations for changes to resources, programs, etc.

If you are interested in being involved with BIRT (minimum of four quarterly meeting), please contact



Tips for Responding to Everyday Bigotry from the Southern Poverty Law Center 


The Hate Symbol Database from the Anti-Defamation League 

Source: DU VideoManager



NOTE: Members of the press/media should contact University Communications & Marketing