Advocates: New Ga. Campus Sexual Misconduct Policy Illegal | WABE 90.1 FM

Advocates: New Ga. Campus Sexual Misconduct Policy Illegal

Aug 9, 2017

Legal advocates say the University System of Georgia's new sexual misconduct policy is not up to federal standards.

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The Board of Regents voted to approve an update to the policy yesterday. Lisa Anderson, with Atlanta Women for Equality, said she wishes she could have reviewed the final language.

"There is absolutely no doubt that this policy is illegal," Anderson said.

One major concern is that the policy doesn't spell out the actual federal laws and agencies that protect student and employee rights.

"They're more likely to exercise those rights if they actually know what they are. And under the law that's required. They need to know what their legal rights are," she said.

Asked yesterday by a board of regents member if the new policy complies with federal law, the university system's Kimberly Ballard-Washington responded with a resounding “yes.” The University System of Georgia did not respond for comment by deadline.

Anderson said she hopes to be in touch with the university system about changes to the current language, but that her group will take legal action if necessary.

"We'll keep pushing, and whether they take it into account or not, we'll see. But if we need to go to court, then we will," she said.

Anderson said another problem is the university system's definition of "sexual harassment." She also believes the policy language that sounds like recommendations to campus investigators and officers, rather than legal requirements.