Title IX at Toolik Field Station

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Everyone at Toolik Field Station has the right to be free from discrimination, unlawful harassment, sexual misconduct, and violence. Title IX is a federal law that gives everyone the right to equal access to education and employment in the absence of sexual harassment and gender discrimination. During your stay at Toolik Field Station you are expected to follow the law, as well as specific guidelines laid out in Toolik Field Station policies and the Code of Conduct. Residents and employees are expected to conduct themselves in a manner that does not infringe upon the rights of others. Violations will result in serious sanctions.


sexual misconduct policy



Unacceptable Behaviors

The following behaviors are considered violations of the Toolik Field Station Code of Conduct:

  • Title IX Violation is the collective term used for incidents involving discrimination, harassment, sexual harassment, sexual misconduct, stalking, dating violence, domestic violence, and/or retaliation.
  • Sexual Harassment includes unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature, and offensive comments related to gender, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, physical appearance, and body size.
  • Sexual Misconduct includes rape, sexual assault, inappropriate touching, sexual battery, sexual exploitation, coercion, and other forms of non-consensual sexual activity.
  • Stalking is repeatedly following, harassing, threatening, or intimidating another person via telephone, mail, electronic communication, or social media.
  • Patterns of inappropriate social contact, such as requesting/assuming inappropriate levels of intimacy with others.
  • Dating and Domestic Violence includes emotional, verbal, and economic abuse with or without the presence of physical abuse.
  • Retaliation is adverse employment, academic, or other actions against anyone reporting a violation of this policy (including reporting to any Toolik Field Station  staff member, Toolik Field Station management team member, police, or the UAF Title IX office).
  • Power-based personal violence occurs when an individual asserts power, control, or intimidation in order to harm another. This includes relationship/partner violence, sexual assault, and stalking.
  • Deliberately mis-characterizing a person's gender identity, including through the use of a name or pronoun that the person has rejected.
  • Gratuitous or off-topic sexual images or behavior in spaces where they are not appropriate at the field station.
  • Violating the Ask Once policy (defined below)

Look out for your friends and labmates, but never put yourself at risk!

ask once policy



Individuals at Toolik Field Statopm have multiple reporting avenues. No matter your home institution or affiliation, you can report an incident that you experienced, observed, or were told about, in the following ways (contact information listed under Important Contacts below):

  • Disclosure to the on-site Station Manager.
  • Disclosure to any member of the Management Team.
  • Disclosure to any staff member.
  • Disclosure to the Scientific Liaisons (see explanation of this position in the Code of Conduct ).
  • Disclosure to the UAF Title IX Office (office of Diversity and Equal Opportunity).
  • Disclosure to police (911).
  • Confidential reporting and support resources are listed under Important Contacts below.

Residents will not be penalized for violations of the Toolik Field Station alcohol or drug policy that are disclosed as part of a sexual misconduct report.

Reporting to any of the listed options above will result in disclosure to the Toolik Field Station Management Team and the UAF Title IX office, who will work together alongside the individual who was harmed to determine a course of action. It is important to note that all Toolik Field Station staff and UAF employees are “responsible employees.” This means they are required to report anything they experience, see, or hear about to UAF’s Title IX office. The next step in the UAF Title IX office process is that an investigator from their office will conduct outreach to the target of the inappropriate behavior, which includes providing resources for support. They will then ask this individual if they want the office to move forward with an investigation. The target is in control of the process at this point. If they do not want an investigation to move forward, it will not. The only way that an investigation will move forward without the support of the targeted individual is if:

  1. The incident was part of a larger pattern at Toolik Field Station (one example is if multiple individuals reported the same person for comments that constituted sexual harassment or discrimination);
  2. The accused individual has a history of violence, sexual violence, arrest, or the incident was committed by multiple perpetrators;
  3. The incident was perpetrated with a weapon, included physical violence (such as hitting, restraint, pushing, or kicking), or the threat of violence;
  4. The affected individual is a minor.

In the event of an investigation, if the individual causing harm is from an institution other than UAF, the UAF Title IX office will coordinate with the Title IX office at the individual’s home institution. Toolik Field Station is a grantee institution of the National Science Foundation (NSF). As such, information about any findings of sexual or other types of harassment and actions taken by Toolik Field Station will be provided to the NSF. See NSF Important Notice No. 144 for additional information.

The target will always be included and informed of the results of their disclosure, any action that is taken, and the results of an investigation.

Toolik Field Station management has the ability to take immediate and long-term actions to ensure the safety of Toolik Field Station residents. Immediate action could include changes in housing or lab assignments and other options up to removal from camp of any staff member, contractor, member of the scientific community, or other resident. Long-term actions occur once an investigation is completed. Depending on the findings, Toolik Field Station management may choose to change the immediate action that was taken, and/or implement longer term actions and sanctions, including up to trespass from Toolik Field Station.

After an incident is brought to our attention, Toolik Field Station management will include the target in their discussion about how to make the environment safe again. Multiple options are available. For example, if the target needs support in talking with someone about inappropriate behaviors, Toolik Field Station management will directly mediate, or find resources to support the mediation of, the conversation. If the target says they do not feel safe being at Toolik Field Station with another person, then the Toolik Field Station management will work with the target to find an acceptable arrangement (such as housing or laboratory changes, mediation, up to removal from the station). It is important to the personal and professional growth of all Toolik Field Station residents that everyone feels safe at the field station. Please let us know if you do not feel safe and need accommodations.

