Univ. of Calif. System Updates Staff Sexual Misconduct Policy
The changes follow a staff sexual misconduct controversy at the school earlier this year.
The University of California system launched a new policy for responding to complaints of faculty and staff sexual violence and harassment June 29.
According to a statement from the UC Office of the President, the policy will “provide greater transparency, consistency and timeliness in investigating and adjudicating such cases.”
In addition to defining the responsibilities of Title IX offices and other offices involved in adjudication and discipline of sexual violence and harassment, the policy includes several new requirements for campuses.
The new requirements, which must be implemented on all UC campuses by September 1, include:
- Sexual misconduct investigations must be completed within 60 business days, with disciplinary determinations made 40 days after that
- Complainants and respondents must have an opportunity to communicate with the decision-maker following an investigation
- Disciplinary actions proposed by staff members’ supervisors must be reviewed and approved by the chancellor
- A peer review committee on each UC campus must advise the chancellor for resolutions, including discipline, involving faculty members
- Complainants and respondents must be informed of all outcomes
The statement also stipulates that everyone involved in these investigations should undergo training.
“These models signify another milestone in UC’s ongoing efforts to strengthen our investigation and adjudication processes,” Systemwide Title IX Coordinator Kathleen Salvaty said. “For the past year, campuses have been hard at work shoring up their resources and improving their processes for implementation of these systems.”
The changes follow the release of sexual misconduct files on more than 10 cases involving faculty and staff members earlier this year.
Following those revelations, the system formed the Joint Committee of the Administration and Academic Senate and the President’s Committee on Sexual Violence Sexual Harassment Disciplinary Process for UC Personnel other than Faculty. Many of the two committee’s recommendations were incorporated into the new policy.