Report outlines steps to prevent sexual assault on campuses

A task force headed up by the Obama administration recently released a report outlining a number of recommendations and guidelines to reduce sexual assault on campuses and protect victims.

The White House Task Force to Protect Students from Sexual Assault’s report includes proposals from the Campus Sexual Violence Advisory Council of Southeastern Pennsylvania, which was formed by Rep. Patrick Meehan (R-Pa.) earlier this year.

“The report issued by the White House is a vital step forward in the effort to keep students on college campuses safe,” Meehan said. “These recommendations will help victims navigate the reporting process, enhance transparency in federal enforcement efforts and help schools build community partnerships with organizations like rape crisis centers that provide critical services for victims.”

Meehan’s panel is comprised of campus safety experts from higher education, law enforcement and victim advocacy organizations. Recommendations made by the panel that appear in the White House report include enhancing partnerships between schools and law enforcement, identifying best practices in educational programming for students, and providing victims with clear information on available resources.

“I’m pleased that the White House report addresses the concerns of so many in our region on the front lines of the effort to protect students,” Meehan said. “I look forward to continuing to work with both experts on campus violence in our region, as well as my colleagues in Washington, to make our campuses safe.”

The report also recommended clarifying the responsibility of colleges and universities under federal law and the use of anonymous campus climate surveys to help administrators understand the scope of sexual violence.