Rep. Davis cosponsors campus sexual assault bill
Rep. Rodney Davis, R-13, announced on Aug. 4 that he is co-sponsoring a bill aiming to help prevent sexual assault on college and university campuses, as well as provide needed resources to survivors.
Bill H.R. 5354, the Campus Accountability and Safety Act, calls for the appointment of confidential advisors for survivors of sexual assault. These advisors would counsel survivors and advise them, or possibly assist them, in reporting the crime. Additionally, no school will be able to sanction students for underage drinking if they admit to it in the process of reporting sexual assault.
Andrew Flach, Davis’s communications director, spoke about the potential positive effects of the bill on campuses across the country.
“By requiring schools to have confidential advisors, minimum training standards for campus personnel and coordination with law enforcement, the hope is that more victims will report cases of sexual assault so schools and law enforcement can get those victims the help they need and take necessary action to prevent future crimes from occurring on campus,” Flach said in an email.
The bill calls for more training for on-campus personnel, so that responders and guidance counselors will be better equipped to deal with the effects of sexual assault on the survivor.
Additionally, all schools must develop a protocol for dealing with sexual assault and there cannot be different protocols for different subsections of the school.
The legislation also aims to increase transparency. Students from every college or university in the nation will be surveyed about their experience with sexual assault on campus. The results will be public, so prospective students can be better educated about their choice.
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