University of Redlands

Bias Incident Resources

The University of Redlands is committed to being a welcoming and inclusive community, which is strengthened intellectually and socially by the diversity of viewpoints, backgrounds, experiences, and identities of its students, faculty, and staff. Any bias incident or activity can jeopardize the active and open pursuit of education and opportunity within and beyond the Redlands community. The Conflict Resolution Center is committed to addressing the harm caused by these incidents, repairing the harm through restorative and educational processes, and rebuilding the trust in our community where we all have the right to feel safe and included.

What is a bias incident and other related terms?

Bias Incident

Bias Incident is conduct, speech, or expression that is motivated by bias, but does not rise to the level of a crime. Bias incidents encompass a broad spectrum of activity, from silently avoiding contact with someone because of their race, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, or other characteristics, to hosting a private party where participants dress up in blackface. Bias incidents arise from the expression of both explicit biases and implicit biases that an individual or group may hold. Explicit Bias is conscious and intentional bias expressed through language or gesture and intended to insult and demean another person. Implicit Bias exists “outside the level of awareness because [it is] deeply embedded in the psyche and made invisible” (Sue, 2010). While implicit bias may not be grounded in intention, the impact of the bias still exists for the individuals or groups who experience its effect. Both forms of bias also can take the form of on-going microaggressions. Ultimately, regardless of origin, bias incidents have the potential to disrupt teaching and learning, a sense of belonging and community, student success, and the overall campus climate.

    • Citation Information
      Sue, D. W. (2010). Microaggressions in everyday life: Race, gender, and sexual orientation. New York, NY: Wiley.


Microaggressions are “the everyday verbal, nonverbal, and environmental slights, snubs, or insults, whether intentional or unintentional, that communicate hostile, derogatory, or negative messages to target persons based solely on their marginalized group status” (Sue, et al., 2007). Ultimately, regardless of origin, bias incidents have the potential to disrupt teaching and learning, a sense of belonging and community, student success, and the overall campus climate at PLU.

    • Citation Information
      Sue, D. W., Capodilupo, C. M., Torino, G. C., Bucceri, J. M., Holder, A. M. B., Nadal, K. L., et al. (2007). Racial microaggressions in everyday life: Implications for clinical practice. American Psychologist, 62, 271–286.

Hate Crime

Hate Crime - California Penal Code 422.55 PC sets forth the definition of a “hate crime.” According to this law, a hate crime means a criminal act committed, in whole or in part, because of one or more of the following actual or perceived characteristics of the victim: disability, gender, nationality or national origin, race or ethnicity, religion or place of worship, sexual orientation, or association with a person or group of persons with one or more of these actual or perceived characteristics.

Hate Incident

Hate Incident - The State of California Department of Justice defines a hate incident as:

"A hate incident is an action or behavior motivated by hate but which, for one or more reasons, is not a crime.

Examples of hate incidents include:

  • Name-calling
  • Insults
  • Displaying hate material on your own property.
  • Posting hate material that does not result in property damage.
  • Distribution of materials with hate messages in public places.

The U.S. Constitution allows hate speech as long as it does not interfere with the civil rights of others. If a hate incident starts to threaten a person or property, it may become a hate crime.

A hate crime is a crime against a person, group, or property motivated by the victim's real or perceived protected social group. The law protects against many classes of hate crimes.

Hate incidents which are actions or behavior motivated by hate such as name-calling or distribution of materials with hate messages in public places are not included. While these acts are harmful, they are legally protected by the First Amendment right to freedom of expression and do not rise to the level of a criminal offense under California law. However, it is important to note that these incidents have a traumatic impact on victim and communities at large.”


Discrimination as defined in the University's Policy Prohibiting Discrimination, Harassment, Sexual Misconduct, and Retaliation involves an adverse action or decision against, or harassing treatment of, a person or class of persons because of, or because of a perception of, a protected characteristic (identified in Section I(A) of University policy) or because of perceived or actual affiliation/association with other individuals in a protected class. Adverse actions include, but are not limited to: denying raises, benefits, promotions, or leadership opportunities; demoting, disciplining, or terminating a person’s employment; interfering with the use of University facilities or services; denying access to an educational program; or instigating or permitting an environment that is unwelcoming or hostile. “Discrimination” under this policy does not include all unfair or inappropriate behavior, only those behaviors that take place because of a protected characteristic.


