Bias Response Team

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Bias Response Team


The mission of the Bias Response Team at Anoka-Ramsey Community College is to receive, review and respond to incidents of bias as well as promote a safe bias-free campus environment through collaborative educational outreach.


The Bias Response Team does not replace any of the existing procedures currently in place for addressing alleged violations involving Student Conduct, Sexual Harassment, Discrimination or violations of criminal law. Instead, the team seeks to establish an efficient and effective process for handling bias incidents.

The Bias Response Team does not seek to limit academic freedom or infringe on constitutionally protected campus speech. Rather, the team will strive to promote a welcoming, inclusive and supportive environment for all students, faculty and staff.

  • The Bias Response Team membership is determined annually by the president, and through annual appointment processes for faculty and student members. The team is facilitated by the director of diversity and multiculturalism, and membership from year to year will include representation from:

    Academic and Student Affairs:

    • Academic Administration
    • Student Affairs Administration
    • Counseling
    • Office for Students with Disabilities

    Community Members
    Diversity and Multiculturalism
    Faculty, Cambridge and Coon Rapids campuses
    Finance and Administration:

    • Administration
    • Auxiliary Services
    • Public Safety
    • Marketing
    • President’s Office
    • Students, Cambridge and Coon Rapids Campuses
  • What is a Bias Incident?

    A bias incident is an act of bigotry, harassment, or intimidation that is motivated in whole or in part by bias based on an individual's or group's actual or perceived race, color, creed, religion, national origin, gender, age, marital status, disability, public assistance status, veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression. Bias often stems from fear, misunderstanding, hatred and stereotypes and may be intentional or unintentional.

    What is a hate crime?

    As defined by the federal Clery Act, a hate crime is a criminal offense that manifests evidence that the victim was intentionally selected because of the perpetrator’s bias against the victim. Hate crimes include more narrowly-defined categories of crimes and bias; all hate crimes are bias incidents, but not all bias incidents are hate crimes.

    What is discrimination?

    Discrimination means conduct that is directed at an individual because of his or her protected class and that subjects the individual to different treatment by agents or employees so as to interfere with or limit the ability of the individual to participate in, or benefit from, the services, activities or privileges provided by the system or colleges and universities or otherwise adversely affects the individual's employment or education. (See Minnesota State policy 1B.1 Equal Opportunity and Nondiscrimination in Employment and Education).

    How do we address bias speech?

    The Bias Response Team may make recommendations to the president about ways the college can respond to reported incidents.

    Recommendations may include, but are not limited to:

    • Identifying the needs of the affected individuals, as well as those of the larger learning community.
    • Providing support, resources and consultation to those harmed by the incident.
    • Considering whether the incident has potential free speech or academic freedom implications.
    • Updating college and external communities, as appropriate.
    • Organizing and holding open forums for affected individuals as well as the larger community to gather suggestions, to reaffirm campus values and standards and to educate.
    • Recommending incident-related topic program areas for additional trainings for students, staff and faculty.

    All efforts should be made to identify and provide opportunities for the community that will enhance and encourage inter-group dialogue that focuses on relevant issues of bias and discrimination, and effective strategies for enhancing individual and community safety and well-being and reinforcing community values.

    Who can you contact?

    If you have questions about the Bias Response Team, please contact:

    Jessica Medearis
    (763) 433-1103

    If you want to report a bias incident, please see “Reporting a Bias Incident” below.

  • Students, faculty, staff, administrators, visitors, community members, vendors, contractors and/or any other member of the campus community who experience or become aware of a possible bias incident may report the incident to the college, using online bias incident reporting form.

    Bias Incident Reporting Form

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