Va. Passes Campus Sexual Assault Bills
Virginia House Bill 1930 and Senate Bill 712 require colleges to establish a threat assessment team to handle all sexual assault claims and help sexual assault survivors get counseling.
Two Virginia bills addressing sexual assault reports on college campuses were signed into law last week.
Virginia House Bill 1930 and Senate Bill 712, which are identical and passed with overwhelming support, were signed by Governor Terry McAuliffe on May 28. The bills will change how colleges in the state are required to handle claims of sexual assaults.
The bills require colleges to form threat assessment teams made up of a Title IX coordinator and representatives of law enforcement and student affairs to investigate sexual assault reports. The team will then decide if there is an ongoing threat to the alleged survivor and alert law enforcement or an attorney if they decide it’s necessary. Threat assessment teams are now required of colleges under Title IX.
Senate Bill 712 was authored by Senator Richard Black in response to Rolling Stone Magazine’s since-retracted article about an alleged rape on the University of Virginia campus and was amended after campus administrators voiced concerns that the original bill would discourage sexual assault survivors from coming forward, according to arlnow.com.
The bills also aim to help sexual assault survivors get counseling and outlines a memorandum of understanding between universities and sexual assault victim support services.
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