The UC Board of Regents today (July 23) received an update on the university’s progress in responding to and preventing sexual violence on its campuses.
UC is working diligently to develop and implement a comprehensive approach that effectively addresses sexual violence and ensures consistency across the UC system.
The President’s Task Force on Preventing and Responding to Sexual Violence and Sexual Assault issued seven recommendations in 2014, which the university is in the process of implementing. The task force later added an eighth recommendation.
The university began implementing the task force’s recommendations in January, including creating a full-time confidential advocate office for survivors on each campus, implementing a standardized two-team response and prevention model at all campuses for addressing sexual violence, and launching a new systemwide website that provides quick access to campus resources and other important information.
New measures UC is now launching include:
- Mandatory systemwide education and training: Starting in fall 2015, UC will require all students to participate in education and training to expand their understanding of sexual violence issues and prevention. Incoming students will be required to participate in UC’s systemwide curriculum by taking the education and training program at their campus within the first six weeks of classes. Campuses will use multiple tools to deliver the curriculum to ensure that students understand the core concepts. Beginning for students entering in fall 2016, incoming students will receive education that starts before they arrive on campus.
Continuing students will participate in ongoing education and training during the year that will revisit the curriculum they learned as incoming students, and cover additional concepts.
A systemwide training program for faculty and staff is expected to be implemented by January 2016. Training for students, staff, and faculty will all be based on six common core concepts, including trauma-informed response and bystander intervention.
- Providing fair support services to respondents in cases involving sexual violence or sexual assault. The task force agreed that a fair process should be provided to both parties in these cases. As a result, every campus will have designated individuals to help respondents understand their rights and the university’s investigation and student adjudication processes. By September 2015, all campuses will have a respondent support coordinator, and be able to refer those who are accused to campus and community resources as needed.
In January, UC established a confidential advocate office on every campus for survivors. There will be a clear separation between the confidential advocate’s office and the respondent support coordinator on each campus.
- Measuring effectiveness: UC has begun collecting a standard set of data across all campuses on sexual violence reports and the use of campus programs and resources. The university will use the data to assess the effectiveness of its services and identify areas for improvement.
In addition to these recently enacted measures, new systemwide standards for investigation and student adjudication processes are expected to be finalized in September and implemented in January 2016.
UC campuses have long had programs and services in place to educate students, faculty and staff and to respond to sexual violence. The task force’s recommendations aim to strengthen those services and ensure consistency across all UC campuses.
Learn more about measures UC implemented in January 2015.