Combatting Sexual Assault on Campus

We have dedicated significant new resources to strengthen our efforts to combat sexual violence – and we have made significant strides. Nonetheless, sexual assault is still a problem on our campus and in society at large, and it is clear that more needs to be done.

We understand that there is no quick fix. This is a challenging problem and requires serious, strategic and long-term focus. Learn more below about our immediate next steps.

TITLE IX: EXPEDITED EXTERNAL REVIEW

Ongoing internal and periodic external review of our Title IX program is important to assess progress and plan for the future. MSU initially conducted an external Title IX review in 2014 and planned a second review to evaluate progress in 2018. Given recent issues surrounding sexual assault, we are accelerating that review, moving forward with a top-to-bottom external review of our Title IX program in fall 2017. This will provide valuable input as we continue to refine and build this critical program.

STATUS:

  • Scope of review being finalized and qualified reviewers identified

STRENGTHENING MANDATORY REPORTING COMPLIANCE

Our ability to properly investigate sexual assault in whatever form it takes is only as good as the information we receive from our community. MSU is currently conducting its annual review of all aspects of the Relationship Violence and Sexual Misconduct (RVSM) Policy. As part of this review, areas of the policy that address violations of mandatory reporting obligations are being strengthened. Employees who fail to report sexual assault allegations to the Office of Institutional Equity and MSU Police as required by the RVSM Policy are subject to discipline, up to and including termination of employment.

STATUS:

  • Policy revisions under review, to be finalized by Aug. 30, 2017

INCREASING TRANSPARENCY AND COMMUNICATION

Last year, MSU released its first Title IX Annual Report, an important step in increasing communication and awareness about our Title IX program and efforts in this area. We also launched a new Title IX website to serve as a central hub of information for the campus community, featuring new resource materials and reports, and connecting the community to engagement opportunities through the Sexual Violence Advisory Committee and Violence Free Communities committee. MSU is reviewing opportunities to continue to increase transparency in our reporting and work, as well as improving websites and communications.

STATUS:

  • Underway

TITLE IX: ONGOING PROGRAM IMPROVEMENTS

Over the past two years, we have strengthened our response, resources, investigation, education, and prevention efforts to foster a culture of caring and respect. Actions include:

  • Introducing and revising our Relationship Violence and Sexual Misconduct Policy
  • Creating the Office of Institutional Equity in 2015 to coordinate and direct MSU’s Title IX program and investigate reported incidents
  • Devoting more resources and personnel to our Sexual Assault Program
  • Requiring all students to complete an annual online training program
  • Requiring all employees to complete an online training program biennially
  • Streamlining investigation procedures and reducing investigation and adjudication timelines

VISIT OUR TITLE IX PROGRAM >

 

Chance at Childhood

MSU social work, law students team up to support abused and neglected children...

 

MSU Community shapes future Title IX efforts

At MSU, the entire campus community is helping to shape Title IX efforts...

 

MSU Experts Tapped to Help Provide Resources for Sexual Assault Survivors

Two MSU experts have been appointed to serve on First Lady Sue Snyder’s statewide Campus Sexual Assault Workgroup...

 

MSU Title IX Report Mid-year 2016-2017

Sexual violence and sexual misconduct continue to be pressing issues facing campuses across the country, including MSU.  As part of efforts foster a culture of safety and respect...

 

Profile: Debra Martinez helps builds community partnerships to combat gender-based violence

As former chief of the Ingham County Prosecutor’s Special Victim Unit, attorney Debra Martinez saw firsthand how much support students need following a sexual assault...

 

Profile: Jessica Norris, MSU's Title IX coordinator, uses civil rights law to combat sexual violence and misconduct

Jessica Norris is committed to ensuring that MSU is a safe and inclusive place for every student. She believes civil rights laws...

 

Profile: MSU Special Victims Unit Lt. Andrea Munford Fights for Survivors, May 9, 2017

Detective Lt. Andrea Munford is a member of the MSU Police Department’s seven-person Special Victims Unit. She is passionate about ensuring that survivors...

 

Profile: Holly Rosen Leads MSU Safe Place, A National Model For More Than Two Decades, May 1, 2017

Holly Rosen knows that college campuses are not immune from relationship violence and stalking. More than two decades ago, she helped establish MSU Safe Place as the first...