If a friend discloses that they have been targeted by sexual misconduct, there are a number of ways in which you can support them:

  • Tell them that you believe them, that you support them, that it is not their fault, that no one deserves to be targeted by such behavior;
  • Provide them with the list of contact information and resources included in this document;
  • Ask if they want your help in finding out what their options are;
  • Ask what else you can do to help;
  • Respect their decision not to talk with you if they don’t want to.

It is common for survivors of sexual assault not to initially name what happened to them as rape or abuse although they may recognize harmful behavior. Over time, as they feel safer, they may try to understand the experience through talking about it. The support of a friend can be extremely beneficial in the healing process.

Remember that the well-being of the person who was harmed must be prioritized. Reporting an incident to police or others without the support or knowledge of the person who was harmed could be more traumatic than helpful. If you are UAF staff or faculty, you are a “responsible employee” and must report to the UAF Title IX office. As described above, this means that the office will conduct outreach to the person harmed and then it is still their decision whether to have an investigation move forward, or not. 

We support you. You have the right to:

  • Talk to anyone about your experience;
  • To not talk to anyone about your experience (silence can make the healing process more difficult, and we encourage you to reach out to a trusted friend or one of the resources listed below);
  • Change your mind about talking to anyone about your experience at any time;
  • Report to the TFS Camp Manager, the police, or any of the other reporting options listed above;
  • Bring someone with you to provide support during reporting or any resulting discussions;
  • To seek reasonable accommodations to minimize the impact of the experience on the success of your work at TFS;
  • To seek medical assistance, including medical care and a medical forensic exam.

This is not intended to be a comprehensive list.

The most effective way we can prevent harm to any member of our community is by looking out for each other. All TFS community members are expected to share in the responsibility of creating a safe environment and to act when they witness behavior that could be harmful to others. In any potentially harmful situation there are often other individuals along the way who recognize there is a problem and have the ability to step in and help the targeted individual. Bystander intervention training programs provide tools to help bystanders act effectively in the way that works best for them. Active bystanders are individuals who take the responsibility to act when they see something or hear something that makes them uncomfortable. Several TFS staff members are certified Green Dot trainers (Green Dot is one type of bystander intervention training). We will be regularly hosting training sessions and we welcome you to attend, but you do not need training in order to be an active bystander.

Here are some suggestions to take an active role in the safety of our community:

  • Be aware of your surroundings and social situations;
  • If a situation makes you or others uncomfortable, or it looks like someone is being targeted, recognize that this is a problem and that you can be part of the solution to help;
  • Take action to diffuse the situation while staying safe. Some ideas include: checking in with the targeted individual, telling the Toolik Field Station Station Manager or Science Liaisons what is happening, recruiting help from friends, diffusing the situation by distracting those involved (look at that neat thing over there!);
  • If you are uncertain if there is a problem, check in with the individuals involved to see if they are okay or need help.

Contact Information


Phone #

Email Address

TFS On-Site Station Manager:

Faustine Bernadac
Chad Diesinger
Justin Johnson


 x2511 (in camp)



TFS Management Team

PI and Co-Science Director:
M.S. Donie Bret-Harte

Co-Science Director:
Brian M. Barnes

Facilities Supervisor:
Faustine Bernadac

SEDC Manager:
Amanda Young

Fiscal Lead:
Skye Geer













UAF Resource & Advocacy Center :

An on-campus program of the Interior Alaska Center for Nonviolent Living. This is a confidential resource to provide assistance with navigating support systems and reporting options.

Kara Carlson, MPA

(24 hr line)



UAF Department of Equity and Compliance
Title IX Office:



Online reporting form

Director, Title IX Coordinator, &
ADA/504 Coordinator:

Margo Griffith





Report and Information Support Specialist:

Heidi Mau





Civil Rights and Title IX Investigators:

Graeme Abraham
Jordan Powell
K. Parker




Chief Human Resources Officer:

Steve Patin






Fairbanks: Interior Alaska Center for Nonviolent Living - 24/7 confidential support

Phone: 1-907-452-2293 or 1-800-478-7273

Website: http://www.iacnvl.org/

National: National Sexual Assault Hotline - Provides confidential, one-on-one, crisis support 24/7

Phone: 1-800-656-4673

Website: https://rainn.org/get-help/national-sexual-assault-hotline/

For more options: https://uaf.edu/titleix/confidential-disclosures/

Development of this policy was led by former TFS staff member Brie Van Dam. Some sections of this policy were drawn from work by Aline Garcia Rubio at the Catlin Gabel School, Portland, OR.

 Additional resources in the development of this policy include:

 Lily Cohen,https://lilycohen.weebly.com/

Kathryn Clancy, http://kateclancy.com/

 The Penn State University Field experience policy, http://www.anthgenomicslab.com/psu-anth-safe

 The ADA Initiative, https://adainitiative.org/2014/02/18/howto-design-a-code-of-conduct-for-your-community

 The Django Community Code of Conduct, https://www.djangoproject.com/conduct/

 UAF Title IX Office,https://uaf.edu/titleix/