Major Changes Announced in BYU’s Title IX Policy, Sexual Assault Response

A council's 23 Title IX recommendations will be integrated into the school's official policy.
Published: October 27, 2016

Brigham Young University announced a series of sweeping changes to its policies for handling sexual assault reports on campus Wednesday.

The changes come after a report was conducted by the school’s Advisory Council on Campus Response to Sexual Assault. The report included 23 recommendations, all of which will be adopted into BYU’s official policy this semester.

Notably, one of the changes will give disciplinary amnesty to sexual assault victims that violate the school’s honor code. Campus Safety had previously reported on a campaign that criticized the school for punishing sexual assault victims after they reported an assault to the Title IX Office.

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The new policy forbids the Title IX Office from sharing information with the Honor Code Office without a victim’s consent, unless the safety of others is at risk. To complement that separation, the Title IX Office will be given its own physical space apart from the Honor Code Office.

“We have an obligation not only to provide that support, both emotionally and spiritually, but also to create an environment where sexual assault is eliminated,” BYU President Kevin J. Worthen said in a letter to the BYU community.

Other changes that will be implemented immediately are listed below:

  • The Title IX coordinator position will go from part-time to full-time
  • A confidential victim advocate position will be created
  • The school will strengthen its relationship with community resource providers
  • A campaign informing students about resources for sexual assault victims will be publicized

The council that created the report spent hundreds of hours talking with sexual assault victims, consulting with victim resource providers and researching the university’s handling of sexual assault.

Read the complete report here.

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