College Initiatives

 

These are some of the many action steps identified and undertaken to improve and assure the safety of every member of the Swarthmore community.

 

  • Hired Margolis Healy & Associates (MHA), a firm specializing in campus safety, security, and regulatory compliance, to conduct a careful and thorough review of all of the College's sexual misconduct policies and procedures.

 

  • Appointed a Task Force on Sexual Misconduct, composed of students, faculty, staff, alumni, and members of the Board of Managers, to help the reviewers understand our community while providing their own insights into our current processes and ways we can work together. This group's work is well underway.

     

  • Shared MHA's interim report with the community.

     

  • Named Patricia Flaherty Fischette, who has worked in Counseling and Psychological Services and with Health Services, as the College's interim Title IX coordinator, reporting directly to the President.

     

  • Formed a group of Title IX deputy coordinators to support the work of the Title IX coordinator.

     

  • Launched this sexual misconduct resources website that provides information and assistance for victims/survivors of sexual misconduct, harassment, and discrimination, as well as details about the College's policies and procedures.

     

  • Provide a new, online course for incoming first-year students and require all students to take it each year. This course will augment the interpersonal work led by Acquaintance Sexual Assault Prevention and Sexual Misconduct Advisors & Resource Team students and others.

     

  • Conduct a thorough review of all relevant policies and procedures related to sexual misconduct, including the prohibition of sexual and discriminatory harassment as well as gender identity violence; the notice of non-discrimination; sexual misconduct; and Public Safety's policies for handling sexual assault reports

     

  • Integrate support and oversight for Greek life into residential life and student activities.

     

  • Hire an additional investigator in Public Safety.

     

  • Create a Clery Act Compliance Committee comprised of faculty, staff, and students that is responsible for reviewing updates to the law and various College policies, identifying programming efforts, and finalizing the data elements for the College's Annual Fire Safety and Security Report, among other duties.

     

  • Re-examine the issuance and policy regarding timely warning notices.

     

  • Enhance the systems and processes for collection of crime data from non-Public Safety CSAs.

     

  • Ensure that all campus security authorities (CSAs) - staff, faculty, resident assistants (RAs), and others who, by virtue of their position, are likely to hear first-hand reports of sexual misconduct and other crimes - are identified and trained on their responsibilities to promptly report all Clery Act crimes, including sexual assault.

     

  • Distribute widely the list of CSAs and ensure the campus community knows they are vital, non-confidential resources.

     

  • Institute a comprehensive training program with expanded Title IX training for CSAs, including RAs.

     

  • Hired an advocate to provide guidance through our systems for survivors of sexual assault and other forms of sexual harassment and misconduct. The advocate will also help expand the College's prevention, education, and programming devoted to sexual misconduct.

     

  • Held additional meetings in the fall of 2013 where MHA met with more members of our community.

     

  • Hire a hearings advisor to assist respondents to complaints, particularly throughout the grievance process, noting that the U.S. Department of Education clearly mandates a fair and equitable process for both complainants and respondents.

     

  • Provide training for investigators on how to most effectively and sensitively conduct investigations related to sexual misconduct.

     

  • With MHA, develop written investigative policies and protocols for Public Safety.

     

  • Hire a new staff member to develop and present educational alcohol and drug prevention programming and provide individual and group counseling to students.

     

  • Issued MHA's final report, which provides more detailed recommendations meant to serve us well into the future.

     

  • Conduct a national search for a dedicated, fulltime Title IX coordinator, who will report directly to the President.

     

  • UNDERWAY - Conduct a full review of our grievance procedures to ensure that they are readily understood and that they don't inadvertently create reporting barriers.

     

  • Review the role of alcohol and other drugs in creating an environment that can contribute to sexual misconduct and to make recommendations to create a safer social environment.