Sexual Assault Task Force

Recommendations

The University of Toledo puts the safety and well-being of its students, staff and faculty as a priority. It is evident through the data presented in this report, when compared to other institutions[1]we are providing comparable programs, services and resources on our campuses to address the issue of sexual misconduct. The efforts of many campus and community partners are strong and will continue to make The University of Toledo one of the safest places to work and to seek an academic degree.

As UT strives to be a leader in the prevention and adjudication of sexual misconduct, it is essential to continuously evaluate our efforts. Using both formative and summative assessments, the SAAPA Task Force has developed the following recommendations to prevent, detect and provide resources to address the issue of sexual misconduct on UT’s campuses:

Comprehensive University-Wide Efforts

  1. Create a Title IX Committee, chaired by the Director of Title IX and Compliance, that will create and disseminate a comprehensive program implementation plan based on the current recommendations provided. Universities such as Western Michigan University, Xavier University and University of Washington use this model. Goals, objectives and action items should be developed by this committee to guide further efforts. The Title IX Committee should collaborate with appropriate campus resources and organizations.

  2. The Title IX Committee will evaluate the implementation of the recommendations annually and provide progress reports to the President or a member of senior administration.

  3. Explore reporting structures following the U.S. Department of Education Office for Civil Rights’ guidance. The Title IX Coordinator should report directly to the President or a member of senior administration.

  4. Develop a written protocol for the distribution of all public, aggregate, external and internal data collected pertinent to sexual misconduct on our campuses.

  5. Maintain the current culture on our campuses that does not condone sexual misconduct. This will be continuously assessed through data analysis tools, such as EverFi and the Ohio Department of Higher Education.

  6. Continue collaboration with various departments across the University, including University Marketing and Communication to develop and disseminate targeted messaging supporting a positive campus culture.

  7. Ensure full implementation of a university-wide policy and procedures requiring all potential and incoming students to disclose criminal/student conduct complaints filed against them, and to submit appropriate information to be reviewed by the University.

  8. Enhance efforts to prevent, detect and report sexual misconduct in and by faculty and staff. Such programming and training should include best practices, such as creating an advocacy network, intervention bystander training and other trainings, such as the currently implemented mandatory compliance training programs on our campuses. Sample programs can be viewed at Boston University and Loyola University Chicago.

    Prevention and Programming Efforts

  9. There are many services being provided in primary prevention, however, not all of these are evidence-based. An annual program evaluation using process, impact and outcome measures should determine if strategies are effective and should continue.

  10. Provide an optional syllabus statement on how to identify and report sexual misconduct on campus to all faculty through the  Provost’s Office and Director of Title IX and Compliance.

  11. Sexual misconduct prevention education should be required for all students. There are many programs aimed at freshman students on the UT campus entering fall semester. Special emphasis needs to be placed on ensuring that any student entering the University at any level receives sexual misconduct prevention education. Consideration should be given to require the currently used Haven-Understanding Sexual Assault and AlcoholEdu for the College, or similar education programming, before classes begin.

  12. Ongoing sexual misconduct programming should occur for all students. There needs to be continuous education beyond the first year to educate all students, including upperclassmen, transfer students, online students and graduate students.

  13. Develop evidence-based programming to address the disparities in victimization rates for marginalized populations, including sexual and gender minorities. Partnerships with such organizations as Prism, Black Student Union, Greek Life, Center for International Studies and Programs, and other student groups/organizations should be established to help promote and champion these programs.

  14. Bystander training needs to be fully implemented to encourage prevention of sexual misconduct to the University community.

    Resource Availability

  15. Diversify resources that are provided for those experiencing acts of sexual misconduct. Many of the resources we currently have focus on prevention. Special consideration should be given to develop resources for online and underserved populations.

  16. Explore creating potential partnerships with the Healthy Campus Coalition members, particularly in the area of alcohol and other drug prevention, to provide year-round programming. Our peer and aspirate institutions have several full-time professionals trained on sexual assault and alcohol, tobacco and other drug prevention that address high-risk behaviors of the campus community.

  17. Implement an annual program evaluation to ensure that students are receiving education and information about resources on UT’s campuses to address sexual misconduct and relationship violence.

  18. Analyze campus data collected on an annual basis via campus climate surveys distributed by the Ohio Department of Higher Education and EverFi, as well as program data, to determine future programming needs.

  19. Implement the newly revised comprehensive sexual misconduct and interpersonal violence crisis response protocol and notification processes.

  20. Continue to seek out and secure long-term funding to enhance our ongoing sexual misconduct programming and resources.

  21. Create and promote resources to assist parties through the investigation and adjudication process.

  22. Partner with community and campus groups to link complainants and/or respondents to behavioral health programs and support groups. Explore how to best assist students in nontraditional settings, such as distance learning students or those with military service.

    Investigation and Adjudication

  23. Conduct an annual review of the Student Code of Conduct and Title IX policies.

  24. Conduct annual training for investigators, hearing officers and board members adjudicating Title IX cases. Training sessions for board members should be evaluated continuously to ensure they are meeting best practices criteria.

  25. Create a Sexual Misconduct Sanction Rubric that will help guide the adjudication process for students. Use of this rubric will ensure consistency in the application of student sanctions. Ohio University, University of Iowa, University of Kentucky and Xavier University have implemented this practice and can serve as a guide for the development of this document, as well as many of the institutions we benchmark against.

  26. Develop and implement a student leader-training program on the prevention and detection of peer sexual misconduct. This program also would emphasize the rights of complainants and respondents.

  27. Explore the feasibility of having all respondents found responsible for alcohol, tobacco and other drug violations meet with a staff member in the alcohol, tobacco and other drug prevention unit.

[1]Ball State University, Bowling Green State University, Central Michigan University, Cleveland State University, Eastern Michigan University, Western Michigan University, University of Alabama-Birmingham, University of Buffalo, University of Illinois at Chicago, University of Nevada-Reno and University of Memphis.

 

Last Updated: 6/30/19