Should colleges issue campus alerts after reported rapes?

Stefanie Botelho's picture

A discussion revolving around the topic of college sexual assault struck a nerve for college administrators and victim advocates Monday when it came to the issue of whether colleges should alert the campus after reported sex crimes. The two parties invited to the roundtable event by Senator Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.) were a part of the last of three conversations McCaskill held before introducing legislation to improve schools' response to sexual violence.

As The Ohio State University Police Chief Paul Denton noted, timely warnings are required under the Clery Act for any ongoing threat to student safety. At Ohio State the department does issue warnings for every reported sexual assault, but not all higher education institutions abide by the rule outlined in the Clery Act.

In fact, recently we saw the backlash against Johns Hopkins University after it was made public that the school knew police were investigating an alleged gang rape at a fraternity, but never told the campus community.

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