 

President Simon: Letter to the MSU Community on Sexual Assault, April 26, 2017

Dear MSU community member: As we approach the end of the school year, you likely are continuing to see media stories or comments related to the issue of sexual assault at MSU, either surrounding former MSU doctor Larry Nassar or allegations made against members of the MSU football program...

 

President Simon: Remarks to Board of Trustees on Larry Nassar Investigation, April 13, 2017

As victims continue to come forward to police regarding former MSU doctor Larry Nassar, I want to provide an update on our response to this critical situation...

 

Media Statement: Investigation of Sexual Assault Complaint Connected To Football Program, February 28, 2017

“Michigan State University Police is investigating allegations of sexual assault against three MSU student-athletes. The police department has been in communication with the Ingham County Prosecutor’s Office, and upon concluding the investigations will forward its reports for review for possible criminal charges... 

 

Athletic Director Mark Hollis: Message to MSU Community on Football Investigation, February 28, 2017

“The core values of MSU Athletics are clear, consistently communicated and non-negotiable. Among them are respect for self and others, accountability for actions and choices, and integrity. Sexual assault is unacceptable... 

 

Coach Mark Dantonio: Message to MSU Community on Football Investigation, February 28, 2017

“With spring practice beginning last weekend and preparation for a new season underway, I feel it’s important to reinforce the core values and beliefs that have built and defined this program during my time at MSU... 

 

President Simon: Message to MSU Community on Larry Nassar Investigation, February 22, 2017

Our hearts continue to go out to those most directly affected as additional state charges are announced against former MSU employee Larry Nassar...

 

President Simon: Remarks to Board of Trustees on Sexual Assault, February 17, 2017

MSU is currently dealing with several unrelated issues of sexual assault or harassment that people might associate together, because they’ve come to light at about the same time...

 

President Simon: Letter to the MSU Community on Larry Nassar Investigation, February 3, 2017

Dear MSU community member: You may have read media stories or comments related to former MSU doctor Larry Nassar, the sexual assault allegations against him, and his work at MSU and other organizations. You will undoubtedly see more. This situation is still unfolding as allegations continue to emerge regarding Nassar’s criminal and repugnant behavior...

 

President Simon: Message to MSU Community on Title IX, December 15, 2016

“Sexual assault is a serious problem on college campuses, and ours is no exception. The recent LSJ articles explained some of the challenges and complexities in handling Title IX investigations of relationship violence and sexual misconduct... 

 

Media Statement: Response to LSJ Articles on Title IX Investigations, December 15, 2016

“As the Lansing State Journal’s Dec. 15 articles on sexual assault and Title IX investigations show, these types of crimes have an enormous and irrefutable impact. While it is imperative these incidents are reported to police so they can be investigated, universities also have a responsibility... 

 

Media Statement: MSU Releases Results of AAU Sexual Assault Climate Survey, September 21, 2015

New data from a climate survey on sexual assault and misconduct show student attitudes, awareness and the prevalence of incidents in the Michigan State University community reflect national statistics...

 

President Simon: Letter to the MSU Community on Sexual Assault and Harassment, September 3, 2015

Sexual assault and harassment are serious problems in society and on college campuses. We have long understood that Michigan State University is not isolated from these pervasive societal issues...

 

President Simon: Message to MSU Community on Sexual Assault, September 1, 2015

Michigan State University has made great strides in its handling of sexual assault reports since the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Civil Rights (OCR) opened its investigation in 2011...

 

Media Statement: View MSU’s Anti-Harassment And Non-Discrimination Statement, September 1, 2015

View MSU’s anti-harassment and non-discrimination statement here...

 

Media Statement: Resolution Agreement and Fact Sheet Regarding the Office of Civil Rights Findings, September 1, 2015

On Sept. 1, 2015, the Department of Education’s Office of Civil Rights released its findings of its review of Michigan State University’s handling of Title IX complaints...

 

President Simon: Message to MSU Community on Sexual Assault, December 9, 2014

The issue of sexual assault on college campuses has gained unprecedented attention over the past two years. This is good, and critical, because only by bringing a painful problem into the light can we make progress...

 

Media Statement: MSU Response To Sen. Mccaskill’s Sexual Assault Survey, July 1, 2014

U.S. Sen. Claire McCaskill recently released a report on campus sexual violence last week highlighting many aspects universities need to improve...