‘U’ Addresses Sex Assault Policies After Football Scandal

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — In the wake of the sexual assault scandal involving members of the University of Minnesota football team last year, a special committee is discussing the school’s policies and decisions.

University Regents, along with outside legal counsel, laid the groundwork for the review Thursday morning.

Led by University Regents, the oversight committee identified several areas they will look at. They include sexual misconduct policies, the disciplinary process, privacy laws as they relate to student athletes and the football team’s boycott.

Staffers noted when situations involve student athletes, the university’s processes are exposed to the public and transparency can be difficult in the face of student privacy restrictions.

“I don’t think the university failed. I think that we have our policies and if there were some issues, those issues were with communicating our policies to the public. And I think we have a set of rules that we have to be guided by and I think it’s sometimes challenging, given that set of constraints to convince the public that what we are doing is appropriate,” Perry Leo, one of two University faculty athletic representatives, said.

As for a timeline for the review, the special oversight committee will meet again in one or two months to look at the findings.

Back in September 2016, a female student reported she was sexually assaulted by several men on the football team in an off-campus apartment.

The allegations ranged from those who had sexual contact with her to those who witnessed and encouraged it.

In the end, the University expelled four players and suspended another for one year.

The Hennepin County Attorney’s Office declined to press charges against any of the players.

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