By Olabisi L. Okubadejo and Dee Spagnuolo
President Obama announced in a memorandum the formation of an interagency task force to address incidents of rape and sexual assault at colleges and universities. Citing “uneven” compliance with applicable federal laws, the White House indicated that the task force would coordinate the efforts of agencies such as the U.S. Department of Education (DOE) and U.S. Department of Justice to address compliance issues and provide colleges and universities with additional tools to address sexual violence. This will add another layer of scrutiny of higher education institutions’ actions to prevent and respond to such incidents in campus communities.
According to the memorandum, the task force will provide colleges and universities with best practices for preventing and responding to rape and sexual assault, build on current federal enforcement of compliance with laws governing sexual violence, and increase transparency and broaden public awareness of institutions’ compliance with legal obligations regarding sexual misconduct.
Although the task force will consult with college and universities, students, law enforcement agencies, and other stakeholders, its membership will be limited to senior officials in the federal government. The panel is charged with providing certain proposals and recommendations to the President within 90 days and will prepare an annual report on its implementation efforts.
Attorneys in Ballard Spahr’s Higher Education Group routinely advise educational institutions on the institutional response to sexual misconduct and assist in complying with Title IX, the April 4, 2011, Dear Colleague Letter issued by the DOE’s Office for Civil Rights, the Clery Act, and the Campus SaVE Act. For more information, contact Olabisi L. Okubadejo at 410.528.5532 or firstname.lastname@example.org, or Dee Spagnuolo at 215.864.8312 or email@example.com.
Copyright © 2014 by Ballard Spahr LLP.http://www.ballardspahr.com/(No claim to original U.S. government material.)
All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means, including electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise, without prior written permission of the author and publisher.
This alert is a periodic publication of Ballard Spahr LLP and is intended to notify recipients of new developments in the law. It should not be construed as legal advice or legal opinion on any specific facts or circumstances. The contents are intended for general informational purposes only, and you are urged to consult your own attorney concerning your situation and specific legal questions you have.
For more information about LexisNexis products and solutions connect with us through our corporate site