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White House Task Force Issues Guide for Campus Sexual Assault Response

On January 6, 2017, the White House Task Force to Protect Students from Sexual Assault published a Guide for University and College Presidents, Chancellors, and Senior Administrators.

The Guide represents a resource for college and university leaders containing recommendations on how they can develop and augment their response to sexual misconduct at their institutions. While the Trump Administration may change the rules governing Title IX enforcement in the future, for now, the Task Force recommendations provide useful insights for administrators as they seek to address sexual misconduct on their campuses..

The Guide focuses on six primary elements that colleges and universities may want to consider as part of a comprehensive plan for addressing sexual misconduct:

  1. Coordinated Campus and Community Response. Schools are encouraged to catalog and coordinate campus and community resources that are available to prevent and address sexual misconduct.

  2. Prevention, Education, and Training. The Guide stresses that education and training programs for students should begin at freshman orientation and continue via “booster shots” through graduate school.

  3. Policy Development and Implementation. School leaders should adopt a broad-based policy for responding to sexual misconduct that applies to students and is informed by principles of fair process and privacy.

  4. Reporting Options, Advocacy, and Support Services. Schools should encourage and facilitate the reporting of sexual misconduct for those who desire to report.

  5. Climate Surveys, Performance Measurement, and Evaluation. Regularly conduct research-based sexual misconduct climate surveys that help administrators evaluate the effectiveness of the school’s sexual misconduct policies and practices.

  6. Transparency. Every effort should be made to communicate, using all available means, so that all constituencies at the school and in the community know the school’s sexual misconduct policies and practices. 

© Steptoe & Johnson PLLC. All Rights Reserved.National Law Review, Volume VII, Number 17


About this Author

William M. Lane, Steptoe Johnson, Trusts and Estate Lawyer

Bill Lane focuses his practice in the areas of trusts and estates, real estate law, construction law, non-profit and for profit corporate law, and administrative law.


(614) 458-9886
Michael Flowers, Steptoe Johnson Law Firm, Corporate Law and Finance Attorney
Of Counsel

Michael Flowers focuses his practice in the areas of business, real estate, and corporate finance law.  He is a former Chief Legal Counsel of KBK Enterprises (a multi-state real estate development company) where he was in charge of business activities and real estate projects. Mr. Flowers is a former partner of Bricker & Eckler, LLP and has extensive experience in corporate law, corporate governance, corporate financing, mergers and acquisitions, leveraged buyouts, formation of business entities, venture capital financing and emerging entity representation, and commercial real estate law.

Mr. Flowers was reappointed by Ohio Governor John Kasich as a member of the Columbus State Community College Board.  He was also appointed to the Small Business Advisory Council by Ohio Lt. Governor Mary Taylor. He is charged with advising the Lieutenant Governor on the adverse impact of government rules and regulations on small businesses.