Weatherford Democrat

Community News Network

July 9, 2014

Survey shows colleges flouting sexual assault rules

Colleges nationwide are flouting federal rules for prevention, response and investigation of campus sexual assaults, according to a survey by Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo.

More than 40 percent of 440 colleges and universities surveyed by McCaskill haven't investigated a sexual assault in the past five years, according to a report released Wednesday. More than one in five large U.S. private institutions failed to investigate all the sexual assaults they reported to the Education Department.

Title IX, the law that prohibits gender discrimination in schools, requires institutions to prevent, respond to and investigate sexual assaults to ensure equal access to education. More than 10 percent of colleges in the survey lacked a designated Title IX coordinator, which is required by law, according to the 120-page report.

"Many institutions are failing to comply with the law and best practices in how they handle sexual violence among students," the report said. "These problems affect nearly every stage of the institutions' responses to sexual violence."

Students nationwide have been holding protests and complaining to the Education Department about the frequency of rape and sexual misconduct on campus. McCaskill sent out the surveys in April to learn how incidents are reported and schools handle them.

More than 20 percent of schools surveyed give no training to faculty and staff on sexual-assault prevention and responses, and about 31 percent of the schools don't give training to students, according to the survey.

Colleges and universities have been required to provide such training since 1993, said Daniel Carter, director of the VTV Family Outreach Foundation's 32 National Campus Safety Initiative.

"It is concerning that as many as 31 percent of schools may not have been complying with the mandatory education requirement," Carter said Tuesday in a telephone interview.

The survey found poor coordination with campus police enforcement, with 30 percent of institutions failing to train officers in how to respond to reports of sexual assaults. More than 70 percent of colleges and universities surveyed lacked guidelines for local law enforcement and college officials to work together on responding to sexual violence.

McCaskill is leading a bipartisan group of senators to develop legislation aimed at increasing prosecutions of rape and sexual assault by local law enforcement.

President Barack Obama's administration has demanded that schools put more effort and resources into preventing and responding to sexual assaults. In 2011, the administration issued guidance saying that failure to do so would violate Title IX, the law that bars gender discrimination in education. In April, a White House task force called for colleges by 2016 to begin anonymously surveying students on rates of sexual assault.

1
Text Only
Community News Network
Must Read
Top News
House Ads
AP Video
Raw: Israel Bombs Multiple Targets in Gaza Veteran Creates Job During High Unemployment Raw: Cargo Craft Undocks From Space Station Widow: Jury Sent Big Tobacco a $23B Message New Orleans Plans to Recycle Cigarette Butts UN Security Council Calls for MH 17 Crash Probe Obama Bestows Medal of Honor on NH Veteran Texas Sending National Guard Troops to Border Hopkins to Pay $190M After Pelvic Exams Taped Foxx Cites Washington 'Circus Mirror' NASA Ceremony Honors Moon Walker Neil Armstrong Obama Voices Concern About Casualties in Mideast Diplomacy Intensifies Amid Mounting Gaza Toll AP Exclusive: American Beaten in Israel Speaks Obama Protects Gay, Transgender Workers Raw: Gaza Rescuers Search Rubble for Survivors Raw: International Team Inspects MH17 Bodies Raw: 25 Family Members Killed in Gaza Airstrike US Teen Beaten in Mideast Talks About Ordeal 'Weird Al' Is Wowed by Album's Success
Poll

The City of Weatherford is considering an ordinance that would ban smoking inside restaurants and enclosed areas where food is prepared, sold or consumed. Do you agree with this proposal?

Yes
No
Undecided
Don't care
     View Results