Senate Republicans Blocked a Bill to Address Sexual Misconduct in Higher Education

(Nov. 16) – Secretary Betsy DeVos and the federal Department of Education released guidance regarding campus sexual assault and misconduct under Title IX that would make it harder for victims to achieve justice and more difficult to hold institutions accountable for mishandling complaints. Speaker Crisanta Duran released the following statement in response:

“The Trump administration is rolling back critical protections for student survivors and making campuses more dangerous. Last session, we put forth a comprehensive Colorado solution to ensure that incidents of sexual assault and misconduct on college campuses would be addressed promptly, and that there was a fair and just process for everyone involved,” said Speaker Crisanta Duran, D-Denver. “Coloradans need to make their voices heard and reject this horrible proposal.”

During the 2018 legislative session, the House passed Speaker Duran and Senator-elect Faith Winter’s bipartisan HB18-1391 setting state-level standards for institutions of higher education to ensure student safety on campus in the wake of the Trump administration’s decision to rescind Obama-era guidelines setting high standards for preventing misconduct and addressing it when it occurred. The Duran-Winter bill was formed in partnership with the institutions and would have established a fair and consistent response to sexual misconduct in higher education settings. The bill passed the House and but it was killed in the Republican-controlled Senate.

Studies show that approximately 1 in 5 women are sexually assaulted during their college years, and many more are sexually harassed. Many incidents go unreported.

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