LSU will release findings from law firm's review into sexual misconduct policies Friday
BATON ROUGE - This week, LSU will unveil findings from a third-party investigation into the university's Title IX policies.
The review of how LSU has handled reports of sexual misconduct came after a bombshell USA Today report revealed the school had allegedly mishandled such cases for years.
The school hired law firm Husch Blackwell to conduct the review.
You can read the full statement from LSU President Tom Galligan below.
"On Friday, we will release the report by Husch Blackwell on LSU’s handling of sexual assault and violence cases, as well as the firm’s analysis of our Title IX policies and procedures.
The report will be published on our website, lsu.edu/titleix-review, as representatives from Husch Blackwell deliver a report about its findings to the LSU Board of Supervisors as part of the board’s 10 a.m. meeting at the Lod Cook Alumni Center. The meeting is open to the public, but capacity will be limited due to COVID protocols and room capacity restrictions. However, the meeting will also be available to watch via a livestream at lsu.edu/bos for everyone who wishes to attend virtually.
We look forward to sharing the report findings with you on Friday, and I will certainly have more to share with you regarding our response to the findings and how we plan to ensure a safer and more supportive LSU for everyone as we move forward."
Ahead of the report's release, Jim Newberry, a higher education lawyer, who has represented colleges and universities, investigated athletic teams and led Title IX probes, says there is one key difference in having proper polices to prevent and address misconduct and following them.
"This is pretty simple," Newberry said. "It's a question of leadership coming from the top. Period. If the board is interested, if the president is interested, if the athletic director is interested, I will guarantee you, the coaches are going to be interested. If they're not, it doesn't make any difference what the policies say."
Newberry says in his experience, changing a culture that has allowed misconduct to go unchecked, is rarely possible without a change in leadership.
"It is very, very hard for that to happen, unfortunately," Newberry said. There are very few examples, with which I am familiar, where athletic department leaders, coaches and in some cases, institutional leaders, have been able to make that change."