Mid-year Title IX Report released by MSU Title IX office
MSU's Title IX office released its first mid-year Title IX report Tuesday. The mid-year report details incidents reported to MSU's Title IX office under the Relationship Violence and Sexual Misconduct Policy, or RVSM, from Aug. 16, 2016 to Dec. 31, 2016.
The new mid-year report details incidents over a span of four months, whereas the annual report that was released September 2016 details incidents that occurred during the 2015-16 academic year, roughly nine months.
“As campuses across the country, including MSU, continue to elevate conversations around sexual assault and misconduct, we expect to see an increase in reported incidents,” Title IX Coordinator Jessica Norris said in the report's release on MSU's Our Commitment website. “This is reflective of a campus community that is more aware of the issues, community values and expectations, and reporting options."
There were 337 incidents detailed in the mid-year report under MSU’s RVSM policy including sexual harassment, sexual assault, sexual exploitation, dating violence, stalking and retaliation. In comparison, there were 461 incidents detailed in the 2015-2016 annual report.
Of the incidents in the mid-year report, 37 were formally investigated and 300 were not investigated because of a variety of reasons — 226 were not investigated because the complainant either did not want to move forward or did not follow-up with investigators, 46 were cases MSU did not have jurisdiction over, 20 cases did not meet the standards set by the RVSM and eight were resolved through administrative closure outside of the OIE.
In comparison, in the 2015-16 annual report, 66 incidents were formally investigated and 378 were not. 289 were not investigated because the complainant did not want to move forward or did not follow-up with investigators, 50 were non-jurisdiction cases, 27 cases did not meet RSVM standards and 12 were resolved through administrative closure.
Average time to complete investigations reduced to 80 days from 104 days in 2015-16, according to the mid-year report. Average time to complete the student conduct process, or the disciplinary process, reduced to 53 days from 57 days in 2015-16.
Of the incidents, 106 were sexual assault, 39 were dating violence, 18 were multiple violations, 14 were domestic violence, 10 were sexual contact, 10 were marked "other," five were RVSM retaliation and two were retaliation, as indicated by a bar chart in the report. Three of the bars — at frequencies of 72, 52 and nine — were not labeled with corresponding instances in the report.
In comparison, the 2015-16 report saw 177 sexual assault incidents, 72 relationship violence incidents, 132 sexual harassment incidents, 67 stalking incidents, four multiple violations and seven retaliation incidents.
There were 16 sanctions with outcomes varying from probation to expulsion. Of those, six cases were students, nine were from university employees and faculty and one was not affiliated with the university.
In comparison, the 2015-16 annual report saw 31 sanctions, where 23 cases were students, seven were university employees and faculty and one was not affiliated with the university.
OIE also made note of resource additions, including hiring two new OIE investigators, adding another therapist position in the Sexual Assault Program and adding one part-time grant-funded prevention specialist to the Sexual Assault and Relationship Violence, or SARV, Prevention Program.
Follow The State News for more updates on the report.