Title IX conversation continues during 2021 legislative session
BATON ROUGE – The 2021 legislative session starts on Monday. A popular topic will be Title IX policies in higher education. There are multiple bills that deal with how university leaders should respond to a sexual assault complaint. One requires mandatory reporting of misconduct and has a termination clause in it for those that don't comply.
“We’re looking for accountability and we’re looking for effective change,” said Sen. Regina Barrow.
Barrow is the chair of the Senate Select Committee on Women and Children. The committee has held three special meetings asking LSU leaders to testify about sexual assault policies. No one showed up to the last meeting on Thursday, which is why lawmakers feel legislation is needed.
“My bill goes into ensuring those policies are followed because we evaluate them, we review them and then we will serve as an advisory to our colleagues to let them know what we found out, what’s working and what needs to be changed,” said Barrow.
On Saturday, the LSU Board of Supervisors met to talk about the University's progress on upgrading policies.
“We can’t control every sexual assault that happens but what we can control is how we react to it so we are putting together an infrastructure so that people can feel safe,” said Dr. Jane Cassidy, LSU's Interim Vice President for the Office of Civil Rights and Title IX.
Online, LSU Interim President Tom Galligan said in the near future LSU plans to select a search firm to help identify an outstanding vice president for the Title IX office and create a task force on developing standardized sanction guidelines.
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