Nov 20, 2013 10:53 AM EST
UCLA and UC-Berkeley to Undergo State Audit for Sexual Misconduct Policies and Procedures
Four California State Universities will undergo state audits for their sexual misconduct policies, among them is UCLA and UC-Berkeley, the Huffington Post reported.
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Assemblyman Anthony Redon (D-Lakewood) drafted an audit request earlier this year after students from UC-Berkeley filed a federal complaint against the school for allegedly violating the Clery Act. Lawmakers in Calif. passed the audit request in August.
The audit will examine how well the schools comply with federal gender equity law Title IX and the Clery Act, which requires schools to release transparency reports about campus crimes.
While UCLA and UC-Berkeley are confirmed to receive audits, the other two to undergo the same have not yet been named. The Calif. state auditor will base the investigation on sexual misconduct cases from 2009 to 2013 and will determine how well the school "investigated and resolved by university personnel and the number referred to law enforcement." Also under review is the faculty's training on such matters.
"Preventing sexual violence and harassment require total vigilance, and UCLA takes seriously its responsibility to educate students, care for victims and properly adjudicate cases involving sexual conduct and crimes," said campus spokesman Phil Hampton.
The audit may also be a result of federal complaints against unrelated Calif. schools Occidental College and the University of Southern California (USC). Both have seen their students allege in complaints to the U.S. Education Department's Office for Civil Rights that the administration mishandled their sexual assault claims.
UCLA is confident the audit will show their compliance with the Clery Act, Title IX and the Campus Sexual Violence Elimination Act, signed earlier this year to become part of the Violence Against Women Act, according to NPR.
The school is currently conducting its own internal review and the student government is welcoming feedback on changes people would like to see made, the Daily Bruin reported.
Savannah Badalich, Student Wellness commissioner for UCLA's undergraduate student government, told the campus newspaper the move has been successful thus far.
"The student response has been fairly successful, but this issue has a niche market within the student body," Badalich said. "There's only a certain reach that I and my friends have, and I might be missing something that fresh eyes with different experiences might not."