Most Popular Choices
Share on Facebook 18 Printer Friendly Page More Sharing
General News    H3'ed 7/25/15

Campus SaVE Act Responds to College Campus Sexual Violence

By       (Page 1 of 2 pages)   No comments
Follow Me on Twitter     Message Marcia G. Yerman
Become a Fan
  (3 fans)

(Image by mgyerman)   Details   DMCA

Students starting college this coming fall (as well as those returning) will be the first to benefit from the Sexual Violence Elimination Act (SaVE), which will require colleges to have "prevention and awareness" programs about sexual assault, dating violence, stalking, and domestic violence in place. (This including same-sex violence.) Well-defined campus conduct protocol for disciplinary procedures against those accused of such crimes must be formulated. Victims are required to receive "written information" that outlines their rights, the channels available to them for reporting incidents, and the protocol for disciplinary action.

Sen. Bob Casey (D-PA), who spearheaded the legislation that took effect on July 1, spoke with reporters by phone to discuss what he qualified as, "A development I think is very important."

The act was cosponsored by numerous Senators, and has been endorsed by twenty-nine organizations including the American Association of University Women (AAUW), Women ofColor Network, and the Clery Center for Security On Campus.

There is an important backstory to the fight for protecting students from sexual violence. It dates back to 1986, when 19-year-old student Jeanne Clery was raped and murdered in her dormitory room at Lehigh University. Her parents demanded that colleges and universities furnish statistics about on-campus crime. They founded the Clery Center for Security on Campus in 1987, and three years later took the lead in pushing through the landmark federal legislation Crime Awareness and Campus Security Act in Congress. It was renamed after their daughter in 1991.

The Violence Against Women Act, enacted in 1994, now contains the Campus SaVE Act (Sec. 304 of S. 47) in the VAWA Reauthorization Act of 2013. Casey contacted the Department of Education with the request to get the SaVE Act put into play as soon as possible.

Stating that the SaVE Act was "the most significant update of the Clery Act in two decades," Casey spoke about additional changes he would like to see made. "I don't think this encompasses everything that needs to be done," he noted.

Implementation applies to all colleges and universities that participate in the federal financial aid program (Title IV of the Higher Education Act). According to the Department of Education stats from school year 2011-2012, that number encompassed 7,234 institutions. Failure to comply can result in hefty fines and loss of the school's federal student aid.

The plan is based on the template of Prevention, Reporting, and Response:

Institutions must have prevention and awareness programs in place that clearly define the "prohibition" of dating violence, domestic violence, sexual assault, or stalking -- as well as a clear delineation of what constitutes these crimes and "consent according to the applicable jurisdiction." Material on "risk reduction" should be available.

Institutions must convey to students information about all resources offered to them if they are victims of sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence or stalking. This includes preserving evidence, victim's rights, counseling, and legal assistance.

Institutions must explicitly communicate their protocols for responding to a report of a sexual assault incident, domestic violence, dating violence or stalking, and their established system for disciplinary action. This includes projected timelines, and how the type of disciplinary hearing utilized will be determined.

A key element underscored by Casey was the "Bystander Intervention" factor. He said, "Young men have to step up and help young women. Guys need to step in and show some guts. This is telling the whole community, 'It's your problem.' "

Concern for a victim's confidentiality has been highlighted, specifically in regard to the pursuit of changing accommodations and seeking protection -- such as changing a living situation or class enrollment. This enables the victim to have agency.

Casey acknowledged that the situation would not totally "change overnight," but that the "new provisions must be enforced and monitored." He defined it as a very clear reminder to schools, particularly those that were in opposition, "These are the rules now. You have to comply."

Next Page  1  |  2

(Note: You can view every article as one long page if you sign up as an Advocate Member, or higher).

Must Read 1   News 1   Valuable 1  
Rate It | View Ratings

Marcia G. Yerman Social Media Pages: Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in       Twitter Page       Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in       Instagram Page

Marcia G. Yerman is a writer, activist, and artist based in New York City. Her articles--profiles, interviews, reporting and essays--focus on women's issues, the environment, human rights, the arts and culture. Her writing has been published by (more...)

Go To Commenting
The views expressed herein are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this website or its editors.
Follow Me on Twitter     Writers Guidelines

Contact AuthorContact Author Contact EditorContact Editor Author PageView Authors' Articles
Support OpEdNews

OpEdNews depends upon can't survive without your help.

If you value this article and the work of OpEdNews, please either Donate or Purchase a premium membership.

If you've enjoyed this, sign up for our daily or weekly newsletter to get lots of great progressive content.
Daily Weekly     OpEd News Newsletter
   (Opens new browser window)

Most Popular Articles by this Author:     (View All Most Popular Articles by this Author)

The Climate Museum: Culture for Action

The Keystone Pipeline Is An Environmental Justice Issue

"A Woman of Interest": Murder in Arizona

"ExxonMobil Hates Your Children" and This Ad

Dr. Martin Luther King: Healing Words in Troubled Times

"Trumping Democracy" -- New Documentary Traces Trump's Election Win

To View Comments or Join the Conversation:

Tell A Friend