The University of Nebraska-Lincoln will begin working to amend current policies to implement the new Title IX regulations issued by the U.S. Department of Education on May 6. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos issued the regulations regarding sexual misconduct in education.
The new Title IX regulations declare dating violence and stalking as allegations that must be investigated and stated that college students accused of sexual assault and harassment must be given the right to a live hearing and the ability to cross-examine their accusers.
Additionally, Title IX clarifies that universities are to take responsibilities for investigating incidents that occur in both university-recognized fraternity or sorority houses and apartments located off-campus if the event is part of a university program.
UNL’s current policies comply with many of Title IX policies. However, according to Nebraska Today, the university will begin amending current policies through the Campuswide Collaborative on Sexual Misconduct. Susan Swearer, a professor of educational psychology, is chair of Campuswide Collaborative on Sexual Misconduct.
“UNL has an unwavering commitment to address all forms of sexual misconduct on campus,” Swearer told Nebraska Today. “While these new Title IX regulations are important and colleges and universities need to make sure they are in compliance, this does not deter us from our mission of creating a safe campus climate where all voices are heard.”
Swearer said the Campuswide Collaborative is working with partners across the Big Ten and the broader higher education community. Campus leadership will carefully review Title IX regulations to determine a way to implement them that respects individual rights and protects the safety and well-being of students, faculty and staff.
“The Campuswide Collaborative has been working tirelessly to examine UNL’s prevention, intervention, and policies and procedures regarding sexual misconduct,” Swearer told Nebraska Today. “The release of the new Title IX regulations will help strengthen our report.”