Harassment as defined in the University's Policy Prohibiting Discrimination, Harassment, Sexual Misconduct, and Retaliation involves behavior that affects a person because of a legally protected characteristic and typically takes two forms: (1) quid pro quo harassment or (2) hostile environment harassment. “Quid pro quo harassment” takes place when a supervisor or other authority figure offers or hints that something (e.g., a raise, a promotion) can be obtained in return for a sexual favor or submitting to harassing behavior. “Hostile environment harassment” takes place when a person is subjected to severe or pervasive behavior, that is unwelcome, and which unreasonably interferes with that person’s ability to carry out their job functions or otherwise meet their responsibilities or creates an intimidating, hostile or offensive work environment. Unlawful harassment does not include stray, insensitive, or even offensive remarks or behaviors when such remarks or behaviors are neither severe nor pervasive. Harassing behaviors prohibited by this policy include, but are not limited to: severe or pervasive use of derogatory words, jokes, slurs, epithets, or statements; stereotyping activities; use of graffiti or other forms of pictorial or written messages of intimidation; threats about unwelcome physical contact; unwelcome physical contact; and stalking. This definition of “harassment” includes harassment on the basis of sex; for Title IX purposes, however, “Sexual Harassment” is defined in Section II(C).

What happens when the CRC is notified of a bias incident?

The CRC does:

  • Refer those who report incidents to appropriate campus offices and programs that can effectively respond in accordance with applicable University polices and principles of expression.
  • Catalog all reported incidents and track for trends.
  • Assess avenues for minimizing or eliminating future incidents of bias.
  • Consult with the Senior Diversity and Inclusion Officer regarding possible institutional responses.
  • Work with campus offices and departments to develop strategies for addressing bias trends and patterns at the University of Redlands.

The CRC does not:

  • Conduct investigations. Should you utilize some of the campus resources offered to you through this process, they might use the information you provide to initiate disciplinary action.
  • Create a formal complaint. Connecting to the CRC does not constitute a formal complaint and will not automatically initiate an investigation. University of Redlands offices responsible for responding to, investigating, and resolving complaints include the Office of Equity & Title IX, Human Resources, Community Standards and Wellbeing, and Deans’ Offices for Academic Schools and Colleges. To report criminal activity, call the University's Department of Public Safety at 909-748-8888 or 911.

Reporting a Bias Incident

If you have experienced or witnessed an incident of bias, you can connect with the Conflict Resolution Center for reporting options and supportive resources. Please complete a CRC Contact Form.

Once you fill out the Conflict Resolution Center Contact Form,  the CRC Team will review the form and contact you to set up a time to meet with one of the members. During the meeting, team members will review the information you provided and work with you to determine the next steps in the process. For more information about the reporting process, see the CRC Response Process.


If I submit a CRC Contact Form, will you automatically share it with the University's Department of Public Safety?

No, not all incidents are criminal in nature. If the CRC Team has questions about whether the incident is criminal or not, the team may ask the University's Department of Public Safety to review it and determine if further action by the police is warranted.

Will you automatically share my information with the Community Standards and Wellbeing Office, the Office of Equity & Title IX, or Human Resources?

No, but that might be an option for you and the team member to discuss as part of your action plan to resolve the incident.

What happens if I am listed as an alleged offender in a bias incident?

The individual who contacted the CRC will work with the CRC Team to determine whether to pursue a formal complaint through the university's existing disciplinary procedures. If a complaint is made through a formal process, a University official may contact the alleged offender if the incident is a violation of the University Student Code of Community Standards or any other University policy.

Does the CRC Team respond to off-campus bias incidents?

The CRC team will provide services and support to students who experience a bias incident no matter where the incident occurs. However, the options available to students for a formal process may be limited based on the location of the incident among other considerations.

What options will the CRC explore to address my concerns of bias?

The list below is not exhaustive, but provides examples to encourage continued support to individuals and our community:

  • Educational opportunities – training, workshop, and intentional educational experiences
  • Conflict Coaching
  • Facilitated Dialogue
  • Facilitated Restorative Justice Process
  • Organized community action